We have all heard of the golden rule. “Do unto others as you would want them to do to you”. Luckily, because of that rule, we are able to put something extremely important into a bite sized quote that anybody could understand. If you wouldn’t want somebody to do something to you, then why would you do it to somebody else. Simple right?
Unfortunately, I am noticing that people tend to pick and choose when to use that rule due to convenience. When they are in a good mood, it easy. When they are in a place of power or the feeling of having power, it’s easy. But what about when that same person is in a bad mood? Not so easy to still be kind to the person who said something disrespectful. What about when that same person is frustrated, stressed out or things just don’t seem to be going as planned?
I have been that person on several occasions even though I have preached, and been preached to about the golden rule my entire life. I have had bad days and I have done the exact opposite and treated people far worse than I ever would have wanted to be treated. After the scenario, I felt horrible and that feeling was not worth it so I decided to make a change.
I decided to be the change for now on and decided that I would add to the golden rule and incorporate it internally with every part of my life. Instead of treating people the way that I want to be treated, I decided to become the person that I want to be. In times when things got hard, I would ask myself how somebody with patience would treat it.
In doing so, I took responsibility for my responses and the aftermath was amazing. I realized that reacting the way that I thought happy person would react made me happy. Reacting the way a patient person in a situation helped keep me calm. Reacting the way a courageous person reacted made me less fearful and built my confidence. It helped me a lot in making me a stronger, calmer, lesser stressed out individual.
It also allowed me to open my mind and see things differently and if you change your perspective, you change your life. Instead of getting road rage, I saw things that happened on the road and just obstacles and detours. If I needed to swerve out of the way because somebody cut me off, I treated it as if there was a pot hole. Now instead of needing to retaliate and show my frustration, I was able to grab my chest, smile and be thankful that nobody got hurt.
Being the change that I saw was fit for a particular situation and changing my perspective helped slow me down mentally and didn’t put me in situations that could make the current situation worse.
The great thing about this new change is that it can to showed to others. I was talking to my neighbor not to long ago and she was explaining how her son was doing bad in school. She said that he was misbehaving and treating his teacher with disrespect. When I pulled him to the side, I asked him about it and he denied doing things that were bad. I asked him “What would a good kid do in this situation.” He responded that a good kid sits in his chair. A good kid raises his hand. A good kid shares. A good kid pays attention.
In his eyes, that is how a good kid reacts. So I told him “If that is what a good kid does, then why aren’t you doing it? He looked at me with a face of defeat but I knew he understood. I gave him a strong hug and told him that I have always seen him as an amazing, good and strong kid. I told him that from today on, be the change. Be the person and act how that person acts and see how it makes you feel.
A week later he came up to me with the brightest eyes and was so excited to tell me how he intentionally did what he felt a good kid would do in the past week and he was rewarded with a gold sticker next to his name and earned a free slice of pizza for his hard work. I gave him a high five and asked if he would continue and he said yes.
So long story short. We all know that the golden rule is how you treat people, but being the change that you want to be will benefit you in so many ways while showing the people around you ways to better benefit themselves as well. Who knows. Maybe a simple action on your part can change the life of somebody who has the pleasure of experiencing you and one day, change the world to something extravagant. Be the change!