Tag Archive for: All the Right Reasons

The Dorothy Principle: A Lesson to Embrace During the Holidays

I’d like to share with you a paradigm-shifting concept. It’s called the Dorothy Principle, a popular story in “All the Right Reasons: 12 Timeless Principles for Living a Life in Harmony.”

All the Right Reasons | Kevin Guest

The “Dorothy Principle” name may seem peculiar, but its implications have been profound in my life.

The essence of the Dorothy Principle lies in treating others with utmost respect and kindness. It’s about understanding that our greatest successes, our most meaningful victories, are nestled in the heart of our relationships.

In my book, I recount an incident from my college days when a college professor posed a seemingly simple question: “What is the name of the woman who cleans this building?” The class was stumped. The woman’s name was Dorothy. The lesson? In life, nothing is more important than relationships. And paying attention to others, even if you only pass them in the hall (if only several times a week like I did), is a secret to success.

This story resonated with me. I remember my first day at college; my professor wrote on the board: “Nothing is more important than relationships.” As a young college student, I felt this was counterintuitive to my ambitions. But time and experience have shown me the wisdom in those words.

I recall studying for hours for my final exam only to be faced with one question: “What had the professor written on the board on the first day of class?” Even after 35 years, I remember the answer and the lesson it taught me.

The Importance of Relationships

Relationships matter. Whether it’s the mail carrier, your co-worker, or the person who cleans the building, everyone deserves your attention, your respect, and your kindness. A simple smile, a warm hello, or just remembering someone’s name can make a world of difference.

As we approach the holiday season, I urge you all to put relationships first. Cherish your family, your friends, and every person who crosses your path. Remember, people matter more than things. Our success is not actually measured by our wealth or achievements, but by the lives we touch and the relationships we foster.

To experience true inner peace, we must understand what holds real meaning in our lives: relationships, making a difference, and living authentically. This is not just a message of hope; it’s a call to action.

It’s up to us to uphold virtues, to fight for integrity, to love truth, to right the wrongs, and heal the wounds. It’s up to us to repair what’s broken. If not us, then who?

So, I ask you today, will you join me in this quest for character? Will you strive for harmony? Will you live your life for all the right reasons?

It’s time we embraced the Dorothy Principle and put relationships first in everything we do. In the grand scheme, nothing is more important than relationships.

I first shared these thoughts in a LinkedIn post published on Nov. 15, 2023.

The Journey Principle: How Do You Define Success?

It seems most of our lives are spent on a journey instead of at some final destination. This is why, in my book All the Right Reasons, I define success by The Journey Principle: Success is about the experiences you have, the relationships you build, and the lessons you learn.

I know success can be defined in many ways. But for me, success comes through the relationships we develop. It’s buoyed by the lessons we learn. And success is connected to our experiences in life that move us forward.

The Journey Principle | Mother TeresaIn the book, I reference extraordinary individuals to illustrate The Journey Principle. I talk about Sister Teresa de Lisieux. In 1946, Sister Teresa — or Saint Teresa of Calcutta or Mother Teresa — received the call to help the poor while living among them.

She set out to establish a community dedicated to serving the poorest of the poor. Daily she visited families in the slums, nursing the sick, the hungry, and the dying. She started an outdoor school for destitute children and focused on giving dignity to those who suffered many indignities.

Her remarkable work touched many lives and helped countless individuals.

Mother Teresa passed away in Calcutta in 1997 without a penny to her name. She never got a college degree, never starred in a movie, never made her fortune in the stock market, and never worked her way up the corporate ladder. Mother Teresa herself admitted she hadn’t done any “great” thing, only small things with great love.

Yet, no one would consider Mother Teresa a failure. We consider her successful in her compassion.

She helped to make the world a better place and, in the process, Mother Teresa discovered the secret to living a life in harmony.

I hope in your journey you’ll find success as you develop strong relationships. Even more, I hope you’ll learn and grow from those relationships and your experiences throughout life.

12 Timeless Principles

All the Right Reasons Book CoverSince its publication in 2018, I’ve shared key points from All the Right Reasons. In written form and through short videos, I’ve gathered elements from each principle and have linked them here.

  1. The Ben Franklin Principle: When you commit to living your core values, you change your destiny.
  2. The Piano Principle: When you really want something, make it happen.
  3. The Turn Up the Volume Principle: Prepare, then fake it till you make it.
  4. The Leap of Faith Principle: You act with faith when you take a courageous step into the unknown.
  5. The Hope Diamond Principle: Good things come to those who are prepared.
  6. The Dorothy Principle: Nothing is more important than relationships.
  7. The Butch O’Hare Principle: You have the power to change.
  8. The Plato Principle: Identify people you admire and learn the valuable lessons they have to teach you.
  9. The Cardboard Keyboard Principle: Choose to use positive self-talk.
  10. The Holland Principle: Find opportunities to serve, then act.
  11. The Currant Bush Principle: Follow your inner voice and divine promptings.
  12. The Journey Principle: Success is about the experiences you have, the relationships you build, and the lessons you learn.

The Turn Up the Volume Principle: Prepare, and Then Go, Baby, Go!

In life, we may be presented with opportunities that intimidate or scare us. Often, the fear stems from the unknown or an unfamiliarity. The Turn Up the Volume Principle, which is Principle No. 3 in my book All the Right Reasons, addresses this.

Prepare, and then Go, Baby, Go!

I’m reminded of a golf tournament I helped organize as a college student. Though I hadn’t any experience organizing such an event, I knew it would be a good experience, so I accepted the challenge.

I’m so glad I took the leap! It provided me with invaluable experience. And the opportunity to connect with many individuals who would help me in business for years to come (notably, Dr. Myron Wentz, the founder of USANA Health Sciences).

Turn Up the Volume!

Another illustration of the principle involved a show I produced many years ago called Turn Up the Volume! I worked as a producer and frequently filmed the segments. As I discuss in my book, the concept involved going behind the scenes with famous rock musicians.

Kevin Guest - Turn Up the Volume PrincipleThe series catered to die-hard fans who wanted to know everything about a rock star’s life.

  • What it was like when they were on the road or backstage before a big concert
  • Who or what was their inspiration for writing music
  • How did they put an album together?

Those were the stories I wanted to hear, the ones I knew other fans would also be interested in.

Well, I developed a business plan and pitched the idea. We got the green light to begin production. One night, I got a call that we had an interview set up with Gene Simmons of KISS…in two days. Equal parts of excitement and fear enveloped me. I couldn’t believe I’d be interviewing a legend. Yet, I didn’t have the appropriate camera equipment ($80,000 at the time) to film the interview.

Long story short, I rented a camera, spent a long night learning how to use it, and filmed the interview the next morning. It proved to be a success.

These notions of “fake it ’till you make it” and then “go, baby, go!” are courtesy of my grandfather. The words were written on a plaque in his office. Of course, you need to be careful with the “fake it” part. Preparation is key, and putting in the effort is critical. So when opportunities come, you’re ready to seize them.

My grandfather believed if he were prepared and took action, good things would come to him. I have consistently found this to be true. When in doubt, act.

In Addition…

I invite you to subscribe here to receive monthly emails from me on a range of topics. Please consider contributing to the USANA Foundation. Its mission is to ensure that impoverished children and families reach their fullest potential by providing food and nutrition.

What Two Beatles Taught Me About Love and Respect

April 2 is national “Love Our Children Day” in the United States. And it’s a perfect reminder to show love and respect to everyone we encounter from adults to children.

Ringo Starr, one of my lifelong idols, is one of the most gracious celebrities I have ever met.

A few years ago, I was backstage before a Ringo Starr concert with a group of fans waiting to meet the world-famous Beatles drummer.

Other fans were nervous, and the lady next to me was hyperventilating because she was about to meet an idol—one of the Beatles. When Ringo arrived, I was first in line, and he smiled, gave me a big hug, and talked to me while looking directly at me. He focused on me and made me feel loved and respected, like I was important. That is a feeling I will never forget.

Years earlier, I saw Paul McCartney on stage for a pre-concert soundcheck and noticed that Paul approached every band and crew member. He hugged them and asked how they were.

I could tell Paul knew them personally and cared about them. Those acts of love and kindness by two of the world’s most famous musicians give a remarkable lesson for us all. In this day when so much is in turmoil, we need to show love and respect for others around us.

Love, Relationships

In All the Right Reasons, I write about what I call The Dorothy Principle. In essence, it puts relationships at the top of the priority list.

People have told me the Dorothy Principle has made an instant impact on their lives. I learned long ago that treating others with the utmost respect and kindness is a key to success and makes life more harmonious for everyone.

To illustrate the Dorothy Principle:

On a pop quiz, a college professor asked: ‘What is the name of the woman who cleans this building?’ and emphasized that nothing is more important than relationships.

The class was blank but soon learned the cleaning lady’s name was Dorothy. So I have dubbed that value the Dorothy Principle and have tried to put relationships first in everything I do.

I apply the same principle as Chairman and CEO at USANA Health Sciences.

I urge all of our Associates domestically and internationally to treat others politely with kindness. Learn their names, acknowledge them as you pass by, and step outside of your own issues to be genuinely respectful to everyone.

I believe those simple patterns of behavior can make us all more civil and lift each other to higher levels of harmony in life.

I shared these thoughts and more in a news release that went out on March 31, 2022.

Designed to help others find keys to successful careers and life, All the Right Reasons reveals 12 principles for living a life in harmony. All proceeds from sales of the bestseller are aimed at feeding two million meals to hungry children. Available on Amazon, each book sold provides 40 meals through The USANA Foundation.

The Currant Bush Principle: Follow Your Inner Voice

Divine impressions, intuition, and instincts guide us. They help us avoid unnecessary pain… if we’re paying attention. But because we’re often busy, unaware, or inattentive, we miss many of them. It’s important to slow down and listen to our inner voice. That’s the Currant Bush Principle, which is Principle No. 11 in my book All the Right Reasons.

I believe there are things greater than us that influence our lives and influence the world around us. As you’re listening to your inner voice, the first thing you hear is usually what’s right. We should follow the first impression rather than talk ourselves out of heading in a different direction.

The Currant Bush

All the Right Reasons Book Cover

I relay a story in All the Right Reasons about a currant bush.

Hugh B. Brown tells the story of a farmer who purchased an unkempt farm where he found a currant bush that was at least six feet high, all going to wood. The overgrown tree couldn’t produce any fruit, so the farmer got his pruning shears and went to work clipping and cutting until there was nothing left of the bush but a little clump of stumps.

When the farmer gazed at the whittled-down tree, there seemed to be tears coming from the sheared branches and he could almost hear the currant bush weep.

“How could you do this to me? I was making such wonderful growth. I was almost as large as the fruit tree and the shade tree, and now you have cut me down. All the other trees in the garden will look upon me with contempt and pity. How could you do it? I thought you were the gardener here. I thought you were my friend.”

The farmer looked on the little bush with compassion and replied, “Look, little currant bush, I am the gardener here, and I know what I want you to be. If I let you go the way you want to go, you will not be happy. But someday, when you are laden with fruit, you are going to think back and say, ‘Thank you, Mr. Gardener, for cutting me down, for loving me enough to hurt me.'”

Listen to Your Inner Voice

Years ago, listening to an inner voice and following through on it — no matter how hard it was — changed the course of my life.

After making the decision to stop pursuing a professional music career, I focused on my video production business, which grew to the point where USANA bought it. I’m now the Chairman & CEO of a billion-dollar enterprise.

As a teenager, I never would have suspected anything could have made me give up a professional music career. Life is full of unexpected turns and crossroads. If we pay attention, we’ll always choose the right road.

View additional videos on my YouTube channel

Even though I chose to focus on business instead of music, my musical dreams have come full circle. I’ve had more experiences with some of the biggest music celebrities than most musicians in the business.

The second time I played at the Grand Ole Opry with Collin Raye’s band, I had the distinct impression I was being rewarded for that choice I had made years earlier.

“I am the gardener here,” a divine or inner voice seemed to say. “I know what I wanted you to be even if you didn’t. If I had let you grow the way you wanted, you wouldn’t have borne any fruit. But because you followed the path I laid out for you and did your part, this is my gift to you.”

I invite you to subscribe here to receive monthly emails from me on a range of topics. Please consider contributing to the USANA Foundation. Its mission is to ensure that impoverished children and families reach their fullest potential by providing food and nutrition.

Lessons From Music to Achieve Harmony at Work

Living a life in harmony is critical to overall well-being. In honor of World Music Day, which took place on June 21, I shared three steps in which music can bring balance and harmony to teams reuniting at the workplace.

To run an effective workplace, companies need teams that work in harmony. With disharmony and discord, productivity stalls, and progress is hampered. That can cripple growth for the entire organization.

Lessons from music, however, can instantly remind workers about the value of harmonious efforts.

As I write in my book, All the Right Reasons, in music, harmony happens when notes blend in a way that is pleasing to the ear. When notes are out of harmony, their dissonant sounds are hard to listen to. Think of the last time you heard someone sing out of key or heard a jumble of incongruent notes. It’s horrible.

You’ve heard me say before that music is medicine for my soul. It’s such a powerful and important part of my life. It is for many others, as well. World Music Day, which got its start in Paris in 1982, celebrates music’s power to bring people together, transcend borders, and break barriers.

3 Steps to Harmony

With three simple steps, music can lift moods and unify teams.

  1. First, if you’re feeling down, play a song that brings happy memories, which may be something from high school or college.
  2. Next, sing your favorite songs out loud no matter who’s listening.
  3. Finally, get with your team to sing a song together.

There’s nothing like live music to lift spirits, and when you are part of making music, it can boost your positive temperament even more. When you’re doing that with team members, I’ve seen it help people find common ground and form instant bonds.

Achieving Harmony Takes Work

Harmony in music doesn’t happen without hours of practice and each individual musician’s commitment to getting the music right. The same commitment is required in the workplace.

Whether someone plays in a band, sings in a choir, or performs in an orchestra, nothing is quite as exhilarating as achieving perfect harmony with fellow musicians.

A life in harmony means a consistent and honest arrangement of your values and a solid commitment to living those values day in and day out.

Throughout the pandemic, most workers have been operating remotely. So coming back into an office setting might be a bit clumsy at first. Working toward harmony, which means understanding others, sharing your positivity, and making a difference for the better, will be one of the quickest paths to restoring productivity levels teams achieved before the pandemic.


A version of the above article was distributed as a news release on World Music Day 2021 with the headline World Music Day Calls for Harmony. All proceeds from All the Right Reasons are directed to feed two million meals to hungry children. Available on Amazon, the book provides 40 meals for every single purchase.

The Leap of Faith Principle: Take the First Step

Sometimes when we are faced with difficult tasks or overwhelming obstacles, all that’s required for us to navigate the path toward success is to take the first step. That’s the Leap of Faith Principle, which is Principle No. 4 in my book All the Right Reasons.

All the Right Reasons Book CoverTo help illustrate the principle, I lean on a story from Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade (apologies for the incorrect Indiana Jones film reference in the video below).

In one particular scene, Indiana needs to get from one side of a massive ravine to the other in his quest to find the Holy Grail. The only problem? It’s far too wide to jump across, and there doesn’t seem to be a bridge.

Indiana fears he will fall to his death if he steps blindly into thin air. But his father is dying and he has run out of time. Professor Henry Jones, Indiana’s father, urges his son to take a leap of faith.

“You must believe, boy. You must believe,” he says.

Ultimately, Indy takes a leap of faith and makes it to the other side.

Take a Leap of Faith

Many times in life, that’s what it takes. We just have to take the first step.

Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. said: “Faith is taking the first step even when you don’t see the whole staircase.”

So often, we’re not willing to take that first step because we’re not sure what’s going to happen. The only thing that will help us do that is to have faith.

The Leap of Faith Principle, to me, is this: You act with faith when you take a courageous step into the unknown.

As I write in my book, faith is not a sure knowledge. It is a firm belief in something for which there is no proof. We have faith when we believe we can find a way and then move into the dark.

Faith is hope put into action.

View additional videos on my YouTube channel

When we embark on a journey, start a project, begin a new relationship, or form a business, we aren’t guaranteed our efforts will prove successful. Like Indiana Jones, we are often taking steps into the unknown. We act, not because we know, but because we hope we can succeed. We believe we can find a way.

I invite you to subscribe here to receive monthly emails from me on a range of topics. Please consider contributing to the USANA Foundation. Its mission is to ensure that impoverished children and families reach their fullest potential by providing food and nutrition.

The Cardboard Keyboard Principle: Choose to Use Positive Self-Talk

The Cardboard Keyboard Principle. In the video below, I relay a harrowing story about a young woman in Rwanda. A civil war had erupted, devastating her small village and leaving many fighting for their lives.

All the Right Reasons Book CoverImmaculee Ilibagiza hid in a bathroom as killers lurked outside the window. For days, this woman feared for her life. Yet, her thoughts were hopeful and uplifting. She imagined her life once she was rescued — working at the United Nations.

Immaculee read books and taught herself English, all while violence raged just outside her door. She drew a replica of a computer keyboard on a piece of cardboard and spent hours learning how to type.

Immaculee survived by keeping hope in her heart and telling herself she would be okay. She prepared for her future.

It would have been easy — and understandable — for Immaculee’s thoughts to turn dark. For her to consider the situation hopeless and to give up. She could have let negative self-talk overwhelm her spirit.

But she didn’t. She used her inner voice to think positively about her seemingly dire situation. And it helped her escape. It allowed her to ultimately realize the life she visualized herself living.

View additional videos on my YouTube channel

The Power of Self-Talk

Managing self-talk is a significant personal difficulty for me. I constantly struggle to eliminate the negative voice in my mind.

At my first Grand Ole Opry performance with Collin Raye.

Many have heard me tell the story, which is also included in my book, All the Right Reasons, of standing off stage at the Grand Ole Opry. I’m about to perform with country music superstar Collin Raye—a phenomenal opportunity on one of music’s biggest stages—and my inner voice is filling my mind with doubt.

What are you doing? You’re not a professional musician. You don’t deserve to be here. What if you make a mistake and ruin the whole show?

Fortunately, I’ve developed strategies and techniques to quiet the negativity and amplify the positive self-talk.

I’ve worked hard to learn the music. I’ve trained and practiced for years for this opportunity. It’s going to be an awesome show!

As individuals, we tend to be harder on ourselves than anyone else is. But the good news is positive self-talk is even more powerful than negative self-talk. Learning how to channel and elevate the voice in your head can change your life.

I encourage each of you to take note of the chatter happening inside your head. With practice, we can consciously choose positive self-talk (and limit negative self-talk) to help make our lives better.

A version of this article went to email subscribers on April 21, 2021. I invite you to subscribe here. Please consider contributing to the USANA Foundation. Its mission is to ensure that impoverished children and families reach their fullest potential by providing food and nutrition.

Kevin Guest: 3 Keys to a Fresh Start in 2021

I’d like to share the following article that went out to news organizations in late 2020.

Getting a Fresh Start in 2021

Making a fresh start toward success in 2021 requires three key decisions to forge forward no matter the past. The following strategies are based on principles in All the Right Reasons, a bestselling book by Kevin Guest.

“Few people dispute that 2020 has been one of the most difficult years in history,” Guest said. “But 2021 can become one of the best, especially when we apply solid principles that can move us forward.”

First Key: Learn From the Past

The Butch O'Hare Principle - Butch O'Hare - All the Right Reasons“The first principle is to learn from the past and move forward,” said Guest, who’s also chairman and CEO of USANA Health Sciences. “It’s something I was inspired to do from the life of World War II fighter pilot Butch O’Hare.”

O’Hare became the Navy’s first Ace of WWII and the first Naval aviator to be awarded the Congressional Medal of Honor by President Franklin D. Roosevelt, Guest wrote in his bestselling book, All the Right Reasons: 12 Timeless Principles for Living a Life in Harmony.

“Butch O’Hare, for whom the Chicago O’Hare Airport is named, was the son of Easy Eddie, the famed attorney for Al Capone in the 1920s and ’30s, who was notorious for racketeering, bootlegged alcohol, gambling rings and prostitution in the Windy City,” Guest wrote.

“But Easy Eddie wanted a better life for his son, and his son, Butch, looked to the future instead of dwelling on the past and made contributions that saved countless American lives in the war. Believing in fresh starts is the key, and there is no better time for us all to do that than Jan. 1, 2021.”

Second Key: Help Others Who Are in Need

The second principle is to help others who are in need.

“Losing yourself in the service of others is therapeutic beyond measure,” Guest said. “That’s something that will bring untold benefits because it helps the giver and the receiver, who may be a coworker, friend, or even a stranger. The rewards of simple acts of service are immeasurable and something we need as we enter a new year and detach from the pandemic.”

Third Key: Never Give Up

Guest’s third principle comes from his grandfather, who taught his grandson confidence, courage, and commitment.

Kevin Guest Speaking“My grandpa was a strong influence in my life in Montana,” Guest said. “He loved to make things happen, not only in business but in life. He was full of enthusiasm and optimism, a real dealmaker.

“His favorite mottos were on a plaque on his desk: ‘You Gotta Fake It Till You Make It’ and ‘Go, Baby, Go.’ Those sayings have stuck with me and taught me that you have to give it your all for as long as you can. You have to be committed and see things through to the end. That’s when the magic happens.”

Leading a billion-dollar company in 24 markets worldwide, Guest applies the principles globally and expects to see a 2021 work environment bring successes for all who apply lessons from the pandemic, help lift others higher and energize their talents to make a difference for the better.

“Persistently implementing these patterns into our personal work habits can carry us to higher levels of personal success — especially as we enter a new year of opportunities like no other time in our lives,” he said.

All the Right Reasons: 12 Timeless Principles for Living a Life in Harmony, written by Kevin Guest, is available on Amazon. All proceeds benefit The USANA Foundation, which works to feed hungry children. Each book purchase provides 40 meals. A version of the above article was distributed as a news release on Dec. 29, 2020.

Kevin Guest on the Inside Sources Show

Inside Sources - Kevin Guest

Inside Sources - Kevin Guest 2Kevin Guest appeared on the Inside Sources Show on Dec. 23, 2019. He spoke with Boyd Matheson on KSL Newsradio and discussed principles contained in his book, All the Right Reasons.

All the Right Reasons: 12 Timeless Principles for Living a Life in Harmony is available on Amazon. All proceeds benefit the USANA True Health Foundation and its mission to feed hungry children. Each book purchase helps to provide 40 meals.