One of the most famous authors in Irish literature was George Bernard Shaw. He spoke wise words when he said “Life is not about finding yourself. It is about creating yourself.” I found it helpful to write down four characteristics that I aspire to. These are wisdom, integrity, maturity and humour.

I carefully studied the meaning of each word and decided that together they would become my mission statement; the values I try to live by. The words serve as a measurement tool against which I consistently try to check my behaviour for correctness, health etc.

Of course I often fail, but hopefully practice makes perfect. A definite gain has been an increase in a quiet, subdued inner confidence. The negativities people utter are of less importance. Don’t be discouraged by mistakes you make. “Get up” and try again!

I regard this as “mental hygiene” in the same way as washing my hair or brushing my teeth. Imagine if every person on the planet could engage in a similar process where we deliberately choose to live by constructive values. I think the world would be a completely different and better place to live in.

Make the choice today to continuously recreate yourself for the better. Become aware of what you think, say and do. Measure these against your own criteria; a benchmark for the ideal you as a human being.