Today’s post is going to be a bit different in that the video, audio and text will be fairly closely matched. If you’d like to listen to this post, use the player below or listen on Spreaker.
Chapter Nine: Ethics & Integrity
Before I go into my reaction to this chapter, I think it would be prudent to get us on the same page on what some terms mean.
The first is ethics, which according to dictionary.com means:
- a system of moral principles
- the rules of conduct recognized in respect to a particular class of human actions or a particular group, culture, etc.
- moral principles, as of an individual
So ethics are, by definition, dependent on morals. So, the second term we need to be clear on is moral, which according to dictionary.com means:
- the distinction between right and wrong
- founded on the fundamental principles of right conduct rather than on legalities, enactment, or custom
- conforming to the rules of right conduct
And finally, the term integrity, which according to dictionary.com means: Adherence to moral and ethical principles; soundness of moral character; honesty.
If you were paying attention, you may have noticed a bit of convoluted circular definitions going on here. Each word depended on the other for meaning, and yet were independent and different at the same time.
Soul gives these words a more personal definition to ground this chapter. He says that ethics are “a set of time-tested principles you create or abide by to accomplish a specific result on a regular basis. Morals mix in the act of judging something based on a set of personal or group standards or norms.” And your level of integrity is how well your actions match your words.
Chapter nine challenges you to define these terms in your own words. To discover what they mean for you and to create your own code of ethics to determine your level of integrity. He says ethics are what you say you are going to do and integrity is whether you do it or not. Morals are a changing judgement of right and wrong.
For example, at one time in history, it was morally right for a man to beat his wife. Today, thankfully, not so much. In fact it is not only illegal, it is a felony. Morals change. Ethics and integrity only change per person, because they are created by ourselves for ourselves.
For example, if I say I think showing up on time is ethically right, but then I’m late with no good reason … my words may be ethical, but I obviously lack integrity. Interestingly enough, Soul suggests that you can be ethical but not moral and vice versa. To illustrate, let me use the wife-beating example again.
Back when it was OK to beat one’s wife, a man could say it was abhorrent to do so and be ethically correct. Then he would hit his wife and be out of integrity, going against his ethics, but, according to the culture around him, be morally correct.
You could spend days, weeks, months exploring the concepts in this chapter and still find yourself, at times confused. And that, my friends, I believe is what makes this chapter so worth exploring.
Coming up in future installments of this journey:
- October 30 — Chapter 10: Gratitude Guidelines
A new series based on the new pre-Master Class survey will begin on November 13.
Explore Your Worth and Become the Master of Your Life
I’m now accepting applications for the next Pay Me What I’m Worth group, which is 12 payments of $149, paid monthly. Learn more and register today at bitly.com/payspence! Together with author of Pay Me What I’m Worth Soul Dancer, we’ll take a 12-month dive into owning your worth and increasing your confidence.
Remember, not everyone will be accepted into the course. You must schedule an exploratory session with me first to determine if you are a good fit for this group at this time.
Are you are wondering what this 12-month class can do for you? Listen to what previous students have had to say about Soul’s Pay Me What I’m Worth Master Class.
Anna Banguilan on Performance-Based Contracts (1:50):
Elaine O’Malley on increased confidence in her business (0:43):
Stuart Young on uncovering more confidence than he thought possible (1:59):