What are they? How is this measured, because it’s measured whether we like it or not.
On a drive back home with my husband from a much overdue one night escape from life, we took advantage of our subtle hangovers to spitball a random topic — Quality people.
I preface this article by saying that by no means are my husband and myself qualified professionally to answer this question. Yet this barometer actually reinforces what is central to humanity:
Everyone is making base judgements on everyone else.
While this is an incredibly broad topic, I want to keep it within the scope of evaluating humanity as a micro context — what is the sole integer that is responsible for determining an individual is one of quality or not? had recently gone through a litany of drawn out dramatic events. Events that materialized through engagement with folks that we had noted had taken more mental space than any individual should.
As we drove from mountain scapes towards prairie scapes, the question at the root of our discussions kept circulating around a certain internal question.
Are they quality people?
For this discussion allowed only by the luxury of captive drive time, we randomly chose various people that are a part of our shared collective and asked each other:
‘Quality or not Quality’.
Everyone from our dry cleaner to best friends were thrown out to be measured in this adult version of a car game. It was obviously subjective. It had no goal of imposing values on an individual. The lack of direction turned into a free wheeling contemplation of WHY we feel the way we do if we found that we had differing perceptions. CZ and I threw out different names with the only caveat being we had to both know them.
What we found was:
- 98% of individuals that were mentioned were agreed upon unanimously as either Quality or Not Quality regardless of type of relationship with that person.
- The 2% that were not agreed to were indeed interesting, bringing up the poignant question of Why? We asked each other why we felt the way we did about the individual as a way to understand the articulation of the differing views. It was of interest to note that those that we differed on we both noted as feeling the individual was ambiguous and felt the individual was going through a time of change.
- We noted that people that would be outwardly considered non conforming to what is considered Quality People by the larger societal brushstroke, actually were felt to be Quality.
An example of #3 is a mutual friend. He has physically destroyed his home due to alcohol induced rages. We have taken him in when he had alienated every other friend of his. He, in turn, went into the laundry room and chose to wear my used underwear as a hat while proceeding to fall down a flight of stairs at such velocity that he put his head through our drywall.
Again, intoxicated. He was subsequently kicked out of our house as well.
Yet both my husband and I both listed him as a Quality Person.
We can dig holes and draw quick conclusions regarding the aforementioned person we deemed as Quality, as well as the character and values of CZ and myself. However, that is the point. We all chew up input to determine such a subjective discussion as to what is a Quality Person.
Here’s what we found — in our unscientific and random chat:
The determination of a Quality Person is innately tied to the concept of Integrity.
integrity[ in-teg-ri-tee ]noun
adherence to moral and ethical principles; soundness of moral character; honesty.
the state of being whole, entire, or undiminished:
to preserve the integrity of the empire.
a sound, unimpaired, or perfect condition:
the integrity of a ship’s hull.
While looking at the above definition of the word Integrity, nothing appears to align with my mentioned example of our friend. However, diving deeper into the word Integrity and its synonyms seems to clarify its resonance with our concept of Quality people.
Examples of synonyms include: integrity
Synonyms for integrity
This is where the layers of bruised humanity are peeled back to these simple, one word descriptions the punctuate the heart of the matter. This is where the energetic vibration between one human and another is encapsulated by single words.
Honesty. Sincerity. Candor.
Integrity can be defined by the limited scope of Dictionary.com, however I would argue that it is not striking at the heart of humanness — it is striking at the level of outer ego. That outer facade in which almost every human being can sense whether it supports the inner self authentically.
I would also go on to posit that, while we can break down of the definition of Integrity in its role as an essential component of Quality people, we are missing that trait connecting the outer and inner of each self.
Authenticity is that intrinsic component that comprises the Quality person’s integrity. It provides the underlying vibrational energy between two people. It resounds on the troubled person’s behalf, quietly whispering that all of those events — even if it’s dirty underwear on their head — is not the definition of that person.
Authenticity also provides Integrity’s litmus test on those not-Quality people. As noted in the beginning of this discussion — my husband and I had contested views on only 2% of the people we included in this non-technical experiment.
That 2% were missing the vital component: Authenticity.
Integrity is difficult to determine without the building block of Authenticity.
And without these, a Quality person cannot be found.