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What Are Your Personal Values? How to Define & Live by Them

Define Your Personal Values

Find out what characteristics or ways of behaving makes you feel good. Answer the following questions:

  • What's important to you in life?
  • If you could have any career, without worrying about money or other practical constraints, what would you do?
  • When you’re reading news stories, what sort of story or behaviour tends to inspire you?
  • What type of story or behaviour makes you angry?
  • What do you want to change about the world or about yourself?
  • What are you most proud of?
  • When were you the happiest?

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IDEA EXTRACTED FROM:

What Are Your Personal Values? How to Define & Live by Them

What Are Your Personal Values? How to Define & Live by Them

https://business.tutsplus.com/tutorials/what-are-personal-values--cms-31561

business.tutsplus.com

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Key Ideas

Personal Values (And Why They Matter)

Personal values are the things that are important to us, the characteristics and behaviours that motivate us and guide our decisions. For example honesty or kindness.

Values matter because you’re likely to feel better if you’re living according to your values and to feel worse if you don’t. This applies both to day-to-day decisions and to larger life choices.

Prioritise Your Personal Values

Once you’ve come up with a list, it's important to prioritise your values.

It can help you get even closer to defining what’s important to you. Prioritising helps you to ensure that you’re spending them on the most important things that'll have the biggest payoff in your life.

Live Your Values and Use Them

  • Use Your Values for Goal Setting. For each of your values, make a list of things you could do to put those values into practice. For example, if you wrote “Learning,” you could go back to college and do that degree you’ve always dreamed of. 
  • Make Decisions According to Your Values. If you value health, do you always take care of your body, or do you sometimes end up eating burgers instead of bulgur?
  • Possible Barriers to Overcome. Discrepancy between your values and some else's. You could choose to focus on your own actions and on living according to your own values, without challenging those around you who live differently.

Adapt and Change Your Values When Needed

Your personal values aren't set in stone. While some of your core values will probably stay the same throughout your life, others may change as your life circumstances change or simply as you get older and start to have a different view of what’s important.

It’s worth checking in yearly to see if your values have changed.

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Why Personal Core Values Are Important
Why Personal Core Values Are Important

Values are a part of us. They highlight what we stand for. Values guide our behavior, providing us with a personal code of conduct.

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Personal Values and Behavior

Knowing your personal values changes your behavior.

For instance: When you value health, you don’t have to wrestle with managing impulse control as much. If you know a particular food or activity isn’t good for your body, you don’t want it.

Create meaningful core values
  1. Start with a beginner’s mind, someone with no preconceived notions of what is.
  2. Create your list of personal values. 
  3. Chunk your personal values into related groups. 
  4. Highlight the central theme of each value group. 
  5. Determine your top Personal Core Values. Whittle your list down to 5 - 10 core values and rank them in order of importance.
  6. Give your personal values richer context. Highlight values into memorable phrases or sentences.
  7. Test the ecology of each value. Review your list a day later: Are they personal to you? Do you see any values that feel inconsistent?

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Why you need to define your values
Your values are the things that you believe are important in the way you live and work.

They (should) determine your priorities, and, deep down, they're probably the measures you use to tell ...

Defining Your Values
  1. Identify the times when you were happiest. 
  2. Identify the times when you were most proud. 
  3. Identify the times when you were most fulfilled and satisfied. 
  4. Determine your top values, based on your experiences of happiness, pride, and fulfillment. 
  5. Prioritize your top values.

  6. Reaffirm your values. 

A Definition of values
A Definition of values

 “(Values) are the principles that give our lives meaning and allow us to persevere through adversity” 

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Choosing Core Values
  1. Choose your top 6-8 values from a wide-ranging list of values.
  2. Think of three to six people you most admire or love. Consider why they are so important to you. 

  3. See a career counsellor as they are able to help match their clients to a compatible career area.

  4. Use an online values inventory. 
  5. Observe yourself and learn. If you experience a lot of dissatisfaction with your choices, you may not be living up to your values or you may need to re-evaluate what is most important to you.
  6. Focus on the bitter and the sweet in your life. These moments could direct you to what you care about most.
Difficult Choices

At times two cherished values will be in conflict.  

Knowing why you are choosing Value 1 instead of Value 2 in that instance can be helpful in resolving any inner conflict you may feel.