Do the right thing
Sunday was a great day. Jonah Meadows, the producer of our Business Matters program had arranged an interview with Naomi Klein the author of several best selling books, the most recent of which is “The Shock Doctrine: The Rise of Disaster Capitalism” .
In this book, Naomi exposes political behavior that occurs in times of upheaval and disaster. This behavior allows those in political and financial power to implement laws and policies that are primarily for their advantage. These advantageous positions would never be considered in times of peace or prosperity. She meticulously pieces story after story together to illustrate this premise. I found myself disturbed and feeling motivated to become a voice that arouses public opinion to stop this activity. If you haven’t read this book, I recommend you move it to your must read list.
As Naomi and I settled into our interview, I was curious about what motivated someone to speak out about issues that would certainly draw criticism and worse to her doorstep. She said that she really didn’t worry about it. (I have read that she believes that her mail has been intercepted because of her writing.) She said her focus was telling the stories of those who trusted her to speak on their behalf. Those who have been directly impacted by the effects of this disaster capitalism whether they are in Bagdad or Bangladesh or New Orleans. She related that the feedback she receives in letters and responses to her public appearances was overwhelmingly positive. It was clear that what she does agrees with her soul.
I thought about this interaction since Sunday. Her calm demeanor and passion to be a voice for those who did not have one was a powerful reminder to me of the right place to focus my attention. I can see times when I would be more concerned about what other people think than to be single-mindedly focused on doing the right thing. I remember, once again, that doing the right thing is always supportive of my purpose and completely aligned with my values.
So why falter? Fear of not being liked by others comes to mind. This recurrent theme is a limiting factor no doubt. So my daily mantra becomes, “Am I doing what feels right?” If the response to this question is “yes”, then great. If the response to the question is either “no” or “I don’t know”, then I will stop, feel what’s right and do that.