Sunday, July 21, 2013

25 Truths: Life Principles of the Happiest and Most Successful Among Us {Schoolhouse Crew Review}

 photo 25_zps13016d40.jpg

It seems like I'm seeing a lot of subway art on blogs and Pinterest lately. I decided to try my hand at creating a project of my own using the lessons I learned from Ed Douglas's book 25 Truths: Life Principles of the Happiest and Most Successful Among Us (available from Ed Douglas Publications). The book was chock-full of inspiring concepts that I'd love to have posted around my house as reminders.

Ed Douglas was a very successful banker in his first career and is now both a writer and inspirational speaker. Several years ago he developed a list of Life's Truths that he wanted to pass along to his children and grandchildren. He later decided to share his twenty-five important concepts with the high school tennis team that he coached. Eventually, this list was written down in book form.

According to the note I received from the author, 25 Truths is "about character, values and what is important in life based on Christian principles." His hope is that the book can be used to change one person at a time so that we can overcome the current crisis of character in our country.

 photo 25book_zpsac9dca24.jpgMy copy of 25 Truths is dogeared and starting to look a bit worn after reading through it several times. I've marked pages to inspire me as I run, encouragement to keep me walking along a straight path, and passages to share with my children. Ed Douglas teaches that it's important to have high standards and to hold yourself to those standards.

The first thing that struck me as I read the book is that many of these concepts are simple to implement, but in other ways powerful enough to make a huge difference. Truth 2 states, "Don't be lewd, crude, or rude." Ed Douglas laments the fact that standards of common decency have dropped dramatically, or in some cases, disappeared completely from our society. He challenges readers to dare to be different by being "gracious, tasteful, and considerate." In the short discussion of this truth, he refers to Philippians 4:8 where we are challenged to think about "whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable." He later asks us to consider whether our talk and behavior is more fitting of someone who was created "a little lower than the angels" or if we seem more like animals. I can only imagine a world where standards of decency were once again common.

I shared this book with Addison in the car the other morning, and she was immediately drawn to Truth #6 -- "Don't Talk Negatively About Others." She appreciated the way that the author first pointed out that talking negatively about other people is a cheap way to make someone feel better about themselves. He also showed the difference between being factual about something that happened and being judgmental about a person and/or his motives. Addison could apply this principle to her life as a teenager now. We discussed how she could build a reputation for being the type of friend who always saw the positive about the people around her.

Addison agreed that this book would be a great to spark meaningful conversations between teenagers and adults, and it even includes a few discussion questions for each truth. When we start back into our regular school routine, I intend to read and discuss a short section of the book each day during lunchtime, similar to the way that Ed Douglas introduced the concepts to his high school tennis players. It'll be perfect to read aloud and discuss with Addison (15 years old) and Brennan (12 years old). I wouldn't necessarily read this book to a child Lauren's age (7 years old), but I think she'll glean wisdom from being part of our discussion.

For now, I've settled on eight of the principles to include on my subway art. I'd love to make a bigger collection with all twenty-five truths someday. I also need one with the principles that I could apply to my running -- Take It One Step at a Time, Make Every Day Your Best Day, Never Surrender, Set Goals and Write them Down, and You've Got to Believe.

25 Truths: Life Principles of the Happiest and Most Successful Among Us is available to order for $12.50. It is appropriate for teenagers as well as for adults. I am considering ordering a copy to give to our Youth Minister because I think these life principles could spark great discussions among our teens and because I think they need to hear someone remind them that it's important to hold yourself to high standards.


©2009-2013 Through the Calm and Through the Storm. All rights reserved. Photos and content may not be reproduced.

statement regarding FTC Regulations for reviews

No comments:

Post a Comment


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...