I see people in vectors.
Because our perspectives are restricted by the third dimension, individuals always seem relatively static to us. But, from a bigger picture POV, we intuitively understand that individuals cannot be static -- we are constantly changing, shifting and adapting to life experiences. We are but sums of our own decision-making. Similarly, each has a certain direction and magnitude. Our intrinsic principles and values drive our direction like a compass. Having no principles is a direction too (although a scattered one). They mold what we aspire towards, how we live and how we treat others. The magnitude is determined by our management decisions. The deeper we explore something and commit towards that direction, the deeper we entrench our own lives around that space.
Other people can influence these factors too. Long-term relationship are interesting vectors. As both individuals grow, their inner principles may diverge according to life experiences, leading to relationship discontent ("but we were so good together in the past!"). Or couples may start with differing fundamental principles but slowly converge as they spend time together (like the bad boy turned good by pure empathy).
To this end, I seek to define my principles first and foremost so that as I invest in whatever I do, I can trust that my decisions follow deeply meditated principles. Because even with the greatest magnitude, without direction, I am lost. In fact, most of my past mistakes are representations of an incorrect trajectory.