Since Kindergarten, we have been told to “treat others as we would like to be treated ourselves.” While this is a good start, as adults we begin to learn that there are some nuances to this thinking. Perhaps it’s more effective to treat others as THEY would like to be treated. We all have different expectations, wants and needs, and truly caring for the people around us can be a little more complicated than that simple phrase. What remains true, however, is that the ultimate test of our character, success, and legacy ought be how we treat the people in our lives, and the people with whom we cohabit this planet.
I think this is even more important during the current pandemic.
We each have our own personal standards for how we behave and treat people, which in good times is relatively easy to uphold. In times of high stress, external challenges, and uncertainty, we can see which of those values we are really committed to. Do we continue to keep our word on our promises? Do we continue to treat people with kindness and understanding? What happens to our generosity, both of resources and energy? Our patience? As we encourage our students to hold themselves to the Golden Rule, it’s a good time to analyze how we are behaving with regards to our own moral compass.