Have we paused to reflect on the fact that we all accept the standards we call the baseline in life?
Our standards apply to all areas of life. They apply to legal standards, ethical standards and general benchmarks of behaviour we will accept and those we will not.
These standards are necessary. They are for the safety and protection of all in our society, and they have an important part to play. However, are they everything?
For instance, we have Work Health and Safety standards that are enshrined in legislation, which require our work places to be safe and without risk of injury or harm to anyone in the workplace. This is obviously needed. For instance, if we operate a massage or other health-care clinic, we are obliged to ensure that there are no tripping hazards, that clients can get onto and off the table without injury, and so forth. But do our standards equate to a true standard, or do they represent something less?
We can look at our Work Health and Safety standards, for instance, and say that they are about protecting workplaces from risk. We can also say that we comply with those standards because we do not want to face the very hefty fines that are imposed for those who breach them.
Thus our standard could be seen to be – compliance with the law and avoiding penalties for non-compliance.
However, the fact is, that is a very minimum standard.
In Part 2 of this series, we look at how the standards we set are actually at a very minimum level, and how we can all play our part in setting and representing a much higher benchmark for our society. When we do, the benefits flowing back to us all, are immense.