Thursday, May 11, 2023

How to find your Core Values

Our core values are the guiding principles that shape our beliefs, decisions, and actions. They are the deeply held beliefs that drive our behavior, influence our attitudes, and define who we are. 

Identifying our core values is an essential step in building a fulfilling life, a successful and rewarding career, and healthy relationships. 

But how do we find our core values?

In this post, I'll share some strategies to help you identify your core values.


How to find your Core Values


Self-reflection is a powerful tool to identify your core values. Take some time to reflect on your life experiences, your achievements, your failures, your relationships, and your goals. 

At a recent session of the Hope Leadership Academy led by Dr. Amy Johnston, she shared the following questions to help participants identify their own core values: 
1. When you were a child, what virtue did your parents most want to instill in you?
2. If you saw a "For Sale" sign in your neighbor's yard, what virtue do you hope the new neighbors have?
3. What virtues do you want to see in your co-workers?
4. What values do you hope to instill in your students?
5. At your funeral, what virtue do you hope is used to describe you in your eulogy? 

Look at your role models

Our role models can provide valuable insights into our core values. Think of the people you admire and respect. What qualities do they possess that you admire? What values do they represent? Look for commonalities between your role models and what they stand for. It can help you identify values that resonate with you.

Identify what triggers you emotionally

Our emotions can be powerful indicators of our core values. Think of the situations or events that evoke a strong emotional response from you. What is it about those situations that trigger your emotions? It could be a sense of injustice, fairness, or compassion. Whatever it is, it can give you clues about your values.

Assess your priorities

Our priorities reflect our values. Take a look at how you spend your time, energy, and resources. What do you prioritize in your life? Is it your family, career, hobbies, or social life? How do you balance these priorities? By analyzing your priorities, you can identify your values and what matters most to you. 

Where to look first? Your bank account and your calendar. The things that we make a priority will show up clearly in those two places.

| Related Post: Staying Balanced in Life

Take a values and/or strengths assessment

There are many values and strengths assessments available online that can help you identify your core values. These assessments usually involve answering a series of questions that measure your preferences and priorities. The results can help you identify your top values and how they influence your behavior. One popular (FREE!) values assessment is the VIA Inventory of Strengths

Seek feedback from others

Sometimes, it can be helpful to seek feedback from others to identify your core values. Ask your friends, family, or colleagues to describe your strengths and weaknesses. What values do they see in you? How do they perceive your behavior? Their feedback can provide valuable insights into your values and how your values are perceived by others.

Final Thought

Should you live for your resume or your eulogy?

Identifying your core values is a process of self-discovery that requires self-reflection, introspection, and feedback from others. Your core values are unique to you, and they can change over time as you grow and evolve. By identifying your values, you can align your actions with your beliefs, make better decisions, and live a more fulfilling life. 

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