Integrity

Published on 21 May 2012 by

Category: New Blog Posts, Updates

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I found myself saying to a friend recently, “If I were really living in my full integrity I would…………”

I was sort of shocked to hear those words come out of my mouth.  This is not, of course, the first time I have heard unexpected words come flying out of my mouth like that.  It came from the same voice that blurted out a few years ago, “I hate my life”.  It is almost as if there is another person living in my head sometimes that I didn’t realize had residence there.  That message of “I hate my life” led to a remaking, over time, of pretty much everything in my life.  Where I live.  What I do.  How I spend my time.  The friends and family who have come into my life, as well as gone from it.

So what do I make of the latest message?  One of the things I have felt proud about was living the way I professed to live.  Living the values I said I believed in.   So what was going on?  What is that all about?   That got me to wondering what the truth is.  The truth is, I am not living in full integrity.  So let me tell you what I think happened.

First, the why.   I believe all this is bubbling up inside me now because I am coming out of a period of time where I have been very challenged at a very deep level with real life-and-death issues.  My own and others close to me.  I have been really, really sick.  I wasn’t sure I would get “better”, and am still not sure.  During this time I have seen myself doing things, found myself thinking things and heard myself saying things that I would never believed would be a part of my life a year ago.

So, the “the voice” was telling me that there is a significant gap between what I am thinking, doing, believing, saying, desiring, dreaming about and how I am actually living my life.  That fits my definition of being out-of-integrity.

That sounds so bad.  I shy away from people who are living a life that seems like it is out-of-integrity and I am drawn towards people that seem to be living a life of integrity.  I believe (at least I did until recently) people either are, or they are not living a life of integrity.   And when they (or I) do something that seems totally out of integrity, I am shocked.

So, if I am out of integrity with myself, what does that mean in terms of what kind of person I am?  The thinking I have been doing lately, leads me to the truth that I have never lived a life of integrity.  Sounds really bad to admit that.

But, not all is lost.  I have a new sense that a life of integrity is the goal, an on-going process, not a destination, a place we either are or aren’t.  It seems to work like this.  Just about the time I reach a moment where it feels like I am totally congruent in terms of beliefs and behaviors, something happens and I find myself chasing perfection again.  New thoughts, feelings, and experiences change who I am, who I want to be and how I want to show up in the world.  Unfortunately these “Newbies” always run ahead of the behaviors that would honor them.

Truthfully all this could just be a rationalization, designed by my brain to help me feel better about the truth that slipped out my mouth-that I am not living in my integrity.  That wouldn’t be the first time I did that either.  I have a feeling though, that I have been kidding myself for a long time.  I have a feeling that I have NEVER been in a place of total integrity.  I just thought I was.  As I see it now, I have always TRIED to live that way, and have always come up short.  Sometimes a little bit, sometimes a lot.

“The Voice” says “finally, you get it”.

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