DO THE RIGHT THING
OK…I’ll admit it…I’ve come late to the “BLOG PARTY…” no pun intended!
As a person who makes a living with words, it’s about time I embraced this amazing technology that gives me the opportunity to connect with you.
The outline below reflects my Life Philosophy.
You may recognize it as “Doe a deer, a female deer…” the song that Julie Andrews sang in the movie, The Sound Of Music. Technically, it’s called “solfege.” I’ll save you the Music Theory 101 definition and give you the layman’s version… “the very basics or absolute essentials of music…”
Just as these Do, Re, Mi’s are basic and essential to music, I believe there are some Do, Re, Mi’s that are basic and essential in life…some principles we can plug into our lives and practice on a daily basis that will help us TUNE UP OUR LIVES….body, mind and spirit!
DO – Do the right thing
RE – Realize potential
MI – Mind Your Manners
FA – Failures can become fertilizer
SO – Solutions begin with me
LA – Laugh
TI – Time is Valuable
…that will bring us back to
DO – Do the right thing
Notice, we begin AND end with:
“DO THE RIGHT THING…”
There was an interesting book written several years ago titled The Day America Told the Truth. In that book, average Americans were surveyed on a number of different topics. One of the questions they were asked was … “What would you be willing to do for ten million dollars?” The answers were staggering. Seven percent said they would murder someone. Six percent said they would change their race. Four percent said they would change their gender. And sixteen percent of those Americans said they would leave their spouse for ten million dollars.
When I first read those statistics I thought, wait a minute this is America – what ever happened to our character? What ever happened to our integrity? What ever happened to just plain doing the right thing?
I think you’ll agree with me that sometimes doing the right thing means we have to dig way down deep inside ourselves and tap that “moral compass,” as the late Steven Covey coined it. Sometimes it takes every ounce of courage, integrity and character we can muster to make the right choice … to do the right thing. It can be very tempting to make the easy choice instead of the right choice…
On December 1,1955, a woman stepped up onto a city bus in Montgomery, Alabama. She was weary from a long day of work…and even wearier of the unjust segregation laws in America at that time. On that day, that lady named Rosa Parks made a decision. She chose NOT to give up her bus seat to a white passenger…and the rest is history.
She’s been called the Mother of the Civil Rights Movement and has been named one of the Most Influential Persons of the Twentieth Century…all because she made a decision.
Make note of the timeline. Rosa Parks rode that bus in 1955. Lyndon Johnson didn’t sign the Civil Rights Act into law until 1964.
Oh, the power of one decision.
Whether it’s the “BIGGIES” or the seemingly small, insignificant ones that we make every day, I believe the decisions we make have impact on our lives and the lives of those we love.
Think about your own life – how many decisions do you make in a day? They affect not only your life but someone else’s as well. It’s like the bumper car rides at the amusement park…every decision bumps into another and the chain reaction changes everyone’s path.
Let’s break it down to a few necessary components for making a decision…
• Clarify what you believe. Do you believe in right and wrong? If so, where do you draw the line? How did you arrive at your beliefs? Many times we just “inherit” our beliefs and adopt things we’ve been taught or had modeled as our own. Perhaps you’ve been taught very good and productive means for arriving at decisions. Perhaps not. Our view of the world is influenced by what we’ve been told and what we’ve experienced. Clarifying what you truly believe and why you believe it will help you as your make life’s inevitable decisions.
• Get information. A decision made with incomplete or inaccurate information is rarely the best decision. Informed decision making is the path to doing the right thing. How can you truly weigh your options if you haven’t considered what they are? Wise decisions made with good information have been a prized possession since the beginning of time. Solid information will help you make good decisions.
• Seek wise counsel. Seek advice from those who have gone before you. Of course, you have to be careful about who you seek advice from. Opinions are like noses – everybody has one. Still, it’s important to bolster your decision-making with safe, sane people who have your best interest at heart. If the trusted voices in your life are seeing a “red flag” – you’ll want to consider what they’re saying. Don’t fall into the trap of rejecting good advice. At least consider it – at the end of the day the decision is still yours.
One decision can forever change the course of our lives.
Whose path did you change today – and who changed yours…?
BOTTOM LINE: It all begins with ONE DECISION to DO THE RIGHT THING!