When you are at a crossroad and thinking about a new career, starting with identifying your values is key.
They influence how we act and react. When we are aligned with them we feel a rightness whenever we make a decision or choose a behavior in a specific situation.
Working in an environment that matches our values will always feel right because we won’t feel we are forcing ourselves into anything that doesn’t feel harmonious.
The process of discovering your personal values involves not just discovering what your passions are about but also finding out what is really important to you.
Personal values offer a form of focus because it becomes clear to you what’s important to YOU and no-one else.
Another reason why it is so important to identify them is because it becomes clear to us when we are experiencing a ‘values conflict’. If you have ever felt really frustrated or angry about something, it is likely you were experiencing this conflict because what is really important to you was not matched.
One other example of a values conflict might be when we are living a life according to someone else’s values. That is why it is so crucial to identify what is important to you because once you know it, you will never waste another second on things that do not matter.
In order to get a clear sense of what is important to you in life and business, try this:
- Make a list of things that you consider important in life and business – A very simple way to do this is to take a piece of paper and split it into two columns, one labeled personal and the other business.
- Identify the ones that jump at you.
- Make a list of 5 to 15 that are the most important ones and then rank them to give them a priority.
- Ask yourself this question: “Am I consistently living through my values in life and business?
Depending on your answer, change what needs to and experience the change by observing how it feels.
Over time they will change based on what is happening at a given time in your life. Therefore it is useful to review them from time to time to see how things may have changed for us and why. However the core ones will always be present (i.e. integrity, freedom, etc…)