Anne Miner is an advocate of The Platinum Rule®: "Treat Other People The Way THEY Want To Be Treated." Now, I was raised to believe in The Golden Rule: "Treat Other People The Way YOU Want To Be Treated," and I was confused about this idea.
It was pretty clear to me that I needed Anne's help to understand The Platinum Rule®, and It turned out this is a longer conversation than we could have at one sitting!
I asked Anne, "How did you come to adopt The Platinum Rule®?"
As she often does, Anne smiled and thought for a moment before she began with some background. "Have you ever noticed that when you apply The Golden Rule, "Do unto others as you would have done unto you," the other person may not respond by treating you the same way you treated them?
"Here's an example. I am visiting you, and as I step in the door, I automatically start to remove my shoes. You tell me it's OK to keep them on.
"I just signaled to you that I would like you to take your shoes off in my house when I moved to remove my shoes in your house. You signaled to me that it was not your preference, and I should keep my shoes on in your house. Do you see that?" she asked.
I nodded even though I was not absolutely clear, and Anne continued, "When you come to my house, what should you do? Keep your shoes on or take them off?"
I answered, "Ummmm. Now I am not sure?"
"If you apply The Golden Rule, (How you want to be treated) you will keep your shoes on. And I won't be happy because I want you to take them off at my house. It might even lead to an awkward moment when I ask you to take off your shoes.
"If you apply The Platinum Rule®, having observed my intention to remove my shoes at your house, (How I want to be treated) you will take your shoes off."
In our next episode, Anne will take us further into the model, the theory, and how we can apply The Platinum Rule®!
In the meantime, am going to get a head start by closely observing the people I interact with to see how people give me clues about how THEY want to be treated!