As human beings we find ourselves in situations where we have a choice to act with integrity.
Being a blogger is no different from any other profession.
How you choose to portray yourself through your writing and through your action is really up to you.
However, I do think that being a blogger presents more opportunities to not act with integrity.
Let’s discuss how to blog with integrity when there are many temptations all around us.
In the end, your blog website represents who you are.
How do you want to be portrayed by your readers?
Do you want them to trust you?
Do you want them to believe you?
Then integrity is not optional.
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What Is Integrity?
“Integrity is choosing courage over comfort; choosing what is right over what is fun, fast, or easy; and choosing to practice our values rather than simply professing them.” – Brene Brown
According to Wikipedia, Integrity is the practice of being honest and showing a consistent and uncompromising adherence to strong moral and ethical principles and values.
I actually like the definition.
It is short but to the point.
To me, integrity is a way of living. It’s who we choose to be when no one is looking.
Integrity is always doing the right thing no matter the rewards or a lack of.
Integrity starts with being honest with yourself.
Integrity is aligning your words with your actions. Sometimes that is not an easy thing to do.
How often do we say one thing and act in the opposite way?
This is not living with integrity.
If living with integrity is important to you, it should be extended to your blogging as well.
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How To Blog With Integrity?
Image is what people think we are. Integrity is what we really are. – John C. Maxwell
When I first started blogging I was quite surprised how easily other bloggers seem to “borrow” others ideas and sometimes entire articles.
It seems to me that often, people just read some else’s post and rewrite it in their own words and they call it “research”
This is not research, this is writing without integrity.
And you might get away with it for a while but sooner or later it will catch up to you as your readers will realize that integrity is compromised in your content.
If you don’t have integrity, you have nothing. You can’t buy it. You can have all the money in the world, but if you are not a moral and ethical person, you really have nothing. – Henry Kravis
There are 10 main ways of making sure that you are blogging with integrity.
#1 – Don’t steal from others
There is a fine line between doing your research to see what are the hot topics that people want to talk about and flat out stealing some else’ content. This is my proven method. Once I find a popular topic, I do not read anyone else’s articles. I will do my research if I’m lacking knowledge to educate myself but I try not to read any blogs or posts. Then I decide on the view that I will take on this topic and create a general outline. That way I am sure the content is unique and totally authentic. Then I go back and do my research, knowing that I will not be tempted to assume someone else views point.
#2 – Take a different spin on the topic
After I decide what angle I will take on the topic I do my research. This is when I will read what others are saying. Most likely I will find many interesting and valid points that I will be tempted to reuse in my post. I really try not to do it, unless I’m able to take a point and put my own, unique spin on it.
#3 Remember the original intent for your blog
Starting my blog was always about wanting to help people. But very often, we forget why we have started something in the first place. Especially when we are a part of a platform, and you see others so focused on monetizing their blogs, it is very tempting to lose the original focus. My general believe has always been follow your passion and the money will come but at times it is very hard to stay focused on what’s important.
#4 Write with your heart
Yes I know, some will say that this is not professional. I do not agree. No matter what niche you are in, there is always room for your heart. Your readers will see that and they will appreciate it. After all, it is other human beings that are reading your posts, not robots. Nothing can beat a true heart-to-heart connection.
#5 Be accountable for your mistakes
You will make mistakes. Be accountable for them. Do not blame others. Accept fault and learn from it.
#6 Be transparent
This is very important especially when it comes to blogging. Your readers do not know who you are. The potential for misrepresentation and lies is quite great here. But don’t do it. Eventually, what is not true comes out and you might lose many readers if they realize that you are not transparent.
#7 Be authentic
This one is little tricky but to me it means staying true to what you really think. Do not pretend to change your opinion even if you think it is an unpopular one. Stick to what you truly feel and people will appreciate your authenticity.
#8 Be helpful
Always remember to offer value to others. Either make people laugh, teach them something, show them something, explain something to them, etc. But more than that, be helpful even if you think that there might not be any rewards for doing so.
#9 Be Patient
There are not shortcuts to places worth going. Patience is a great virtue. Especially when it comes to blogging. We know that it takes a really long time for a blogging website to get readers and to become successful. You might be tempted to try some shortcuts but in the long run they will not pay off, instead, most likely they will set you backwards.
#10 Be kind
Always choose kindness above all else, especially when it comes to dealing with people over the internet, where you have no idea who the other person is. You don’t know what that person is going through, what troubles, he/she currently has, decide to always be kind no matter what the circumstances.
“You can easily judge the character of a man by how he treats those who can do nothing for him.” – Johann Wolfgang von Goethe
I know that blogging with integrity seems not easy to do. Furthermore, it seems that a lot of people are doing the opposite. But don’t get distracted. Know who you are deep down and portray that in the way you are writing your blogs and creating content for your website. It will be worth it in the end. You will gain followers that will trust you and rely on your knowledge and opinions. Furthermore, you will feel really good about yourself knowing that you have maintained your integrity.
I hope you have enjoyed the article. I really hope you will continue blogging with integrity. I hope this was helpful and I would love to hear from you. Your comments, questions, suggestions, feedback, please leave it below.
Most people don’t understand that being a blogger can be a profession as they tend to believe it is a hobby. The fact that one chooses to create a blog being for one reason or the other must really take integrity into the first plan. I couldn’t agree more with your statements.
As you know being honest, having principles and values is nowadays very “risky” I should say.
Thanks a lot for sharing and keep safe!
Thank you Antonio for your comment. Yes, it’s a bit disheartening to see all the “plagiarism” when it comes to blogs. I understand research but flat out stealing people’s content is just not right. I was shocked to discover how often it actually happens. I think bloggers with integrity and moral values will win in the end. It might be a slower road but in the end truth and integrity will win.
Hello Anna. I agree with you, every one should blog with integrity. I’m a blogger and also a reader of other blogs. I expect and appreciate unique and honest posts. This is also the way I want to communicate with my readers. I think this is very important if you want to keep your audience for a long run.
Hi Debora, thank you for your comment. Before becoming a blogger I never realized that people will have to be reminded to blog with integrity. It takes one not so unique post and you could lose a lot of readers. Sadly, I have seen that happen over and over again. I agree with you, I have too much respect for my readers to copy other peoples content.