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What’s Your Integrity Got to Do with It?

Has she called yet?  Is the technician scheduled to come out?  I gave her the guy’s number a couple of days ago.  I’m left waiting and wondering.   And while I wait, it’s making me think about two cardinal themes of life coaching … tolerations and personal integrity. 

Ya want to get rid of the first … and you want to do everything possible to uphold the second.

To explain, we have a condo in Mexico, and electricity is really expensive there.  We bought a high dollar AC unit, not commonly found in Mexico, to replace the existing one that was functioning perfectly.  Now why would we do such a dumb thing?

Because we were told it was super-efficient and would save us big $’s over time.  And that might have been true if the #@&! thing worked right.  But that’s NOT been the case.

It conks out again last week and the one repairman recommended by the distributor comes out, cleans the unit, fills it with refrigerant, and it works for a few minutes, only to conk out again.  Baffled, he gives up.  Says we should buy a new unit.

We get the name of another technician.  I send it along to our property manager.  We’re in New York conducting a training program, so we’re relying on her to chase this issue on her own.  I ask her to contact him and set up a time for him to come out.

I hear nothing back.  Another day goes by, and I don’t want to nag, so I give it a little more time.

Still nothing.  So, I text her and she replies, “Yes, I called the guy.”

When I ask her to close the loop in a situation like this and let me know that she has, indeed, done what I requested, she replies that she was really busy.

So, what’s the message here for you … and all of us?

When you don’t take care of business that’s hanging out there … when you leave it unresolved … it becomes a burden.  It becomes a toleration.  Could be anything from trying to operate with a messy desk to not returning a phone call to putting off fixing something … be it an appliance or a relationship.

Had she just taken 20 seconds to text me … “Called him. Coming out later this week,” it would have been off her plate and I wouldn’t be pestering her.

That’s where the expression, No time like the present, comes from.

There’s no time like the present, because you put whatever’s hanging over your head behind you.  And, in doing so, you feel a flush of relief … and you’re able to move on to other things with an unburdened mind, which makes you much more efficient … and happy.

You want to make your experience of life better in a hurry?  Start working on getting rid of your tolerations.

Okay, but where does integrity come into it?  When you don’t do what you said you’d do or were expected to do, you’re out of integrity.

So, how you do get back into integrity?

When you have a job to do or a promise to fulfill and you don’t come through on time or in the manner that was expected, just fess up and say, I didn’t do it … and make a fresh commitment.  Then, perform to expectations.

Actually, real integrity is when you communicate as soon as you know that you’re not going to be able to perform as promised or expected.  Don’t wait until you break your commitment or don’t meet your deadline.

And don’t make excuses. 

I hear it all the time.  I couldn’t do this thing I pledged to do, because I was busy or tired or overwhelmed or whatever.

No.  Just take responsibility and move on toward satisfactory completion of the task or fulfillment of the promise.

Doing what you said you’d do is a big part of personal integrity, and making it right when you underperform, without excuses, is another big part.

Do we all come up short at one time or another … a little or a lot?  Of course.  Nobody’s perfect.  And yet, a successful life can largely be defined by how well you uphold your level of personal integrity.

In a lot of ways, nothing is more important.

So, pick one toleration that’s been buggin’ the heck out of you and get it behind you.  Clean that desk.  Make that call.

Then, get to work resolving just one situation where you haven’t been completely in integrity and see how much freer you feel.

You’ll love yourself for it.




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Meet Denise: Denise Hedges is a Business Development Coach and Speaker Coach for small business owners who want to be more comfortable, confident, and successful with their sales and marketing efforts. She specializes in helping them use speaking as a way to dramatically improve their results!