Integrity trumps anonymity every time

When you have to go, you have to go. There is no avoiding it.

We have all been in a situation where it’s business time and you are far from your home office. Your only option is to handle your business in a location where there have been many others before you.

There is nothing worse than being in an emergency situation and seeing the residual from someone else’s failed business transaction all over the seat.

If there is one thing that really disrupts my inner chi, it is a blatant disregard for the welfare of others, especially when that neglect in no way benefits the perpetrator.

It is something that I see almost on a daily basis, and it sickens me. There is no room for that kind of childish disrespect in any of our lives.

The scene of the crime, all too often, is a public bathroom.

The fundamental issue here comes from anonymity. Being anonymous brings out the absolute worst in people. Just read through some of the comments on a popular YouTube video.

Integrity, or doing what is right even when no one is watching, is a fading attribute. It seems like society is growing more inconsiderate every day, and people don’t care about anything but themselves and what is going on in their lives.

When hiding behind the mask of anonymity, people think they can say or do whatever they want with no consequences to deal with.

Unfortunately, that is not true. There are always consequences.

Those consequences are dealt with by the target of your online comment, or the person who uses the public bathroom after you.

When you decide to leave a mess in a public bathroom, you create an unnecessarily unpleasant situation for someone else. You are basically saying, “Forget everyone. I don’t have time to take care of myself. Someone else can worry about the problems I created.”

A recent independent study was conducted to calculate how disgusting it is for someone to clean up a public bathroom mess made by someone else.

It’s gross.

That same study found that it takes less than 30 seconds to wipe off the seat, and even less time to hit an extra flush if necessary.

If you don’t have that kind of time, you need to adjust your life accordingly.

My plea is that we take more responsibility for ourselves.

If you make a mess, own it. Take a second to double check your work and make sure you aren’t leaving anything behind.

By doing this, we simultaneously improve the living conditions of those around us.

It doesn’t take much more effort to move even a step further and occasionally go out of your way to think about other people and their well-being.

Throughout the day we can simply ask ourselves, “How could what I am doing right now affect other people?”

This might change our perspective. It might help us make better decisions.

Usually, if the answer to that question is that our actions could negatively affect someone else, the solution is as easy as wiping off a toilet seat.

Copyright 2015 BYU-I Scroll