I’m still just warming up with ‘Principles’ and I see a definition here:
“Principles are fundamental truths that serve as the foundations for behaviour that gets you what you want out of life.”
And, to be principled means to consistently operate with principles that can be clearly explained.
Finally, when he says: And it’s very rare for people to write their principles down and share them. That is a shame. I would love to know about what principles guided Albert Einstein, Steve Jobs, Winston Churchill, Leonardo Da Vinci, and others so I could clearly understand what they were going after and how they achieved it and could compare their different approaches. I can’t help but agree.
With the exception of Winston Churchill, the man who hated my country and my people, and was responsible for millions of deaths from war and starvation. Would I like to know what principles he operated on? Maybe. Would I want to know what principles Hitler or Pol Pot operated on? I don’t know. Maybe. That’s probably a discussion for another day.
It makes sense when Dalio says: I’d like to know which principles are most important to the politicians who want me to vote for them and to all other people whose decisions affect me. Do we have common principles that bind us together – as a family, as a community, as a nation, as friends across nations? Or do we have opposing principles that divide us? What are they? Let’s be specific.
Yes, let’s be specific.
If you can think for yourself while being open-minded in a clearheaded way to find out what is best for you to do, and if you can summon up the courage to do it, you will the most of your life. – Isn’t this most difficult for a lot of people? To think for ourselves? How do we know it is our independent thinking and not our conditioning?
But my favourite is this:
First principle: Think for yourself to decide
- 1) What you want
- 2) What is true, and,
- 3) What you should do to achieve #1 in light of #2
… and do that with humility and open-mindedness so that you consider the best thinking available to you.
So here’s a good idea: Write down your principles. Make sure they fit the definition.
Here’s one of mine, lifted from my Gujarati heritage, and it goes like this: Hisaab Paisa no, baksheesh lakh ni. Settle the accounts to the very paisa, even though you may gift away lakhs. It’s a great principle for those who value relationships and like to save them from getting ruined due to money.