It can be hard to push the ego aside and tell the truth but integrity is a beautiful thing. One of the most memorable reviews I’ve had on amazon about my book to date came from a wonderful author and it said:
“what I found most engaging of all was that her integrity shines through on every page, she’s not afraid to share her flaws and vulnerabilities”
How can we be the same person privately, publicly and personally? How do we live our lives with greater integrity?
I have always been an open book. My nickname from my Dad is WYSIWYG (what you see is what you get). One of my motto’s is always do sober what you say you will do drunk. I drink less these days though and I strive to keep the many promises I make when I am sober. I strive to be less talk and more action. Honesty is one of the most important aspects of integrity. It can be scary to be honest and some won’t like it, but it’s important.
Having a greater sense of self awareness is really useful. I talk and write a lot about our values. Personal transformation takes a lot of work and dedication. There are tools we can use such as vision boards and mantras to help us have a clearer understanding of what guides us and to then reflect over whether or not we are living our life according to our values. Granted, we will all mess up from time to time and that’s called being human. One of my values is to be kind and to judge less and live with a very open mind. Sometimes I lack patience though and there are moments I find myself snapping, instead of dishing out love and compassion. I ain’t quite Mother T just yet.
I have written a lot about mindfulness but I am taking it to the next level this year. 2019 is my time for a one-way ticket to mindfulness and I have to say, it’s been a bit of a game changer for me. Look out for some more of my podcasts about this soon. Taking time to practise mindfulness helps us to have a greater sense of purpose which can be transformational in terms of demonstrating integrity. Mindfulness requires us to be super conscious of the way we think, speak, and behave daily. Sometimes it can feel impossible to be mindful. Like the mornings I am packing up and trying to leave the house (it is the Feb break as I type and I am not missing the early morning school run), or the times we drink too much and perhaps lose our inhibitions. Perhaps stress can make it harder to be mindful. I think it’s important to remind ourselves that we don’t have to act on our thoughts. Also, we don’t need to give energy to our thoughts either. Sometimes we have thoughts that don’t serve us. Perhaps it’s the inner critic, memories of mistakes we have made in the past or thoughts concerning our ego. I now see these thoughts as negative noise and the act of mindfulness helps me to push those to one side. I adore going for a massage and a pamper, but there are times that my mind gets noisy, instead of focusing on the amazing sense of touch. Practising mindfulness daily helps to remind us to tame that noisy mind. To focus on breathing or our senses and take ourselves away from thoughts that don’t serve us. Thoughts such as fear, negativity or self-doubt. Perhaps one of the best things for me that has come out of mindfulness is my desire to be more present. My inbox is never going to be empty. There will always be work to be done. There will always be more tasks, more goals and more places to rush to. I decided this year I wanted to walk a bit more, when it is so tempting to sprint. I decided I wanted to swim more, instead of drowning in lists.
Living our lives with integrity can be so hard, but when we speak our truth, even if it makes our voice shake or our hands tremble, powerful things happen.