by Marguerite Ham
If we live in a way that conflicts with our deep internal values, we can’t help but be unhappy, though we might not consciously know why. In the midst of our busy life, we don’t often stop to think about our personal value system. The list below will help you discover the values that have deep meaning to you. You can use these values to review your own personal value system which you can keep handy to help you assess new situations or re-assess any situation that makes you uneasy. Often, when we are feeling strangely uncomfortable or upset in a situation, conversation or circumstance, it is because the situation is pushing against our value system.
What Are Your Values?
Could you sit down and list your top five deep personal values? If not, this is a great exercise. To build your value list, read through this list of values and check any that have great importance to you. Don’t worry about dictionary definitions or what other people think; you know what these words represent to you, and that’s what is important. The words you check should represent principles you hold dear or values you strive to live by; these are basically your internal guideposts. Go straight through and check everything; don’t overthink.
If you found multiple words that represent the same value to you, review and decide which is the best word for you and “uncheck” the others. Think about the remaining words and how relatively important they are to each other. Try to sort them out and find the MOST IMPORTANT ones to you. The goal is to whittle your list down to your top 5 core values.
You can use this list in several ways. You may want to use them during meditation or self-examination. Do you feel like your core values are what they should be? Do you act in accordance with them? Is anything in your life pushing against what you believe? You can use this to help you make important life decisions, personally and professionally. It is also great to share your Core Value List with your significant other, close friends or even your co-workers – it can lead to some amazing, meaningful conversations.