What too often happens:
Without guiding principles you have no moral compass.
With no moral compass, all paths seem of near equal value. Since there are more wasteful paths than worthwhile ones, chances are, you’ll wind up pursuing something wasteful. (This is living reactively).
Because you have no guiding principles or moral compass, you have no means whereby to measure yourself.
When you fail to measure yourself, you fail to course correct.
When you fail to course correct, you end up spending an embarrassing, irretrievable amount of time on that path of no value.
Being so invested, you’ll be prone to defend your investment, thus further entrenching your commitment.
In the end, you’ll find yourself nowhere meaningful, at a tremendous expense, and you’ll want to blame someone else, thus further enhancing the misery of the situation.
On the other hand…
If you have established some guiding principles, you have a fine-tuned moral compass.
Decisions are easy, guided, and your direction, deliberate.
Frequent measurement is automatic, and course correcting, because you’ll be so invested. Invested in what matters most, invested in your pre-chosen direction.
In the end, you’ll do remarkable things, and leave a legacy of greatness.
Happiness, engagement, and fulfillment will surround you.
The good news…
…is that you can create your moral compass at any time. Determine your guiding principles, catch a vision of where you want to go, and then use that compass to analyze your current trajectory.
If it doesn’t lead in the right direction, stop, change course, and spend the rest of your time investing in something of value.
It’s the only way to avoid the misery that so often accompanies those who lack clarity of purpose, and have no sense of direction.
Those who accomplish greatness don’t do it by choosing the path of least resistance, nor the path of greatest temptation. They do it by staying true to the values, principles, morals, and direction they have pre-determined in a moment of clarity and insight.