How do you navigate your life? When the tides are low and the tides are high? How do you steer your ship in a rough sea? In a quiet one? Do you simply let it float? What guides you?
We all have our navigation system. At the core of this navigation system stand ethics, morals and values. While the first two are mostly externally established, values are your own guide and compass. Values will prescribe what you decide to do or not do in a certain situation – that is why values are important to know.
There are many ways how to extract for yourself what your values are. I will name a few below. Be generous with yourself with time and patience to go through these exercises and if you still have doubts or clashes of values, please work with a coach or a mentor.
- Write down an experience in your life where you were the happiest; the proudest; the most fulfilling moment? What was present there for you? What needs were covered?
- Write down a moment in your life when you were at your best – what were you doing? What was important there for you?
- Name 2-3 persons in your life that you admire. What qualities in them do you admire? Make a list of those qualities.
- Answer the following questions:
- What drives you crazy? What upsets you? (the opposite of answers you get here are your values, example: if your answer is hate – your value here is love etc).
- What is an absolute must for you in life?
- What can you NOT compromise with?
- What is lacking when you are not happy?
It might be that you do not have the answers for all these questions. Start with what is easier for you. Keep on journaling…
Notice what words stand out; what is in common in all the answers. The words that stood out are your VALUES. You might need some assistance in this part of the process. Sometimes, we can’t see the forest for the trees on our own.
Once you have a list, circle 5-6 of these values that are the most important to you. These are your core values. These are values that are at the bottom of all are values, feeding them. It might be very easy for some to discover the core values and for some not.
Let’s take an example: you might have written “money” at some point. Ask yourself: what does it mean to me to have money? What would money give me? You might answer: freedom or security; or fun etc. Money is not a value in itself. In this case, freedom or security or fun are core values.
Knowing core values is very important. In case there is discrepancy between your values and your decisions or what you are doing and being, you will never feel content with your life. Be clear about your values. Make an effort to become aware and stay vigilant as values can change depending on what stage of life we are and what we consider important at this phase.
I would be happy to support you in this process. Start today with taking charge of your life and creating a life you want. Book a complementary session here: