How does it feel to win something you don’t deserve, receive something you didn’t earn, or get what you want (in an underhanded way)? Contrast that with the exhilarating feeling of overcoming a big challenge, attaining success through hard work, or leaving a legacy that makes you proud. Do you live an honorable life?
The greatest reward of success isn’t the money or acclaim;
it’s the confidence and self-respect that success brings with it.
Do you care more about accumulating riches that impress others or about living a life that makes you proud? Living with honor strengthens self-confidence, boosts self-respect, and offers peace of mind. So why do some folks care about being honorable while others couldn’t care less?
10 Types of Shameful Behavior
If people know the difference between right and wrong, why do some folks disgrace themselves? Here are 10 types of shameful behavior.
Being greedy. Some people are selfish. They don’t care how they treat people — all they care about is themselves.
Being lazy. Some folks want the good things in life but aren’t willing to work hard for them. They cut corners or look for shortcuts to get what they want.
Feeling envious. Some people envy others’ success — despite the sacrifices that were made to secure that success and its rewards. They feel justified in getting what they want by hook or by crook.
Being phony. Some folks distort facts, withhold information, or lie to get what they want. The fact is, people in the right never fear the truth.
Being untrustworthy. Some people are way too quick to make commitments and too quick to abandon them.
Feeling defeated. Some folks refuse to accept responsibility for their misfortune — after all, “The system is broken,” they say. So they look for ways to game the system.
Being money-hungry. Some people are obsessed with power and prestige. They don’t give a hoot how they win, as long as they get what they want.
Acting entitled. Some folks think success isn’t something you earn. They believe everyone should be rewarded equally — regardless of whether they deserve it.
Being delinquent. Some people get away with unacceptable behavior and think they can repeat the offense again.
Being a zealot. Some folks are fanatics. They don’t care how they attain their goals. To them, the end always justifies the means.
How to Be Honorable
It takes a conscious and concerted effort to become an honorable person. Here are 10 significant areas of your life — with suggestions to help you stay on course.
Parenting. Be actively involved in your children’s lives, expose them to activities that reinforce good values, and look for teachable moments.
Influencers. Top-notch people have strong moral character, live a virtuous life, and bring out the best in you. Do your friends and colleagues bring out the best — or the worst — in you?
Role models. Role models represent the epitome of excellence. They raise your game by demonstrating behavior for you to emulate. Choose your role models wisely.
Culture. The music you hear, the movies you watch, and the video games you play affect your mindset and seep into your subconscious. Watch what you eat and how you feed your mind.
Education. There’s only one investment that will never go down — an investment in yourself. Embrace the value of continuous improvement and lifelong learning.
Personal growth. Developing your mind and your talents shouldn’t be limited to formal schooling or work experience; you can gain just as much from playing a sport or learning to play a musical instrument. Performing the activity well isn’t what counts — it’s the know-how gained from the encounter.
Positive reinforcement. Living for a cause greater than yourself is a worthy mission. This goal can be reinforced by attending a house of worship, volunteering within your local community, joining a values-based organization, or being a mentor.
Mindset. Some people feel powerless or blame scapegoats for setbacks. They believe they can’t affect their personal situation — so they stop trying. If you don’t believe in yourself, why should anyone else?
Self-examination. Make time to do some soul searching.
Live with Honor: For Your Own Good
Some people feel that honor and integrity are important. Others don’t. So they rationalize, thinking “I’m under pressure to perform,” “The rewards are worth it,” or “It’ll only be this time” to justify their behavior. Folks who take what they don’t deserve, mistreat people, or cheat to get what they want are only hurting themselves.
The real prize for living with integrity is making yourself proud. You can take great pride in knowing that you held yourself to a high standard and never compromised your ideals. You didn’t choose the easy route, but you preferred the honorable way. You fought hard to attain your dreams, but you did so with dignity and grace. In so doing, you brought honor to your family, you earned respect from your friends, and most importantly, you did yourself proud. Bravo!
Do You Live an Honorable Life?
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