The one critical factor in choosing a word or a principle to live by is to actually do it. Otherwise, just choosing a word would be little more than just a wish or a dream.
Thoreau, in his well-read book, On Walden Pond, stated that he was going to live “deliberately.” That he “wanted to live deep and suck all the marrow of life...,” An expression that probably had more meaning back in the 1880s than it does now. But we get his drift.
And he practiced what he preached. With the resolution and dedication of a philosophical pioneer, Thoreau lived on the shores of Walden Pond, near Boston, for about two years. He lived basically and rustically. It was a period of intense, if somewhat unstructured education.
Someone like Thoreau might have said that we make a mistake by asking children what they intend to be when they grow up. He would probably have said that it would be better for them to choose how to live rather than what to do.
The teachings of Jesus emphasize that approach as well. In giving his followers the commandment to love one another, (John 15:12), he is telling them how to live. He continued by saying that love, when put into practice, would even compel a person to die for his friend. It was an example that he carried out not too long afterward.
That was living life deliberately. It was also an example that changed a lot of things in this world...