2iB: What is Integrity?

By integrity I mean the right frame of mind. That is where 2iB begins.

Some describe integrity as a clear conscience. For Muslims "integrity first" means the ritual of ablutions before prayer, shedding the literal dirt of the outside world before stepping foot in a place of worship. The Jewish religion has the Mikveh, a cleansing bath for purification. Other religions have non-aqueous methods, including various forms of genuflection, i.e. Christians bend a knee or make the sign of the cross, Sikhs kiss the doorstep of the Gurdwara (Sikh place of worship) before even bowing to any of the Gurus, and Buddhists prostrate first, before anything else. There are plenty of secular examples too. The ritual of cleansing utensils with hot tea before a meal attempts to spur this. Mainland Chinese, Taiwanese, et al. have their particular styles in how they go about it. Some pour tea into a glass and dunk everything in, including chopsticks, chopstick holder, soup spoon and serving spoon. Others use the teacup to anchor the utensils, and with them rising up out of the tea cup, they bathe them with tea flowing straight out of the spout of the teapot. However you do it, it is a ritualistic exercise. The simplest handshake, which originally was designed to discern if a person was armed or not, is also about integrity. But it is a gift to be able to pause, for three or thirty seconds or however long you need, to gather yourself, and with the muscle memory of a ritual prepare yourself for your next move. This gets to the idea of the “integrity” in 2iB.

Integrity is not baring your soul, however. That is an important point. Integrity doesn't mean: pokerfaces not allowed. It means no disinformation. It means trying your best to arrest any bad intentions you have- but surely your counterpart is not owed insight into how you are thinking. Integrity is also self-respect.

Integrity means listening. It means taking the time to reflect on what it is that you have to do, and however large or small the task is at hand, to always have good intentions. Integrity is always the first step. Often, we have a tendency to filter. That is our first reaction, and to a large extent it is evolutionary- we are programmed to assess threats. Who is this person and what do they want? What do their tattoos say about them? How many twitter followers do they have? What can they do for me? And even if we don't filter all that much, we want to jump straight to action, we want to jump straight toward completing a task. Often, we worry of missed opportunities-and even at the risk of being a little "slow," or giving the appearance of being aloof, Integrity says that is O.K. Why? Because Integrity is how we remind ourselves of what is truly important..