What Are Values?
Values are beliefs regarding what is good or bad. They guide how you live your life both personally and professionally. Your values also determine what you place priority on and how you spend your time. Our core values play a key role in the way we behave and the kind of things we get involved in. They say a lot about who we are.
Examples of core values include: commitment, teamwork, loyalty, reliability, efficiency, etc.
We learn most of our core values right from childhood and grow with them into adulthood. There are however other core values which you learn as you move on in life. These could be values which you admire in others and consciously develop in yourself.
The importance of core values in our everyday lives cannot be overemphasized. We, in fact, make decisions based on our core values.
It is necessary to identify your core values and consciously make decisions in line with them. This makes life a lot easier. When you make decisions that don’t coincide with your values, you will most likely be unhappy. A lot of people are unhappy in life but they don’t know the reason behind their unhappiness. Making decisions that don’t align with your values might just be the reason.
An identification of your core values is not only important when it comes to big things, it also affects small things. You may find yourself getting involved in things that you don’t like and then you start to regret later. For example, buying something out of impulse even when you know that you don’t need it or you can’t afford it at the moment. A person who does this lacks the core value of contentment which is important not just in big things but also in small things. The truth is that the decisions we make in small things goes a long way in affecting the big things. We may not realise this at the moment but it is a proven fact.
It is important to discover your personal core values. The earlier you do this, the better for you.
How exactly do you discover your personal core values?
Begin with what you know about yourself. This could be your morals which play a key role in your behaviour. For example, do you believe in getting to work on time and facing your work totally all through your time at work? The answer to this question can tell if honesty and efficiency are part of your values.
Another way to identify your core values is to take a look at your own experience. This can tell a great deal about what you value. You could consider moments when you were happy and what made you so happy. You could also think about a time you were really proud of yourself and what ignited such feeling. The answers you get from these thoughts can tell a lot about what is important to you.
Once you identify your core values, you should write them down. You can have as many core values as possible but you will definitely need to prioritize your values. You need to arrange the values you have listed in order of priority.
It is not enough to just list these values, you need to look at them every day and work towards applying them in your daily decisions. It is in tough situations that your true values come to light. Ensure that you are true to your values. You chose them yourself so you are accountable for them.
Make up your mind to have values today as there is no great man or woman who does not have core values. Don’t just set values for yourself, work at sticking to them. Your values will always be tested. If you don’t stick to your values when they are being tested, then they are not values, they are hobbies.