High-Integrity People Do These 7 Things

Leave the world better than you found it.

James Michael Sama
7 min readNov 21, 2021

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What does it mean to live with integrity? To look back at your own past and consider it a “good” life lived by a “good” person? I wonder about this often, and consistently strive to show up better every day for the people I love — but also the people I’ve never even met.

Life has changed a lot for all of us over the past couple of years. Covid, employment crises, quarantines, crazy housing markets…

The only thing that we can control every day is how we choose to conduct ourselves in the world.

I’ve been fortunate enough to have varied experiences in life that have both grounded and elevated me. I’ve been many different people and lived many different lives — and at the end of the day I am confident that the most important endeavor remains to live a life with integrity and honor.

How do we do it? Here are 7 lessons I’ve learned along the way:

1: Help those you can, whenever you can.

I find myself observing people often these days. Not just observing though, but absorbing. Absorbing what they are feeling in the moment. The challenges they are facing. The simplicity of sitting down alone at lunch. The struggle of scaling the third flight of stairs as they likely wonder if they should work out more often. The challenges we all face, simply by being human.

Years ago, I had a routine doctor’s appointment and as I was leaving, getting on to the elevator, the door opened and I found myself making immediate eye contact with a woman being pushed in a wheelchair. She glanced at me for a brief moment before looking into the distance as she continued to her appointment, but in that moment I felt her sadness. I felt it in a way that stayed with me for a long time, and I am reminded — all any of us want is to live a happy, healthy life. The realities of the world are often harsh, and sometimes we all need a helping hand.

The next time someone bumps into you, accidentally says the wrong thing, or needs help lifting something heavy into their car — do not lose sight of the realization that how you react in that moment towards them could be the best or worst part of their day.

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James Michael Sama

Helping high achievers build deeper fulfillment & love. Multi #1 writer. Coach & Speaker. Trusted by: CNN, CNBC, NY Post, CBS, more. Say hello! @JamesMSama