Integrity: soundness of moral character; honesty.
Integrity: how you behave when no one is looking.
Integrity: choosing right when no one is there to hold you accountable.
Several years ago, my youngest cleaned out his binder, and the result was an enormous stack of papers piled on a bar stool and a little bit of personal anxiety. These are the kinds of piles that make me a little nuts. The idea of deciding what we keep and what we dispose of is overwhelming. I typically do one of two things.
1. Walk around the pile for way too long, contemplate the amount of energy it will take me to decide, and then throw it all away in an act of impulsivity.
2. Painstakingly comb through the pile looking at each one while fretting over what has value and what won’t be missed.
While opting for the second, I came across these words scribbled on top of a math assignment.
“The strategies I used while taking the test were not really any.”
I literally laughed out loud; I loved every word he used in his explanation.
As a teacher, I know this was frustrating. After all, strategies are taught in hopes that the students will actually put them to use.
As a mama, I couldn’t be any more delighted. I delighted in my son’s integrity. He didn’t attempt to make excuses or pretend. He opted for honest disclosure.
That is ridiculously refreshing.
We could all benefit from taking a lesson from his book. Integrity looks an awful lot like taking responsibility for your personal decisions.
He didn’t use strategies, but he owned it. I’m going to keep this picture close as a reminder of the value of honesty–>even in the face of potential consequences.
May we have the wisdom to choose integrity today.