There is a tremendous focus on HIV/AIDS these days, yet there is a different strain that is causing much more chaos, affects many more people and is a disease of even greater irresponsibility.

It is Acquired Integrity Deficiency Syndrome.

You get this when you see what you can get away with, and you get away with it. The more that you get away with it the less you see the need to actually do the right thing until eventually it becomes your nature to do the wrong thing and you then believe that doing the wrong thing is actually the right thing. And that's when the Honest Intent Vanishes.

This disease is rife in our business world where shareholder satisfaction takes precedence over customer satisfaction. Policies are deliberately implemented to deny consumers their rights and defraud them of their cash. You are enticed with pretty promises but when you need the service you were promised you come to the ugly realisation that it was all lies, they just wanted your money.

It is rife in our employment field where the aim of all too many employees is to see if they can get out of work or to see what they can get out of work. They willingly enter into an agreement with their employer and then once employed demand improved conditions of employment without offering improved levels of service.

Sadly this concept is echoed by many employers who offer below subsistence wages yet expect above average performance.

The above practices are the equivalent of commercial "Date Rape"

It is rife on our roads. Respect for our Road Rules has all but vanished and in certain sectors is non-existent.

It is rife in our Public Sector staffed by Civil Servants who are neither Civil nor prepared to Serve.

So. How to protect yourself from the dishonest practices that are so prevalent, as a general rule:-

Never sign anything unless you have fully understood it.

Never accept the word of the person behind the desk he/she most likely does not know what they are talking about, They have been trained on what to tell you in order to get you to sign the document.

Never be so desperate for the deal that you put yourself in jeopardy. Once you've signed you are committed/trapped.

Keep a record of everything. Who you spoke to. When you spoke to them. What you spoke about.

Keep a copy of every document that you have to hand in and always get proof that it was handed in.

If you open an account set up your own system to check and control it. You can no longer trust the people who have created the system and you cannot trust the people who capture the data that goes into the system.

You owe it to yourself to protect yourself and never presume that they have your best interests at heart.

So with the understanding that integrity is "Doing the right thing because it is the right thing to do" go for an AIDS check up. Find a mirror and look deep into your eyes and check your Integrity Level. Are you doing the Right thing? Are you fulfilling your responsibilities? Could people use you as an example of how things should be done? You owe it to those you serve as you should always have their best interests at heart.

Now this may sound a little negative and perhaps it is. It is also the sad reality that we face every day and if you really want to Live Your Best Life it is important that you are aware of the things that could stop it from happening. Just remember you won't try to break out of a trap that you do not know that you are in. You won't try to fix something if you do not know that it is broken.

With love and best wishes


PS: I would really like to have your comments on this article so send them to me at I am especially interested to hear what lessons you have learned from this article.

Author's Bio: 

A professional speaker and trainer, Johan delivers exciting and empowering presentations, seminars and workshops. As a life and business coach he gives practical advice and counselling that you can immediately use to transform your life.

Johan has the ability to make the most complicated subject easy to understand and the most sensitive subject easy to deal with.

He is the author of:
"Thoughts to live by" Vol 1 and 2 compilations of 99 specially selected inspirational and motivational messages
"A Staff Management Toolbox" a complete "do it yourself" Human Resources guide.
"A Practical guide to Performance Management"
"Thoughts For Every Day" 365 empowering and educating passages and quotes to enrich your life
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