Our personal values are the things that are important to us and whether we’re conscious of them or not, they are the underlying factors behind our behaviour and the decisions we make. Our values are usually formed quite early in life, based on our upbringing, culture and religion, although they may change slightly over our lifetime as we learn more about ourselves and discover new things that matter to us.
Regardless of what our values are – and they will be different from one person to another – we are likely to be happiest and most fulfilled if we are living in alignment with them. Our best career choices will allow us to live our values every day and we tend to gravitate towards friends with similar values as we feel comfortable with them. So do you know what yours are?
Just a few examples of values might be:
- Spending time with family or friends
- Looking good
- Giving back
- Being wealthy
- Physical fitness and health
- Feeling secure
- Making people happy
- Studying to improve your career
- Becoming a better person
- Making a difference in the world
- Being independent
Here are some questions you could ask yourself to start uncovering what matters most to you:
- Given a choice, how do you spend your free time? You will always gravitate towards what you most enjoy and value.
- What energises you? Notice which activities leave you feeling drained and which boost your energy.
- What do you spend money on? You will always want to invest in things that are important to you.
- What’s easy for you? When something matters to you, you do it willingly and the time spent on it flies by.
- What do you think about and talk to others about? The topics that pop up most often in your own head, or in conversations with others, can give you important clues.
Understanding what your values are is an important step if you want to be able to make good decisions for yourself in every area of your life. Start the process now by identifying them, and then check if you need to make any adjustments in your life to align yourself with your values.
For more on this subject, read Inspired Destiny by Dr John F. Demartini
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