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Flagging Standards


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When you have high standards, you are likely to feel extremely good about yourself. Indeed the higher your standards, the better your life. Choosing to raise standards is a great way of bolstering your self-esteem and making yourself irresistibly attractive to other high quality, like-minded people. If your standards are low then you will be flying your emotional flag at half mast.

A good way to bridge the gap in your own personal standard is to identify the qualities and natural behavior of people you admire and establish what you have to do to be more like them, whilst retaining your own identity. Of course, you can start immediately by being unconditionally constructive every time you speak, by eliminating gossip - good or bad - about anyone, by putting people and relationships ahead of results, by maintaining reserves of time, money, and well-being and by telling the truth, even if there is a consequence.

Let me focus in on that last one for a moment - telling the truth. Be honest with yourself: When was the last time you were dishonest? Someone once said that even a half truth is a whole lie. And if you tell a lie, don’t believe that it only deceives the other person.

Where then, does your demarcation line lie? Do you always tell the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth. Or, the whole truth and, on occasion, anything but the truth? In the words of former British Prime Minister, Margaret Thatcher, “You don’t tell deliberate lies, but sometimes you have to be evasive. ”

In what situations are you prepared to be economical with the truth? Would you bend the truth to preserve the feelings of someone you love as this light-hearted poem suggests?

If she is twenty, you, with truth, may compliment her on her youth; But if she’s forty, do not shy, At telling her a pleasing lie.


Would you lie for a friend? Would you lie to leap up the ladder? Would you fudge the figures to make a profit? I am not suggesting that you would do any of these. It is a question of standards - of knowing your own mind, of knowing you own demarcation line, of maintaining the highest standards, of in this case, honesty. Only you know where you stand and what you need to do to preserve the truth as you perceive it and know it in your heart and mind.

The best-selling business book, The Millionaire Mind, by Dr. Thomas Stanley looks at how people became millionaires and how they behave afterwards. Dr. Stanley interviewed one thousand U. S. millionaires. The most significant ‘success factor’ in becoming a millionaire, with an importance rating of 90% is, surprisingly, “being honest with all people. ”

If you want to be a millionaire, not just in monetary terms, but in every sense of the word, don’t lie down to low standards. Instead, raise your standards so high that everyone around you will have to reach up to touch your flag.

Thomas Chalmers is an executive coach based in Scotland. He works with executives, politicians, and entrepreneurs. Michael Imani is a life coach based in Atlanta. He has worked with clients in 6 countries.


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