I have learned some important life rules while I have trundled through my life. Many came from my father (a very successful businessman), and some others from mentors who took me under their wing. I think it’s a good set of rules to follow…along with what ever cultural or moral rules to which you want to adhere.
No doubt there are many little life rules that others follow to help them on the road to success – these are just mine. They have and continue to work well for me, and so I offer them for those looking for ideas on how to move forward…….
My seven life rules
Life Rules 1. It is ok to make a mistake…just don’t make the same mistake twice.
This one is obvious…learn from your mistakes. It’s one I say to my staff as well as my colleagues when they despair about something not working as they planned.
Life Rules 2. There is one person in every group. Don’t be the one!
I run trips for groups of people, and have done for over 25 years. It is true that even with a small group there will be at least one person who requires “management” for some issue. Without the management, the issue can destroy their or the whole groups experience. So now I plan to have to deal with one person. But the real lesson is not to be that person that makes the rest of the group uncomfortable. Question your motive before any action that might cause disharmony.
Life Rules 3. Dress like you mean business and you will be treated like you mean business.
When I started work as a lowly staff member at one company, I was the only person who wore a tie every day. Not even the Executive Director did this. Then when a major meeting was called at a last minute with important clients, I was often pulled in as I looked “business”. This put me in the company of the higher management, and helped me to quickly rise through the ranks to become a Director of a group.
It’s a simple rule, and often discarded by people today who think it’s trendy to be an “individual” and not dress for business. The lesson here is that to dress for business is now the exception more than the rule, and so you stand out….and in today’s world you need to be able to stand apart from your peers for the right reasons.
Life Rules 4. First class people travel first class.
My father always said this…and while he may have meant it literally, he also meant to reflect on the importance of self esteem. If you feel that you are worthy to be treated well, then treat yourself well. Aspire to being first class it what ever you do, and you will be treated as first class by your peers and customers.
The flip side of this is if you are not worthy of being treated like top of your field, don’t try to act like you do, but rather strive to be “first class”.
Life Rules 5. Don’t hide your lamp under a bushel.
Biblical origins, but quoted by my father to me a lot. If you have a skill or a talent, don’t hide it. Step up and sell it to your customers and clients. Those skills and talents are what makes you special and unique.
Life Rules 6. Don’t use a canon when a pea shooter will work.
When we strike problems in our lives people tend to react strongly and want to pull out a rapid and strong reaction. I am very guilty of this. So this rule is one I remind myself each and every time I have to deal with an “issue”. The question I ask is this: what is the minimum I can do to solve the problem? If that does not work, what is the next level of action and so on. I think that this approach has saved me from going into an issue “boots and all” only to find out that the issue was a smaller misunderstanding and then making me look foolish. This is a face-saver.
Life Rules 7. There are many ways to skin a cat!
This is sort of like the rule above (6) – it means that there are many solutions to a problem – not just the one in your mind. Sometimes this means that you have to ask others for ideas on solutions rather than just assume you way is the ONLY way. Having a few solutions can help you to keep rule 6 as well.