Stick With Your Principles

Dear Friends,

Far too often we're motivated by our feelings and not our principles or values.

Now, there is absolutely nothing wrong with feeling your feelings.

Quite the contrary. One of the most beautiful aspects of our lives is our ability to feel the full spectrum of feelings and emotions.

The good, the bad, the downright messed up. I love it all.

But that doesn't necessary mean that what we're feeling is the best driver of our actions.

Feelings can often be reactionary causing us to act unconsciously.

What we really want is a conscious response, not an unconscious reaction.

When we have a clear vision of what we want (outcome), to bring that to life, we must perform the actions and behaviors that lead us to that vision.

What we're feeling right in this moment, while a natural part of being alive, isn't necessarily going to be the most supportive thing we could be doing for ourselves.

Have you ever succumbed to emotional eating? You weren't necessarily hungry. But as a result of how you were feeling, you kept eating.

Or what about not going to the gym because you didn't feel like going? 

Snoozing through your alarm because you didn't feel like getting up?

These behaviors are driven by our fleeting feelings and emotions and not our highest values.

Now, you know I'm a big believer that we are what we repeatedly do and not majoring in the minors.

Letting your emotions run the show every now and again is not going to be the end of the world.

Just remember that every Friday, Saturday, and Sunday night does not constitute "every now and again."

Instead, we're best served when we act from our principles and values.

When we know what's important to us, it's easy to know what to do.

The challenge, as always, is in doing what we know.

One of the best ways to help practice doing what we know is momentarily pausing before we do something.

This is especially important when we find ourselves experiencing particularly challenging feelings or emotions.

By pausing for a moment, we create a small space between the impulse and the action.

And in this space, we have the opportunity to decide how we will respond.

We also have the opportunity to ask ourselves if what we are about to do will serve our greatest good.

Sometimes the answer is going to be "no." 

And even though we know this, we may still do what we were going to do anyway.

Again, not a problem. Just don't let this become a habit. 

The good news here is that even though we aren't necessarily acting out from a place of our greatest good, we still had the opportunity to practice pausing and consciously choosing.

You chose to do something because you chose it. It wasn't an impulse. This simple practice is HUGE.

It's important that we do everything we can to stick with our principles and our values and to reduce the frequency that we act from a place of feeling or emotion.

Sometimes it's the right move. Other times, we're best served with something else.

Regardless, there is immense power in being able to consciously choose what we do next.

Harness this power. Use this power. Live in your power.

Thank you for reading.

With Love,

Ev

Evan CookComment