I have always found it fascinating that we label ourselves as ‘consumers’.
Looking up the term ‘consume’ in a thesaurus, you’ll find related words such as exhaust, waste, spend, devour, squander, and drain.
Exploring the antonyms for consume, we find words like save, create, build, construct, produce, and so on.
Why do we choose to identify with the former versus the latter?
If we are constantly consuming more than we produce, will we not eventually run out of resources?
A dream of mine is to shift our thinking so that we label ourselves as a Producer Society.
The essence of my 126 Principle is that we should produce more than we consume, to live in a world of abundance and growth.
Here’s where the idea started…
THE GOLDEN RULE
As a child, I was a big believer in the golden rule: “Treat others as you want to be treated”.
As an adult, I altered the saying to: “Treat others BETTER than you want to be treated”. I found that I had a knack for ‘giving’, and it became my secret personal mission.
Then in 2008, when my son was 3 years old and beginning to speak, I once asked him, “Michael, how much do you love daddy?” My son responded, “Daddy, I love you one hundred and twenty six!”
At the time it made no sense, but 126 soon became my favourite number as it represented the love of my son.
Wherever we go, when we see the number 126 we secretly smile at each other, take photos, and share a unique bond.
Soon after we started this he said, “I love you 126 percent” and the 126 (one-twenty-six) Principle was born.
We now simply say ‘One-Twenty-Six’ to each other, meaning ‘I love you.’
While the Golden Rule is about reciprocity and equality, The 126 Principle is about focusing on ‘giving’ instead of receiving, and on producing more than you consume.
THE 126 PRINCIPLE
Essentially, The 126 Principle states:
1) Give more than you receive (126% more, if you’d like to be precise).
2) Give more to receive more.
3) Give forward more than you give back.
4) Strive for constant personal improvement and growth.
5) Leave the world better than when you arrived.
#1 GIVE MORE THAN YOU RECEIVE
While the concept may seem utopian, how different would society be if we all focused on providing more value, service, help, and support? What would happen if we all produced more than we consumed?
#2 GIVE MORE TO RECEIVE MORE
As long as we come from a position of producing more than consuming, I believe it is okay to consume. In a capitalistic society, the more we receive, the more we’re helping others to give. The key is to follow rule number one above.
As an entrepreneur with a social purpose, don’t be afraid to make money and profits. The more you make, assuming you believe in rule number one, the more you can give.
#3 GIVE FORWARD MORE THAN YOU GIVE BACK
I’ve never liked the term ‘giving back’. I once heard it said that giving back implies something was taken. I prefer the term ‘Give Forward’, which has its roots in the phrase ‘Pay it Forward’.
When someone does something nice for you, instead of trying to reciprocate, do something nice for two other people. This creates a gift for four people – for yourself, for the person who originally helped you, and for the 2 new people you’ve helped. I liken this to a form of ‘exponential giving’.
#4 STRIVE FOR CONSTANT PERSONAL IMPROVEMENT AND GROWTH
I wake up everyday thinking, “How can I make myself better today than I was yesterday?”
Think of yourself for a minute as a factory – a place of ‘Production’. The more capabilities within the factory, the more that can be produced…the more value you bring to the table, the more of a gift you can be to the world.
Every article you find discussing the habits of the most successful people include the topic of lifelong learning. I guarantee you that the most successful people on the planet (specifically those with big hearts that want to change the world) are avid readers.
As Mark Twain once said, “Never let schooling get in the way of your education.”
#5 LEAVE THE WORLD BETTER THAN WHEN YOU ARRIVED
While the fourth rule is above making you a better ‘you’, the fifth rule is about constantly striving to make the world a better place. You can do this in two ways – helping people in need by reducing their suffering, and by helping create a more sustainable environment for future generations.
BY: GIOVANNI MARSICO
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