I received an email from a subscriber to my weekly newsletter. She was unhappy with something I’d written about my childhood, and she asked me to please limit my email newsletter to business-related topics. [You can read the post 7 Things I Was Never Allowed to Do for yourself. I’m pretty sure it was number 5 that bothered her, and I can understand how it might.]
But there is no personal life and professional life. There is just life. You are who you are, wherever you are and whatever you are doing.
You don’t have one set of values when it comes to business and a separate set of values when it comes to your personal life. But even if you did, it wouldn’t matter. Your real values would still be the lowest standard you set for yourself.
If you wouldn’t dare steal in your personal life but you do steal at work, you are still a thief. The location as to where the theft occurs doesn’t change it’s nature (or yours).
If you are rude to people and treat them poorly at work while being a prince at home, you are still a rude person. The fact that you are polite to some people doesn’t change the fact that you are rude to others.
If you are a gossip at work it’s likely you are a gossip at home, too. But even if you didn’t gossip at home you’d still be a gossip.
If you have a substance abuse problem that doesn’t prevent you from showing up to the office, you are a still a person with a substance abuse problem, even if you are highly functioning. Substance abuse may begin as a value issue, but addiction that comes later is an illness. You are still ill, whether at home or at work.
What you do on your personal time is your business, but it doesn’t change your values. Your standards for yourself are yours and yours alone. You are who you are, wherever you are and whatever you are doing.