In his book, Doing the Right Thing At Work, James L. Nolan says, “In a given situation, our doing the right thing might be the result of good habits cultivated over a lifetime or might come about only after periods of trial and error, painful soul-searching and courageous risk-taking.”

Doing the right thing is directly connected to our personal spirituality beliefs because it’s difficult to separate our moral code into the various compartments of our life. We cannot have one set of values at home and another in the workplace. That creates an inner conflict that can open the door to destruction of our character.

I suspect we’ve all made decisions to “bend the rules” and then rationalizes personal justification for our actions. But here is the troubling factor. If we continually engage in habitual behavior that bends the rules, we will soon be comfortable with such actions. The potential for guilt to surface becomes less and less and we slowly drift into the abyss of deceitful behavior.

What is our charge if we are to do the right thing? We should identify our core values and beliefs about what is right or wrong. Checking our spiritual base is the starting point. With these guiding principles firmly identified, we create standards by which we can judge the quality and value of our decisions. Consistency is the most important factor. When we live with only one set of standards, we avoid inner conflict and raise the potential for your decisions to be on target each and every time.

The pressures to survive in this world economy grow daily. If we have no rigidly defined values, these pressures make it easy to stray off the straight and narrow path of ethical decision making. But, we must not succumb to the easy path. Our charge is to do the right thing every time in every circumstance. Only then can we truly be at peace with ourselves, our place of work and with our spiritual relationship with God.

What about your work place? Where is the moral compass pointing? What decisions have you or other employees made in hard times that “bent the rules” a bit? Is there a difficult situation you can recall when you took the right stance? What is the personal moral code by which you make decisions at work and in your personal life? These are tough questions. But, if we are to remain true to ourselves, we must face the answers and become crystal clear exactly how we will respond to the challenges life places in front of each one of us, regardless of the circumstances.

We are blessed with a free will and ability to make independent choices. Our choices must be laced with a moral code and a sense of ethics that is grounded in our spirituality. With such a guidance code, the best decisions will always surface.

In Chris Lowney’s book, Heroic Leadership, he listed four pillars of personal leadership. I’ve added my own commentary following each pillar.

1. Self-Awareness: Get in touch with your strengths, weaknesses, values and view of the world. Keep your awareness antenna high to easily pick up wrong signals and then make the choice to move in the right direction.

2. Ingenuity: Constantly adapt and innovate to embrace a rapidly changing world. But a changing world does not mean we have to change our core values.

3. Love: Engage others with a positive, loving attitude. Giving love to another brings the greatest joy into our life. Approaching all with such an attitude and mindset keeps us on the straight and narrow path of spiritual correctness.

4. Heroism: Energize yourself and others through heroic ambitions—stretching beyond wholehearted service. Doing more while always making the right decision, regardless of personal cost, makes you a hero who truly provides the highest level of service to your organization, family and the world.

Don’t be shy about tying your life to a spiritual mindset. We are creations of a higher being that longs for us to engage him. When we keep the spirit alive in all aspects of our life, we are making that connection we so desperately need to reach our ultimate destiny.

© 2007 Billy Arcement

Author's Bio: 

Billy Arcement, MEd., turns knowledge into results. He is a former teacher, coach, school board member and senior corporate manager. Today, he uses his teaching, coaching and corporate experiences to create insightful consultation and training sessions.

His work with business leaders creates a culture of teamwork, productivity and profits. His message to school boards, administrators and teachers is simple and candid—always keep children first.

By mixing a generous blend of his signature “Cajun” stories, inspirational content rich messages with common sense advice, Billy brings enlightenment and enthusiasm to every event.
No matter the role—keynote presenter, in-service workshop leader, meeting facilitator, executive coach or leadership consultant, clients receive a highly customized approach that turns problems into opportunities.

Billy writes nationally published articles on leadership, education issues and success principles. His book, "Searching for Success," is now published in four foreign countries. His newest book, "The Journey--Powerful Strategies for Discovering Your Personal, Professional and Spiritual Destiny," is due out in October 2007. His ezines, News from the Swamp (leadership and success strategies) and Children First (parenting skills) reach a world-wide audience each month.

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