To truly understand what is important to you, you must be able to clearly articulate your values. Your values are what help you understand your motivating forces and what drives you to make the choices you make.
Our values are our compass, so if we are not crystal clear on what they are, how can we steer in the direction of our goals and desires in life? If we are not living life according to our values, how are we making decisions? How do we know what to focus on to ensure we get the most out of our short time on this planet?
What if I told you exploring your personal values has merit and may improve the results you are getting in life?
Before my journey to becoming a coach, I could have told you only one value and why it was important to me. Integrity. And it remains my constant companion. I could very ‘loosely’ state a few more but I did not have the same connection or awareness of their importance to me.
From the work I’ve since done on myself, I now know, identifying and understanding my personal values is empowering as it allows me to live a more aligned life. My everyday actions are aligned with my values and that equals greater peace in my life.
Let me give you an example. One of my values is health and that means I choose to eat well, exercise regularly, drink plenty of water, meditate and sleep well. Do you see how my actions align exactly as they should with my value? This is a really important point.
Now over to you.
When was the last time you paused to think about your personal values? How well is your life aligned with those values? Have you assessed whether there are any gaps between your values and your actions?
If you are interested in understanding what you value most, I invite you to pause here, put pen to paper and be guided by the following 3 steps:
On a blank piece of paper, answer the question below by writing down as many words that immediately come to mind. I want you to think about what makes you happy, what inspires you and what motivates you. Is it freedom, compassion, kindness, security,
I want you to think about what makes you happy, what inspires you and what motivates you. Is it freedom, compassion, kindness, security, humour, family, knowledge, career? Write whatever comes into your mind and please, no judgment. The question is: what is really important to me in my life?
Is it freedom, compassion, kindness, security, humor, family, knowledge, career? Write whatever comes into your mind and please, no judgment. The question is: what is really important to me in my life?
Write whatever comes into your mind and please, no judgment.
The question is: what is really important to me in my life?
It’s time to select 5 to 8 words from the list created in Step 1. Take your time to read and re-read each word.
You need to determine how much each word resonates with you and what the word means to you. This is super important so don’t be tempted to rush.
Note: ensure you list ‘current’ values that you already display day-to-day versus something that you ‘aspire’ to achieve.
Almost there! I now want you to rank your values with 1 being the most important to you. Again, focus on each word and see what resonates with you the most. There will be some that naturally feel more powerful to you.
WELL DONE! You now have 5 to 8 clearly articulated values that are unique to YOU and reflect who you are.
Being aligned with your values is what helps create harmony in your life.
So now what? If you would like to fully embrace your personal values, here are a few tips:
Write your definition of each value to help crystallize what the value means to you.
Write your values (word only or word plus definition) on an inspiring piece of stationery and place somewhere that you will see them each day.
This is my favorite! Take a moment to think about how you currently spend the majority of your time. Check this against your 5 to 8 values and see if they are aligned. This can be a revealing exercise!
What were your top values? Were you surprised by any of them? Comment below!