People With True Integrity Have These 20 Important Qualities

Integrity is a timeless quality that speaks volumes about a person’s character. Those who possess true it are often seen as beacons of trustworthiness, honesty, and moral fortitude. In a world where values can sometimes seem blurry, these individuals stand out for their unwavering commitment to doing what’s right. So, do you have it? Read on for 20 important qualities that define people with true integrity (as well as how to become a person of integrity if you don’t quite feel you’re there yet).

1. Honesty

When you think of integrity, honesty often tops the list. It’s not just about telling the truth, but about being genuine in every interaction. Someone with integrity doesn’t lie or exaggerate to make things seem better than they are. They’re transparent, even when the truth might be uncomfortable or put them in a difficult spot. Their word is dependable, and that consistency builds trust with those around them.

2. Authenticity

Authenticity is one of those qualities that’s truly cherished by people with true integrity. They’re unapologetically themselves, not swayed by trends or the opinions of the masses. They have a deep sense of self-awareness and are comfortable in their own skin, which means they don’t need to put up facades or hide their true feelings. Their genuine nature is refreshing in a world where pretense is all too common.

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4. Accountability

Taking responsibility is a hallmark of someone with integrity. When they make a mistake, they don’t pass the blame or make excuses. Instead, they own up to their actions, apologize if necessary, and take steps to make things right. They recognize that they’re human and that everyone slips up from time to time, but what sets them apart is their commitment to learning and growing from those missteps.

5. Empathy

Having empathy means being able to understand and share the feelings of another. People with integrity go beyond just recognizing others’ emotions – they genuinely care about people and show compassion in their actions. They’re often the first to lend a listening ear, offer a shoulder to cry on, or stand up for someone in need. Their ability to connect on a deep emotional level makes them invaluable friends and allies.

6. Transparency

A person with integrity doesn’t hide behind smoke and mirrors. They are transparent in their intentions, actions, and decisions. This means that they communicate openly, sharing their thoughts and feelings, even when it might be uncomfortable. They don’t keep secrets for the sake of political or personal gain, and this kind of openness breeds trust. People around them know where they stand and appreciate the honesty.

7. Compassion

Being compassionate is about more than just feeling sorry for someone; it’s about understanding their pain and wanting to help alleviate it. People with integrity exhibit genuine kindness. They’re quick to lend a helping hand, not out of obligation, but out of a sincere desire to make someone’s day a bit better. They recognize the struggles others face and offer support without judgment.

8. Consistency

One of the most recognizable traits of a person with true integrity is consistency in their actions. They aren’t swayed by personal gain or convenience. Whether it’s how they treat others or how they approach their work, you know what to expect from them. Their steadfast nature provides stability and assurance in both personal and professional settings.

9. Humility

People with integrity aren’t in it for the applause or accolades. They recognize their own strengths, but also their flaws, and they don’t see themselves as above others. They’re grounded, approachable, and always willing to learn. When they succeed, they remember those who helped them along the way, and when they fail, they take it as an opportunity to grow. They know they’re not the center of the universe and act accordingly.

10. Fairness

A hallmark of integrity is fairness. People who are fair treat everyone equally, regardless of background, status, or personal bias. They judge situations and people based on facts and not preconceived notions. They believe in giving everyone an equal shot, an equal voice, and an equal opportunity. Fair-minded individuals don’t play favorites or let their personal feelings cloud their judgment; they make decisions that are just and unbiased.

11. Reliability

If someone with integrity says they’ll do something, they’ll do it. Reliability is about sticking to one’s word and commitments, even when it’s not convenient. Others can depend on them because they’re consistent in their actions and follow through on promises. They don’t back out last minute or leave people hanging. Their consistency establishes a strong foundation of trust with those around them.

12. Accountability

While this was mentioned in the previous list, its importance cannot be overstated. People with integrity take ownership of their actions, both good and bad. If they’ve made a mistake, they admit it, apologize, and seek to make amends. They don’t shift blame or try to deflect responsibility. This accountability isn’t about self-blame, but rather about recognizing the power and impact of one’s actions and decisions.

13. Patience

In a world of instant gratification, patience stands out as a virtue of those with true integrity. They understand that good things take time and that it’s important to give people and situations the time they deserve. They’re willing to wait for the right moment and resist the urge to rush. This patience applies to how they deal with others as well, offering space and time for people to express themselves, grow, and learn.

14. Open-mindedness

Open-minded people are eager to see the world from multiple perspectives. They resist the urge to judge quickly and are open to understanding different viewpoints, even if they don’t agree. People with true integrity recognize that the world isn’t black and white. By staying curious and receptive, they foster an environment of learning and growth, making them more adaptable and versatile in their interactions and decisions.

15. Generosity

It’s not just about money or gifts; generosity is a broader gesture of the heart. People with integrity are generous with their time, advice, and kindness. They understand the importance of giving back and lending a hand where they can. Their acts of generosity are often selfless, driven by a genuine desire to make a positive difference and uplift others, rather than seeking recognition or something in return.

16. Resilience

Life isn’t always smooth sailing, and those with integrity are often marked by their resilience. They face challenges head-on and bounce back from setbacks. Rather than getting disheartened by failures, they view them as learning opportunities. Their tenacity is not about stubbornness but about a deep-rooted belief in their values and a commitment to stand by them, even in the face of adversity.

17. Empathy

While mentioned earlier, empathy deserves emphasis due to its profound impact. People with genuine integrity have a strong capacity for empathy. They can put themselves in others’ shoes, feeling and understanding their emotions and struggles. This emotional intelligence allows them to interact with compassion, understanding, and genuine concern, making them both excellent listeners and trusted confidants. They see beyond the surface and connect deeply with others.

18. Humility

People with genuine integrity aren’t in it for the applause or the accolades. They recognize their flaws, acknowledge their mistakes, and understand they don’t have all the answers. Humility doesn’t mean they lack self-confidence or belittle their achievements. Rather, it means they remain grounded, give credit where it’s due, and appreciate the role others play in their success. It’s about keeping ego in check and valuing the bigger picture over personal gain.

19. Adaptability

Life is always changing, and adaptability is the trait that keeps people with integrity afloat. They understand that rigidity can often lead to unnecessary conflicts and missed opportunities. While they stand firm in their values, they’re flexible in their approach. This means they can adjust to different situations, make informed decisions when faced with challenges, and navigate the unpredictable waters of life while still maintaining their core principles.

20. Self-awareness

Those with true integrity possess a keen sense of self-awareness. They spend time reflecting, understanding their emotions, triggers, strengths, and areas needing improvement. This introspective nature allows them to remain true to themselves, recognize when they might be veering off their path, and make necessary corrections. Their ability to self-reflect ensures that their actions align with their values, leading to authentic interactions and genuine relationships.

21. Gratitude

Being thankful isn’t just about uttering “thank you” now and then. For people with integrity, gratitude is a mindset. They appreciate the big and small things in life, recognizing the role each plays in their journey. This acknowledgment creates a positive outlook, helping them focus on the good even during challenging times. It’s not about blind optimism but about understanding the value in every experience and cherishing the lessons and moments that shape their lives.

How to become a person with integrity

1. Keep the promises you make.

One of the simplest ways to exhibit integrity is to follow through on your commitments. If you said you’d do something, do it. Even the small promises matter, like returning a borrowed book or showing up on time.

2. Recognize that honesty is key and live accordingly.

It’s tempting to tell little white lies, especially if you think it’ll avoid hurt feelings. But honesty fosters trust. When faced with a situation where lying might be the easier route, take a pause and choose truth instead.

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4. Acknowledge your mistakes.

Nobody’s perfect. When you mess up, own it. Apologize if necessary and figure out how to avoid making the same mistake in the future.

5. Ask for feedback and take it seriously.

Ask friends or colleagues for honest feedback about your actions and behaviors. Sometimes, an external perspective can spotlight areas where your integrity could shine brighter.

6. Avoid gossiping.

It might feel good in the moment, but talking about others behind their backs is harmful and breeds negativity. If you have an issue with someone, address it with them directly.

7. Take responsibility.

Blaming others or external circumstances for one’s actions is an easy way out. Instead, accept responsibility for your decisions and their outcomes.

8. Practice active listening.

Give people your full attention when they’re speaking. This shows respect and makes them feel valued. It also prevents misunderstandings.

9. Be consistent.

Your values shouldn’t change based on the situation or the people you’re with. Integrity means staying true to your principles, regardless of external pressures.

10. Act the same even when no one is watching.

Integrity isn’t about getting recognition. It’s about doing what’s right even if you’re the only person who will ever know about it.

11. Regularly reflect on your actions.

Set aside time to think about your actions and decisions. Are they in line with the person you want to be? If not, it’s a signal that you might need to make some changes.

Gail is Bolde's social media and partnership manager, as well as an all-around behind-the-scenes renaissance woman. She worked for more than 25 years in her city's local government before making the switch to women's lifestyle and relationship sites, initially at HelloGiggles before making the switch to Bolde.