Do you have a philosophy of life, for yourself? Could you describe your philosophy to someone else, in 25 words or less? Pete Carroll, head coach of the Seattle Seahawks, is a big fan of everyone having a personal philosophy of life. As relayed in his book, Pete spent a lot of time – and notebooks – putting his philosophy into words, and then condensing it into 25 words or less. Could you?
While each of us probably does have a core philosophy to live by, very few of us could describe it to another person. We don’t take the time to write it down. Words, whether on paper or in an electronic file, put substance to our beliefs. The words provide a touchstone that we can go back to when life presents us with difficulties.
Our behavior, every day, reflects our beliefs. It is the way human beings are built. No matter what we might say, it is our actions that reflect our core beliefs, our philosophy of living. Everything that we do flows from this philosophy. If it doesn’t, that is where stress and anxiety can be found.
Now you may ask, “If I write down my philosophy, what happens if things change? What happens if I change? Do I doggedly follow my ‘philosophy’?” That’s the beauty of writing things down – the words can be crossed out, erased, and re-written! We are all going to change over time, as we learn the lessons that living our lives teach us.
Again, do you have a philosophy of life? Can you describe it in 25 words or less? If you don’t, find some quiet time for yourself, and create your own philosophy – and write it down. It doesn’t need to be perfect – very little in life is perfect. But it does need to be meaningful – to you. Having that philosophy provides us with a solid foundation from which to act and gives us the strength to stand strong through whatever storms we face.