Creating a List Of Personal Values - Deepstash

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How to Discover Your Values and Use Them to Make Better Decisions

Creating a List Of Personal Values

The core values that are most valuable to each of us come from our own personal experience, not from being taught.

As you put them into practice you’ll get better at internalizing these values and they’ll express themselves subconsciously with smaller decisions, as well.

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A Definition of values
A Definition of values

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

- The Self-Confidence Workbook.  

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.  

Choose Your Top Values

Select your top six to eight values. Some of these values may change as you face new situations.

Examples of values: financial security, compassion, health/fitness, nature, accomplishment, creativity, dependability, loyalty, beauty, bravery, gratitude, love, connection/relationships, learning, leadership, survival, self-preservation, security, adventure, family, work, success, calm, freedom.

Think of the people you admire

Values can be personified in people that you love and admire. Identifying the specific values embodied by your heroes can inspire you to adopt those values for yourself. To uncover the values that you associate with your loved ones and role models:

  • Identify and write down six people who are important role models or valued connections for you.
  • Think of the values they embody. 
See a Career Counselor

Your values are a major determinant of career choice, work decisions, and career transitions, as each may lead you down a different career path. 

That’s why career counselors have a large toolbox of strategies and inventories, including values inventories to help match their clients to a compatible career area.

Our emotions are short-term biased

Our emotions are obsessed with the present moment because it’s difficult to look past our immediate fears and anxieties. And this prevents good decision-making.

The sweet spot in decision-making is to find the short-term failures that enable huge long-term successes to happen in the first place.

“Risky” behavior you should consider
  • Propose “moonshot” ideas, knowing that 90% of them will get shot down, but that if one of them gets accepted, it will be a huge boost to your career.
  • Be excessively bold in your dating life, stating exactly who and what you want.
  • Buy difficult books expecting that most of them won’t be useful to you, but also that, occasionally, one will completely change your life.
  • Say yes to every invitation knowing that most of the events/people will be boring, but that occasionally you’ll meet someone really interesting.
Optimizing life for fewer regrets

Most of us are afraid of messing thing up. But we rarely ask, “Would I regret that failure?” If the answer is “no,” then that is absolutely a risk you should pursue.

Sometimes, the right decision becomes crystal clear when put into these terms.