The Bible says: “Above all else, guard your heart, for it is the wellspring of life.” The position you hold in life may cause people to take notice of you, but only your integrity will cause them to respect you and be willing to follow you. And integrity is only established when it becomes clear to everyone that progress, financial reward and recognition are not your gods; that you value something more, something you refuse to give up for profit or popularity. With integrity comes influence. You can manage people without integrity but you can’t influence them without it. Talking one way and living another will wound you. And depending on time and circumstance, you may not be able to recover from it. You say, “How I conduct my private life is nobody else’s business.” Wrong! When people see a difference between what you demand of others and what you demand of yourself, it’ll erode their respect for you every time. Your position may make you secure, but your influence with others will always remain fragile. At any given time you are only one decision, one word or one action away from destroying what it took years to build. Why is it important to keep this in mind? Because the fastest route from where you are today to where you will be tomorrow is not always the most honorable one. Leading and being the person you want to be don’t come easy and don’t always line up. It’s in those moments, however, that you discover a great deal about yourself—you find out what you truly stand for!
Published on Saturday, February 18, 2012 @ 7:39 AM CDT