Our Moral Compass: The Character It Takes Towards Being An Honest Person

“I hope I shall always possess firmness and virtue enough to maintain what I consider the most enviable of all titles, the character of an honest man.”

-George Washington

We all have heard the phrase “honesty is the best policy.” In today’s quote President George Washington essentially speaks to honesty being the best characteristic that can and should be within all of us. It is a title that we should all possess and one that we should be proud of. It helps us maintain a strong hold of who we truly we are and what we essentially believe in. It is the fiber of our true self. In a blog from 2014 Frank Sonnerberg adapted from his book Follow Your Conscience: Make A Difference In Your Life and The Life Of Others where he writes about 13 Ways to Demonstrate Honesty:

  1. Think before you speak.
  2. Say what you mean and mean what you say.
  3. Bend over backward to communicate in an open and honest fashion.
  4. Simplify your statements so that everyone clearly understands your message.
  5. Tell it like it is rather than sugarcoating it.
  6. Present both sides of each issue to engender objectivity.
  7. If you have a personal bias or a conflict of interest, make it known.
  8. Tell people the rationale behind your decisions so that your intent is understood.
  9. If something is misinterpreted, quickly correct the record.
  10. Don’t shoot the messenger when someone tells you the truth. Thank them for their honesty and treat the information provided as a gift.
  11. Willingly accept responsibility by admitting a mistake or an error in judgment — in a timely fashion.
  12. Hold people accountable when their words do not match their actions.
  13. Never compromise your integrity and reputation by associating yourself with people whose standards of integrity you mistrust.

Honesty is a word that embodies uprightness and fairness; truthfulness, sincerity, or frankness; freedom from deceit or fraud. It is a word that has so much meaning behind it. The challenge is upholding it during the most crucial times that we face in our lives and never waver from being honest no matter what the outcome may be. And for those that are truly are honest have one of the greatest and moral characteristics that anyone could ever be blessed to possess.

What does this quote mean to you and how can you apply today’s message towards defining/refining your own moral compass?

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