When you hear the word “Integrity,” what do you think of? Words like honesty, sincerity, honor, goodness, incorruptible, dependable, and others might come to mind, and while all of those words do reflect integrity, here’s our favorite definition of integrity:
That’s quite a mouthful, but it leaves no wiggle room where integrity is concerned. We either have integrity or we don’t. And yes, no one is perfect, but having complete integrity is definitely a goal to work towards while giving ourselves grace when we mess up. Because we will.
We often think about the integrity we have with others, which means that when we say we’re going to do something, we do it, no exceptions. We keep the promises we make. And when we consistently keep those promises to others, it builds trust in that relationship. They can trust that we’ll come through and that our word is solid because we have a track record of keeping the promises we make.
But, what about personal integrity—how well we keep the promises we make to ourselves? This is where a lot of people struggle. While we aim to have a 100% success rate (or something close to that) when keeping our word to others, often, we’re not so great at keeping our promises to ourselves. We tell ourselves…
- “I’ll start my workout or nutrition plan tomorrow.” And then we don’t.
- “I’m going to put $50 in my savings account every month.” And then we don’t.
- “I’m going to call _______ (someone important) every week.” And then we don’t.
- “I’m going to go to bed 15 minutes earlier tonight.” And then we don’t.
You get the picture.
There can be a long list of reasons why we don’t keep the promises we make to ourselves, but the main reason is that we lack personal integrity. We don’t do what we say we’re doing to do when we say we’re doing to do it. And since the promises we make to ourselves aren’t often seen by others, it can be tempting to give ourselves a pass “just this time.” But each “just this time” leads to more and more “just this time”s, and our personal integrity takes a major hit. We can’t trust ourselves to do what we promise ourselves we’re going to do.
Besides building trust with ourselves, why would we want to build and strengthen personal integrity? Check out these important reasons:
We build confidence in ourselves. We know we can keep our promises, which can help us try new things with the confidence that we can be successful.
We’ll sleep better. We won’t be stressed or experience other negative feelings, which can definitely help us sleep more and better.
We’ll feel more peace. When we know we’re not keeping our promises to ourselves, it’s the opposite of feeling peace. We can actually feel like we’re fighting an inner battle with ourselves, which is not a good place to be.
We’ll take better care of ourselves. The promises we make to ourselves are all about helping us to improve our lives and become more successful. Keeping promises to ourselves simply leads to better self-care, which can then positively affect other areas of our lives.
We’ll inspire others. When those around us see us keeping our promises to ourselves, they’ll want to do the same. It’s as simple as that!
We’ll have a stronger mindset. Integrity, especially personal integrity, is an important key to creating a strong mindset—the type of mindset that helps us nail our goals and experience success long-term. The stronger our integrity, the better our mindset.
Need some more keys for transformation success?
We become a better person overall. When we keep promises to ourselves, we’ll be better able to concentrate on our own journey instead of comparing ourselves to others, wanting to please others, or focusing on others overall. We’re more likely to do what’s best for us, which allows us progress closer to who we ultimately want to become
Those are some pretty amazing benefits, right? The key to making and keeping promises consistently is to make our promises so super simple that we can keep them every. single. time. No matter what.
Personal Integrity + Transformation
No matter our goal, personal integrity—keeping those promises we make to ourselves—is THE secret to success. And when it comes to a transformation goal, personal integrity is the foundation for achieving that goal too. Here’s the deal: A workout isn’t just a workout and nutrition isn’t just what we feed our bodies. Why? While each workout and nutritious meal gets you closer to your goal, each one also helps build your integrity. Without integrity, each piece of our life and our routine may be parts of a whole that aren’t quite working together. Often, this is because we make promises to ourselves that just aren’t realistic, which negatively affects our personal integrity—our trust and self-confidence in our word—because there’s no way we can keep them. With integrity (think back to our definition), we have a grounding idea of WHY we are choosing to do what we do (build our integrity, trust, and self-confidence in ourselves), we make promises that are important to us AND that we can keep, and with all of this in place, we are more likely to succeed. Let’s break it down:
- Without integrity: I will work out 2 hours a day every day.
- With integrity: I will work out 5 minutes a day every day.
- Without integrity: I will hit my macros every day.
- With integrity: I will eat an extra serving of vegetables every day.
- Without integrity: I will drink a gallon of water every day.
- With integrity: I will drink an extra cup of water every day.
- I will spend an hour doing mindfulness exercises every day.
- I will spend 2 minutes a day just breathing.
Every single one of those integrity-centered promises is totally doable every time, right? Strong personal integrity can get us to the gym when we might not want to work out because we want to keep that promise to ourselves. And with that type of integrity, we’ll make sure that we do all 5 minutes of movement, not 4 or even 4 ¾, because 5 minutes is our promise. These small promises we make to ourselves, like we shared above, can work together to help us achieve our goals because every time we keep a promise, it strengthens our integrity and helps propel us to keep more and more promises. And once we get that integrity momentum going, we want to keep our promises no matter what happens, and we won’t want to cut corners on any of our promises because our integrity is so important to us.
Ready to give it a try? Let’s apply your newfound knowledge about integrity to your next workout. Don’t cut corners, do every minute and movement you’ve promised yourself you’d do, and build that integrity. You can find a workout that Chris just posted here, and it only takes 10 minutes and zero equipment!