“Integrity is telling myself the truth. And honesty is telling the truth to other people.”
~ Spencer Johnson
The ability to trust in all our relationships – not just intimate ones – allows us to take the risks necessary to grow. In addition, knowing how we decide someone is trustworthy is ultimately not so important for “protecting” ourselves, but rather, in a Ziji Up! kind of way, to also know:
Are YOU the type of person people can trust?
This often is about living with integrity.
People want to know where you stand, what you value, and if you act accordingly. It isn’t so much even WHAT those specific values are, or even about always knowing what is “right” or “wrong” (which, by the way, is often a futile effort).
Rather, whether someone trusts you or not is more about if YOU know what you value, if that somehow includes consideration of others, if you act consistently in the things that matter, and if you’re honest with yourself and others.
That is what builds trust.
For example, in romantic partnerships, trust isn’t only about fidelity, even though that is the way it is often used. In reality, whether or not your partner can trust you is also about wanting to know if you’ll consistently show up fully and authentically in the relationship in the context of the values you share:
*Can I trust that you’ll be home on time for dinner as you said you would?
*Can I trust you’ll keep supporting me in pursuing my passions in life?
*Can I trust you to bring home your share of the money to pay our bills?
*Can I trust that you’ll not spend us into debt?
*Can I trust that you’ll watch the kids the way I do?
*Can I trust that you’ll do the laundry and not ruin my shirts?
*Can I trust that you’ll be open to making love with me tonight?
*Can I trust that you’ll be honest with me?
It is about knowing, “Can I count on you?”
The greatest benefit to living with integrity is that ultimately this leads to you having more trust in YOURSELF.
And when you have more trust in yourself, your Ziji grows, you are more confident. You are proud of who you are and how you are in the world.
Then you will take more important risks. And you will stretch. And grow. And live full-on.
Take the rest of this month to observe how consistent you are in your actions. When you find an inconsistency, what can you learn from that?
Is it harder to stay consistent when you’re worrying about what others might think?
When you’re feeling insecure?
When you’re worried about disappointing someone?
When you feel you might not be liked by someone anymore?
When it is inconvenient?
One of my favorite poems about “showing up” is The Invitation, by Oriah Mountain Dreamer (I know…woo woo name but awesome poem). I invite you to partake:
It doesn’t interest me what you do for a living. I want to know what you ache for and if you dare to dream of meeting your heart’s longing.
It doesn’t interest me how old you are. I want to know if you will risk looking like a fool for love, for your dream, for the adventure of being alive.
It doesn’t interest me what planets are squaring your moon…I want to know if you have touched the centre of your own sorrow, if you have been opened by life’s betrayals, or have become shriveled and closed from fear of further pain.
I want to know if you can sit with pain, mine or your own, without moving to hide it or fade it or fix it.
I want to know if you can be with joy, mine or your own, if you can dance with wildness and let the ecstasy fill you to the tips of your fingers and toes, without cautioning us to be careful, to be realistic, to remember the limitations of being human.
It doesn’t interest me if the story you are telling me is true. I want to know if you can disappoint another to be true to yourself. If you can bear the accusation of betrayal and not betray your own soul. If you can be faithless and therefore trustworthy.
I want to know if you can see Beauty even when it is not pretty every day. And if you can source your own life from its presence.
I want to know if you can live with failure, yours and mine, and still stand at the edge of the lake and shout to the silver of the full moon,”Yes.”
It doesn’t interest me to know where you live, or how much money you have. I want to know if you can get up after the night of grief and despair, weary and bruised to the bone, and do what needs to be done to feed the children.
It doesn’t interest me who you know or how you came to be here. I want to know if you will stand in the centre of the fire with me and not shrink back.
It doesn’t interest me where or what or with whom you have studied. I want to know what sustains you from the inside when all else falls away.
I want to know if you can be alone with yourself, and if you truly like the company you keep in the empty moments.