Integrity refers to the quality of being honest, transparent, faithful, and open with regard to interactions and communication with other people (AuBuchon 19). It is a vital personality trait that is necessary for the sustenance of relationships between people. People with integrity hold themselves to high ethical and moral standards. Their actions, behaviors, and speech reflect their moral values that govern their lives.
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In ethics, integrity is defined as the quality of being truthful and accurate with regard to one’s actions and behavior (Killinger 37). The importance f the world can be better understood by evaluating its origin. It originated from the Latin word integer, which means complete (AuBuchon 19). Therefore, having integrity is characterized by the completeness of character and personality. Integrity is the quality of being truthful, honest, and accurate with regard to one’s actions and behaviors and the disposition to live in accordance with personal values, beliefs, and convictions.
The two most important aspects of integrity are honesty and transparency. Honesty refers to the tendency to tell the truth in all situations, regardless of the consequences (Cloud 48). Many people lie because of the need for personal gains. Others lie because of the need to hide their true personalities and characters. People with integrity avoid lying and hiding information because such behaviors tarnish their reputation (Killinger 38).
On the other hand, transparency refers to the act of revealing information regarding a certain situation or matter without concealing part of it. Transparent and honest people find it easy to communicate and interact with others because of the trust their integrity elicits in other people. I always tell the truth because my reputation is my most valued asset. I believe that it is very important for people to be honest with themselves and others, act in accordance with personal values, and align their lives with moral principles.
The development of personal integrity requires individuals to critically and thoroughly evaluate their beliefs and values to determine whether they have positive or negative impacts on their lives and those of others (Cloud 51). Change is an important aspect of inculcating integrity because of the need to evaluate one’s life regularly constantly. Everyone makes mistakes. However, people with integrity accept them, learn from them, and make the necessary changes to ensure that they do not repeat those mistakes again (Killinger 41).
In contemporary society, integrity is a need in all fields, including politics, education, medicine, law, religion, and science, among others. People with integrity are trustworthy and are easy to interact with. For example, many people in politics lack integrity because of the pervasive tradition of lying to voters so that one can get into the office (Cloud 54). On the other hand, integrity is wanting in many businesses. Many business owners use manipulative techniques to coerce customers to buy their low-quality products. I have experienced several instances of lack of integrity in business. It is unethical for any person to lie or use manipulative methods to sell products or services. People who lack integrity lie, keep secrets, manipulate others, contravene their beliefs and values, and disrespect other people.
Integrity is an invaluable trait that confers self-satisfaction, respect for oneself, and respect from other people, trust, and admiration. People love to deal with people they trust and respect. For example, employers hire people who are honest and transparent because they do not hide anything from them and always take responsibility for their mistakes. The world would be a much better place if everyone adopted integrity by aligning their lives with certain moral and ethical principles.
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AuBuchon, Dennis. Integrity: Do You Have It? New York: iUniverse, 2003. Print.
Cloud, Henry. Integrity: The Courage to Meet the Demands of Reality. New York: Harper Collins, 2009. Print.
Killinger, Barbara. Integrity: Doing the Right Thing for the Right Reason. New York: McGill-Queen’s Press, 2010. Print.