A Code to Live By for Teens

Who are you? Don’t tell me your name and where you’re from. I’m asking you a much tougher question, indeed. To answer the question I’ve asked, you have to know the answers to these questions: What do you stand for? What are your values? Where are you going in life?

At age eighteen, I didn’t know. Even though I was as focused as a sniper’s eye on my goals athletically and academically, I had not consciously defined who I was. This lack of personal definition led me to, among other things, embarrass myself with poor behavior in public. You see, when you define who you are, a code is written. This is the code you live by. I had goals, but not a code – they’re different and equally important.

Before you reach the point where you can even write a code, you have to understand where you have been and how you have been participating in the reality that you live in each day. This is important because all of the habits and patterns of behavior you have developed through your youth and starting to follow you everywhere you go. Some of these may begin to manifest in your life in ways that hinder your ability to find success. For some, these just might be bad habits like staying up late, and for others they are self-destructive behaviors like fighting and stealing.

So, what is the code you live by? If you have one, how is it serving you in life?

If you don’t think you live by a certain code, trust me, you do live by a set of values. You tell me what you value and I can tell you what kind of results you’re going to get in life and in athletics. Write out your core values, honesty is an example of a value, and post them on the wall of your room. Look at it as you leave for school and live it.

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