Hey guys, welcome back to the Finding Clarity Series, if you haven’t already, make sure to read last week’s post about Agreements before this one, as it sets the foundations for the series and towards seeing things clearly in your life.
Today, I’m walking you through another key part of this series: your values. Finding your old values, seeking new ones, living by them every day.
I have done another post about living by your values but I will do an updated version here because since then, I’ve really worked on my own and read more books that have highlighted the importance and roles of values.
What are values?
Perhaps you don’t know what I mean by values. If you do, skip this section.
Values are “principles or standards of behaviour; one’s judgement of what is important in life.”
Now, from this most people would probably want to say something like family, marriage, money, or something like that but that’s not quite the right thing for this. We mean more ideas or elements of life that inform your decisions, actions, and desires. What do you seek? What is important? What helps you decide what to do? What helps you to stay true to yourself?
Muchelle B, as I say in my other post, asks you to think about what makes you feel good, happy, accomplished? Those things are likely to be related to your values.
Brain Dump/ Get a List:
Firstly, there are a lot of things that could be of value to you. Different people in the field have different lists. I’ve included here the list I used to get mine from the book Sacred Powers, I recommend you read it, but there are also other sources for you to check out if you’re interested, like James Clear’s list or the lists on my other values blog post.
These are pictures taken from the book because it’s a long list, but you get the idea!
James Clear’s list of core values:
Here, I’ve screenshot my PowerPoint where I explored my own values. These are the ones that call out to me the most so far…
Now, take some time to scan these lists and see which ones call out to you. Note down a list of ones that intrigue you or feel right for you. Feel free to add some ideas of your own, too. Get any and all ideas out.
Whittle it down
Now that you have your list in front of you and you have added any ideas of your own, it’s time to make that list smaller. How? Well, this is where I recommend books. It may be hard for you to truly appreciate a powerful value for you to have without doing further research. Sacred Powers really helped me here, for it guides you through important questions and journaling deeply.
Briefly, here are some things David Ji tells you to explore:
- Your most defining moments…
- Positive relationships and traits they bring…
- Most important decisions you’ve ever made…
- Worst decisions ever made…
- Time-wasting activities…
- Common themes/reoccurring things from the last 10 years…
- How do you want to define yourself?
He then asks you to look at his list and choose the ones you hold most dear. He asks for 10, then 7, then 3, then 1 (your most sacred).
My sacred value/power is Balance.
Question the old
As with the agreements/beliefs from the last post, ask yourself if you’ve held the wrong things as values so far. Values and agreements are different, and you may not have bad values, but you may have been focusing on the wrong things. Things that don’t actually make you feel as good as you thought. Things that have been leading you astray.
In next week’s post, we’ll go deep into our values’ sidekick: metrics for success and happiness. This is where we probably have the most work to do.
Here’s an idea of some wonky values I think I had before:
- Hard work
- Success = wealth
- Helping others
Living true to your values
Definitely check out my other post on this for more depth, but I think the most important way to live by your values is to remember them and then choose them each day, simple!
The problem is, a lot of us don’t know what’s important to us or we don’t have the dialogue for it. When we can literally name our top 3-5 values, and remember them with ease, it makes it easier to keep yourself in check. This means when you’re making decisions, you take your values into account.
What should I do today?
Should I marry my partner?
Should I publish this book?
Should I try this thing?
Where should I live?
Should I take this job or that one?
Should I take this opportunity?
These are all times when we need to consult our values. Values-based decisions, rather than reckless, unintentional, or fears-based decisions will bring you the most fulfilment.
When we choose with our values in mind, we can trust that those decisions are good, no matter what others may think or the outcome.
Last thoughts & considerations on values
- Who makes you feel good? What traits do they have? What do they embody? Who are your role models and what do they stand for?
- Give yourself permission to go against what you think you’re “supposed to” value.
- Your values have a lot to do with your personality, but not entirely; they’re deeper, perhaps more spiritual.
- You could list what you DON’T value and go backwards.
- Values help you to set boundaries for yourself and others to uphold.
- They can help you to set out your weekly routine and habits.
- You can revisit and change your values!
- Do further research to get it right (Sacred Powers, The Four Agreements, The Subtle Art of Not Giving A F*ck, Rising Strong etc.)
- It’s personal, it’s fun, it’s important (you’ll see why in further posts)
Check back next week where we take our values and add metrics to them (measurements for success and happiness). This part of my journey was the most important for me, so I’m excited to share.
Until next time, folks…
Download and check out my workbooks and journal prompts to help you dive deeper and analyse your beliefs and emotions.