Defining Your Values
DETERMINE YOUR CORE VALUES AND USE THEM TO CREATE LIFE ON YOUR TERMS.
Values are the fundamental beliefs governing our lives.
They are the principles helping us determine what we go after and what we avoid. They embody the person we want to become. They set the standard on what is good, fair and meaningful in the world. Values determine our actions and influence how we interact with others and how we build our legacy.
Most of our values are conditioned and programmed into our lives. Formed and influenced by the way we are raised, life events, past results and expectations for the future. Values also come from our efforts to earn the love we crave. We all want to be loved and accepted, particularly as children, so often we'll adopt the values and beliefs we feel we need to in order to earn approval.
Consciously Choosing Your Values
IT'S HARD TO LIVE YOUR VALUES IF YOU DON'T KNOW WHAT THEY ARE
If you were asked to name your top values, would you be able to answer right away?
If the answer is no, you’re not alone. Many people react to life without ever considering what is truly meaningful and impactful to them. This is one of the reasons why so many people become distracted by material things and lose track of what truly matters. We skip determining what is truly important to us and end up pursuing someone else's idea of success. Being able to define your own personal set of rules is essential to building life on your own terms.
We've put together a guide to help you evaluate and re-design your value hierarchy so you can create and shape life on your own terms.
Step by Step Guide
Step 1. Find out what your current values are. If you have trouble brainstorming, think of when you are the most happy, excited, or proud. These are highlights that can lead you to your values. You can also think of moments you regret. If you still need help brainstorming, there are plenty of lists online to help you get started.
Step 2. Rank your values in order of importance. Start narrowing down the list by process of elimination. Find your top 10, then narrow it down to your top 5, then top 3 and ultimately your top value. The goal of this exercise is not to find out all that you value. Chances are you'll have a lot of the items on the list but your goal is to find what you value most.
Step 3. Re-assess your current value system. After you completed step one and two, examine the order of importance and ask yourself the following questions:
What values do I need to reach my goals and have the biggest impact in my life?
What values do I need to add?
What values do I need to eliminate, replace or re-organize?
What benefit do I get by having this value in this position?
Step 4. Determine your new order and select your top three. Knowing your top values gives you a guiding principal when you have to prioritize decisions or make trade-offs.
What you value determines what you focus on. Using your values to guide your decisions goes back to understanding what drives you.
Be willing to be surprised. The beauty of knowing your values and how they can influence your outcomes is that you can always add more, eliminate and reshuffle.
Evaluate constantly. Do your values mirror your actions? Make sure you use your values to guide your decisions. Write down your top values in your Building Power Together™ journal as a daily reminder to live every day by what you value the most.
Finding and living your values is an ever evolving exercise. Life-changing events can shift our values and that's okay. Give yourself grace. Find ways to live your values in a way that helps you find fulfillment, improve your energy and ignite your passions.