addiction recovery Nov 08, 2020

Taking responsibility for one’s own actions has suddenly taken on a new meaning in high places these days: Men in very visible, coveted and openly public positions are being outed by accusations – real or imagined — of women and men who claim long-standing patterns of sexual misconduct, abuse, and other very inappropriate and compromising behaviors.

In response to an enraged public and litigiously shy corporate America, the victims of inappropriate & predatory male sexual behavior are no longer tolerating what used to be the status quo of business as usual in politics, media, entertainment and government.

In just the past several months, we have witnessed an avalanche of astounding and never before considered firings from the likes of Roger Ailes, Bill O’Reiley, Harvey Weinstein, Kevin Spacey, Garrison Keiler, Al Franken and other Senators seeking re-election. Most recently, seemingly lily-white Matt Lauer from the Today Show publically admitted he is “Truly Sorry.” He goes on to say that “there is enough truth in these stories [of sexual abuse] to make me feel embarrassed and ashamed. I regret that my shame is now shared by the people I cherish dearly.” In addition to an announcement Wednesday morning by NBC News about Lauer’s termination, reports by Variety and The New York Times included bombshell sexual-harassment allegations about the longtime anchor. “Repairing the damage will take a lot of time and soul searching, and I’m committed to beginning that effort,” said Lauer. “It is now my full time job.” His a little too late mea culpa and amends for being such a naughty boy.

Clearly, this is just the beginning of the gender backlash from totally unacceptable and outrageous abuse by people of power and privilege. None of this should be surprising except that it has taken this long to finally come to an ugly head. And, clearly, up until now, the balance of gender power has conveniently kept all this public ugliness under the covers – something that has been occurring throughout history back to ancient times. Public conscience has now become both the judge and the jury. There no longer exists a veil of protection by the size of one’s ego or status anymore. Finally, people are choosing between right and wrong and the power lies within the collective conscience.

What’s more, the once very powerful sexual & feminist revolution has been once again validated and resurrected. Woman now rule, and it will likely usher in a whole era of woman in responsible positions of power, and hopefully more thoughtful and conscious leadership. Cronyism and the “Old Boy’s Network” is officially dead. Clearly, it’s been a long time in coming and for most decent and conscious people, a welcome change!

So, what can we, who have both transgressed and/or been victimized by our poor interpretation of moral code and social mores, learn from this recent spate of bad behavior? And, what can the ethically and morally obedient and observant population learn from this avalanche of public humiliation and sacrifice? Here are seven key sober lessons that we all might consider taking stock of today:

1. Don’t break the ancient and time-tested “Golden Rule”: “Do onto others as they would have you do unto them. The Laws of Karma and Newton’s Third Law of Physics (every action will have an opposite and equal reaction) apply and will prevail. So bad behavior be warned. You will reap what you sow. To think otherwise is insanity!

2. Integrity and good character development is paramount. It can best defined by this statement: Integrity is what we do and experience when nobody is looking! You can misbehave, but you can’t hide for long. Clearly, the choice is yours.

3. Men and women are all equal in the eyes of God, and while we attempt to judge and label others, we will all be reckoned with appropriately and swiftly by our higher power on judgement day.

4. Fall from Grace is an equal opportunity outcome, and can affect everybody and anybody, without warning and without regard to gender, race, creed, economic status or political persuasion. Nobody is ever safe from acting badly and inappropriately.

5. Enabling people and their negative behavior is not a good thing – as it greatly distorts what should be more balanced relationships based on true value rendered by each party. It also hurts both the people who were enabled and the enabler in the long run. Nip it in the bid now before it is too late. So bosses, corporate owners and even shareholders beware!

6. Fully understand your intent and motivation for acting out before you do so. None of us is immune from an occasional relapse into bad behaviors, bad attitudes and harming others either intentionally or not. But, think before you act and understand that others are always watching what you might not see, believe, think or do. And, hurting others is NOT a good or acceptable thing – ever. Period!

7. Focus on Forgiveness. True, we all make mistakes – some worse than others, and none of us are perfect. But, it is important to not forget our humanity and to forgive those who have harmed us AND forgive ourselves for harming others. It is in the forgiving that we get free of our past.

8. Principals over Personalities. Take the high moral ground when it comes to dealing with others. Focus on doing the next right thing, fairness, compassion, empathy and your conscious – if you have one. If not, please get one at your earliest inconvenience before you are smoked out. Both people and principles matter in this rising age of consciousness and consequence!
Be safe, considerate and be a productive and positive contributor to the human race and not your animal instincts deriving from your lower base needs. The cameras are watching and Big Brother just got considerably Bigger! And, if you are a member of a 12-step Recovery Group, take and honest and thorough inventory of your own character defects and clean-up your side of the street before your Big Secret becomes your only liability. And, keep taking inventory and focusing on your character development in your daily 1oth step inventory

If this blog resonates with you, let me know how you feel. I’d love to hear your thoughts and points of view. You can always reach me through your comments below and at [email protected]

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