10 characteristics of men with unwavering integrity

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Men of integrity operate by a code of conduct. 

They have red lines they won’t cross and standards they won’t fail to meet. 

Here they are: 

1) Self-accountability

The first of the key characteristics of men with unwavering integrity is self-accountability. 

That means absolute, unbreakable self-honesty and holding himself accountable for his actions, words and decisions. 

The man of integrity never hides behind context or blames others to escape responsibility. 

When he has had a part in something he owns that head-on. 

For the promises he makes to himself and others he takes responsibility and is accountable to himself. 

Even if not a single other soul on earth knows of his promise to lose weight or accomplish another goal, he knows, and he holds himself accountable. 

2) Authenticity

The next of the characteristics of men with unwavering integrity is authenticity. 

A man of integrity never fakes it. He doesn’t do “fake nice,” and he doesn’t feign interest when he doesn’t care.

He looks people in the eye and tells it like he sees it. 

He’s polite, sure, but being authentic comes first for him. 

If he’s a different political view and a crowd of people demand to know where he stands, he’ll be honest about it. 

Life’s too short not to be who you are.

A man of integrity does what he believes is right and is true to who he is and his core values. If you don’t like it, he’s still going to stick to his code of ethics and beliefs.

As Scot Chadwick puts it:

“They intentionally direct their conduct according to their understanding of what is right and wrong. 

Authenticity marks the heart of integrity. 

Their internal character remains consistent regardless of external conditions.”

3) Admitting mistakes 

Next up in the characteristics of men with unwavering integrity is that they admit their mistakes or when they did something wrong. 

Whether or not it was avoidable, a man of integrity is going to apologize and seek to make amends when he wrongs somebody. 

For example, say a man is renting his apartment and his payment for rent this month doesn’t go through. It turns out the bank had an error and it’s their fault, but the payment will still be late. 

He speaks to his landlord and owns up to the mistake apologizing. He doesn’t focus on blame or “that bank and its issues.”

He focuses on apologizing and saying it won’t happen again. Because a man of integrity isn’t looking to shift blame or find who’s responsible. He owns up and takes the hit regardless. 

4) Leading wisely

One of the key characteristics of men with unwavering integrity is that they lead wisely. 

If and when they take on a leadership role, they take it seriously and they care about guiding and caring for those in their stewardship. 

Whether that is father, CEO, tour guide, manager of security or fire chief, the man of integrity leads with courage and conviction. 

He doesn’t pass the buck and he owns his decisions, putting in the extra time and energy to keep things running smoothly. 

Make no mistake: 

This kind of man is the glue that holds society together.

5) Following conscientiously 

When placed in a follower position, the man of integrity also behaves judiciously. 

He does not follow blindly.

Yet at the same time he does not act rebellious just for the sake of it. 

To put it bluntly, he follows if the leadership is competent and necessary. 

If he resists authority, it is only for a solid reason, and only if and when he knows that his stand will have a good chance of success. 

Most of all, however, he keeps his eyes open to what he believes and who he follows, to ensure he doesn’t get sucked into anything counterproductive or harmful to himself or those he cares about. 

This brings me to the next point…

6) Loving few, respecting many

Another of the key characteristics of men with unwavering integrity is that they treat others with respect, but they don’t open up overly easily. 

They choose very selectively about who to bare their soul to and who to give their heart to. 

This is because a man of integrity isn’t looking to waste time on broken hearts and toxic relationships. 

If he pursues something serious with a woman, it’s because he’s serious. Full stop. 

He doesn’t fall in love easily or often. And if he does, it’s for real

7) Remaining faithful in romance

Because he is selective, authentic and trustworthy, a man of integrity is faithful in romance and when in a relationship. 

He doesn’t cheat. Period. 

He doesn’t watch pornography. Period. 

He doesn’t flirt with other women. Period. 

Does this sound too old school?

For some women it certainly will be… 

He doesn’t care. If women find him too much of a prude, he’ll meet one who values the kind of attention and devotion he’s willing to give to the right person.

A woman who will cherish the ability to voluntarily give that same commitment right back to him.

8) Innovating in business 

The man of integrity doesn’t rest on his laurels. 

He stays fit, stays healthy and stays growing. This is especially true in the commercial realm, where he dedicates himself to innovation. 

He enjoys his days off, but that’s because he works like hell when he’s in on mode. 

He grows his businesses, is endlessly curious about new strategies and approaches and networks whenever possible with people who express an interest or desire to contribute to what he does. 

He seeks out new opportunities all the time, and brings his same badass work ethic to every single one. 

When a new idea for business or growth fails, he learns from that. 

Instead of getting bitter, he gets better. 

9) Being the same guy in every place

Now it’s very crucial for a man of integrity that he be the same guy wherever he is. 

We all have many roles in life and different skills and duties in different contexts. 

In one situation a man may be a boss, in another a parent, in another a friend, a teammate in his sports league or a client. 

But while he shifts his focus in his interactions and gears up appropriately for whatever situation he’s in, he never shifts his core values or what he believes or stands for. 

He never pretends to be something he is not, even if that could bring certain advantages in some contexts. 

As Mark Merrill writes:

“Too many of us are different people in different places. 

Determine instead to be a man of integrity and then practice at home, at work, at play—wherever you are.”

10) Staying awake when others sleep 

The man of integrity works hard, is trustworthy and brings his best to every area of his life. 

When others let responsibilities and goals slide, he steps up to the plate…

When everyone is under the weather, he’s on his game and working hard…

When people are all buying into a false narrative, he’s out bucking the trend…

A man of integrity stays awake when others sleep. 

He gets things done, he stays true to himself and he fulfills his commitments. 

At the end of the day he works harder than most, but earning his sleep leaves him with a genuine smile on his face instead of the cocky sneer of an upstart or a hypocrite.

The engine of integrity 

The engine of integrity is you. 

What makes a man is ultimately his own decisions and follow-through on those decisions. 

You have to decide who you want to be and then be it every single day to the fullest extent possible. 

Life provides endless opportunities for excuses and a lack of self-accountability. 

The man of integrity declines every excuse that comes his way and rises above the pack for that very reason. 

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