In business and in life, we all face occasional dilemmas where it seems like the only option is to abandon doing what we know is the right thing because we feel like we don’t have a choice. However, there is always a choice. Even when doing the right thing involves making yourself uncomfortable and being willing to put yourself in a position you don’t want to be in, it’s still the right thing. That’s important to remember because we each must live with our own decisions.
I really believe that sometimes you’ve just ‘gotta do what you’ve gotta do’ in order to stay true to what you know is right.
Years ago, when I taught as an adjunct faculty member at a university, I found myself in a predicament where the higher-ups were trying to force me to break my word and go back on a commitment I had made. It was a very uncomfortable situation that put me in a position where my job was on the line if I didn’t do something that I felt was wrong.
I share the story in this video and am glad to say I have no regrets in how I handled it.
I believe you always have to do the right thing. I made a commitment and followed through with that commitment. Sometimes you gotta do what you gotta do if you think it’s really right. I hope that sharing this story helps others think about the importance of doing the right thing even when it could result in losing something that means a lot to them.
The Hard Path is Easier
A few years ago, I was at a meeting of the Transformational Leadership Council (TLC is a group made up of trainers and “thought leaders” helping to transform people’s lives) and I heard Steve D’Annunzio say something in his presentation that really resonated with me. It was in his discussion about taking the easy path or the hard path in the decisions that we make throughout life.
He said, “taking the hard path often makes life easier and taking the easy path often makes life harder!”
I related that to my own experience as a college student stocking shelves on the night shift at a grocery store while I was finishing up my bachelor’s degree. It was a good paying position at the time that helped me pay my living expenses, however I knew I did not want it to be my career. Even then I believed that sometimes You gotta do what you gotta do to get to do what you want to do. I learned many lessons in that job that served me well along my path to building a global enterprise. It wasn’t easy at the time, but it was part of what helped me get to the life I enjoy.
It also relates to what I teach people in business. I’ve used this phrase for years: “It’s not net-sit or net-eat, it’s net-work!” If you want to be successful in your networking efforts, you have to work the process consistently and regularly. Some people will nod their heads in agreement and then continue to only go through the motions of business networking, refusing to do the hard work necessary to create a powerful network.
The irony is that those are usually the same people who later say this “networking” thing doesn’t work for them, and they continue to struggle in business. They take the easy path, and business continues to be hard. Conversely, I’ve seen many people who truly work hard in their networking efforts and invest their time in building deep relationships. These are the people who consistently see great results over time. What seems like hard work at first leads to things being easier for them later.
I think this is something we all struggle with from time to time . . . doing the right thing when it’s not so easy to do. Yet, it is our choice. Sometimes you gotta do what you gotta do to get to do what you want to do. And I want to do the right thing.
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