Integrity. I’ve been thinking about it a lot lately, mostly because I heard Martha Beck talk about it on a podcast and it struck a nerve. She has run a program called The Integrity Cleanse, which I’d like to take, but as far as I can tell it’s not coming up any time soon.
What does she mean by integrity? As far as I can tell, she means living life in complete alignment and always telling the truth. For some reason people hear “always telling the truth” and automatically think it means being rude to people and saying whatever is on your mind, even if it’s, “your breath smells like a dead badger.”
But, no. It’s not about just opening your mouth and saying the perhaps mean things running through your head, it’s about really getting in touch with your truth. Did you say yes when you wanted to say no? Did you tell someone something to hurt them but you know it’s not true? Are you in a relationship or job that gives you hives, but you keep trying to force yourself to stay because it’s the “right” thing to do?
I was talking about this stimulating topic to my good friend Tabitha, and we decided for the month of September we’d have our own challenge to keep us aware of whether or not we’re living in integrity. At the end of the day we email or text each other one time during the day we felt like we were really living with integrity, and one time we felt like we were really not living in integrity.
This challenge is running through the month of September, so it’s only been going on for about 1.5 days. I’ve already been thinking a lot about integrity, so I can’t say it’s hard (maybe our next challenge is to not just notice when we feel out of integrity, but to do something about it ASAP), but I can see it’s going to be painful at times.
I think most of us, no, I know most of us are used to lying.To ourselves. To others. To our children. We don’t do it because we’re bad people, we do it either because we were raised to believe the same lies or because we believe the lies protect. They don’t though, at least I don’t think so, and that’s why I’m working on living with integrity every single day.
When I’ve got more to report, I’ll let you know.