You were taught all kinds of things to make it easier to “get along” in this world. By the time you hit adolescence, you had adopted certain moral codes. Early on, we each attempt positive interactions and find that there are certain social structures in place to maintain a sense of order. As we get older, we have opportunities to branch out. At some point, you might have decided to explore. Chances are, however, that unless you dropped into a new culture, there would not be any dramatic change and you pretty much stuck to what you were taught early on.
Early theories about the way we make ethical decisions boil down to two decision-tree paths: “care” or “justice.”
It turns out that choosing “right” isn’t always simple. What’s right to you might not be so right to someone else. For example, I think we could all agree that stealing is wrong. Would it be okay to steal a medicine or hijack a car if you knew that in doing so, you could save a loved one’s life? It’s still stealing. What if, in taking that medicine or car, you put someone else in harm’s way?
Expanding your thinking takes work. And luckily most of our daily decisions aren’t of the life or death type. Perhaps because of that, though, most people don’t challenge themselves to think beyond what they already know to be “true.” Step outside of yourself for a moment. Think about whether you are more prone to go down a Justice path or a Care path when making decisions. Are you looking to conform to norms given to you? There’s nothing wrong with that; just become aware that’s what you’re doing. Are you in a position to break free from what you learned and step into a new perspective.
Unlearn Some Old Ways In Order To
Expand and Level Up
This Wednesdays With Wayne is a reminder that you might just need to unlearn a way of doing something in order to adopt a new way. What would happen if you looked at the world from a different angle? While I don’t get political in my blog posts, I think it’s an interesting time to explore the other side, no matter what you believe. No one comes to a debate ready to have their mind changed. What if you decided to explore what the “other side” believes and how they got there? It’s an amazingly eye-opening experience. Personally, I listen to what I call “polar radio.” I hear both sides and come away shaking my head. What a ridiculous world we live in to be so one-sided. The world isn’t binary. Alternate ways of thinking – a third way of looking at overlapping ideals, might best serve each of us as world citizens.
If you’ve only looked at decision making from a right/wrong stance, you might want to consider the consequences to the individuals involved. (Hint: This is a powerful leadership concept!) Conversely, if you’ve only engaged in the soft place, perhaps even over-giving, you might need to look at how to engage with others based on a more traditional set of decision rules.
All of this is a little heady, so take some time to think about how you make decisions, what leads you to feel pulled in one direction, and if it’s time to unlearn some old ways in order to expand into your next level of being a bigger you.
See you here next week!
~ Dr P ~
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My New Podcast is coming soon! Stay tuned for: One Sharp Sword – Cutting Through To What Matters Most with Outfluencer, Dr Wayne Pernell