Character is a broad term, describing a wide range of individual attributes. The attributes associated with character can be positive or negative, and act to predict and define an individual’s intentions, goals, and beliefs. Integrity serves as a positive identifier to an individual’s character. Integrity describes the moral fiber of an individual. The degree of integrity an individual possesses can impose significant effects upon the trajectory of their life.
Integrity is generally defined as the personal choice to consistently adhere to moral and ethical standards. These standards are often derived from religious, political, legal, and cultural values, directing an individual’s interpersonal framework. While states of integrity can vary due to differing foundations, the effects of a strong sense of integrity, or lack thereof, are often congruent.
Integrity, or a lack thereof, imposes effects on several different levels. On a personal level, integrity greatly influences the success of relationships. Honesty, moral consistency, and kindness elevate the likelihood of successful interpersonal relationships. However, a lack of these qualities can quickly degrade an existing relationship, or impede development before it forms. Nonetheless, integrity acts on more than just the personal level.
Integrity imposes equal affects upon an individual’s professional career. A lack of integrity can induce immoral acts in business endeavors, destabilizing a career or company. A lack of integrity was observed in the stock and mortgage transactions that resulted in the most recent economic collapse in the United States. While integrity is commonly correlated with interpersonal relationships, its effects are incredibly wide reaching, destabilizing careers and even entire economies.
Integrity is a fundamental component of personal character. The characteristic, describing the moral fiber and consistency of an individual, possesses wide reaching implications. The presence, or lack thereof, of integrity imposes a significant affect on personal relationships, professional success, and the overall fluidity of the society. If integrity were valued at a higher level, the world would be a better place.