Principles are defined as fundamental truths or propositions that serve as the foundation for a system of beliefs or behaviors. It is based on moral rules or beliefs that help you know what is right and wrong and this influences your actions.

“There are three constants in life... change, choice and principles.” -Stephen Covey

Growing up in a small town in Illinois on the banks of the Mississippi River, we learned some of our basic principles from our parents, grandparents, teachers and church. Some of my earliest memories were learning the importance of telling the truth, and the regret of telling lies. We were taught to use our manners, be polite and always respect your elders. We also were taught the importance of living up to your word. If you made a commitment, then you better do all you can to keep it – no excuses.

“Great ambition is the passion of a great character. Those endowed with it may perform very good or very bad acts. All depends on the principles, which direct them.” -Napoleon Bonaparte

Living a principled life is about deciding what’s important based on what you value and then living accordingly. This week was an exceptional week of watching two of my grandsons receiving awards for how they are living their lives. Grandson Aaron was awarded the Daniel Kerner Award for exemplifying all that Daniel stood for.

“A player that has a great attitude even if he is not batting first and not the starting pitcher. A player that cheers for all the players in the league and represents Santa Margarita Little League in the best light.”

Just a couple days later, our grandson Andrew earned the rank of Eagle Scout, the highest achievement attainable in the Boy Scouting program and earned by only 4 percent of all Boy Scouts. We are so proud of the principles our grandchildren are choosing to live by and their achievements.

Regardless of the season of life you may find yourself in, there is always an opportunity to examine what beliefs and values we live by, and how that is affecting our behavior. If you are struggling with reactions or behaviors that are posing challenges to your relationships and career, it’s a good time to do a self-evaluation and consider what new principles you can adopt to make a positive change in your future.

“The principles of living greatly include the capacity to face trouble with courage, disappointment with cheerfulness, and trial with humility.” -Thomas S. Monson

Here Are A Few Of My Favorite Principles:
  • Be Fearless – Fear is like a cancer, it paralyzes and destroys.
  • Be Honest – Tell the truth, it builds trust.
  • Be Courageous – Courage builds character.
  • Be Persistent – You only lose when you give up.
  • Be Forgiving – No one is perfect, and we all need mercy.
  • Be Compassionate – Do unto others’ as you would have them do unto you.
  • Be Humble – It’s the cornerstone of true leadership.
  • Be Thankful – Gratitude is a virtuous attitude everyone appreciates.
  • Be Patient – We all grow and learn at our own pace.
  • Be Kind – Gentle affection shows you care.
“My guiding principles in life are to be honest, genuine, thoughtful and caring.” -Prince William