Reliability is being dependable. Others can rely on us to be responsible. We genuinely care about keeping our commitments. When we say we will do something, we do it in a predictable way without forgetting or having to be reminded. We avoid taking on too much, so we can give fully to what we choose to do. We finish on time. No obstacle can stop us from giving our best. When friends need us we are there. We are promise-keepers.


The only lifelong, reliable motivations are those that come from within, and one of the strongest of those is the joy and pride that grow from knowing that you’ve just done something as well as you can do it. 

— Lloyd Dobens

 The Practice of Reliability

  • I choose my commitments wisely.
  • Others can depend on me.
  • I take responsibility for what I promise.
  • I am consistent in giving my best.
  • My word is my bond.
  • I give full support to those I love.
Definitions and practices of virtue are used with permission from the Virtues Project™.

In Family Life

Reliability within a family is the steadfast commitment to being there for one another, both in times of joy and adversity. It manifests in consistent emotional support, trustworthiness, and dependability. Demonstrated through actions means keeping promises, being punctual for important events, actively listening and offering a helping hand when needed, and maintaining open and honest communication.

Reliability in a family fosters a sense of security, as family members can rely on each other for guidance, love, and unwavering support, creating a solid and enduring bond that weathers life’s challenges together.

Balancing Reliability

Here are some virtues that cultivate reliability in a balanced way:

Flexibility: Embracing flexibility allows individuals to adapt to unforeseen circumstances without compromising reliability. It encourages a balanced approach to commitments, recognizing the importance of accommodating changes while upholding one’s promises.
Self-awareness: Cultivating self-awareness enables individuals to recognize their limits and avoid overcommitting, ensuring they can fulfill their obligations consistently without succumbing to burnout.
Empathy: Empathy fosters understanding and compassion towards others, facilitating genuine connections and mutual support even amidst challenging circumstances and reinforcing reliability through solidarity.

While reliability is a cornerstone of trust and integrity, its optimal expression lies in a delicate balance. By embracing flexibility, self-awareness, and empathy, individuals can sustain their personal well-being and contribute to the greater good.