17 Things Men of Integrity Refuse to Compromise On

It’s hard to find men of integrity today because everyone seems to get away with bad personalities. Even people who have promised to remain fair have fallen into the temptation of compromising on the quality of their character. To remain true to yourself, never trade off these 17 traits.

Staying Honest

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It’s never “just one lie” for a man of integrity, no matter how harmless you may think it is. There’s a strong, ineffable desire to always tell the truth because one white lie today will make an excuse for two black lies tomorrow. It’s a gradual loss of integrity and trust in what you say.

Keeping to What’s Yours

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Taking from others what’s due to them without permission is theft—an act that breeds immediate distrust and even contempt for your character. Like taking accountability for faults, integrity also requires that you always give credit where it’s due, whether it’s to others or to yourself. As Harvard shares, “Integrity is a truthful and responsible representation of yourself and your work by taking credit only for your own ideas and creations.”

Being Subtle With Words

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From speaking kind words to people you love to refrain from being insulting to the people you have a conflict with, a man of integrity never compromises on the gentleness of his words. You ultimately despise verbal abuse, and you always watch the tone of your words when you have to say harsh truths.

Remaining Calm In Demeanor

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Gentleness in words extends to calmness in actions, and a man of integrity never compromises on the tranquility of his outward behavior. There’s no aggression in making yourself heard or getting people to do what you want, and you’re never violent with partners and friends, even when angry.


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Verywell Mind describes mindfulness as “being purposely aware of the moment, including your thoughts, sensations, and feelings.” Mindfulness is self-awareness—one of the most crucial elements of integrity. It allows you to understand what your triggers are and also evaluate the motive behind your actions. It’s the first step to honestly judging your own character.

Being Responsible

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What’s placed in your care or assigned for you to do is never ignored. But you don’t stop here. You also expend the best of your abilities when carrying out tasks or watching over important items. Men of integrity never give out the barest minimum when working a job or caring for their spouses and children.

Remaining Respectful

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Disrespect is an attack on a person’s self-worth. When it comes to integrity, staying respectful isn’t just about maintaining respect for other people. It’s also about respecting yourself. When others see that you let your values down or show signs that you have lost confidence in yourself, they promptly treat you in that light.

Avoiding Gossip

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Gossip almost always involves backbiting about people—judging them and staining their characters without any chance for them to defend themselves. It’s dishonorable. As Harvard’s Business Review shares, “The most accurate judgments about others’ motives, competence, or actions are judgments that have been exposed to broad and open examination.”

Thinking Independently

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In forming opinions on people or situations, you also don’t let popularity cloud your judgment. You are an independent, critical thinker who doesn’t take accusations at face value and comes to conclusions only based on facts. By only conforming to what’s right, you never give others the chance to define your character based on false popular beliefs.


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You put it on yourself to always remain fair in your judgment and treatment of others. Your adversaries are given what’s due, even if it means you have to deny friends benefits. Judgment isn’t meted out until you hear from all sides involved. Fairness is taking equality to a new level where, alongside treating people equally, you give what’s appropriate for everyone to thrive.

Showing Empathy

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Trading off empathy towards others breeds apathy in your character and promotes mercilessness in the environment around you. Always ensure that you’re aware of how others feel, and you use this awareness to guide what you say and do to them.

Keeping to Promises

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Ashley Stahl, a former contributor at Forbes, explains that the value of keeping to your word now holds an immeasurable value. Many promises dissipate into thin air after they’re made, which destroys trust in character and business. With integrity, you only make promises you can fulfill, and you fulfill these promises exactly as they were made.

Apologizing When Wrong

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Although you have a great sense of self, you don’t have an inflated ego that keeps you from understanding and taking accountability for your wrongs. Apologies are rendered when due, and you use them to show that you never had bad intentions, hence restoring comfort and trust in your person.

Staying Transparent

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A man of integrity never deceives others by masking his character or hiding information that could be beneficial for all. You’re always transparent, so everyone understands the true state of things and no one gets led to false conclusions. You always understand that deceit is an abuse of others’ intellect.

Staying Open-Minded

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There’s trust in your judgment of things, but you don’t use them as absolutes. This is especially true when you know you don’t have all the necessary information to come to a conclusion. Men with integrity ensure they stay open-minded to the opinions of others to strengthen their own and remain fair always.

Being Selfless

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A man of integrity doesn’t think of his needs as superior to those of others, no matter what he stands to gain from them. He understands that, although everyone cares about themselves more, staying selfless to meet the needs of the group is more beneficial for everyone. Selfishness in you will trigger selfishness in others.

Consistency, Even in Solitude

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It’s no surprise that many “good” people reveal their true selves behind closed doors when no one is watching. They express contempt towards others, steal when they know they’ll never get caught, and do the opposite of what they present to hold dear. Consistency in solitude isn’t about other people anymore. It’s integrity and honor toward yourself.

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