Let’s have an introspective and reflective moment. Which of your qualities are most important to you? Take a good hard look at yourself and see what you find. The reason I ask is because the answer to that question is usually pretty revealing. It tells you what you really prioritize about yourself. Another way of putting it, it uncovers your core principles. So, lets take the time to formalize your core principles.
When I started this process myself, it took me over a week to figure out what I truly hold most dear and what I take the most pride in. I still see this as a dynamic process, and my own core principles will always be re-evaluated based on new circumstances. Nonetheless, it is important to have them. For example, my core principles are Quiet Diligence, Dream Big, Enjoy the Journey, and Dependable Execution. I am still working on a fifth, which is something along the lines of Treat People Right.
Having formal and explicit Core principles provides a cornerstone for all decision making. If they truly reflect the person you want to be, then you can use them in any dilemma, with the point being that all decision align with your overall vision for yourself and the person you want to be.
If having concise representations of complex concepts is difficult for you, like it was for me, then I suggest adding smaller affirmations that contribute to the larger core principle. For example, within quiet diligence, one affirmation is, “i believe in practicing humility and letting actions speak louder than words”.