MOTIVATION: What Is Integrity?
Let every man do, as he is disposed in his heart, not grudgingly, or of necessity.
Tom used to work as a personal assistant. Throughout his working tenure of 40 years, none of his employers were fully satisfied with his work. When enquired, most of them reiterated only one reason. “Tom does not know how to say NO. He says YES to everything and then not does the things he did not want to”. Psychologists call this ‘Passive-Aggressive behavior’. Basically Tom used to fake himself and wanted to project as if he was willing to do anything for his boss, though the inner truth was something else.
Let us try to understand Integrity from Tom’s story. I will give you the simplest definition of Integrity: Say yes when you mean yes, no when you mean no, maybe when you mean maybe and I don’t know when you mean I don’t know. We keep confusing people and get into trouble when we say yes when we actually mean no, maybe when we mean I don’t know and on and on through all the permutations. We are in integrity when what we are doing in the outer world matches with what is real in our heart.
We have all dreamt and desperately want to be Civil Servants. The desperation can never be sufficed if we fake ourselves. Every step we take, every action, every reaction, every behavior, every conduct should be in sync with our dream. We can’t keep behaving like a fickle minded person or reacting impulsively or blasting like a volcano on trifling matters, and still keep dreaming of becoming Civil Servants. The whole thing sounds so unbecoming. And it simply signifies that we don’t possess enough integrity. No need to emphasize here that Integrity is one of the most vital virtues of an honest human and a responsible, mature bureaucrat. If it does not come to us naturally, then we don’t deserve to become Civil Servants.
We usually do much better when we let people know what is going on inside of us, than to play a presentation game which is out of sync with our inner truth. We need not fake ourselves. We can save ourselves and other’s trouble by being natural, original and direct at the outset. Honesty always serves best. And I’ll say ‘Do Not Fake, For Other’s Sake”.
“Give me the courage to tell my truth in word and deed.”