Do You Know What Your Values Are?

One of the best places to start building your business is to begin with understanding what your values are. Here is a quick assessment you can use to determine what your top ten values are.

Values are the cornerstone of our families, but also of our communities. Values determine what we believe about money, free time, work, friends, clothes, politics, family, spirituality and more. Values drive our actions and add meaning to our lives. As parents, it is our responsibility to teach our children about values and to be solid role models. As a mother of two, I feel strongly that I am responsible for raising the next generation of leaders, teachers, workers, parents and citizens. While our children learn values from us, they also learn about them from friends, teachers, mentors and the world around them. As parents, one of our essential roles is to give children the tools to identify their own values and to give them confidence in their ability to know right from wrong.

Living a values-based life is equivalent to living a heart-centered life. When we understand how our values inform our decisions and influence our choices, we can help our children to see the world in new ways. Understanding and discussing our values and respecting the values of others allows us to model a heart-centered approach to relationships and communication that will improve our family connections across time. Values provide a strong foundation for our children so they feel prepared and secure to make big decisions at life-changing moments.

Curious what your values are? Here is a simple assessment you can do quickly to determine what your core values are. Click on image below to enlarge.

Instructions

1. Put a circle around all of the words that you feel are important, right, or necessary. Circle up to 40 words on the list that for some reason are meaningful to you. Don’t think about it; just start circling! Give yourself about 3 to 4 minutes to do this.

2. Now go back and put a star or mark next to half of the words on the list. This is the list that is more meaningful to you, it doesn’t feel like a “should” or what society recommends, these are the words that are at the core of your own sense of what is important and what defines right or wrong for you.

3. Finally, narrow down that list by putting a line, highlighting or otherwise marking ten of the words. These are the words that drive you, internally motivate your decision-making process and define you as a person.

4. Take note of the original 40 words. How was it to cut the list down? Are there more than 10 words that need to go on your list? That is okay. The key here is to drill down to the critical core of who you are from a values-based perspective. Note that on your original lists from steps two and three, you may find words that were important to your family, your community or your church that feel like “shoulds.” Your goal is to create a very clear mental image of what matters to you and what you hope to pass on to your children.

I want to give kudos to my friend Kathy Garland, she was one of the women who helped me understand how to use values in my business and why they matter, along with being clear about our vision and mission.

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