Tag Archive for: principles

The Piano Principle: What Sacrifices Are You Willing to Make?

Early in All the Right Reasons (the second principle, in fact), I tell a story about my mom and dad.

When they were younger and didn’t have a lot of money — like a lot of us at that age, just starting out with a family — my parents needed to prioritize purchases.

Kevin GuestOne thing I’ll always remember: My parents bought a piano before they purchased a car.

It’s not like they didn’t need a car. Life likely would have been easier had they had one. Yet my dad would ride my mom around on his bicycle to the grocery store and other places.

Why did they do this? Because music was so important to them. And they were willing to sacrifice everything to see that we had music in the home.

They couldn’t afford both a piano and a car.

The Piano Principle speaks to that mindset.

You should do whatever it takes for the things that are most important to you.

Here’s something I’ve told a few people as I’ve thought about The Piano Principle. My wife, Lori, and I did pretty much the same thing. We were talking about this the other day. We bought a piano in the early days of our marriage.

We weren’t exactly like my parents — we did have a car. But we bought it used and made payments (like a lot of folks). We knew we needed a piano in our home to make sure our kids grew up with music in their lives.

Some of my greatest memories are sitting around the piano singing church hymns and other songs as a family.

The Piano Principle in Your Life

What do these stories mean for you? I encourage you to think about what’s most important to you and then what are you willing to sacrifice to make sure that it becomes a reality in your life.

It comes down to prioritizing.

The Piano Principle is simply that:

What is most important and then what are you willing to sacrifice to make sure it becomes a reality in your life?

If you do that, I believe you’ll look back years later and be so thankful that you did what it took to make sure that priority became a reality in your life.

How About You?

What’s most important in your life? Is it planning for a dream vacation? A new car? Saving to start your own business? I’d love to hear what you’re willing to sacrifice in order to make it a reality.

For more of my thoughts on principles included in All the Right Reasons, please take a look at this link.

The Plato Principle: Surround Yourself with People Who Will Help You Grow

I recently returned from USANA Live — our annual Asia Pacific Convention. It’s an event I look forward to each year. The energy is off the charts and the enthusiasm is invigorating.

I intentionally surrounded myself with thousands of people — Associates and Employees — who are dedicated to making a difference in the world.

It reminded me of The Plato Principle, which I discuss in depth in All the Right Reasons.

In essence, The Plato Principle involves being open to those around you and having people around you who can be a positive influence. Surround yourself with good people that will help you grow.

I think it’s so important, especially in today’s world, to have an open mind and to be teachable.

Seek Advice From Others

It’s not a secret that one of my idols is Paul McCartney of the Beatles. Not long ago, I had the opportunity to sit in on a sound check with McCartney. There were only a few of us in a large stadium.

He walked out and I was off to the side. It was interesting to watch his interaction. He actually walked up to the crew, to his band members, and he hugged them. Then he sat down to sound check his piano. He asked for input on different settings. He was asking for advice and interacting.

Here you have arguably one of the biggest celebrities in the world. He walked out, engaged his crew and his other band members with hugs, with a warm friendly interaction.

But then he was asking questions through the process. I was learning from him, one of my idols and icons, someone who’s been a mentor from afar.

No matter what level you’re at or where you’re at in life, consider these two things:

  1. Respect people. Respect who they are and be open to their advice and interaction.
  2. Surround yourself with good people. Learn from them. Have an open mind. And most importantly, be teachable.

Thank you to all my friends in Singapore and from around the world who made last week so memorable. I’m re-energized and excited about the future!

Photos From Singapore

Here are a few photos from the USANA Live event in Singapore. Click or swipe to see my interaction with someone I’ve looked to for advice for a long time. I bet many of you have as well.


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The Dorothy Principle: Dr. Oz and the Story of Pearl

If you watched The Dr. Oz Show episode in which I talked about All the Right Reasons, you heard me tell the story of Dorothy, the namesake for The Dorothy Principle.

Pearl - Dr. Oz - The Dorothy PrincipleHer story taught me the very important principle: Nothing is more important than relationships.

When I shared that story with Dr. Mehmet Oz, he immediately thought of Pearl, a woman he’s worked with most of his career.

Recently, Dr. Oz shared this story with me and he provided me with Pearl’s permission to share it with all of you.

Meet Pearl – the housekeeper of the cardiac floor at NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital. I’ve known Pearl for most of my career in medicine. Without Pearl, rooms wouldn’t be cleaned in time to house recovering patients who need to leave the ICU. Pearl creates a pristine environment that reduces infection and gives confidence to patients and their families.”

Pearl is a wonderful example of The Dorothy Principle.

Dr. Oz continues:

“Pay attention to the Pearls in your life. Get engaged with others and your challenges will take care of themselves. Judge us by how we treat those around us.”

I invite each of you to live The Dorothy Principle and continue to develop and nurture relationships.

The Ben Franklin Principle

The end of one year and the start of the next is my time to evaluate and assess what I’ve accomplished and what I’ve yet to accomplish.

I believe a goal not written down is merely a wish. Therefore, I try to be very specific about what I want to accomplish by writing down my goals. I actually add them to my phone using the “Notes” feature so I can refer back to what I want to work on and what I want to accomplish.

Ben FranklinThe first principle in my book, All the Right Reasons, is the Ben Franklin Principle.

Something I love about the story of Ben Franklin, a founding father of the United States, is when he was a teenager, he decided to write down important things that he wanted to pattern his life after. We translate those as values.

He wrote 12 things down, and later, added a 13th — humility. He decided he wanted to pursue a life of perfection by following these 13 very important principles. (Franklin’s 13 virtues can be found on page 8 of All the Right Reasons.)

He kept track of how well he did weekly. He picked one value each week. Franklin tracked in his notebook how well he did in following that virtue or that value. He did that throughout his life.

As he reflected late in life, when he was 79 years old — almost 60 years later — he said he never actually obtained perfection when it came to living his individual value system.

But he felt like he was a much better person because he had attempted to hit those values throughout his life.

Identify Your Core Values

I love the Ben Franklin Principle. Identify your core values. What makes you you? What’s your guiding light, your North Star? Do all you can to be perfect in those values you’ve established for yourself.

Although many of us will never hit it — I know I won’t — it gives me something to work toward. To become better and improve my life.

An Invitation for 2019

That’s an invitation I give all of you as we start 2019. Work toward becoming just a little better, a little kinder, a little happier, and a little better in your relationships with others.

And if you do, I believe you’ll find 2019 to be an awesome year.

This and 11 other timeless principles for living a life in harmony can be found in All The Right Reasons. Book sales benefit the USANA True Health Foundation to help ensure impoverished children and families reach their fullest potential.

Photo: Joseph Duplessishttp://www.npg.si.edu/exh/brush/ben.htm, Public Domain, Link

Living a Life in Harmony: Two Principles From All the Right Reasons

Kevin Guest - All The Right Reasons - The Dr. Oz Show

A few weeks ago, as you may know, I had the opportunity to appear on The Dr. Oz Show. We talked about how to live a life in harmony. It’s the thesis of my book, All the Right Reasons: 12 Timeless Principles for Living a Life in Harmony.

As Dr. Oz says in his introduction, “We all face challenges in our life.” (you can view the full segment below this post).

I believe it’s how we deal with those challenges and create “harmony” in our lives that make us who we are.

First, if you’re not sure what “living a life in harmony” means, here’s my definition:

A life in harmony is having the courage to stay true to the principles that are at the foundation of who you are, despite the circumstances. For me, that is to make a positive difference in the lives of other people.

Living a Life in Harmony

I’d like to share the two principles I talked about on the show, with the hope that they might help you in your own life.

Nothing is More Important Than Relationships.

A big issue for many in today’s world is we’re not connected to people nearly as much as we’re connected to our electronic devices. I believe human interaction is so important.

There’s a story I share in All the Right Reasons — it’s the story of Dorothy, a cleaning woman at a college. A few weeks into the semester, a professor gave a pop quiz. The last question was: What is the name of the woman who cleans this building?”

One student, who had breezed through the quiz until this question, wondered if that final question was a joke. He’d seen the cleaning woman several times during those first weeks of school, quietly going about her business cleaning the halls and classrooms.

But he hadn’t paid much attention to her otherwise.

It turns out, that cleaning woman’s name was Dorothy and it illustrated the professor’s point:

“In your careers, your paths will cross with many people. They all matter and deserve your attention and care, even if all you do is smile, say hello, and learn their first name. Few things are more important to people than being called by their first name.”

Eliminate Negative Self-Talk

We all have an “inner voice,” the little voice inside our heads that is constantly talking to us, providing a running monologue for every second we’re awake.

Psychologists call it “self-talk.” It can be useful to help us process and interpret our life’s experiences. Unfortunately, a lot of us are prone to negative self-talk. That is, “I can’t do anything right,” or “I’m not good enough,” or “I don’t have enough time.”

All the Right Reasons Book CoverWe start to believe that voice inside our heads. We have to flip that switch that turns the self-talk from negative to positive. Positive self-talk is even more powerful than negative self-talk, and learning how to channel and elevate the voice in your head can change your life.

On The Dr. Oz Show, I shared a story of how negative self-talk almost ruined a lifelong dream of mine — to perform at The Grand Ole Opry. I stood backstage, guitar in hand waiting to go on and I actually started having a panic attack. I’m thinking: “Why are you here? You shouldn’t be on this stage. You’re not good enough to play.”

Luckily, I had learned a breathing technique that helped snap me out of those moments of negative self-talk. I calmed myself down and went out to perform. But it’s amazing how crippling those few moments were. And what could have happened had I not eliminated the negative self-talk.

In the book, I share several other principles to live a life in harmony. It can be purchased now. I’d love for you to pick up a copy and let me know what you think.