Integrity

I used to be one of those.  When i first went on Facebook, i felt it was my duty, you know, being so smart and everything, to correct other people’s grammar.  I was a teacher’s aide in university and marked first year papers.  It was kind of my responsibility, right?  Help society with their grammar.  Pretty nobel, if you ask me.

And do you know how many people use stupid logic to prove a point?  You, sir, are an idiot.  Yes, i just posted that on your timeline.  Just being honest.  Did you a favour there.  No, don’t thank me.  Just being honest.

i have been an honest man for a long time.  Depending on my current boundary issues, i will answer just about any question, but i will be honest.  My ex (not Sarah…she is not an ex) asked me once if something she was wearing made her look fat.  My reply?  “No.  The dress doesn’t make you look fat.  You’re fat.  The dress is fine.”  She left me.  Never figured that one out.

You see, i thought i was exhibiting integrity, by being honest.  Integrity is about more than honestly.  Total honesty can by a terrible thing.

Ok.  You cheated on your wife.  i’m not judging, so if you feel guilty…well…anyhow.  The honest thing is to tell your spouse and, hopefully, they kick your ass to the curb.  But that is not integrity.

If i have integrity, i do not cheat on my spouse in the first place.  i don’t cheat because i made a commitment to Sarah.  i’m monogamous.  Sue me.

That is the problem with lies.  They catch up to us.  There is an immediate effect when you lie.  Your brain shoots cortisol into your system.  Don’t know about cortisol?  It is my duty to inform y0u:  “Cortisol is a steroid hormone that regulates a wide range of processes throughout the body, including metabolism and the immune response. It also has a very important role in helping the body respond to stress.” (for more science, go to: http://www.yourhormones.info/hormones/cortisol.aspx)

Anita Kelly, Professor of Psychology at the University of Notre Dame, Indiana, conducted a study on 110 adults. She spent 10 weeks with the participants, urging half of the participants not to lie throughout the study period while the remaining half were not given any specific instructions. All participants knew they would be required to keep track of how many lies or ‘fibs‘ they told each day. They each take a lie detector test every week and answer a questionnaire regarding their mental and physical health as well as the quality of their relationships.

They found, the bigger the lie, the worse it is for your health.  They also discovered that telling three less lies per week resulted in four less mental health issues and physical complaints three fewer times.

Other research has connected lying has been linked to increased production of stress hormones, faster heartbeat, increased perspiration, and increased blood pressure. Excess stress caused reduces white blood cells which can result in increased back pain, stress headaches, menstrual problems, and fertility issues.  If the lie is too big, one can even experience the adrenaline rush. Pupils dilate and the person begins to sweat.

Within a few minutes of telling a lie your brain struggles to maintain a track record of what you know and what you said.  So your brain is immediately impaired.  As it shifts things over to focus on the lie, other things can be dismissed as unimportant.

 

We miss so much of life by being dishonest with others.  i know it is easier to avoid conflict in the short term, but it can build animosity and anger. Here you go:

Integrity and honesty are character issues.  Way important than what people say when we are not around. Some people enjoy talking about other people.  That is what they do.  Can’t fix them so gotta work on me.

Because integrity is not about them…it is about me.  i do not need to run about correcting anyone else’s flaws because i have plenty of my own to work on, thank you very much.

There i am.  i am not talking about the bathroom in Canadian Tire, or about boundary issues.  i am talking about in my own home.  Is that honesty?  No. Integrity?  Not even close.  Here are i am not daring to be vulnerable and honest with the person who loves me most.  The man so sure of his integrity.

Side bar.  If you cannot share with that person, i understand.  Some folks are in terrible situations and i am not suggesting you be vulnerable to someone who is damaging you.  i could tell you to leave and find someone else, but that is often easier said than done.  i could say all kinds of things, but i won’t.  Bottom line.  Be safe.

My integrity demands i keep my promises to others.  So i am stepping out of my self-created shell of protection.  And you, my dear readers are seeing my first steps into a whole new world.

Aw.  Look at him.  A baby chick peeking out of an egg.  Don’t you just love it?  We need to be gentle with him.

Anyhow, i say this a lot, but i will repeat it once again.  i’m not an expert on everything, but i know some things.  If you find stuff here that helps you on your journey, that is a bonus.  And i value comments or observations.

This is the Asylum.  This is my safe place to talk about my journey openly and honestly.  That is why Sarah reads things first.  Sarah deserves to know my feelings before anyone else.

That would be “integritous” if that is a real word (no, it is not)

Working it with you a day at a time,

John

 

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