It’s a new year, gentlemen!

With its fresh perspective and renewed focus, 2016 also brings with it a massive amount of information begging for our attention. We are marketed to for everything from advertisements for gym memberships, to books on how to live stress-free lifestyles.

We talk about this barrage of information and overstimulation quite a bit at The Modern Day Gentleman, but that’s because it’s such an interwoven part of our realities today. We are constantly sold to, tempted, distracted, and lied to about who we are as men. The world is not all evil, of course! There are many good people, men and women alike, that are sharing amazing stories and creating incredible material. And because of the age we live in, it’s more readily available to us than ever before. That is a wonderful thing, indeed!

But if we are not careful, if we are not diligent, if we are not intentional, we can find ourselves focused on all the wrong things.

If we are not diligent this new year, we'll find ourselves focused on all the wrong things. Click To Tweet

My call to you today, dear reader, is to ensure you are concerned with the right things as we usher in the new year.

In this week’s article, I want to propose a list to you of 5 principles that all gentlemen are to live by. I hesitate to deem them “resolutions” because that word has been so diluted by the term “New Years resolution”. These days, a resolution usually means little more than a “suggestion” that you only stick to when you feel like it.

So let’s not call this a list of “resolutions”. Let’s call it a list of New Years oaths.

An “oath” is defined as “a solemn usually formal calling upon God to witness to the truth of what one says or to witness that one sincerely intends to do what one says.”

Let us take these commitments that seriously. To understand that we are not just stating empty resolutions, but rather we are proclaiming confident promises…oaths…for the way in which we are committing to live our lives in 2016.

This list will not be 100% applicable to every man. But it is a great place to start.

It’s not a defined set of specific goals that must be achieved with tangible results. It is simply a guideline that lays out broad values we should all be striving towards with our most diligent efforts.

It’s not a profoundly new or insightful set of principles. You’ve heard these things before. It’s not intended to “open your eyes” to a new way of approaching your life. It is simply a reminder of that which you are already aware. A return to what you know to be true about what is meaningful and worthwhile. This is not a new list. It is nothing revolutionary. But it is proven.

Proven by thousands of years of men going before us and showing us what it means to live in a way that writes a story worth reading.

Join me as we rediscover these long-held truths about what we, as modern day gentlemen, are to be concerning ourselves with as we continue to learn to lead others, and ourselves, well in 2016.

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If you learn to be a man who lives genuinely, you will be man who is trusted unreservedly.

If you learn to be a man who lives genuinely, you will be man who is trusted unreservedly. Click To Tweet

Love without condition

Offer your love completely and unselfishly. If you are to be remembered for a single trait, be remembered as a man who loved exceptionally well.

If you are to be remembered for a single trait, be remembered as a man who loved exceptionally well. Click To Tweet

Forgive with unexplainable grace

Do your best to always be the first to forgive. Nurture your relationships on a foundation of grace, and you will watch them mature into relationships with unwavering and unbreakable trust.

Carry yourself with excellence

Be excellent in everything that you do. This does not require you are the best at everything you do. But it absolutely requires you to do your best in every task you are given, relationship you are entrusted with, and every opportunity you are afforded.

Attend first to the needs of others

To live selflessly is to live fully. The gift of tuning in to others’ needs is learned, not given. Put forth a great amount of effort into learning how to know the needs of others, and you will be given countless opportunities to impact the lives of those around you.

As I said before, this list does not cover everything. And it certainly doesn’t pretend to be applicable to every man’s life and circumstances. But take from it what you can, and insert other virtues in areas of your life that will be the most impactful to those who are placed in your path.

Go, gentlemen. Go forward and live faithfully the oaths that you commit to this year, and beyond. This is your story, write it with integrity and with the highest virtue.

And do not forget, although you may be the author, the pages are filled with the lives of others who make your story worth reading.

Until Soon,