Integrity, Your Whole Truth

If you want long-term success, you must guard and protect your integrity. Without it, nothing else really matters. It doesn’t matter what you say if no one trusts you. And it doesn’t matter how committed, skilled, courageous, or optimistic you are if people don’t believe you’ll honor your words. None of those traits matter if people can’t count on you to do what you say you will do.

The loss of integrity is a major reason for failure and unhappiness. Look at the people who make the news because of a scandal—sports figures, film stars, politicians, CEOs, and sometimes a neighbor down the street. In most cases they allowed ego, insensitivity, and greed to override their integrity.

How can you guard and protect your integrity? If you consciously do four things, you will enhance your relationships, improve trust, and become a person whom others want to be around more often.

First, conduct a basic integrity check: Is the action I am about to take illegal, immoral, or unethical in any form? If you answer yes to any of those, STOP. Period.

Second, ask yourself: What is the right thing to do? You know the answer to that question. Regardless how much you may want to bury what ‘right’ is, if you are honest with yourself, the ‘right thing’ will always surface.

Third, defend your commitments. Don’t make commitments you cannot keep, even minor ones. You may have to give up something to keep your commitment. If that’s the case, ask yourself: Am I okay with making the exchange?

Fourth, eliminate ‘I’ll try’ from your vocabulary. Instead of saying ‘I’ll try,’ tell the person either ‘no’ or ‘consider it done.’ ‘I’ll try’ is weak and apathetic. You are not committed to doing anything when you use those words. ‘Consider it done’ is clear, direct and powerful.

Learn more about how to become the person you want to be. Order Quit Drifting, Lift the Fog, and Get Lucky today from Amazon, Barnes and Noble, CornerStoneLeadership, or through your local bookstore.

Become more optimistic!

Here are two quick actions you can take to become more optimistic.

First, talk to yourself in the same manner and with the same words you would use to encourage your best friend. If you are like most, you’re far more careful and considerate with what you say to others than with what you say to yourself. Typically, a large percentage of self-talk is negative: I can’t, I won’t, I wish, I’m not good enough, etc. Your best friend would never talk to you like that, and you would never talk to anyone else using the harmful words that you tell yourself.

When you get discouraged, ask yourself what your best friend would say to you, and then say it to yourself. It will make a difference in your ability to become the person you want to be.

Second, look around. You’ll see that there are plenty of things to be optimistic about. If you list five things you’re grateful for and dwell on them for a few minutes twice a day, your attitude will improve dramatically. Just five things. Taking a couple of minutes for gratitude will help change your perspective.

Why twice a day? If you acknowledge five blessings before arriving at work, your day will naturally begin better. In addition, before you open your door at home after work, do the same exercise. Even if you had a lousy day, refocusing on the positive things in your life will help prevent work issues from destroying your family time. The most important gift you can give your family is yourself. Give them your best, not just your leftovers from work.

Learn more about how to become an optimistic person. Order Quit Drifting, Lift the Fog, and Get Lucky today from Amazon, Barnes and Noble, CornerStoneLeadership, or through your local bookstore.

You get what you give!

Once there was a person who moved into a new town. He met a longtime resident and   said, “I’m new to your town. What are the people like here?”

“What were the people like in the town you came from?” the old-timer asked in return.

Well, they were pretty pessimistic and always complaining, and their glasses were half-empty,” the newcomer replied.

“Hmmm,” said the old-timer. “Sounds like the people who live here.”

A few weeks later, another person moved to the same town and met the same old-timer. “I’m new to your town. What are the people like here?” the newcomer asked.

“What were the people like in the town you came from?” the old-timer asked.

“Well, they were terrific. We worked together in the neighborhood, helped each other out, and were always there to support each other during tough times. We’re going to  miss them now that we’ve moved,” the newcomer replied.

“Hmmm,” said the old-timer. “I think you’ll like it here. That sounds like the people who live here.”

The old-timer’s message? You get what you give. If you want to be around people who are positive, optimistic, and eager to live life, your attitude must be the same. If you think the people around you are glum and pessimistic, check yourself because that may be what you’re reflecting, too.

Learn more about how to become an enthusiastic person. Order Quit Drifting, Lift the Fog, and Get Lucky today from Amazon, Barnes and Noble, CornerStoneLeadership, or through your local bookstore.

How optimistic are you?

Your attitude is important. It influences your approach to life and your relationships with others. It can be the catalyst to chart a new course for your life and help you become the person you want to be.

Here is a story about the same situation being looked at differently:

Two researchers working for a shoe manufacturer were independently dispatched to one of the world’s least developed countries. Their task was to evaluate the business potential for shoes within that country.

After several weeks, a report came back from the first researcher, and the message read, ‘No market here. Nobody wears shoes.’

A few days later, the second report came back from the other researcher. It read, ‘Great market here. Nobody wears shoes!’

Those two people saw the same thing differently. The first guy probably considered himself a realist. He fixated on one thing and could not see the bigger picture. Actually, he was not a realist. He was blinded by his own perception of the obstacles in front of him.

The second guy looked beyond the obvious and saw possibilities. Optimistic people see opportunity. Negative people can’t see through their own fog to the potential right in front of them.

Which guy best describes you? Learn more about how to become an optimistic person by ordering Quit Drifting, Lift the Fog, and Get Lucky today from Amazon, Barnes and Noble, CornerStoneLeadership, or through your local bookstore.