Photo by samsommer on Unsplash

One of my Three Words To Live By in 2019 is Integrity. But with a twist!

People who act with integrity live their values in every circumstance. They’re consistent, authentic: the same person with everyone.

While a lot of us show this “best self” to others, how often do we give this best self to ourselves?

I know many of us honour the commitments we make to other people before the ones we make to ourselves.

We start the year with good intentions to create a new habit, whether it’s a new workout routine, healthier eating, doing more networking, or going to bed earlier.

But it’s easy for life to get in the way—kids are sick, snow days, travel, work deadlines—and suddenly we’ve forgotten to be good to ourselves.

If you’re feeling pulled in many directions, you’re not alone!

Staying in integrity is a major behaviour change for me. It’s not easy. As a student of personal development, I’m always excited to try a new approach to wellness, business, and career enhancement. How many podcasts have I listened to and thought, “I’m going to try THAT!”, only to drop the ball days later?

I’m better off not committing to something unless I know with certaintyI can make it happen.

So, I simplified my commitments to myself: two things that are so crucial to feeling good that I can’t tolerate missing them!

I committed to spending time outside every day—ideally being active. The Walk Challenge we just wrapped up reinforced this habit, and I really enjoyed moving in nature and being more reflective during my walks.

I also said that I wanted to dance more in 2019.

When I put that out to the universe, things lined up to make it happen! I was approached by a gym in my small town to teach a dance-based fitness class! Seeing that this was a sign, I committed. And suddenly I’m dancing a lot more to prepare and memorize my choreography!!

Dancing brings me so much joy. Now I get to share it with others! If I didn’t have the class, I may not have continued on with regular dancing. Then I’d feel bad about myself because I didn’t follow through. See how the cycle perpetuates itself?

Staying true to the commitments I make to myself has incredible benefits.

  • I plan one “impact activity” daily and focus first on getting that task done before anything else (no looking at email or social media until it’s checked off my list!). I am more productive than ever now!

 

  • I feel proud that I’ve stayed in integrity. I deserve to take time for the activities I love!

 

  • I’m careful about what I commit to. When I was approached to author a fitness certificate program recently, I felt honoured. But I knew it was going to take me away from other revenue-generating commitments I’d made, so I negotiated for a much higher fee than was originally offered. After lots of communications back and forth, I actually felt relieved when they declined my final fee proposal. I understand, of course: they have a budget. But their proposal wasn’t aligned with the direction I’m going in my business, and I was happy to recommend some colleagues who’d be a better fit for the project.

I’m realizing I have to say “no” to some things in order to make room for even better opportunities.

You are worthy of the benefits of self-integrity. Don’t underestimate how challenging it is, though! If you want support in identifying and committing to the most impactful thing in your own personal development, please reach out. I’m happy to talk through it with you!