If we want the deepest level of life fulfillment, we can achieve it in only one way: by deciding upon what we value most in our life, what our highest values are, and then committing to live by them every single day. If you and I are not clear about what’s important in our lives—what we truly stand for—then how can we ever expect to lay the foundation for a sense of self- esteem, much less have the capacity to make effective decisions?
We need to realize that the direction of our lives is controlled by the magnetic pull of our values. They are the force in front of us, consistently leading us to make decisions that create the direction and ultimate destination of our lives. This is true not only for individuals, but also for the companies, organizations, and the nation of which we’re a part.
Many people know what they want to have, but have no idea of who they want to be. Are you living your core values? When I ask my clients to identify their values, they often reply with a route echo of family values given them as a child; honesty, God-fearing etc.. But personal values change over time and what may have been important when I was 15, is not the same as it is today. Adventure, self-nurturing, playfulness – these might be more aligned to my current life-chapter.
Choose or Lose! An exercise
Put each core value on its own small Post-it all the way around a door frame that you walk past frequently (the bathroom door worked well for me!). In no more time that it usually takes you to walk through the doorway, quickly choose two values. Which one would you keep if you were forced to give one up? Move the keeper to a higher place on the door frame and the other to a lower position. Continue this process until you feel satisfied that you have considered each value in turn and moved those that you value most to higher positions. What you will have left is a stack-ranked list of core values that are most important to you. Feel free to add others or change the name of a value as it best suites you. I [-precommend no more than three to five values AND I recommend that the values remain constant across all sphere’s of your life – personal and professional. If Family is a value only when you are with family, and does not form part of your attitude in the workplace, I feel it is misaligned. Approaching your colleagues like strangers and refusing to share of yourself in the workspace may ultimately lead to a values-clash. Give it a go, I’d love to hear what you identify as your values, and what they mean to you;
** Abundance ** Achievement ** Advancement ** Adventure ** Affection ** Autonomy ** Beauty ** Challenge ** Community ** Competitiveness ** Connection ** Cooperation ** Creativity ** Discovery ** Economic Security ** Fairness ** Family ** Happiness ** Friendship ** Health ** Helpfulness ** Inner Harmony ** Integrity ** Involvement ** Justice ** Knowledge ** Learning ** Loyalty ** Order ** Pleasure ** Quality ** Power ** Recognition ** Romance ** Security ** Self-Reliance ** Spirituality ** Status ** Respect ** Self-Respect ** Stability ** Tolerance ** Trust ** Variety ** Wealth ** Wisdom