People deceive themselves about their values for many of the same reasons they deceive themselves about facts. Among other things, they want to see themselves as more diligent, honest, or trustworthy than they really are. They say they are committed to working hard, telling the truth, or keeping promises, but their actions say otherwise.
The pitfalls of lying about values are similar to those of lying about facts, but there is an added snare—lying to ourselves about values compromises our integrity.
The word “integrity” has its roots in the Latin word “integritas,” meaning “intact.” It describes a whole that isn’t weakened or compromised. A crack in a foundation compromises the integrity of a building; a crack in the hull compromises the integrity of a ship.
When the integrity of a whole is compromised, parts of it are divided from each other, and the whole is weaker as a result—a building is more likely to collapse, a ship to sink.
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