You Either Have Integrity Or You Don’t

I loved my job as operations manager for a small investment management firm. Numbers had always been a second language to me, and the work required me to be logical, methodical, and organized—useful traits which continue to serve me well.

Four years after my high school friend, Neil, had hired me, however, my calling came calling. I gradually became consumed with the idea of writing for a living. It wasn’t long before the work I was being paid to do no longer held my interest. I didn’t have a computer at home so I stayed after work to type my magazine articles and greeting card ideas on my work computer, an arrangement which Neil had approved.

Soon, however, my personal use of my work computer began spilling over into my work day. I rationalized that this was okay because it was only for five minutes here and there and I was still getting all of my work done. I was so absorbed in my new passion, however, that my occasional indiscretions began increasing in frequency and length.

One day, as I was typing up a batch of greeting card ideas, Neil opened the closed door to my office, shut it behind him, and gently confronted me. Deeply embarrassed, I apologized; yet I had the temerity to ask if I could finish what I was typing so I could meet a deadline.

I’d like to report that Neil’s rebuke slapped some sense into me and prompted me to see the error of my ways, but that would be only partially true. I continued taking occasional liberties whenever my misplaced sense of entitlement deemed it necessary. Yes, I was more careful about stepping over the line but only because I had to, not because I felt compelled to do what was right.

Some years later, at a small informal gathering of fellow writers, a friend made the statement, “You either have integrity or you don’t.” It dawned on me that who I thought I was did not sync up with my actual behavior—an unsettling realization, to say the least.

I had always thought of myself as a person of integrity. And it was true, just not completely—I had allowed myself to bend the rules whenever it was convenient to do so. No more. I vowed to never again let myself get away with tiptoeing over the line just because I could. If that meant I had to stop by the library instead of using the copy machine at work, so be it.

Funny how the little things matter so much. Waiting until I left work to do anything of a personal nature made me feel more peaceful, made me feel like I was living a more honorable life. That makes sense. I was.


There is no pillow so soft as a clear conscience.
French proverb





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ABOUT PHIL BOLSTA

Phil is the author of Through God’s Eyes: Finding Peace and Purpose in a Troubled World, a comprehensive guide to living a spiritual life. Who will benefit from reading it?

Anyone who is on a spiritual path, or wants to start one
Anyone who loves life, or wants to learn how to
Anyone who is happy, or wants to be happier

To order your copy of Through God’s Eyes, go to GodsEyesOrder.com OR order from Amazon at GodsEyesAmazon.com OR for an inscribed copy, click here to e-mail Phil for information.

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Through God’s Eyes won first place in the “Spirituality and Inspirational” category at the San Diego Book Awards on June 22, 2013.

Here is a two-minute video introduction to Through God’s Eyes.




Want to learn more about Through God’s Eyes? Here is a free 40-page PDF sampler from the book that includes:

• an overview of the book
• the complete table of contents
• the Foreword by Caroline Myss
• my Introduction
• chapter excerpts
• a sample end-of-chapter story
• endorsements from authors and thought leaders

Just click on the link below to download your free PDF sampler!
THROUGH GOD’S EYES PDF SAMPLER





logic-of-living-a-spiritual-life-book-cover

Phil’s eBook, The Logic of Living a Spiritual Life: Supporting a Life of Faith Through Logic and Reason, is now available for 99 cents on Amazon.

Order it at GodIsLogical.com.

In this eBook, you’ll find answers to questions like:
• What is the cornerstone of a spiritual life, and why?
• What is the secret to liberating yourself from other people’s judgments and expectations?
• Why is there an exception to “Everything happens for a reason”?


Those who worship logic instead of God are only half right. Not only is it logical to believe in God and to live a faith-based life, the existence of a loving, benevolent God that governs all creation is perhaps the only systematic worldview that explains every aspect of life.




Schedule a Mastery Mentoring phone session with Phil to learn how to apply principles of spiritual living more effortlessly and effectively. Priced affordably! Click here to e-mail Phil for details.



SiSe_fullcover_final.inddPhil is also the author of Sixty Seconds: One Moment Changes Everything, a collection of 45 inspiring, life-changing stories from prominent people he interviewed, including Joan Borysenko, Deepak Chopra, geneticist Dr. Francis Collins, acclaimed sportswriter Frank Deford, Dr. Larry Dossey, Wayne Dyer, Dan Millman, Caroline Myss, Dr. Christiane Northrup, Dr. Dean Ornish, Dr. Rachel Naomi Remen, Dr. Bernie Siegel, James Van Praagh, singer Billy Vera, Doreen Virtue, Neale Donald Walsch, and bassist Victor Wooten.

Here is a three-minute video that introduces you to Phil and his book. Click here to order Sixty Seconds. Click here to ask Phil to add you to his e-mail list for updates on his blog and books.

Reading this book is like spending a few minutes face to face with each of the contributors and listening to their personal stories. Click here to read unsolicited testimonials from readers. Learn more by visiting the official Sixty Seconds website.

Sixty Seconds was one of three finalists in the General Interest/How-To category at the 12th annual Visionary Awards presented by COVR (Coalition of Visionary Resources) in Denver on June 27, 2009.

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2 Responses to “You Either Have Integrity Or You Don’t”

  1. Marie Says:

    I don’t know who to credit with the quote, but the best definition of integrity I ever heard:

    “Integrity is defined by what you do when you think no one is watching.”

  2. Phil Bolsta Says:

    Yes. Here are some more:

    The measure of a man’s real character is what he would do if he knew he never would be found out.
    Thomas Babington Macaulay

    Integrity is not a 90 percent thing, not a 95 percent thing; either you have it or you don’t.
    Peter Scotese

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