This is one of my codes to live by. It is part of my life philosophy and has allowed me to enjoy my imperfect progress towards my goals even when I wanted to do a better job. Having a wise, thought out philosophy to live and work by is key when pressure mounts and stress rises. Do you have a clear pathway (set of rules) to cope with challenge, pressure and stress?
Have you ever articulated the philosophy by which you want to live and work? In tough situations what is your default position? Having a “Code To Live By” has helped me navigate some very tricky seasons in my life and situations along my career path. It has enabled me to make decisions under pressure. Example: I sold a moderate quantity of my 5th book, “How To Motivate, Manage and Market Yourself” to a client that would on sell the book. It was a strategic sale with further potential. Two weeks later I was offered a sale of 20,000 of the same book to a competitor of the first client. The profit would be great, but sales of the first client would be seriously impacted. Should I care, or was it simply a matter of good sales at the cost of business relationships.
What mattered more, the sale or my relationship with client #1? If something is the wrong thing to do does the amount of money at stake have anything to do with the decision? Can a windfall profit satisfy a convicted conscience? Was it really a matter of right and wrong or good practice versus best practice?
Ultimately, I declined the larger sale. I went with character and reputation instead of profit. One of my codes to live by is “People and relationships are more important than profit.” A year later I sold my then latest book, “Keeping Couples Cooking” to client #2.
A lecturer friend of mine refuses to reproduce graphics that are copyrighted in his lecture notes. His students complain and his peer group sniggers, but his code to live by includes “honesty above all else”.
On your death bed you will never regret putting people first. Besides, the only thing you get to take with you is your character.