Written by Dr. Dorothy Martin-Neville

In speaking with two prospective clients today, I was reminded once again that what we know is irrelevant. What we believe and what we practice is what has the greatest impact on our lives.

One “knew” that she was the problem in not achieving her dreams. She has worked tirelessly yet at the same time has been treating her business as if it was a hobby. She was charging far less than she needed to if she was going to make any real profit. When I mentioned to her that one factor of a business is actually making money she just laughed. It was a ridiculous thing to say; something she knew and yet something she hadn’t really considered when looking at the costs of what she was offering compared to what she was charging.

She just looked at me when it finally dawned on her that yup, there was a problem here. No wonder she couldn’t grow further, expand her business, or live the life she desired. She knew yet her belief that if she actually charged what she needed to cover expenses etc., she would frighten people away, caused her actions to betray her and her goals.

How frequently do you know what needs to get done, what needs to be said, and yet something in you causes you to believe that what you know needs to be distorted to keep the peace, to make people like you, to not “make waves” and so on? What we know becomes irrelevant since our beliefs and or actions are not at all in alignment with them.

It can be hard to keep integrity with yourself. To go with what you know is true. Sometimes we wish we didn’t know something; we wish we didn’t understand. Yet when you do, pretending you don’t is stepping out of integrity with yourself. Frequently, we don’t need to say a word to anyone else - but always we need to admit to ourselves what we know and decide what to do with that knowledge.

If you witness racism, bullying, etc. would you step in? Would you support someone? Would you get help? Know your response – and - if it doesn’t sit well with you then know you are in a place of needing to choose personal integrity or not. Recognize the cost is high when you don’t...

If you see someone fall and your natural inclination is to run and help yet you don’t, look at how what you know is the correct thing to do got blind-sighted by the beliefs that you shouldn’t interfere; you shouldn’t make them feel embarrassed by knowing they were seen. Your actions, along with your beliefs, called you to betray yourself, to step out of integrity. You know you did because you spent the next hour or more trying to justify to yourself why you didn’t help. You then had to deal with the guilt if not shame as well.

Without judgment, just observe yourself. Observe your choices. Give yourself the gift of personal integrity as a way of life. The price is so much smaller than stepping out of it.

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