Words I choose to live by

It was January of 2005 when I sat down and attempted to pen my personal mission statement. I spent a couple hours just jotting down words that captured everything I could think of that I deemed important or worth pursuing.

No organization.
No plan.
Just free flowing thinking to start.

Next I started looking over all the words I had on the page in front of me. I circled or underlined the ones that stood out and eliminated those that upon review seemed less meaningful or relevant.

Finally I formed sentences (or at least sentence fragments) around each of the words that had made the cut. The result was the following:

To live courageously.
To do everything passionately.
To pursue excellence and in all things act with integrity.
To be healthy in mind, body and spirit.
To give more than I take and earn more than I spend.
To always be learning, growing, and creating.
To find the opportunity in every situation and improve with every failure as much as with every success.
To encourage.
To build up.
To dream big and aim high.
To be grounded in scripture and rooted in love.
To value and protect family and friends.
To stay far from arrogance and remain always teachable.
To give life 100% and reach the finish line with no regrets.

That statement motivates me as much today as it ever has. I tried updating it a couple times, but every time I’ve ended up scrapping the changes and going back to my original draft.

Those words have served me well over the last 13 years. They help to remind me who I want to be. They bring me back when I get too focused on just one thing and start neglecting other important areas of my life.

Cary Grant once said:
I pretended to be somebody I wanted to be until finally I became that person. Or he became me.

I love that. The desire to become better is what drove me to write that statement. By God’s grace I continue to work toward it, some days pretending, other days being but always intent on becoming the embodiment of that statement.

What about you? Do you have a personal mission statement?

Mark Armstrong

Mark Armstrong

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