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Map For Success in 2020

When I was growing up, I did my share of hiking and backpacking with Scouts and other organizations. Somehow, I would get stuck being the navigator in the group. While I’m not known for my knots (many a rainbow trout is thankful for that) I’ve always been fairly gifted with knowing how to get from point A to point B…every now and then we would just take the more scenic route. If you’re like me, these different, difficult, uncertain times have also created space for reflection and planning—a time to map out goals and strategies—a time to set a foundation for success for the future. While success means different things to different people, we each need guiding principles to carry us to our personal version of success. Thinking about my past successes (and failures), and borrowing liberally from the book Today Matters, I’ve settled on seven guiding principles for personal success:

  • Develop and live-out my values (beliefs)

  • Truly invest in other’s lives; build strong relationships

  • Adopt and demonstrate a positive attitude

  • Create emotionally, mentally, and physically healthy guidelines for my life

  • Establish and act on the most important priorities

  • Make and keep commitments that bring value to others

  • Seek continuous personal growth and improvement

As I sit in my makeshift writer’s nook, where I’ve been spending hours typing, thinking, and on endless Zoom calls, I’ve realized this period of quarantine has taught me one very important lesson: The only thing I can control in life is me. I’m responsible for my own actions and can’t regulate or control the behavior, attitude, or morals of others. So, in short, to find my version of success I must first learn to be the change I hope to influence in the world. The more I practice self-control and exemplify a values-based role model, that determines the extent to which I will earn authority and be able to truly influence others. What time have you taken to reflect on your own guiding principles for success? In 2020 will you endeavor to be the change you want to see in the world? In your home? At your place of work? In your community?

- Davis Taylor and Gaines Taylor


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