Are You Living in Integrity?


I would venture to say that most people don’t give a second thought–or even a first thought–to the answer to the question posed in the title of this post:  Are you living in integrity?

To be fair, some of those folks don’t think much about whether they live a life of integrity because they do the right thing all the time.  Period.

My friend Charles is like that.  He was raised in horrific circumstances–unfathomable childhood violence–then entered a career meant for justice but riddled with the opposite.

Charles endured bigotry, hatred and indifference.  Yet, he is one of the most principled men I know.

Inventory your integrity

There are other folks, and I include myself in this category, who have struggled with applying integrity in their lives.  I’m not implying that you deliberately do false or rotten things, but you may be the kind of person who occasionally asks yourself, “Jeez, did I do the right thing?”

Don’t feel badly; part of what’s cool about life is that we can periodically take stock of the assets and liabilities that make up our days.  Most of us in active recovery from addictions find the practice beneficial to feeling peace and serenity.

For my “normal” friends, I’ll spare you the whole 12-step, rigorous honesty process (although we jokingly say everyone could benefit from an inventory).  Instead, I found a few quotes about integrity to offer as food for thought.

My long-time readers might recall a stretch of time when I posted five quotes on Mondays to percolate through your work week.  I hope you enjoy these morsels of wisdom in that same vein.

Please post in the comments section any other quotes or ideas that frame your life of integrity.  Have a terrific week, my friends!

Integrity thoughts to live by

Six essential qualities that are the key to success: Sincerity, personal integrity, humility, courtesy, wisdom, charity.

— William Menninger

Living with integrity means: Not settling for less than what you know you deserve in your relationships. Asking for what you want and need from others. Speaking your truth, even though it might create conflict or tension. Behaving in ways that are in harmony with your personal values. Making choices based on what you believe, and not what others believe.

— Barbara De Angelis

Be daring, be different, be impractical, be anything that will assert integrity of purpose and imaginative vision against the play-it-safers, the creatures of the commonplace, the slaves of the ordinary.

— Sir Cecil Beaton

But my idea of success is different today. For me, the most important thing in your life is to live your life with integrity and not to give into peer pressure, to try to be something that you’re not. To live your life as an honest and compassionate person. To contribute in some way.

— Ellen DeGeneres

Have the courage to say no. Have the courage to face the truth. Do the right thing because it is right. These are the magic keys to living your life with integrity.

— W. Clement Stone

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  1. Love the quotes, Beth. Good reminder to take a look at our integrity. Always a process and definitely something to continually review. Thanks!

    • Beth says:

      Sometimes it feels like I’m in a constant state of review, Cathy! While it’s occasionally exhausting, the results are rewarding. Hope you’re having a terrific week!

  2. Thank Beth. I love the one by Sir Cecil Beaton and I work on that every day. Call it playing small – not being all one can be. I never though of it as not having full integrity, but certainly one could look at it that way. Thanks for that perspective!

  3. Bill White says:

    In this hurry-up world, the essentials are often left behind. Yes, integrity! And we’re all better off when it’s a priority in the collective thought. Thank You!

    • Beth says:

      Hi Bill! You’re right . . . integrity is an essential ingredient of life–along with respect, decency, etc.–that often gets overlooked or left behind in a Wile E Coyote dustbowl. I’m guilty too of moving too fast, which is why I took a nap with integrity this afternoon!

  4. Herby Bell says:

    A sweet read and I hadda go find the Latin root of integrity, “intact.” Absolutely savoring your quotes and feel as if I’ve got a bunch of different ways to think about being “intact” to start the week. Loved the Whole thing, Beth. Thank you!

  5. Beth says:

    Hey Herby!

    Thanks for bringin’ out the Latin! Intact, huh? Now that does put a new spin on things. So glad you gave it a read and dug a little deeper. I appreciate you!!

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