One of the things that I taught my sons growing up was to own their actions…whether right or wrong. I taught them that if what they did was not appropriate or came out bad even with good intentions, to own it and not try to blame other people for their actions. It shows our character by how we do this. We can either stand up and say “you know what folks..I am sorry. What I did was not the right way to handle this or that” or we can try to turn it on the other person and begin attacking.
Honesty is a huge thing with me as you all know and if we do not own our own actions and blame others because they disagree with us, then we are not being honest….not being honest with ourselves or with everyone around us. And what people can fail to see is that while they are trying to blame others for inappropriate behavior, everyone around them sees what they are doing and so they are showing themselves to the world. And some people love to do this via the internet thinking that gives them more credibility. It will give credibility if you are owning your actions and your words but if you are via the social media trying to place blame on someone else, it shows your character to the world.
My dear friend Sherry uses this quote a lot…
“when someone shows you who they really are…believe them”.
When someone shows you that they are not all the nice and sweetness they try to portray and act in a way that says they have a manipulative or ugly side..believe them. And when someone shows you that they are honest and good…believe them. No matter what it is..a person will eventually show you their true side. Usually the ones that are pretending to be this sweet and loving soul but have the ugly darker side will eventually slip up and you will find them doing ugly things.. They are showing you who they really are.
I have found through the years that there are those who, if you dare to criticize or disagree with them…they will set out to get you. I know you all know that kind of high school behavior. They have even made movies on it but it is not just high school people who will do that. We will never have people agree with all we do and that is normal but many will only have around them only..ONLY..those that agree and go along with what they do and say. And sadly, there are people who will do that. Just like in high school, you will have people who will follow people and will not stand up for what is right, will not tell someone who they are friends with that what they did was not right but will go along with the person who is leading the pack. And that person will never admit that they were wrong and therefore will continue to make the same mistakes over and over and over all their lives.
I also taught my sons to stand up for what is right…even if you stand alone. Own your behavior. If you believe that you are right..stand up for it. If there is injustice, stand up for what is right. If someone is being hurt or mistreated, stand up for them. And, if you are wrong..stand up and admit it. Do not blame someone else. It is so important to own our words, our actions and our intentions if we are going to be people of integrity and honesty and good morals. But, I am sure that you all know too that there are people who do not do this. We have seen it from the highest office down to just people we know personally. They will never admit that they may have made a mistake. Instead, they will try to promote hatred and anger towards whomever disagrees with them or if they apologize it is what I call a “false” apology. We all know them…they use words to divert the apology onto the person that was offended or hurt…”I am sorry but…”. There are no “buts” when you hurt others, even if it was unintentional.
There are a few key phrases people use when trying to divert attention from their doing wrong. One is that if a person dared to disagree with them, then that person must be such a “lonely, sad person” or some phrase along those lines, or will talk about how the person that dared to say something must be of a certain mentality. They will hint at inappropriateness in those who do not agree with them but will never admit that anything they did is inappropriate. They will not own their own behavior or words. Most of us recognize people like this instantly but some will be so blinded by the person who acted inappropriately or will be a person that stands up for nothing and they will just be a sheeple and go along with the wrong deed. We have minds and we are smart enough to have opinions even if they differ from what someone else does. And we should have courage enough to stand up for what is right.
As long as we live honestly, ethically and morally…and we own our actions and our words…then we are ok. It is when we do not own what we said or did and try to divert it on to someone else that we show people who we really are….we show them our real character. We will make mistakes and we will fall and it shows who we are by what we do with those mistakes. And those around us, will either stand up for what is right or they will keep silent because they do not want to “make waves”, which again shows our character.
And the last line that should be on the quote above is:
Or you will fall for anything
Many people will not want to get involved, will not stand up for anyone because they do not want to make waves, will allow ugliness to go on instead of saying “you know, that was not the thing to say or do. I love you friend but it was wrong” and that shows the kind of character they have. There comes a time when you need to stand up for injustice, stand up for what is right and make a stand because if you stand for nothing, then no one will stand for you. Own your actions and own your words because they will follow you all your life. Standing up for what is right is not creating drama. It is standing up for the truth and for justice.
I have learned from my older than dirt wisdom that saying “I was wrong” or “I am sorry” does not mean you are a bad person, it means you realize that you are not perfect and will make mistakes and people will see them because we do not live on an island by ourselves. I learned how to apologize a long time ago when I have said or done something that was not right. And many times I have eaten my words and said “I am so sorry. I did not mean it how it sounded but it was still wrong” and that friends, gives you a life of peace and joy because you know you have owned your words and actions and you have taken responsibility for them and righted any wrongs. I am proud of my sons and I have tried to emulate standing up to them and they do. They have the courage to make a difference in their corner of the world. It all comes down to choice. We can choose to own our actions and our words or we can make excuses, blame others and denigrate others to cover up our own bad behavior…the choice is ours to make.
Have you ever heard the expression “Everyone has a price. What is yours?” Usually, it is when someone wants something of yours but I think it is true in life in general. I have seen people lie, cheat and steal to get money, benefits, etc that were not theirs but the more I see of the new reality shows coming out, I realize that many will sell their own souls for the almighty dollar bill and when they do that, they are selling themselves short.
image from http://www.myspace.com/raysmithdrums
I have decided that I must be plain crazy but I can not compromise my values or my self-respect just to have money. I do not watch reality shows for this reason. I will not eat a buffalo anus for a million dollars. Sorry. Not going there. I will not act like an idiot and make myself look stupid for a money either. I look at the show Here Comes Honey Boo Boo and think how can the Learning Channel put this on. I mean..an educational show my foot. So, the executives of TLC are selling their souls for a buck and that family is acting like idiots for money. Now, do not be fooled. They are not as dumb as they act. Mama June was on Extreme Couponing and made money so she knows what she is doing. And those children are being taught to act in ways that I can only imagine their teachers must dread. And all for money. Sorry, but I would rather stay poor.
I can not stand any of those reality shows from Jerseylicious to the New Housewives on down because in the first place…they are not reality. They are people paid to act crazy, wild, uncouth and whatever else seems to turn the viewing audience on. I find it impossible to believe that anyone in this day and time could believe that these shows are actual reality and not staged performances but some do believe that it is real. People wrote TLC and begged for the Honey Boo Boo show to remain on the air so people are watching it and loving it. What happened to standing up for morals and honesty and ethics? What about holding TV channels responsible for what they proclaim to be. Oh yes, people are learning from the Honey Boo Boo show…kids are learning to be disrespectful and act in ways that most parents would be ashamed to see them act in public.
image from http://appliedalliance.wordpress.com/
No wonder our political world is like it is because people are voting these people into office. No one looks at the morals, the ethics and the honesty of the candidates. Why do we not seem to hold people accountable? The government sure holds us accountable on taxes and income and what we state as true. So, why do we not hold them accountable. Why do we just take a candidate and follow it because it is of one party? I do not find that all the candidates in one party are people I would vote for.
I can not speak for anyone elses going price but I can tell you what mine is. I will not compromise my own self respect, my honesty, my ethics, my faith, or anything else for money. I learned a long time ago that it does not provide the happiness and peace that people yearning for it think it will. It lasts about as long as spending it does. Value and respect oneself is what I believe. If I do not value nor respect myself…no one else will.
image from http://www.idlehearts.com
And just a reminder:
Am Asking for VOTES for my friend Sherry E. Showalter in the Yahoo “WOMEN WHO SHINE”.
If you will vote for her, please go here to vote:
Loyalty, generosity or honesty…..which is more important? I laid here thinking about this and thought wow, what a serious question this is. What do you want in a friend? Which one means more to you.
I can only tell you which means more to me and that is honesty first, then loyalty and generosity. I read a short story by O’ Henry and it is called “After Twenty Years”. You can read the whole story here:
It says a lot to me because it tells when honesty is more important than loyalty. It is about two men who agree to meet twenty years later. In the story, a policeman sees a man leaning against the wall and walks up to him.
“The man in the doorway struck a match and lit his cigar. The light showed a pale, square-jawed face with keen eyes, and a little white scar near his right eyebrow. His scarf pin was a large diamond, oddly set.”
The man told the cop not to worry, that he was waiting to meet a friend from twenty years ago. They had promised to meet twenty years later. The man and the cop carried on a conversation and the man told the cop all about his friend. The policeman told the man that he hoped that his friend showed up soon and he walked on around the corner.
The man was leaning against the wall watching when a man walked up and started talking to him. The lights were dim and the man leaning against the wall thought it was his old friend. They talked a minute before the first man realized that this was not his long-lost friend. The man was an undercover cop and informed him that he was and had been under arrest for ten minutes.
The police department from Chicago had sent out flyers to all the police departments asking them to pick up “silky Bob” who was a criminal and wanted. Before the policeman took him away, he told the man that was “silky Bob” that the cop that had talked to him earlier sent him a note and handed it to the man.
~”Bob: I was at the appointed place on time. When you struck the match to light your cigar I saw it was the face of the man wanted in Chicago. Somehow I couldn’t do it myself, so I went around and got a plain clothes man to do the job. JIMMY.”
The policeman had a choice. He could be “loyal”…the kind of loyalty some friends want you to be, which is to stand by them and agree with them even when they are doing something wrong or illegal or he could be honest and live up to the code of his job and his heart. One may affect a friendship but the other affects your very soul and character. Though he struggled, he decided honesty was more important. And I am sure that is because then he could live with his conscience.
We may make people…friends, family..loved ones…angry when we do not agree with them and when we tell them that what they are doing is wrong..but if we are doing it because we are being honest…then we are doing the right thing. I have made people mad before because I would not agree with them doing something illegal or wrong and I have lost so-called friends because of that. But, I truly believe that if we love someone…if we really love them…we tell them the truth and we do not stand up and agree with them just because we do not want to make them mad or lose their friendship or love.
I have told my sons that I will not support them doing anything illegal, etc but that I will stand by them and be with them as they face whatever the consequences are of their actions. That is loyalty to me. Out of honesty, I can not support illegal and immoral actions but out of loyalty, I will not stop loving them or being there for them. That is the difference in honesty and loyalty to me.
Which is more important to you? Loyalty, generosity or Honesty? Very thought provoking question, isn’t it.
I figured I would be up tonight after my trip out to the tiny church but that is ok for it was worth it to me and I would do it again. I am still feeling the joy of having gotten to go today. So, while I am trying to tone my pain down, I thought I would just ramble a bit. Below is a picture of my Saint Francis statue right beside the patio. Those are mixed sunflowers planted beside him. I can not wait to see them bloom. And in the pot is a blooming vine that I am looking forward to seeing get blooms on it. It is supposed to have red flowers that grow on this vine. But, anyway…the picture is a very relaxing picure to me and brings serenity and that helps with pain.
I was laying here thinking about dreams and about a friend of mine that told me she was too old to dream anymore and she is younger than me. I do not think there is an age limit on dreaming. We might have a time limit (just kidding) but I think we can dream up until the day we leave this world.
I believe sometimes we set these ridiculous “rules” in place that I often wonder who made them. I remember when my children were little my father telling my son that little boys did not play with dolls. Meanwhile, three feet from him was his female cousin who was playing with the “boys” trucks. So, who set that rule? Why not let little boys play with dolls? It might make them more in tune to children when they decide to have some.
Another one I was told when I turned thirty by a cousin was that once you were thirty you were not supposed to wear pants anymore…you were a mature lady. Ok, maybe I was the rebel growing up…and I am still growing up by the way…but who said we do not wear pants anymore and must wear a dress all the time? Sounded like another one of those dumb rules to me and of course I put on pants just to spite it too.
I got teased because I love dolls even now and have them in my room. Did you know I am too big to play with dolls? Goodness, I did not. I just knew I got enjoyment of seeing them and putting them in different outfits to brighten my room. Wow, who made that rule? Well, guess they will be mad when they find out a friend sent me a girl reborn doll and it is due here tomorrow. Reborn dolls look and feel like a real baby. It is amazing. And when my pain is screaming, my reborn doll is a wonderful visualization tool to help me get through it. I hold him…Gabriel…and I sit and close my eyes and rock in the recliner and visualize the days when my boys were little or my Sweetpea and I rocked them. It takes me away from the pain and brings me joy. Guess the creator of the rule that says once you get my age you should not play with dolls never thought of that one, huh.
Now here are some “rules” that I can live by. They are not really rules but great quotes that lead the way for us if we allow them. Life is too short to be bogged down with senseless rules but too precious not to use wisdom along the way.
This first one is so true. It does not say do not depend at all. It says do not depend too much on others in this world. I have seen people become dependent emotionally on others and then when the times come where others are busy and they can not find anyone to come to help them through their emotional crisis, they become almost hysterical. I am proud of the friends and loved ones I have but I also am proud of the brain I have and that I can think and I can decide things on my own. We have to learn to self soothe ourselves for there will always be times when people are busy or not home and we have to deal with a crisis and if we do not know how to soothe ourselves so that we can handle it, then it will always be a traumatic experience. People are human. They will always let us down at one time or another…not because they do not care but just because they ARE human.
I truly believe that life gives us back what we put into it. If we are kind and loving, then it will come back to us. If we are bitter and full of angst, that will come back too. I think if we stop before we spout off anything in anger or do anything in anger and make ourselves say one good thing…then it can set the tone for our day and we will find that saying ugly things are not really necessary.
I remember a friend from many years ago called zigi. She was a precious girl of about 17 but an old soul. She died young from her body being exposed to drugs too long. She had cleaned herself up and was living a wonderful life with a baby and husband but her past came back to haunt her and her kidneys failed.
When people would tell her how sweet she was or how kind, she would tell them that what they saw in her was what they were giving out. Now, I do not mean that syrupy fake sweet that some people do but the real genuine sweet…the kind of sweetness and kind heart that is authentic. Many did not get that. Those of us that thought she was sweet and loving were sweet and loving people. Those that did not like her and thought she was something else, they saw what was in their own hearts.
I believe life is too short to let all the garbage take over our lives. We have to pick what is the best and what is the most important. And once you discover that, then work towards that. From experience, I can tell you that life can change in the blink of an eye. I look back to when I first started getting sick…in my thirties. I was young and thought like so many do at that age, that we are invincible. What I learned young was that there are no guarantees in life and if you want to do this or that, then you better start trying it while you have the time.
Love from the depths of your heart. Yes, you may get hurt but the joy you feel while you are loving should make up for it. I told a friend once that was divorcing after twenty years and she wanted to wipe it all out to remember..that there were good moments in that twenty years. There were happy moments, moments of sharing and loving. Do not turn them all into hate and anger. Take the good and cherish it. Just because you can not get along now does not mean that you must hate ever minute of the twenty years you had….or however many years.
Love, forgive…others and yourself, laugh, share, reach out, do for others, reach for your dreams no matter your age and most of all live with honesty and integrity. For if you do that…then you can face anything. All it takes is believing..in yourself.
Oh, I think Facebook people would find this good with all the scams and games that go on there. There are a lot of takers on the internet and seems to be quite a few people who are gullible and do not even bother checking to see if something is true or not before they open their wallets. One thing I have learned from Facebook is that people are not always what they seem.
image from https://www.facebook.com/wisdomquotes
Now, I have some really good people I met on the internet that I trust with my life. And then, there are those that I have believed in and yes I have been gullible and gotten used. But, it was a lesson learned. Someone the other day was talking about a person they knew and said “you know, they are just too nice acting and too sweet to be true”. You know, the old southern statement “that person is too much sugar for the pound”. My response was that if they really felt that way than to be on guard for the truth will always emerge. We have to learn to use our brains and to ask questions and to think, not be part of the herd. Well, at least I know I do for I do not have that much money to spare.
People who lie start out with that niggling of the conscience saying this is wrong. But, after a while….those that lie begin to believe their own lies and they just continue to lie. They soon deaden the conscience inside of all of us that makes us feel guilty when we lie, cheat, steal or otherwise do something we know is wrong. They are the ones that their whole life becomes a lie because they no longer feel their conscience tell them anything. And the sad thing is that not only are they affecting themselves, they are setting examples for all the people around them that living a lie is ok.
I find that when people are not real and they know you begin to suspect them, they will go to all lengths to try to prove that they are telling you the truth. Only the acts come out as fake as they did with the scam. And they do not get it that when they tell you a half truth, they have just told you a lie and made it where I for one will not believe anything they say.
Don’t tell half-truths and expect trust when the full truth comes out. Half truths are no better than lies….
We were created perfect. We come into this world and all the things that happen through our life shape us. That is not an excuse for those that lie, cheat and steal. It is just staying that how we live affects the person we are. People learn to lie from somewhere. They learn to steal from somewhere and they learn to cheat from somewhere. And after a while, they will convince themselves that this is ok. And they might do alright in this life but when it comes to facing our maker…that is a different story. We were made with good hearts and we should try to keep those good hearts and not follow like sheep down paths that are not honest, ethical and moral.
image from https://www.facebook.com/wisdomquotes
I imagine every generation has had their share of fake people and scams but it seems to be more now than ever and I believe that is because it is so easy on the internet. Every thing from selling babies, to losing my house, to losing my car, to dying, etc is used to get people to feel sympathy and donate to them. And before the internet was so big, the people did it locally but now they can do it nationally and people do not bother to check. That is why the first quote box is so important. It says give but do not be used, love but do not be abused, trust but do not be naive and listen but do not lose your own voice (or brain).
If you live your life with integrity, honesty and morals, then expect those around you to do the same. I grew up hearing that expression that “birds of a feather flock together” and it was not until I got older that I realized that another expression “we are known by the people we associate with” was saying the same thing. If we believe in integrity, honesty and ethics, then we should be hanging around with people who believe like we do. People with similar beliefs and likes tend to hang out together. Those that are big drinkers hang around those that are drinkers. Those that like to party hang around those that like to party. Those that are church goers hang around other church going people. And those that are honest tend to hang around others that are honest. And those that like to play games, lie and deceive tend to hang around others that like to do that too. So, I believe we hang around or associate with those who have the same moral compass as we do.
One rule of thumb to always remember….if people are talking ugly about those you know…you can bet your last dollar they are talking or have talked ugly about you. Those that are not genuine are able to carry it out because they move from group to group and the group they are chummy with today is the very people they were demonizing the days before. Honesty and integrity are an everyday thing for people who are really honest and ethical and so if we come into contact with people who are suddenly our best buddies and they begin making snide remarks about the people they used to hang around with, your antennas should go up and you should begin to recognize that they have no integrity or honesty. Once you become aware, then you will recognize that some of the sugary sweet things they say really have a knife in the middle of the bouquet.
image from https://www.facebook.com/jennifer.styers
I saw this tonight. Oh my, what awesome words. I have always tried to be honest with those I love….so if any of the people I know have gotten mad because I was honest with you…remember this….I loved you enough…I had enough love and belief in you to be honest with you and I believed that you were person enough to handle it. That is a lot of love.
And when we get mad because someone loves us enough to be honest with us, we need to ask ourselves…are we mad at the honesty or the fact that someone dared to tell us the truth even when it was telling us what we were doing is wrong? That is a pretty tough question is it not? Are we mad because we are like the child who got caught with the hand in the cookie jar and now others will know or are we mad because we do not like honesty.
I believe the best gift I can give those I love is honesty for then there is no confusion, no middle ground, nothing except the truth between us. I had a friend back east some years back who was going to pretend to be having a fling with a friend of her boyfriends…to make him jealous. I told her I thought she was wrong, that it was deceptive and it would really mess up her relationship. She got mad because I would not support her in this and help and she quit speaking to me. She also lost her boyfriend because he learned the truth after a long time and he told her he could not stand liars and manipulators.
I loved her enough to tell her the truth knowing full well that the friendship might end. But, I could not keep a friendship based on fake or lies or anything else. I still love her. If we really love someone, we are honest. We do not agree just because we do not want them mad, or we want to be liked or any other reason. We agree when we believe it to be right and only then. I had someone tell me a while back that if you disagreed with what a friend was doing then you were not a friend and no way could you love them. I said you know what..I disagree with things my sons do and I love them dearly and they disagree with things I do and they still love me. That is part of life and love.
Today I was reading online and read this question…”Who are you when no one is looking?” and thought wow what a mouthful. Who are we really? Are there things that we do that we will not do in public because we know it is not really the way to be acting? Do we hide things about us because we know others would not approve? Are we like two different people from public to private? Or are we proud of ourselves both in public and in private and are not embarrassed or ashamed to tell others what we have done?
“Integrity is being honest even when no one else is looking. Integrity is doing the right thing even when no one is around to see you do it. Integrity is doing things the way they should be done, when no one is looking, instead of doing shortcuts. Integrity is being upright, and true to ones beliefs. Its admitting you made a mistake and facing the consequence, even if no one could prove it was you. It about doing whats right and all the time, in everything you do, so that at any moment anyone can look at everything you did that day and be proud of what kind of person you are.”
It made me very conscious of what I do all day. While we all make mistakes….I wanted to self analyze what I said and did when no one was around to see if I was deliberately withholding because I knew I should not be doing this or that. Was I as honest in private as I was in public? Was I as nice and caring in private as I was in public? Did I stretch the truth in public? Did I live up to my faith in private and in public? Did I let others take the blame in public instead of admitting if I did something? Did I act all sweet and nice in public and different in private? Was I proud of the way I acted in private and in public? Was I ashamed to tell anyone what I did in private? Did I hide the real me or things I did because I did not want anyone to know so I would not get in trouble? Did I feel anything in my conscience if I did something I knew I should not? Or had I successfully deadened my conscience so that I did not feel guilty at anything I did? If I were a TV show like the Truman Show movie and someone could tune in at any time and see me, would I be ashamed of how I acted at any time? Lots of serious thinking was going on.
Have you thought about that. What if someone could see you in private…would you be worried? Or would you say that you did ok…maybe made a mistake or two but you tried hard? Who are you in private? Some people seem to do ok acting one way in private and another way to the public or friends, but eventually it will catch up.
“No man, for any considerable period, can wear one face to himself, and another to the multitude, without finally getting bewildered as to which may be true.”
image from blog.adw.org
I always wondered what make people think they needed to put on a front to the world and hide who they were. As I was reading on this, it finally hit me that the reason is they know how they really act would not be accepted by most people. So, then why not just change? I guess I am naive but to me, it would be a lot simpler to change how they are if it is something they have to hide than to keep playing a game of being one way in public and another in private. I guess that is too simple but I like simple. And I like knowing that if someone walked in on me, they would see the same person as they would see out in public.
“Honest people don’t hide their deeds.”
Emily Bronte-Wuthering Heights
So, who we are in private really goes back to honesty again. Does everything lead back to honesty? I am beginning to think so. I was always told it took a lifetime to build a good reputation and only a minute to destroy it. So, I guess who we are in private is part of building our character and as long as we keep both the same…then we are showing a true picture of ourselves.
“Being truthful, even when your friends are not, takes real courage.” Donna B. Forrest
I remember taking a quiz once with questions like this: “if you walked in to the snack room at work and saw a dollar left on the table where someone had just been sitting when you walked in and they had left…would you pocket it?”, “if you saw someone stealing, would you report them?” “If you saw people picking on someone, would you go over and stop it?” “If you caught a good friend in a lie, would you tell them?” Who are you when no one is really watching?
You can build a thousand bridges and with only one loss of integrity, you won’t be remembered as a bridge builder.
I think the reason that keeping who we are in private the same as who we are in public becomes crucial..in other words…not hiding part of ourselves because we know it is wrong….is because someone is always watching and one day…we may think we are in private and someone will overhear or see us and the charade is discovered. Being a person of integrity means in all thing…even the little things and it means not deadening our consciences so that we no longer have the few days of feeling like things are just not right because we did something that we knew was not exactly the honest thing to do.
Is is important to be honest in little things as well as big things.
Living a dishonest life…and that is really what it is when you act one way in public and another in private can become so complicated. For one lie…leads to another lie and another and then a person can not remember what stories they told and what they did not and will get their stories mixed up and it will catch them in the end. Being honest is a lot easier because there are no stories to remember…just the truth. Some people think exaggerating is not lying but it is. It is telling a half truth and “A half Truth is a whole lie. ~ Yiddish Proverb”
image from meganhelstone.com
Sadly, many that live half truth lives…that are different people in public than they are in private…and they do not want the truth to be told. No matter if a person catches them in the middle of their lies…they will deny the truth and will actually try to continue to prove to you that the lie they have perpetuated in public is true. They would rather live the lie than stand up and say…you know what..I was wrong..this is not true…here is the truth.
Some people will not tolerate such emotional honesty in communication. They would rather defend their dishonesty on the grounds that it might hurt others. Therefore, having rationalized their phoniness into nobility, they settle for superficial relationships. ~ unknown author
I tell people I am me yesterday, today and tomorrow….the same me. I believe in honesty in all things. Does this mean I never do anything wrong. Of course not. It just means that when I do make mistakes….it is not a deliberate untruth or whatever. It means that I do not deliberately try to present a facade in public that is one way and hide the way I really am and only show it in private. I am the same me today, tomorrow and always. So, who am I in private? I am the same Deb that I am in public…wacky, funny, loving, happy,, passionate, honest, hardworking…survivor.
But that one sentence in the title sure did make me think a lot and make me do some self-examination. I can remember a time many years ago that I hid who I was because I did not like the person I was. That is when my quest to make integrity and honesty the core of who I am began and I worked hard on it to make sure that I kept me the same day after day and followed my faith and my beliefs whether I was in private or public. And that title..who are you when no one is looking?…instills in me even more the desire to keep integrity a top goal for myself always…no matter how hard it is.
“Integrity is not a conditional word. It doesn’t blow in the wind or change with the weather. It is your inner image of yourself, and if you look in there and see a man who won’t cheat, then you know he never will.”
—John D. MacDonald-
image from findingnew.com
I have said for years that if your eyes and your mouth did not say the same thing to me, then I did not believe anything you said. It is like that old saying that you do not just tell someone you love them….you show them you love them. I read this yesterday on a Facebook and loved it.
“Love is shown in your deeds, not your words.”
Unfortunately, with the world gone cyber, we do not always see the other person’s eyes to look into and know the truth and so we do have to go by what they do and do not do.
Being authentic and ethical is not in just about what you do but also in what you fail to do. If you are dishonest and fail to go back and correct that, then you are not being authentic. If you say you believe in equality for all but fail to stand up for it when someone is being treated wrong, you are not being authentic or honest. If you say you believe that animal cruelty should stop and yet you do nothing to help stop it, you are not being authentic or honest. People pick up after a while that you are not what you pretend to be. So, it is not just what you do but what you do not do, too.
image from image from the160acrewoods.com
Living in a cyber world, we can often be duped. This is an example from a group I was in a while back. A woman joined the group and like everyone else, fixed a photo album of her, her husband, doggies, home, etc. One day, she started in crying that they had no money and had bills to pay, utilities to pay. People being like they are chipped in to help her. It soon became a “we are so poor and have no money saga”.
A short time after that, she posted that she is sitting at home and just utterly down because her computer monitor just went out. This was before the day of using cell phones with applications. There was something about the woman that had raised my suspicions from the beginning as her pictures showed a very nice house with very nice furniture and a husband playing with the dogs and her playing with the dogs and yet as her time in the group progressed, she began saying that they both were so disabled they could not walk or take care of themselves and had been for years. These were recent pictures she posted by the dates stamped on the pictures. But, I did not say anything. I just watched and paid attention.
image from personaldevelopmentmaster.com
Everyone started wanting to donate money to her to get a new monitor. People were so caught up in helping that no one caught something she said. She said “I am sitting here at my computer and the monitor just died and I do not know what I am going to do”. I looked at my son and said…read this and tell me what you see. He read it and looked at me and said “if her monitor just died…how is she posting?” I said exactly. So, before the group once again got conned, I told her I had a monitor and son was on the way to the post office to ship it to her. Everyone was thanking me for sending the monitor and this woman blew up on the page telling us “NO! Don’t send that monitor.” And her anger at getting caught at her game took over and she exposed herself. People eventually get caught when they are frauds.
But the point of this story is, we can not always see what others are really like or what con they are pulling on us in the cyber world and so many people get taken advantage of. And some people become so duped by the con and caught up in it that they will not believe it even when it is shown to them.
image from tinatruelove.hubpages.com
My son’s will tell you that I have “lie-dar” and can spot a lie at fifty paces. I wish that were totally true but I do have that extra sense that seems to read body language, facial expressions and how people write and know when they are conning. I do not know if that is a gift or not for it makes me one that will say I think you are pulling my leg on this and that will make some people mad. But, I would rather have an honest friend who disagrees with me than one who just says they agree.
If I have to be untrue to myself to have a bunch of friends, then something is wrong. It will depend on the type of friends I want and since I prefer honest friends over ones that are not authentic, then my actions will be someone of honesty and authenticity.
image from facebook.com/destructionoflove
No matter what we do in life, it would seem that our actions should match our inner selves and be authentic. We can not just talk the talk. We must also walk the walk and make our words and our actions match. One of my favorite quotes says “to thine own self be true” and you will know if you are not because that little conscience guy will keep bugging you.
We all have dreams but the question is….do we box our dreams in and make them unattainable because of fear? Have you ever noticed the parents who will not let their kids do many things because they are afraid for them to. I do not mean let children run wild but I have seen parents who force kids to color in the lines or not color purple dogs. Are we boxing in their dreams? Do we Box in our own dreams by squelching the desire to try? Do we box in our dreams by not working for them ethically or honestly?
“What would life be if we had not courage to attempt anything?” Van Gogh
I remember my sons outside when they were little, building a ramp and putting on their capes and riding their bicycles off the ramp thinking they would fly. Or the two by four air plane my son built and threw off the big hill because he thought he knew the way to make a plane fly. Dreams that they had and worked on. I also remember one of my sons when a young teen that dreamed of owning this particular book and he let some boys talk him into stealing it. The book came to haunt him for he knew he was wrong taking it. I had him go back, return the book and apologize to the man he stole it from and to volunteer to clean the parking lot for a month to make up for doing something like that. That lesson on honesty stuck with him. We can mess up our dreams horribly if we are not totally honest and ethical.
”Most of the important things in the world have been accomplished by people who have kept on trying when there seemed to be no hope at all.” Dale Carnegie
Following your dreams does not always mean that they happen instantly. It took us a year to get to Colorado and it took us five years to reach the destination that we wanted. There were times we felt it was hopeless and times we came close to giving up but something inside just would not let us.
image from www.friendship-thru-music.blogspot.com
Sometimes we box our dreams in with “I can’t do that” or “It will never happen” or “it is too hard” or “that is not how it is done”. I think that is one reason I admire Julia Child so much. She never gave up and there were times she felt defeated and wanted to. But, what she did was to find a different route to get her dream. Dreams often take stepping outside the box to reach.
“The worst thing one can do is not to try, to be aware of what one wants and not give in to it, to spend years in silent hurt wondering if something could have materialized-and never knowing.”
How many times have you said “I wish I had tried this or that….or done this or that”? Said it, but never tried to do it. What makes us hold back? Worried about failing? Worried about doing something new? Afraid of the change? Afraid others will think we are odd or strange? Just pessimistic by nature? Do we box ourselves in by limitations such as “if we do not do it in a year, we will quit”? Or, we will only do it if blah blah goes with it? Or, it cost too much? Or, there is no sense in trying, so and so did it and it did not work?
Shake off the fear and step out and try your dream whether it is dancing, singing, artistic endeavors, traveling, building this or that, running a business, writing a book, doing photography, buying a house or land, remodeling your house, having children…whatever the dream is…step out and try. You will never know until you try.
“You may be disappointed if you fail, but you are doomed if you don’t try.”
I just remind myself that no matter what I try, to always do it with honor and integrity for if I do not do it with honor and integrity, the result will not mean the same to us when we are done.
image from dailyquotes2u.tumblr.com
I have learned to listen to my conscience and when it makes me feel like maybe I should not do this…then I should listen. Even when we try to ignore our conscience, it will keep shouting to us as time goes on and what we think we accomplished, we will realize is not really what our hearts want….if we are true to our hearts. I believe in dreaming big and reaching for the stars and doing it in an honest and ethical way. If I cheat to get my dream, then I am teaching others to cheat.
The other day Kate commented to me that I had a “good, kind, and honest heart”. That brought tears to my eyes and means more to me than if they had said I was smart or beautiful or talented. These are three traits I value highly in myself and in those I choose to be around me and to have someone think that about me…made me feel like I had been handed the lottery.
image from http://moonpointer.com
All three of these things I think are far more important than looks, financial gains, talents, achievements for they are about your character and I think if we work on our character and like the quote box above says…if we work on goodness and truth then beauty will take care of itself. I want my beauty to shine from the inside out for I have seen many with the perfect makeup and perfect hairdo and the perfect body and not one shred of kindness, honesty or goodness shining out of them.
“Being good does not consist in not committing any fault; rather in knowing to amend one’s self”
ST. John Bosco
I think being good, kind, honest ….all three of those…means we have the moral character to correct things we do wrong and to make amends when we have hurt and to realize that we are imperfect beings but that we do our best to correct the things we have done that are not truthful or unkind or just plain bad or ugly. That is my goal. I may not always achieve it..but I do try and so that made Kate’s words mean even more to me.
image from www.rishikajain.com
I absolutely adore this picture for it shows so much love and caring. I love the quote too for sometimes…even when you think you are right…sometimes it is kinder to let the other person be right in their own way. I find today that some people are so intent on arguing everything you say that those who are being argued against soon quit trying to express how they feel. I became that way at one point in my life. I figured why try if every time I opened my mouth someone was telling me how I needed to do it this way or that way. Being right is not always the most important but being kind is.
I do believe in being honest with friends for if we can not be honest with friends then we don’t have much of a friendship. And that is where the true test of friendship comes in. Either we want real friends or we want yes people in our lives and I prefer the real friends.
image from www.dbgreetings.com
I have posted before on how honesty is important to me. My phrase..don’t lie to me and don’t steal from me, whether it is my heart, my time, my money, my possessions, my work…no matter what…..I say often. I think that is why I have such a deep emotional reaction to those that lie…like “The Woman Who Wasn’t There” and others that lie or exaggerate for whatever reasons. Values seem to be missing so much today. I can remember chasing someone down to hand them money they dropped, or telling a cashier that they gave me too much money back. And yet, I see people today who think that it is cool to keep the money and it is stealing..cheating…and lying. I can remember one son who under peer pressure stole something from a local store in the little town we lived in. I not only made him take it back and apologize. I told him he needed to volunteer to clean up their parking lot for a couple of weeks to show that he was truly sorry. Yes, my son was embarrassed. I was embarrassed that he did that but he was more embarrassed that he had to go face up to what he had done. But, that lesson stuck with him from then on and he remembers it to this day and talks about how it helped him value being honest over other things.
image from www.quotesnsayings.net
Doing right is so important to me. Took me years to develop the feelings I have about kindness, honesty and goodness because as youngsters and especially teens, we are taught through peer pressure to think that being called good, kind, honest and NOT beautiful and popular and gorgeous is an insult. What a sad thing to me that so much is focused on superficial things when not enough is focused on the character.
“it takes a lifetime to build a reputation but only moments to destroy it“
Kate, your words inspire me to keep working on those traits that I think are so important…goodness, kindness and honesty. I thank you for your words. They touched my heart in a tremendous way. You brought tears to my eyes…the good kind. The words mean the most to me of all compliments that I have ever received for they mean you are looking inside me and seeing my heart.
- Comfort foods
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