Are You Loyal? 


Throughout life we are faced with dilemmas that will test our loyalty to family, friends, employer or work place, belief,moral and ethics. Loyalty is generally described as faithfulness to a person, group,country or cause. In literature some claim that loyalty is strictly interpersonal and most face loyalty dilemmas to persons in their close Blog 97environment. Facing truth versus loyalty can cause a dilemma. Telling the truth is right as is obviously being loyal. This again is not the same as ‘right’ and ‘wrong’. Therefore, being loyal can be right but it can also mean wrongdoing.    

Loyalty to family and society is formed through life. But who is to say that these standards are right?  Doing the right thing might make you break the bounds to someone you have been loyal to – while remaining loyal can make you do something wrong. Both truth and loyalty are good characteristics yet not always compatible. There are many variations, let us consider a few examples. Would you for instance report your husband for a crime you knew he had committed?  or If you came across evidence proving your boss was corrupt, would you report him/her? or perhaps obtaining your dream position meant you had to betray or let down a good friend, would you consider it? Life can pose you some difficult dilemmas, especially when truth being fact-based and loyalty being emotional.

Loyalty is a characteristic that when challenged translates into specific patterns of actions and behaviour. At the end of the day, you are the one that will live with and face the consequences of your own decisions. Loyalty cannot be forced upon any inter-personal relationship, but rather is developed and nurtured over time. Loyalty is earned and once you grant someone your loyalty it is inherently based on other values such as honesty and respect. If these are the values underpinning a loyal relationship, you will not face dilemmas as those described above.

Doing what is right or being truthful yet loyal, does not always represent the most comfortable path in life. A loyal friend will or rather – should – tell you so. Misusing loyalty has nothing to do with friendship while some might see loyalty as a comfort zone that would protect them irrespective of whether they did the right thing or not, however is this really what a true loyal relationship is about? A true loyal friend will not make you choose between loyalty (friendship) and truth.  S(he) will encourage you to act according to what you think and feel is right. It would neither be right nor loyal if that ‘right’ were doing wrong. 




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