Episode #92 Get Back in Integrity

Ensuring Harmonious Relationships
November 26, 2021

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You are listening to My Freedom Grove podcast with Gretchen Hernandez, episode 92.

Welcome to My Freedom Grove podcast. The all inclusive podcast that teaches mindset and business tools. We'll help you rise as your authentic self. Be unshakable with your emotional freedom and unstoppable in achieving any goal and living your purpose. I'm your host, Gretchen Hernandez. If you want to put your mental health first in life, relationships and business, you've come to the right place.



Hi, My strong friends. All right. I'm recording this pretty early because I had all of the inspiration. I had fun doing some batch recording of things. When this airs it's going to be the day after Thanksgiving. Thanksgiving always brings all of those fun conversations with our family members. When we actually get to see them in person, sometimes we don't. Hopefully, you had a wonderful Thanksgiving full of love, full of reconnecting.

With the pandemic, we had a couple of Thanksgiving's there where we didn't get to together and it sucked. For some of us, that's still the case. Some of us that was a blessing in disguise for the last couple of years, wasn't it?

Holidays Bring Out the Best and Worst In Us

Let's be honest. It's not always fun to be around everybody in our lives. There are definitely people that can trigger us. When we get triggered by things, it brings up old thoughts that we had. Those ones that are buried deep in our mindset, that causes all sorts of discomfort. Sometimes it's downright pain. When we start to have those feelings, we act out in certain ways.

We say things that we don't mean to say, or we say things that we really think we want to say in that moment. We might even go away feeling very justified in everything that we said to someone. This can go on for a couple of days, maybe even a couple of weeks where we're like, yes, I feel vindicated. I stood up for myself!

But there's that little nagging-ness in the back of your head where you're like, maybe that wasn't such a cool thing to do. Maybe I really was triggered. Maybe what I said, actually harmed my relationship with that person. Maybe I don't want my relationship to be harmed. Maybe I really do want to have a harmonious relationship with this other person in my life.

Integrity: What It Is And How It Is Influenced


This is where integrity comes in. I had the fortunate experience several years back to go into an integrity seminar. I was a participant in this, so I attended The Landmark Forum back in 2019. Actually, it was the second time I did it, I did it in 2006 also.

The nice thing is they offer a seminar series afterward. It's free. It's part of their business model because you know, I love talking about business models. They get you into this free thing that lasts for several weeks and it helps them to get you to bring more people into their business model so they get more customers in.

Some people feel like this is a cult, but when you were very aware of business models, you know what's going on. You can be very aware of your own thoughts. This is an important thing because some of the integrity stuff, and we're going to get into what integrity is. Some of the integrity stuff is that we got influenced by other people and it triggers us, but in a different way. Like a very positive way it feels, but then we act out towards our family members or our friends or other people in our lives because we were influenced by something else.

It could be, someone's very, very good business model to influence you and make you feel empowered. And then you act out with your family members and then it destroys your relationship. I don't think that's what you want.

Okay. Integrity is being true to your own word. What is it that you want for yourself and for the other people? Do you want to talk with respect to them and respect yourself, like respecting yourself, most important thing. Other people are not going to respect you if you don't respect yourself first. So it is important for you to build up that muscle of respecting yourself.

But that does not mean that we trample all over other people as a way of getting our respect. There are ways that you are respectful to other people, respectful to yourself. So being in integrity means that you are honoring your word to yourself and to other people, you do what you say you're going to do. And if you don't that you take ownership of it and you go clean it up. Everybody's going to make mistakes at some point in their life. We have to take ownership of our own feelings, our own actions, and the outcome that it has on our relationships.

This isn't always easy. Let me tell you, there are some definite times I have totally stepped in it, especially with my husband. There are times that I got triggered by something he did or something he didn't do. And I felt empowered and standing up for myself and I would say something and it would then start to go and cause a ripple effect and some problems in our relationship. I would walk away for a couple of days thinking I was totally justified. I felt empowered. And also my brain starts going towards maybe our relationship should end. That's horrible. It's really not what I want.

Get Objective: What Do You Really Want?

Then I would go and I would get coaching on it because I really wanted to have a healthy relationship with my husband. So where did it go wrong? What happened? Because where we were would be having all of this tension. That's not what I wanted. It's not what he wanted. It's not what I wanted. So what went wrong?

I'd go through coaching. And this is so helpful because when you have a neutral third party, they can help you lay out the whole series of activities so that you can see all of the different pieces. And you can see where was it that you were triggered either positively or negatively and what your actions were and how that can impact the other person. And sometimes it triggers the other person and they have actions that then caused the whole thing to escalate.

I have a tool that I call the framework that shows this whole pattern of how one person's thoughts and their beliefs affect their feelings that affect their actions. Their actions now become a circumstance for somebody else. That person has thoughts and beliefs about it. That causes feelings and actions and their actions are now the new circumstances.

Combined, you have a combined result. Your relationships are going to be really important. You have the ability to look at this objectively. When you can get it all out on paper and look at it objectively, have that neutral third person look at it with you to see was that particular thought and belief that you had helpful for you for getting the result that you really wanted.

You might be thinking about that result of, well, I wanted to be respected. I wanted someone to believe in me. But the way that you went about it, did you get that end result? You might have it for yourself that you believe in yourself, but did you get the actual result that you wanted, which was that both of you believe in you and that your relationship is strong and healthy and loving.

Maybe not, maybe you're spending time apart. You're feeling great, but also a little crummy at the same time. There might've been a different way that you could have gone about it.

When you're looking at all of this, you can see that you can see how things deteriorated somewhere. Where was it in this overall circle of a process of two people that didn't work for both of you? You can of course decide that you want to blame the other person. There are so many thought communities that you can be in that this is the default that people will do.

Oh, just blame the other person. Just say that they were being a jerk and that you are still justified in thinking this. Well, yeah, that's of course going to make you feel good in the moment. Like that is a psychological defense mechanism so that you can feel good it's by taking the other person down, but it doesn't help you to have a strong relationship.

If you continue to do this of blaming the other person and not taking responsibility for your own thoughts, your own feelings, your own actions and the outcome that it had on your relationship, you might find that you keep standing up for yourself in all of these ways. And you're cutting all these people out of your life and you might think, oh well, it's because they're a toxic person. I've heard lots of thought communities talk about toxic people. But if you keep cutting every single person out of your life, you're going to be pretty lonely. You might be feeling really great about yourself, but yeah, you believe in yourself and you can take a stand for yourself, but you're also lonely.

Zero In On Where Integrity Was Lost

There's another way my friend it's by having integrity for yourself, integrity for your word, integrity for your actions and cleaning it up. Sit down, try to see where could you have done things differently so you could actually get the result that you wanted.

Sometimes, what it takes is seeing what you made a circumstance mean to you. You can make a circumstance mean anything that you want to now, sometimes your brain is just pulling something from your mindset and assigning meaning to a circumstance. And it feels like it's the right thing, but all of your beliefs on something it's always optional. You can believe anything you want to, if you have been influenced by somebody else.

So you're listening in a different thought community. And all of a sudden they're presenting you with meaning about a certain circumstance that might seem like it's the truth. And then all of a sudden your feelings get really strong and intense and you can take an action from it. But that action might not have been the right one. That action might be something that goes completely against something else that you had already agreed to.

You might've broken your word to someone and you're justifying it to yourself because you have this new thought that feels so true that you're now breaking your own word. You're replacing it with something else and telling that person it's because you're standing up for yourself. Is that true? Is this really the outcome that you wanted for yourself? Do you really want to break your word to yourself? Do you really want to break the word that you had to the other person?

Relationships often will involve some promises. Rules of engagement, like the ground rules for what makes a relationship successful. If at that moment you decided that you're going to break that and say that thing that you know is going to trigger the other person, you've not stayed in integrity.

Okay. I'll give you a quick example. So I mentioned with my husband, there are a few thoughts that I am aware of that he has that causes him a lot of pain. There were times that a circumstance presented itself and he didn't act in the way that he had agreed to. I was mad and I justified to myself that it was okay for me to use certain phrases. I knew it was going to cause him pain, but it was because I was in pain by him not honoring his word.

What it did is it escalated things until we were both suffering. And sure. I was feeling a lot better because I felt like I got him, right? Like my pain was less because I transferred my pain over to him, but that's not the truth. The truth was that I still had my pain from the original thing. And now I had created more pain for him. And then he automatically reacts whether he wanted to do or not. And now it's escalated. Cause more pain for both of us.

I did not honor my word to myself. Sure. There was a circumstance where he may not have done the thing that he said he was going to do. That's that's on him. And we could have a different conversation about that, but I didn't honor my word that I wouldn't use these things to trigger him.

There are certain things that I don't want to say to him because I know how painful it would be to him. And those thoughts are not true. I already know these thoughts are not true about him, but I did it. It was awful of me. It took me like a week to come to that realization that, yeah, I did not honor that. I didn't honor him. I didn't honor our relationship. It sucked.

It really sucked for me to have that realization that I was out of integrity because although there might've been a circumstance where I felt like he was out of integrity. It doesn't justify me going out of integrity. There's always another way where I could stay in my own integrity, have that conversation so that we can have our relationship healthy. And we can still address that original thing. Like that doesn't mean that, that original thing, that original action that was done or not done that it's not a problem. But it doesn't mean that the way to solve it is by me getting out of integrity. By me breaking my word to myself or to him.

Cleaning Up The Mess And Getting Back To Integrity

How do you clean this stuff up? Because you know, you need to, because if you don't clean it up, if you don't get yourself back in integrity, you are going to stay suffering. Your relationship is going to be damaged. It's going to be like a wound that keeps festering for both of you, but definitely for yourself, because you're going to feel that nagging.

Because you're going to know you didn't do something right. It's not going to sit well with you. You're not going to have good mental health as a result of this. I always encourage you to put your mental health first in everything that you do. Getting yourself back into integrity is going to be what helps you to have good mental health. So you got to go clean it up.

You have to go and share with them that your relationship with them is more important than anything. You re-establish that vision of what you guys want together. And then you share that there was this event and that you realize now after all of this time has passed, that you were out of integrity. And they may not even realize that you were out of integrity. And you may not even want to tell them that you were because, oh my gosh, now they might think something bad about you, right?

But again, this is for you and your mental health. It is more important for you to get into integrity than to worry about what they're going to think about you for outing yourself, that you did something wrong. And honestly, they're going to respect you so much more in the long run. The trust that they're going to have a view in the long run is going to be so much stronger.

You're going to share with them that there was an action that you took, that you feel was out of integrity. You're going to share how you got to that action. You're going to share about what that original triggering circumstance was. And what you made that mean you can share where that meaning came from if you want to, but you don't have to. The whole point is you're taking responsibility that your brain made it mean this thing that now you realize that may not even be the truth.

But because you made it mean this thing, you felt this way, that led to these actions. And you know that those actions were out of integrity with how you wanted to show up for them. With the word that you had created with them, with the promises, with the values that you hold, that these actions were out of integrity with that.

And then you're going to share that now you realize that that original circumstance didn't have to mean that. And that you have decided that you're going to do the work to find another way of thinking about things because you want that end result for the two of you. That your relationship is that important, you want to be back in integrity with them. You want to have these different actions and that you're committing yourself to doing the work of finding other ways of thinking about things so that you can feel differently and act in integrity.

And it's that. It's just that. That is how you clean it up with someone. It might not be comfortable, especially the very first time you do it.

The Benefit Of Getting Back In Integrity, Even When They Were Wrong


Oh my gosh. I have had to clean things up with my husband so many times. Some of it was really, really hard because the original circumstance, like the thing that triggered me, I had a really hard time thinking about it in a different way that didn't lead to me getting upset about something.

But I knew that my actions were out of integrity and that I had to think about it in a different way. And sometimes it's still that, that original triggering thing was not okay. It wasn't a respectful thing, but I didn't have to make it mean that he didn't respect me or, or anything else. I could just have it mean something else I could have. It mean that it was something that was important for him and his mental health that day. But it also didn't work for me.

It's okay to hold both of those in one thought and share that with them. And say, Hey, I know this was something that you really needed, but it also had an impact on me. How can we work on this together? How can we a solution that works for both of us? Because you're re-establishing how important that relationship is to you. And that you're willing to experiment through all of the process obstacles through all of the mindset obstacles, but you're role modeling by going first.

You are getting in integrity. You are cleaning it up. Again, your relationship is going to be healthier. It's going to be stronger. And because you role modeled it, you might see that they start doing the same thing. They start realizing where they were out of integrity, too. Or where their actions might have definitely been for them and for their mental health. But they didn't realize that it also had an impact on someone else's mental health. And that it's important that both of you have good mental health, that you both have great environments to be in. And that you're going to experiment together. That your relationship is worth it, that you care enough for each other.

But that being in integrity with yourself is going to be what keeps your mental health strong? I know this is kind of a heavy topic.

You're having a great Thanksgiving, hopefully, but for those of you that did have some kind of little flare-up, this is going to be some good stuff for you to try out.

Having Integrity In Business, At Work, And At Home

I went through that 10-week integrity seminar. Very long, every single week. And you know what? Every week I showed up and there was some kind of conflict in my life with someone could be a coworker. It could be my husband, could be my kid. Every week, they had us go through to see where is it that you're having any friction in any of your relationships? Write it down. Where was it that you were out of integrity? I was like, what? It was a hard practice to get into. There was so much resistance. We wanted to blame everybody else.

But now once you start to realize that somewhere in there you were out of integrity because you made something mean something that caused you distress and made you act out, or it made you isolate from the other person, that's still an action.

But you were empowered. You could fix this. You could make your relationship stronger by going and cleaning it up. And when you role model it, they start to get into integrity because they're like, wait a minute. What's going on here? I am not used to this. It was one of the healthiest things ever. And when you can be in integrity in everything that you do, your mental health is so much stronger.

Ten weeks of this, every single week, I had to go and clean up something with somebody. Sometimes it was multiple people, I had to go clean stuff up with. And you know what? It sucked. I did not enjoy doing it. But after awhile, I started to see the improvement in all of my relationships. I saw the benefit and I saw the shift in my own mental health of always knowing that I had acted in integrity and that, yeah, sometimes I'm going to mess up.

Sometimes I'm going to step in it. But that doesn't mean that all hope is lost. It doesn't mean I have to suffer with chastising myself over something. I can go and I can clean this up and I can get back in integrity as soon as I want to. And then I don't have to suffer anymore. And my friends that is a great feeling to have. In fact, I got pretty grateful with myself for doing these exercises and cleaning it up. Being in integrity, having great mental health.

So as you think about all of the relationships that you have in your life, are there times when you have been out of integrity? Are there times when you've been out of integrity? What would you have to do to go and clean that up? What would that mean for your relationships? What would that mean for your own mental health?

If this is something that you would like some help on because I know those relationships are important. I also know that it can be stressful. Having that independent third party can really help you find the objectivity in it. I would like to invite you to reach out, contact me. Let's talk about it. Let's see what we can do.

Go over to my website, MyFreedomGrove.com go to the contact me page right there. You have my schedule. You can pick any time that you want. We can sit down. We can talk about what your life looks like and what your relationships look like. We talk about business all the time. These can be your business relationships. Your business is also impacted by the relationships that you have.

So as you're trying to create your businesses, your family might be getting impacted by some of your decisions. Let's make sure that you're in good integrity. Reach out. Let's talk. You're going to feel so much better. I hope that this weekend proves to be fruitful, colorful, happy, and warm and that you get hugs from all of the people in your life.

Have a wonderful week. I will talk to you soon. Bye-bye.


Thank you for listening to My Freedom Grove podcast.  I can't wait to work with you directly. I'll help you to be your authentic self, to have amazing relationships and to live your purpose. I invite you to check out Unshakable Men and Unshakable Women. The Unshakable programs will give you all of the tools, the coaching and the community to help you rise in life, relationships, and business. To learn more, go to my freedom grove.com/workwithme. I can't wait to see you there.


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