Ethics vs Morals

Both ethics and morals refer to what’s right and wrong. Although they are similar, there are some differences. Ethics are rules that are recognized by a specific group of culture. “Ethics is knowing the difference between what you have a right to do and what is right to do.” -Potter Stewart. Morals however refer to principals that we hold ourselves to. “The right way is not always the popular and easy way. Standing for right when it is unpopular is a true test or moral character.” -Margaret Chase Smith.

Here are some ethical examples to consider:

  • Is killing a murderer justified? Why or why not?
  • Should people be able to decide the sex of their baby in advance? Why or why not?
  • Would you steal for your family if you had no money and no other means of getting it? Why or why not?

Here is a moral example to consider:

One morning you are driving to school/work and you are running a little late, so you start speeding a little. You look away from the road for just a few seconds to change the CD, when all of a sudden, your car hits something very solid. Your car spins to a stop but several other car hits something very solid. Your car spins to a stop but several other cars crash into yours and other cars in an attempt to avoid the accident. After a few moments of sitting in the car in shock, you get out of the cat and see the person that you hit. They took terrible and very close to dead. But as you are standing there looking at this person that you might have killed, a woman comes up to crying and very distraught. You ask her what’s wrong and is she okay. She says that she just ran over someone. You ask her where the person is, and she points to the person that you hit. You don’t know why but for some reason she feels that she has caused the accident and hit the person even though you know you were the one that did. Whoever accepts the blame is very likely to put in jail for a long tie. Do you let the woman take the blame or do you take the chance and try to get away with it and risk getting thrown in jail because you tried to cover it up?

Relationships

I feel that any type of relationship can be happy, stressful, complicated, etc. There are so many different types of relationships, but I feel that the one people tend to think of the most when hearing that word is a romantic type of relationship. However, this isn’t the only kind of relationship that can bring out all these strong and different emotions. It could be a friendship, a relationship with your sibling, even the relationship you have with your parents or other close family members. I feel that all relationships are complicated in their own way and tend to get more complicated as we get older because we all change so much. But they all require a lot of effort.

Friendships for example require a lot of forgiveness and understanding. I think that a lot of people take friendship for granted and don’t treat them as a real relationship. But they are something that you have to continue to work at and improve. I had a recent situation in where I had to end a 16-year long friendship because my “best-friend” stopped being a friend. It was hard lesson and it took me a while to learn. The lesson I learned was that you shouldn’t excuse someone treating you poorly just because you’ve known them or been friends with them for a long time. People that are toxic to your life, shouldn’t be in it, no matter how long you’ve known them or been friends.

Another relationship that you should continue to work on and improve is family relationships. I think that this can be one of the most strained relationships. I’m very grateful to have a good relationship with my parents but it wasn’t always like that. When I was in high school, especially my freshmen and sophomore year, it was very strained. There was a lot of arguments and things we just didn’t see eye to eye on. However, I tried my best to communicate with them, but it would always end up in a screaming match. Over time we found ways to communicate without the yelling and things are a lot better now.  My final thoughts would be to not give up on people. Don’t just give up on someone because the situation isn’t what you wanted it to be and because it isn’t ideal. All relationships have their problems, and no one is perfect. But learn the difference between doing what’s best for you and letting go of what’s toxic.

Expectations

My message to everyone today is to go after your own personal goals and not to try to solely live up to people’s expectations of you. For the longest time I thought I was going to be a lawyer, and not because it’s what I really wanted to do but it’s what my parents really wanted me to do. I thought I would be good at it, but I’ve always felt like you should do something that you would enjoy and that you’re passionate about; because you can always learn how to be good at something, but it takes more to actually be motivated to want to a job well.

I think too many times we try to follow people’s expectations instead of doing what we may be comfortable doing or even what we actually want to do. I used the example of my parents, but it doesn’t always have to be parents/guardians. But I feel like sometimes you may feel the most obligation to them because most likely they are the ones paying for your education and they tend to be the ones you don’t want to disappoint the most. I know there can be pressure and different expectations that you get from friends. These kinds of expectations aren’t usually about goals or things of the future but more so about who you are as a person. I have a friend that always feels like he has to act goofy and do something crazy when he’s around his friends because he feels like it’s expected of him.

Expectations aren’t a bad thing. I personally find it motivating to know that people have high expectations of me because it makes me want to live up to them, do better, and not slack off. However, there’s a thin line between being motivated and letting these expectations control you. I’ll go back to my earlier example about being a lawyer. At first, even though I wasn’t feeling that career path I researched it and wanted to see if it was something I could really be interested in since it was my senior year and needed to decide a path. Then I researched some other things that might interest me and while I was researching, a lady on my TV was giving an ultrasound to another woman and I looked up some information on my computer and that is now what I am in school for. In that short amount of time that, I have been more committed this career choice than I ever have been about becoming a lawyer. My final thought to all of you is, “I hope you do not let anyone expectation’s direct the course of your life.”-Julianne Donaldson.

Managing Stress

Dealing with stress is something that has always been a challenge for me and has proven to be more challenging the older I get. When I talk to my friends it seems like we are all stressed. Between trying to maintain our grades, figure out what we want to do, getting into programs at school, having a part-time job, financial issues, and trying to still have some sort of social life, it can be very stressful. There are so many things to stress about but I’m not sure that it solves anything. I believe that being driven and being stressed are too different things. Some people may feel like they have to stress to get done what they need to get done. Others feel like they don’t want to stress but it just comes naturally because it’s how they are.

For the longest time I felt that I couldn’t manage my stress and couldn’t control whether I got stressed or not. But I found that there is a lot of meaning behind the phrase “mind over matter.” My first semester of college was very stressful, and I had a very hard time managing it. As I went into this semester, I told myself that I wouldn’t stress myself out; at least not as much as I did last semester. The night before I had a test, I wouldn’t stay up all night, or spend the night and next day worrying myself about it. It is better to just prepare yourself in advance, even if it’s just for a week and let it be what’s it’s going to be because stressing about it doesn’t do you or anyone else any good. Although you’ve probably heard this before, there are health risks that go along with prolonged stress. Some of these health problems include depression, high blood pressure, and mental health problems.

There are many ways that can help deal with stress. I’ve found that one of the most effective ways is to get more sleep. It can seem hard to do when you are stressed out but getting a good night’s rest is very effective in relieving stress. Also, finding ways to manage your time is essential in managing stress. Whether that means scheduling your whole day every day, or for the week, or setting reminders on your phone to keep yourself on track, this is a very helpful way to relieve stress. Talking out your frustrations with your friend or someone that listens is also a good way to manage stress. I hope these tips helped someone!