December 8, 2007.
"Our own heart, and not other men's opinion, forms our true honor."
In today's seemingly ever-present personal pursuit of power and prestige, sometimes honor and integrity appear to be the last things on people's minds. Don't get me wrong; there's still a sizable portion of the population that fervently believes in these fundamental principles. Thank goodness for that. But there are still far too many amongst us who have abandoned these beliefs in their selfish search for fame and fortune. And nothing could be more tragic.
Look, there's nothing wrong with pursuing the finer things life has to offer. In fact, it's a perfectly natural instinct. Within each and every one of us burns a fiery passion to achieve, a deep-rooted desire to make the most of what we have been given. We want to do well; in fact, we actually NEED to succeed. But we need to do it the right way.
"Real integrity is doing the right thing, knowing that nobody's going to know whether you did it or not."
The manner in which we chase our individual rainbows speaks volumes about our character and integrity. If we cheat, lie or steal to get to the top, what have we really accomplished? Oh sure, we may have garnered status and standing in the eyes of others, but what have we lost in the process? What have we given up to get where we wanted to go?
Is the attainment of prestige and riches really worth tarnishing our good name and tainting our integrity? Do we really want to forfeit our self-respect and honor to realize our goals and aspirations? I guess it depends a great deal on who you ask.
"What is left when honor is lost?"
Different folks will provide different answers. Some will jump at the chance to dance in lifes gray areas, no matter the personal cost. Then there are others who will elect to do things the right way, keeping their principles close at heart. But let's get one thing straight right here and right now; there is a world of difference between going all out - and selling out.
Now many people can talk a good game, outwardly advocating the concepts of playing fair and square while inwardly doing whatever it takes to win. WHATEVER IT TAKES! So what if they lie a little here, cheat a little there? The bottom line is they will do whatever they need to do - no matter what.
Honor and integrity are little more than worthless old values that just get in their way. In order to get what they want, these self-absorbed power mongers will walk on, over or through anything standing in their way. They never once realize that there's a better way to achieve their dreams. Sadly, the only ones they ultimately lie to, cheat on and steal from are themselves.
"Act well your part; there all honor lies."
Real winners clearly understand that cheating, lying and stealing are only temporary shortcuts to fleeting success. Never in a million years would they ever consider sacrificing their honor or integrity for personal gain. Rather than trampling over or taking advantage of others, these straight shooters elect to take the high road. As corny as it may sound to some, these champions choose to do the right thing - because it is the right thing to do.
George Bernard Shaw eloquently stated, "The most tragic thing in the world is a man of genius who is not a man of honor." Without question, far too many people needlessly forsake their honor in their single-minded pursuit of riches and fame. They never once realize they could have had so much more by simply looking within.
Each and every one of us holds inside of us a unique genius, a special talent unlike anyone else's, a one-of-a-kind flair unmatched by anything else on earth. And it's this special knack, this matchless gift that can make our dreams come alive from the inside out.
Contrary to what many believe, you don't have to lie, cheat or steal to make your life the resounding success story it deserves to be. As a matter of fact, you can get anywhere you want to go and get there the right way as well by tapping into your internal reservoir of strength. By looking within for the answers, you instantly unleash a tidal wave of relentless power that simply cannot be stopped. You'll start winning the right way and best of all; you'll maintain your honor and integrity along the way.
The Bottom Line: Honor: a roll you were born to play.
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