October 8th, 2013 15:48 EST
The New Golden Rule: The Rhodium Rule
My work has me traveling a lot; I love this because I love to see, meet and connect with people. I am constantly amazed with the people I meet each week " mostly how different we all are. And, in the same moment, how amazing we are.
Though we are amazing, I also see how we openly disrespect and treat each other poorly. Two things happened just yesterday that got me thinking. Here is what happened.
I live in South Florida where we have a lot of retirees. It was early in the morning and I was on my way to the gym. We were all stopped at a red light. The light changed; the first car at the light made no attempt to move. In a matter of seconds horns were blasting, people were screaming and curses were flying. We were held up by an older man who must have just tuned out. Once aware, his car slowly accelerated. The cars behind him passed him in a tear, windows rolled down and cursing. At least 5 cars did this to him. My heart hurt watching this.
At my gym is a transgendered woman; previously a man, now a woman. Everyone stares and talks about this person. I can`t imagine how difficult it is for this person to be who she really is, and to have the courage to show up true to herself in a world that is thrives on judgments and with opinions.
So what would allow us to show up more significantly, lovingly and kindly in our world? Let`s look back at a fundamental rule we all learned when we were younger " the golden rule. The golden rule says treat others the way you want to be treated. That was updated to the platinum rule that said to treat others the way they want to be treated. Maybe what need a new rule " the Rhodium (the most precious metal " look it up) Rule. The Rhodium Rule helps us realize how utterly precious life is and that living it fully and supporting others to live fully is the greatest rule in life. So here is what I propose as the Rhodium Rule: Know yourself. Be yourself. Let others be themselves.
Know yourself. Knowing what makes you distinct, different and unique is your key to finding your way in our wild world. The challenge is that none of us received an owner`s manual at birth " a summary of who we are including what we are good at, passionate about and what matters to us " and how to live in our best way. Instead, we have to tune in " to show up present, conscious and awake to each moment of our lives to discover our unique talents, strengths and passions that came hardwired in us at birth.
Tom Dooley shares in his book Infinite Possibilities that our passions, interests and abilities create guideposts that help us define which roads in life are for us " which fit our unique perspectives and abilities. But to travel our right road, we must first learn about the true us " what we are good at, passionate about and what matters to us. This is information. And from this information we have the clarity to make choices about how to be who we really are.
Be yourself. Knowing ourselves " good. Being ourselves (living true to who we are) " priceless. All this great information we found out by being aware, awake and present to our lives gives us the ability to find where in our world we fit. We didn`t learn about ourselves to take notes; we learned about ourselves to live boldly, confidently and wisely as our true selves. The benefit of being ourselves is that we step into our greatness " we show up to our world in our best way. However, we get a lot of pushback in trying to be ourselves. Our world regularly tells us who to be, how to live, what to believe and so many other things. So, though we may have clarity about who we are and what fits us in life, it still requires focus, effort, determination, courage and support to actually be ourselves in today`s pushy and opinionated world.
Let others be themselves. Seeing how much effort it took to know and be ourselves, we now know the effort and challenge required to be authentic, honest and true. It`s not easy. Imagine if those around us were more supportive of us in this process and how much easier it would be to know ourselves and be ourselves. Plato had it right when he said, Be kind, for everyone you meet is fighting a hard battle. " It is a battle to be ourselves in a world that would prefer we look and act like others " that we blend instead of stand out. Allowing and supporting others to step into their greatness shows we know its value for us and want the same thing for others " to show up big to life and to live it on our terms.
Born into each of us is a spark of greatness. Knowing that each of us has this spark changes my perspective of everyone I meet. I know that whomever I meet is born awesome " that he or she has amazing gifts and abilities " even if they haven`t been discovered and lived yet. They are there. And I want this for them " to figure themselves out and be themselves. I want them to show up big, bold and better in their world " in our world. Knowing this changes everything about how I treat myself and others.
My organization and I are committed to this Rhodium Rule. Our work, our writing, our tools and our programs help people discover who they are so that they can live who they are. And in the process, knowing the work it takes to connect to our best selves, it naturally follows to openly allow and support others to in their process to connect to their greatness. It takes patience, acceptance, support and kindness. Stepping into our greatness and allowing others to find and live their greatness is the most significant thing we do in life. It is the most precious rule and therefore carries the name of the most precious metal " rhodium.
Know yourself. Be yourself. Let others be themselves. Imagine a world where we connect our best to our world and encourage and support others to do the same. We are wise enough to do this. But wisdom isn`t enough. We have to want it and choose it. How can you live the Rhodium Rule today?