Challenging times bring out both the very best of our human qualities – and, unfortunately, sometimes the worst. COVID-19 examples abound, from people checking in on vulnerable neighbors to those who take advantage by hoarding and selling necessities at exorbitant prices.

How do you keep on the high road, even when times are hard? Ask the question, “Would I be okay with my behavior if everyone knew about it?” Also rate yourself against these “Green Path” (versus “Red Path”) criteria from our forthcoming book, What Great Teams Do Great: How Ordinary People Accomplish the Extraordinary, to be released this spring.

  1. Is your focus of care on the greater good (which includes you)? The other end of the spectrum means you’re motivated only by what is best for you.
  2. Are you fully committed to having a positive impact, even if it means less comfort or convenience for yourself?
  3. Are you acting with deep intelligence about people? In other words, do you understand your own emotional landscape, AND are you engaging productively with others on a feelings level?

There are other Green Path behaviors (like communicating with care, honesty and directness), yet these three (CARE, COMMITMENT and PEOPLE) are foundational to making the right choices.

How do you build more Green Path capabilities?

  1. Accept the reality that you are responsible for your actions. All behavior is a byproduct of a choice, whether you’re aware of it or not. No one and no situation can “make” you do anything.
  2. Ask others for help. Explain the foundational criteria of CARE, COMMITMENT and PEOPLE to a trusted colleague or friend. Ask them to give you feedback on the types of choices you are making. Make sure to agree on how, when and how often this feedback will happen.
  3. If you’re not confident in one of these areas, create a plan for improvement. Make it focused, with clear actions defined to improve your capabilities. Track progress and make sure you have a plan to hold yourself accountable.

Operating on the Green Path doesn’t just make you feel good, it’s the best way to get things done when you’re accomplishing anything with other humans involved.

How are you employing these three pillars when interacting with others, during crisis and at other “normal” times? Comment below or message us.

Photo by Oliver Roos on Unsplash