Foul On The Play! Get Clear About What You Value
“Foul!” If you like sports or you’ve ever watched a movie that included a sporting event, you’ve heard this before. It means that a player did something wrong, illegal. They violated a rule.
But let’s bring it closer to home. Think about some times in your life when you wanted to blow a whistle and yell, “Foul!” In most cases, I’d guess your values were violated. You had a, “Hold up. Wait a minute. Do not pass go. Do not collect $200. Go straight to jail” reaction.
The incident probably violated your values for things like honesty, compassion, love, family, achievement, success, joy, fairness, community, cooperation, purpose, spirituality, etc.
Values exist at our core. They drive us. We use them to make decisions and guide us into safe territory. We use them to assess a situation and figure out whether it’s a good fit for us. We get uncomfortable when our values have been violated. “Foul”!
Think about it for a minute. Let’s say that you value honesty. What happens when someone breaks a promise? Or leaves out a crucial piece of information? Or hides something from you?
What do you feel? Angry and stuck? Afraid and indecisive? Do you feel let down & drained? That discomfort, the energy drain says, “Foul on the play!” We know that it’s time for a change.
When I start a new class, I put students into small groups and have them share something about themselves such as their top three values. Throughout our time together, I remind them to connect their work, play, and responsibilities to their purpose and what they value, powerful aspects of Truth.
I’ve also participated in values clarification exercises. They help us define our purpose, passion and mission. Branding experts say successful companies have value-driven missions.
Truth is, you are on a mission. You entered this place we call life to fulfill a purpose. Your values drive and energize you.
These three steps can help you use your values to build energy and accomplish the goals you’ve set.
Identify 5 core values – Think about what’s most important to you. What things make your heart sing? What ideas are you willing to take a stand for, defend, and protect? What’s your bottom line? You can start with a longer list and narrow it down. Give yourself 10 – 15 minutes to think about it. Remember the list can change over time.
Put your values into action – Take a look around your life. Notice the things do you do that reflect your values. Make a list of at least 3 ways that you’re putting each of the 5 values you identified into action. Are any of your values being overlooked in your everyday life? What will you do to make sure your life is aligned with what you value? Misalignment brings discomfort that can be draining, inhibiting. Think about how you’ll get back into your value zone.
Use your values – Consider some goals that you’ve set for yourself. Pick one and think about how your values can help you accomplish your goal. How can family, fairness or joy be a source of energy to help you accomplish a goal? Use your values to outline the steps you’ll take to complete your goal. For example, you value joy and you have an important meeting with a potential client. You could use joy to help you define how you will interact in your meeting.
Take some time to reconnect with what you value most. Name it and grab that boost of energy it gives you to live the life you want to live.
© Sandra Y. Lewis