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The Choice to Behave Yourself

No matter what…we can do the right thing. No mater our age, our background, our race, our gender, our education or our circumstances we can conduct ourselves in a responsible way. Even when we encounter a situation with which we totally disagree, we can act and work in an intelligent manner to make things better.

Forrest Gump said, “Stupid is as stupid does.” So true. It takes a smart and insightful person to “manage themselves” and to do the right thing regardless of what others around them are saying or doing. It’s not just a matter of having conviction, we have to be right in our convictions. As Rev. Martin Luther King reminded us, “Nothing in all the world is more dangerous than sincere ignorance and conscientious stupidity.”

Unfortunately, we are seeing more and more situations around the country where “cooler heads” did not prevail and people got hurt, or even killed. We’ve got to find a way to come together and, when differences arise, to work through them in an open, honest and effective way. One of the best pieces of advice that we could all practice more is simply this…keep your mouth shut and think for a minute.

We all make mistakes and do things that we wish we hadn’t done. But, there is no eraser in life that allows us to go back and change things. Instead, we can accept forgiveness, even forgive ourselves, and start making the world a better place from this day forward by making good choices and helping those around us.

So, before you get upset and fly off the handle…before you shout out at that other person…before you act like your opinion is the only right one in the room, stop and think. And reflect on this Bible verse: “…in as much as you have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, you have done it unto me.” Think about what that means…and behave yourself.

There are two primary choices in life: to accept conditions as they exist, or accept the responsibility for changing them. Denis Waitley