Principles are ways of successfully dealing with reality to get what you want out of life.
Ray Dalio, one of the world’s most successful investors and entrepreneurs, cites principles as his key to success.
In my own life, what I want to give to people, most importantly to people I love, is the power to deal with reality to get what they want. In pursuit of my goal to give them strength, I will often deny them what they "want" because that will give them the opportunity to struggle so that they can develop the strength to get what they want on their own. This can be difficult for people emotionally, even if they understand intellectually that having difficulties is the exercise they need to grow strong and that just giving them what they want will weaken them and ultimately lead to them needing more help.
Of course most people would prefer not to have weaknesses. Our upbringings and our experiences in the world have conditioned us to be embarrassed by our weaknesses and hide them. But people are happiest when they can be themselves. If you can be open with your weaknesses it will make you freer and will help you deal with them better. I urge you to not be embarrassed about your problems, recognizing that everyone has them. Bringing them to the surface will help you break your bad habits and develop good ones, and you will acquire real strengths and justifiable optimism.
This evolutionary process of productive adaptation and ascent--the process of seeking, obtaining, and pursuing more and more ambitious goals--does not just pertain to how individuals and society move forward. It is equally relevant when dealing with setbacks, which are inevitable. At some point in your life you will crash in a big way. You might fail at your job or with your family, lose a loved one, suffer a serious accident or illness, or discover the life you imagined is out of reach forever. There are a whole host of ways that something will get you. At such times, you will be in pain and might think that you don't have the strength to go on. You almost always do, however; your ultimate success will depend on you realizing that fact, even though it might not seem that way at the moment.
This is why many people who have endured setbacks that seemed devastating at the time ended up as happy as (or even happier than) they originally were after they successfully adapted to them. The quality of your life will depend on the choices you make at those painful moments. The faster one appropriately adapts, the better. No matter what you want out of life, your ability to adapt and move quickly and efficiently through the process of personal evolution will determine your success and your happiness. If you do it well, you can change your psychological reaction to it so that what was painful can become something you crave.