Contributed by Noreen Sumpter, Personal Life Coach


Find out what it means to me


Take care, TCB!

These are just a few words from the song made famous by Aretha Franklin.  In order for her to have written this song, I am guessing she must have had it up to her eyeballs with feeling disrespected. We all love the song because of its catchy little melody and because it resonates for most of us.

Respect is a really important desire for all of us.  It is something that makes all of our relationships work well.  It also makes us feel comfortable and gives clear boundaries when we know that we’ve got it.  I think that respect is very important and, when it’s given or felt by each toward the other; then there is mutual or reciprocal respect.  I like it when I experience reciprocal respect from my fellow humans.  It just feels good.  It helps me understand the natural boundaries we’ve created.  It also gives me a sense of freedom, because I know how far I can and cannot go with the person and they know the same about me.

What I cannot understand is when we do not honor our personal word, when we cannot, for whatever reason, follow through on our own word.  We cannot and do not complete actions that we start.  It is very confusing and frustrating.  I often wonder how we do business with a ‘sickly’ personal word—a word that resembles Diarrhea: bowel movements (stools) that are loose and watery, with no substance to it at all. For example, making appointments with no intention of following through or saying yes when you mean no. I know that when we behave in this manner, we really do not understand or might not even feel the impact of our actions on another.  I also know that this kind of behavior is not personal since how we are in these situations is how we are all the time.

This form of integrity diarrhea is so common that we do not understand the serious effect we sometimes have on others as it relates to their time and money.  We do not realize that we could consider a very quick remedy just like an over-the-counter medicine that can cure this ‘sickly’ behavior in an instant or in a matter of a few days.  Specifically, verbal lack of integrity can be cured with just one quick action like a phone call or an apology or whatever it takes to clean up the mess.

As you look to the ‘cure’ some questions to consider include …

  • What would have you be out of integrity and have it linger longer than is necessary?
  • What kind of fear or neglect would have you shut yourself down?
  • What does it feel like when you encounter the person again?
  • What is the fear that has you not honor your word or integrity?
  • And, most importantly, why would you continue live in this kind of messy situation?

I have taken a good look at my level of integrity, and I have found that in the past I was not even aware of how it impacted others. I was totally unconscious about this behavior that I had become an expert in.  However, now, here is what I notice when I am out of integrity:

  • I get upset if I consciously ignore my word.
  • I get sick to my stomach and I feel jittery.
  • I do not feel good about myself.
  • I erode my sense of personal trust.

How does it feel when you are out of integrity?

I have now developed a relationship to being my word and being in integrity with myself, regardless of the pain I might experience. What I have found is I feel so much better about my communication and all things get completed fully. With that, I have room to give of my best in my business; I am an excellent friend and live life openly and honestly.  I feel a sense of empowerment and I realize that nothing is ever that wrong. Besides, failure is an opportunity to win and win big!

We invite you to share your thoughts about integrity and being your word in the comment box below.

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Noreen Sumpter, Personal Life Coach: works with High Achievers who feel trapped in their private life.  They lack personal confidence and self-esteem. By helping them clear mental clutter and dissolve limiting beliefs, they can take deliberate steps, own their voice, speak their truth and have the freedom to live life their way.  “Live Life Your Way” 

   “Live Life Your Way”

To make an appointment with me, please call 718-834-9450 or e-mail

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