Should I quit my 9-5 and focus on my new business?
Should I go on that vacation, or should I keep working?
Should I fire this toxic high performer with a bad attitude?
Should I end this relationship?
Should I really eat that cheeseburger?
We have all been through times where we feel indecisive. We go back and forth, weighing the options on an endless loop of poor decision-making, feeling stuck with no answers. Even tiny decisions create pings of anxiety while important choices loom, resulting in sleepless nights, chest pains, and debilitating stress. Our stomach is in knots. Frozen, we are unable to move forward.
Your indecision may be a sign of lacking clear Core Values.
So, what the heck are Core Values, and why are they important?
Core Values are one of the most significant elements in our personal and professional lives, helping us understand our true purpose and motivation while driving our performance.
See, we all need to build a solid and centered foundation to create something worthwhile. Imagine for a second that we were constructing a skyscraper. Instead of drilling down deep into the earth to build a stable structure, we began construction at the street level without a plan or footprint. If we don’t know the appropriate materials to use or how each piece fits together, it would be a miracle to choose the correct elements to build anything sustainable.
And after all our hard work is complete, the tiniest storm would most likely destroy everything we had worked so hard to build.
Understanding what we value is essential to establish a solid foundation and create an aligned future. Clarifying your values makes decision-making simpler, allowing you to more easily assess where you spend time and what actions to take that align with your belief system. They should be your moral compass for all decisions, including hiring and firing staff in your business.
So, okay, where do values come from?
Our values are shaped initially by close connections such as our family, teachers, or friends, and they expand as our circle of influence grows. Our geographical location, economic situation, religious beliefs, external forces such as the TV or the Media, and significant historical or personal events also can play a role. Over time, our scope of influence changes until we eventually form our independent perceptions and values.
But is it REALLY true that values impact our decision-making?
I can tell you first-hand that yes, this is true. Years ago, my independent values had become lost within a sea of others’ desires, influences, and expectations. I often struggled to make both small and large decisions and felt frozen, unable to move forward. I did not have a compass to give me a clear direction until I decided to take action.
My family patterns became the first clues to where I came from and who I am. Later, experimentation with other methodologies created additional clarity. After taking time to reflect and identify my values, my confidence and decision-making completely shifted.
I now understand what I genuinely want and can create a future in alignment with who I am. Taking time each day to reflect on whether or not I am following my values, I can adjust my course moving forward. I make decisions quickly and easily with confidence.
Additionally, having clear Core Values in my business has been a game-changer. It allows everyone to have an excellent understanding of our standard of behavior and raises the bar for the team. Additionally, assessing whether team members align with our values makes the hiring and retention process straightforward. Everyone is on the same page, moving in the same direction.
Give me an example.
Sure! No problem! My Core Values are:
Love. Cultivate positive transformation through authentic connection.
Imagine. Let curiosity spark creativity, innovation, and growth.
Inspire. Be the change to make the world a better place.
Live. Embrace freedom, abundance, and limitless potential in the present moment.
So, let’s say I am in a relationship that does not feel authentic to me.
My value: Love. Cultivate positive transformation through authentic connection reminds me that I value authenticity. I can quickly and easily end the relationship without hesitation.
If asked to participate in something I felt does not improve the world, it conflicts with my value Inspire. Be the change to make the world a better place. Again, an easy no.
Okay, that’s great. How do I start identifying mine?
Creating your values takes time and patience, and it can also be fun! One of the first steps in the value-defining process I use with my clients is to brainstorm on words that deeply resonate with them, free writing whatever comes to mind without judgment. I invite you to reflect on this as well.
As a bonus, you can also ask yourself, think of one person you deeply respect. The person can be someone you know personally or even someone on TV. List the qualities that you admire.
I would love to know what values are important to you!
Email me your values at email@example.com, and I will personally respond to you so we can connect!