A couple of weeks ago, a good friend called me as he was caught in a dilemma and wanted advice. It was a very simple transaction that could’ve turned into a very bad situation had my friend’s moral compass not been calibrated correctly. I stayed engaged to ensure my friend and other associates were making good decisions and acting responsibly, but especially to be a sounding board. Needless to say, we were able to work through it and everyone involved (except the antagonist) had a clear conscience. We all became wiser and more deliberate once the dust settled.
It got me seriously thinking about how trusting we are of others and how far others would go to to deceive. I’d like to believe that I surround myself around “good” people yet there have been a few surprises throughout the years.
It starts with defining your core values. My core values include authenticity, integrity, honesty, fairness, and family. When working through a decision, sometimes these values are not front and center because I am reacting. I don’t want to be inconvenienced. I don’t want to create conflict. I want to be more empathetic.
However, if I run through all of the scenarios WITH my core values, the solution becomes more apparent. Am I being authentic? Is this a solution of integrity? Am I being honest and fair? Am I putting my family as a priority?
Finally, as we wonder how someone could consciously do something harmful, we have to consider that they may not live to the same core values as we do. If “being the best at any cost” is a core value, this may cross a line. Although they do not see anything wrong with their behavior, it certainly violates our core values.
I hope that this encourages you to revisit your core values and reflect on reading and using your moral compass to help guide you to make better decisions. It certainly did for me.