Most of us live a reactionary life. We coast through each day mindlessly without considering our actions, and as a result we stay stuck. This is called Habit Based Living.
If you don’t like the state of your life, you probably suffer from inconsistency. When you’re inconsistent, it means a lack of follow-through with healthy guidelines. In order to get traction, you’ll need to embrace a new series of fundamentals and follow through on them without compromise. This is Principle Based Living, and it’s the tried-and-true approach to a better life.
“Insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.”-Unknown
Principles: The Train Tracks of a Healthy Life
Most of our lives are a mess. Tracking the trajectory would like following the tracks of an off-road car chase. Most of us need to stop driving like felons, and the best way to do that is to stop treating our lives like freestyle motocross and more like train travel. Trains don’t go off course. They follow a set of tracks and can travel long distances at a steady pace. The tracks for a healthy life are principles. Principles allow your life to look like a train by helping you stay on target, accelerate, and go far.
The Benefits of Principle Based Living
Living by habits makes you more likely to make terrible decisions. It invites chaos into your life and creates the same painful outcomes over and over. Principles make decisions easier, create order, and simplify personal growth. Here’s how.
1. Principles Save You Energy by Making Choices For You
Your best defense against devastating decisions is to never consider them in the first place. There’s a reason why so many people either fall from grace or never rise to it in the first place, and it’s because they made poor decisions. Usually it’s a series of bad choices, but sometimes it only takes one mistake to ruin your life. Sooner or later, compromising with your principles brings disaster. In contrast, adhering to principles will preserve you.
If I give myself the option to lie, I might. But if I decide I will never lie, it’s no longer an option. This is a huge benefit of principles, and why I don’t play the pros-and-cons game when it comes to issues of integrity. I don’t expend energy on asking “what if?” I just tell the truth. So much stress and mental strain is eliminated when we choose the established path of principles and never look back.
2. Principles reduce the effect of Murphy’s Law
Murphy’s Law is the idea that If something can go wrong, it will go wrong. While this may sound like a joke or an excuse someone came up with for poor planning, physicists and mathematicians agree that this is a real universal law.
Murphy’s Law will wreak havoc in a life without principles. Principles are forms of order, and where they aren’t applied, there’s chaos. Take the example of a serial adulterer. It’s possible that a person could cheat on their spouse with multiple partners and manage not to get caught for a little while. However, the longer this goes on, the less likely this is. Moreover, even if this person never got caught, the constant strain that would come with working to avoid being caught would have to be tremendous and exhausting. Even if their marriage didn’t collapse, their life would hardly be peaceful or consistent.
The good news is that you can reduce Murphy’s Law in your life by making it more predictable. Eliminating complexity allows for fewer things that can take a turn for the worse. What makes your life more predictable? Principles. If you resolve never to cheat no matter what, your marriage will never have to face that threat. You’ll be able to grow closer with the person you’ve already joined your life with and become increasingly prosperous and content!
Let’s use money as another example. If you live by a principle of saving money, you make a decision to spend only a set amount of money every month on your expenses and your bank account becomes steady. This means that when an emergency comes up (car trouble, health issue, etc.) you will be prepared to cover that expense, and if nothing bad happens, you’re still sitting pretty!
3. Principles Make Growth Easier
Principles eliminate confusion. They make personal growth about repetition, and repetition is simple. With simplicity you can increase your focus and compound your personal growth by generating momentum.
One cool thing about trains is that despite weighing thousands of tons, they don’t burn very much energy. This is because they don’t constantly shift from starting to stopping. Their momentum carries them forward so that they can coast easily from place to place, despite carrying up to hundreds of loaded cars that weigh 40 tons on average! Some trains can even generate their own electricity and even provide electricity to an outside power grid.
Can you imagine if your life had so much momentum that it actually provided energy for other people instead of taking it? With the momentum that comes from consistently applying healthy principles, this could be you. You could be the person with increasing muscle mass instead of declining health! Eating healthy foods could become more enjoyable for you than sugar and junk! You could learn something valuable every day by replacing TV with reading or practicing a skill!
Win the Fight of Principles v Habits – Choose the Right Principles
It’s not too late to get on the right side with Principles vs Habits. You just need to select the healthiest set of principles you can and follow through on them like your life depends on it. This is what took me from homelessness to owning a multi-million dollar business, so imagine what it can do for you.
But here’s the catch: you have to choose the right principles.
Before you can follow through on the correct principles, you need to identify them. That’s why I’ve created free resources to help you win the battle of principle based living. These e books contain the life advice I wish someone had given me 20 years ago, and I want you to have it at no cost. Check them out now and start creating momentum and stability in your life!