You likely learned The Golden Rule a young age. It’s still a powerful guide for life. But are you applying it to yourself as well as to others?
The Golden Rule is a beautiful guiding star. “All things whatsoever ye would that men should do to you, do ye even so to them.” Today, it has been simplified to “Do unto others as you would have them do you.”
We all know this rule. Yet too often, we ignore it. Not in the way you might think, though. We don’t neglect the needs of others or treat them as less-than. Rather, we know how we want to be treated; and so we give that away to friends and family, co-workers or strangers. Sadly, we don’t ensure that we ourselves actually get treated that way.
This shows up in two ways. First, we don’t stand up for ourselves. We rush to support a friend who’s being emotionally abused in a relationship or at work. Yes, we give to those in need. We stand up for the helpless. But when it comes to ourselves, we find reasons to accommodate. We don’t give ourselves the same permission to set boundaries or walk away. Even when we have realized we’re in the wrong. Or when we seek earnestly to change our behavior in deference to the Golden Rule. We still let others treat us in ways we’re trying to give up.
There is a second way in which we fail the Golden Rule. We don’t give ourselves the same treatment we would give others. Consider if a friend came crying to you about:
- a recent disappointment with a friend;
- a romantic failure;
- the loss of a job.
Your heart would bleed for them. In your conversations, you would offer comfort by assuring them it wasn’t their fault. You’d help find hope. Help them see how they’re showing up – and how they could choose differently. You would never put them down or punish them. Nor would you ever allow external situations to reflect on their core self.
How to Apply the Golden Rule to Your Own Life
The Golden Rule is a beautiful message. Everyone would be happier if they could take this approach more of the time. But it’s critical to recognize both sides of the coin. You deserve to be done unto yourself as you would do unto others. Perhaps the kindness needs to come from yourself. Maybe you need to make it clear to others what you expect.
Would it serve you to dive deeper into this topic? Can you see how giving yourself the same treatment and consideration you give to others is crucial to a happy and well-lived life? If so, the support and opportunities for growth offered by a community such as The Journey Training could sure help.
You’ve got a personal invitation to become the best version of yourself here. We’ll support you in learning how to do unto others and unto you in a way that creates more light in your own life and in the world. Just reach out to us today.