Tag Archives: honesty

the Lance deception

“It’s the great temptation for small groups of people to slide into a state where they’re not quite telling each other the truth and they’re not quite celebrating each other. Instead, they tolerate each other, they accommodate each other, and they settle for sitting on the unspoken matters that separate them.”

Bill Hybels

  The news is filled with the epic deception that Lance Armstrong thought he would be able to watch fade behind him over time.  It turns out that the volume of evidence that showed he was only deceiving himself pushed him to the point of confessing his lies. Bike racing filled my life for about 20 years and it is a great sport.  At the elite levels where the money is substantial the pressure to win at all costs looms large in the teams and in the riders.   We see the same thing happening in any organization or institution where the pressure to succeed at any cost is evident.  Banks push performance, Wall Street demands performance, and companies demand performance.   At some point that performance has to be obtained by the leader or by their replacement.  When failure is not an option people step outside of their authenticity and become someone else, often leading to their personal destruction.

Did Lance Armstrong do some good?   He boosted the popularity of cycling in America and he provided resources for those who were dealing with the weight of cancer, both good things.     His sponsors benefited, his coaches benefited and many other people benefited from the Lance persona and now that the persona has been found to lack integrity people want to distance themselves from him.  In a culture of win at all costs things will spin out of control at some point.   Do you find yourself in a culture of win at all costs?   How does that impact you?

What would have been the price of honesty for any cyclist riding at the elite levels in the Tour de France?   Would they be able to continue?  Would they be able to find willing sponsors to support the costs of riding in the Tour?  Is the price of winning worth your integrity?

The foundation of our society is based on truth, integrity and honesty.   We trust that others will abide and live their lives in such a manner that we can know that we are engaging an experience where the interests of each person are not being taken advantage of, that promises made are promises are kept.

Here is one person’s take on the issue of deception and how lying can corrupt the soul and destroy a brand.

The biggest lies, take a look.

What are your thoughts?

a balance of power

 

“… she followed power itself instead of risking her life for principles.”  Jacqueline Novogratz – The Blue Sweater

 

In your life has the idea or thought of power taken over your principles or values? 

So many people have been caught up in the vortex of power.   Power will not release its grip on anyone.   Power seeks more power and that in of itself becomes an intoxicating lure capable of destroying values and character.  Those who survive the ecstasy of power have strong guides that are reliable and honest.   

Search for excellence

“We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, therefore,
is not an act but a habit.”

Aristotle

Not  only is excellence a habit that needs to be developed so are other aspects of our lives.  Each postive aspect needs to be nurtured and developed so that it is a habit.  It might be  integrity, character, honesty, charity, or authenticity, any of these can be cultivated and grown.  The question might be do we attempt to do those things that improve our soul.   Do we spend enough time developing significance or do we spend our time perfecting success?  What is more important to you success or significance?

my character counts

What is character?

What makes character important?

Where do you find character?

How do you build a lasting character?

Posner and Kouzes the authors of “The Leadership Challenge” surveyed thousands of business and government executives to see what they thought were the most important ‘characteristics’ for a leader.

1.    Honesty

2.    Vision – forward looking

3.    Inspiring

4.    Competent

5.    Fair-minded

6.    Supportive

7.    Broad-minded

8.    Intelligent

9.    Straightforward

10.  Dependable

 

Honesty ranks as the number one character trait that matters more than any other trait.  How important do you think honesty is in America today?   Do the top leaders act with impeccable honesty?   Do leaders in the middle support and make honesty their #1 objective?

The honesty dilemma.   Most people would say that being honest is the right thing to do, and at the same time have difficulty executing with honesty during the day.  Why is that?

Is there some type of fear that is associated with being honest?   What is it?   Is it a cultural issue?   Is it habit or bad habits that trap us in a web of twists and turns that take truth and mold it to fit in a better way the story we want to be told.

How important is it for a leader to be honest?   How important is it for everyone to be honest?

footsteps in the sand

Imagine walking down a beach and what you see are a crisscross myriad of footsteps. You stop to look at some of them, footprints, footprints of children, footprints of those who wearing shoes, footprints etched deeply in the sand and others that just skim the surface. The waves move in to erase the canvas of footprints.

You put down your foot into the wet sand and you too leave an impression in the sand, your mark on the world an ephemeral mark as the water rises and sweeps up the sandy beach erasing all that was printed there. You notice three footprints – your footprints etched onto this large canvas and they tell your story.

The first footprint is the mark of your values. What is it that you value? What do you care deeply about? Write those values down? Oh, by the way, money is not a value. It is a tool. What are your values? Now that you have them written down, rate them in terms of desired importance in your life from 1 to 10. The value of one indicates that you are not even close to living out this value and a ten is saying out loud that this value is fully being realized. Are you able to live your values?

The second footprint is about your smile. We all can smile but do we? Do we practice smiling? Or, are we not able to smile because of the way we feel about ourselves or others. We have shutdown and stopped smiling. What makes you smile? When was the last time you were able to genuinely smile? You know the kind of smile, the one that is fueled from deep within. It is not the smile we can put on our face, this is a smile that erupts across our face without denial – it appears and you can’t erase it – it is alive. When was the last time you had one of those kinds of smiles?

The third footstep is a hunger for our personal truth. Dante writes, “Midway upon the journey of our life I found myself within a forest dark, For the straightforward pathway had been lost.” This footprint seems to be floating up and out of the sand and before long the print is lost. To seek the right path, to seek our personal truth requires that we be honest with ourselves. How can you find the right path?

Align your attitude with your values. Smile from within. Seek the right path – honestly.

“Our feelings of dissatisfaction, unhappiness, loss of hope and so forth are in fact related to all phenomena. If we do not adopt the right outlook, it is possible that anything and everything could cause us frustration. Yet phenomena are part of reality and we are subject to the laws of existence. So this leaves us only one option: to change our own attitude. By bringing about a change in our outlook towards things and events, all phenomena can become friends or sources of happiness, instead of becoming enemies or sources of frustration.”

“The Dalai Lama’s Book Of Wisdom” (1999)

true friend

“It is the best and truest friend who honestly tells us the truth about ourselves even when he knows we shall not like it. False friends are the ones who hide such truth from us and do so in order to remain in our favour.” R. C. H. Lenski

Lets shine up the soul – soul polish

Polish your soul

Polish your soul

When our shoes get dull and dingy we might get a can of shoe polish and update the finish on the exterior of our shoes.

Before we go off to work we put on our shoes. Shoes protect us from the elements and they also reflect part of our values as individuals. We might have fancy shoes, shiny shoes, colorful shoes, or some other kind of footwear and that sends a message. If we are trying to impress people we might find our best shoes, our shiniest shoes and put those on. If we are hiking in the mountains we will put on shoes that are best suited for that task. If we want our shoes to last and make a lasting impression we have to take care of our shoes.

The same is true for our souls. We have to a take care of our souls as well. Our souls reflect who we are. Often we try to hide our true selves from others. We don’t want them to see the dull, scuffed, damaged, dirty or dingy souls. We want them to see the shiny, bright, and polished souls. We may want them to believe in an illusion – that our souls are polished when they aren’t.

How much time out of each day do you take to polish your soul? How do you make sure you are taking care of one of the most important assets you have – your soul?

What is soul polish? Soul polish is time, it is reading, it is meditating, it is reflecting, it is relaxing, it is observing beauty around you, it is acknowledging others, it is strengthening a relationship, it is building character, it is ensuring your integrity is intact, it is being honest with yourself and others, it is helping others, it is serving, it is being kind, it is find joy and beauty in your work and life – and that is just the start of the list. What do you do to polish your soul? Would others say you are polishing your soul? Is your soul worn, scuffed, dingy or in need of some serious repair?

Start thinking about your soul polish today – what can you do?