Two Moments that Help Find your Values
At the end of your life, what do you want people to say about you?
In a previous edition of The Game Plan I wrote about making your 8 and 80 year old version of you proud as a way to make better decisions and live in a way that makes you proud of yourself.
This week I am going to cover our values. The cornerstone of our lives.
In a podcast with psychologist Jim Loehr , we discussed how an exercise called your tombstone exercise is a great way to create the character in which you’d like to be remembered by.
However there’s another way in which I think we can get to the same answer (or similar answers) of what our values are.
Our values are the cornerstone of our lives.
When we’re living authentically, we are living by our values.
The trouble is, a lot of people think of their values as these big shiny words stuck on a wall.
Whereas truly living your values, is in the action and moments when they can be seen.
So today I’m going to offer two ways in which you can discover your values.
🤔 Why find your values?
Living to your values has a host of benefits from making clearer decisions to higher self esteem. But I’d like to focus on a couple that stand out for me.
Living our values can motivate us towards our most authentic self and leave us building an identity that we’re proud of.
To discover our values, we’re going go into our past.
To experiences that we’ve had that aren’t necessarily comfortable, but ones that we came out stronger from.
Onto the first exercise
1. Write down a tough moment in your life. 😰
Once you have that memory, ask:
What got you through it?
What energy did you draw upon?
Who was there for you?
What actions did you take and what would best describe those actions?
This moment of your life may not have been easy, but you made it out the other end.
It’s in our darkest moments when we discover who we truly are and what we are made of.
This exercise may not be easy, it could trigger negative emotions but I encourage you to take a different perspective. To see this moment as a time of growth.
By learning your values in dark times, you’ll be able to help yourself face challenges in the future with more clarity and strength, knowing what you’ve done before, how you got through, and that you can again.
In the resilience mindset chapter in the MindStrong Mindset Course we go into this in much more detail by adding behaviours you’d create alongside each value.
The second exercise is:
2. Write down a moment when your were proud of yourself.
Once you have that memory, ask:
What were you doing?
What got your to that point?
Perhaps it was achieving something. Perhaps it was being a part of something with a team, group or community.
Draw down on what made you feel proud of yourself.
When I did this exercise I went to a memory of a cricket match where I was battling with physical pain but by enduring it, I helped my team win.
I believe your values can change over time. We are forever evolving.
But the opposite is also true, they can be concrete. Especially if you’ve shown them for a while now.
So maybe this exercise was about finding new values for you, or cementing what you already know.
In the Mindstrong Course we go into the second part of finding your values which is the behaviours you show with them.
Because values aren’t just nice looking words, they’re actions that can be seen.
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