Ten rules to live your life by

  • Published
  • By Lt. Col. Brian Riniker
  • 190th ARW Inspector General
Sometimes, a few lessons learned in life can really help a person cope with stress and become successful with what they do. Here are 10 of the rules and expressions that I live by. Most of these I've heard from others. Only a couple are my originally my own.

1. Always learn something new. Your brain is like a muscle, use it or lose it.
2. If your not leading by example, your not leading.

3. When you're in charge, try to not act on emotion. Your actions affect more than just you.
4. Criticize in private, praise in public.

5. Criticism (like everything else) can be both positive and negative. When appraising people, let them know where they excel and where they need to improve.

6. We all need to improve. When one improves, you change to the positive; when you refuse to improve, you will change anyway, just not for the positive.

7. Smile, it scares people. Actually I'd rather be optimistic and happy, rather than pessimistic and miserable.

8. If you mess up, admit it, fix the problem (or improve so that it doesn't happen again), apologize if needed, forgive yourself and others. Then move on. We all make mistakes. Do not dwell on them, learn from them.

9. Communication is more than a memo. The message I send may not be understood by others in the same way I understand it. Tailor your message to the audience. Different people sense their environment differently than you. This is where the Four Lenses training can become very handy as it gives you an excellent tool to understand others.

10. Having a sense of humor is one of the most important gifts God gave you. However humor is a form of communication. Thus see rule #9. If you do not obey rule #9 you will need to see rule #8 again.