Living a Valued Life: 5 Steps to Clarify Your Values
Your life is important. We all have moments of doubt and fear that can make us feel small, inferior and unworthy. These thoughts do not control us and they have no power over us. We can choose to live a valued and purposeful life that has meaning and invigorates our spirit. Here are some steps that you can take right now to live in accordance with your values, goals and dreams.
What does it mean to live a valued life?
Values are the beliefs and standards we choose to live by. Our values dictate how we choose to act and respond in the world. When we define our values, we are describing how our lives would be most meaningful to us.
How will you define your life direction? What do you want to stand for? It is important to clarify exactly what you are working towards. By choosing the direction of your life, you can act on what really matters to you.
Once you’ve got a few ideas of how you want to grow and move forward, you can start moving toward achieving these goals and values.
- Describe your ideal moment. Whether it’s getting the promotion, reaching a certain point in your health journey, getting a certain task done describe it. Go into the smallest details and describe it for at least 3 minutes. If you’re more comfortable writing about it, do that. The goal here is to get in touch with the things that make this moment important and what you feel about this moment.
- What parts about that important moment stand out? What parts do you include? Are there certain parts of this description that you keep coming back to? What parts feel the strongest in terms of the details? These things that are standing out to you are telling you why this goal matters so much to you, and these details will keep you moving forward even on the hard days when you need energy to keep it all moving properly.
- Why are these things important to you — why do they matter and what is your motivation? Take the focus points that you mentioned — the ones that feel the strongest — and understand why they are important. Write descriptions for each point that you pull out. It could be the way it makes you feel, what it will mean for your future, anything. You’ll understand the importance of this ideas and this will keep you moving towards it. It will help you get the focus to go after those important goals you have identified.
- Keep reminding yourself of these values and the moment you are working toward. Now that you’ve got a clear picture of what you are working towards, you need to remind yourself of that as much as possible. Understand why it means so much to you and what, exactly it means for you to be able to meet those goals. If you need to, make an image that reminds you of that happiness that is waiting for you, and put it on your fridge, on your wall, on your phone, whatever. Just keep remembering why it matters so much to you!
- Always work toward it. We all have weak moments where we want to give up and quit. Take a deep breath, re-energize yourself with that description and/or the photo that you keep around, and move into your bright future. You’ll be able to understand why it matters so much to you after a few minutes of work, and you’ll be able to get back on track and tackle that part of your life that is waiting for you.
There is no definition in a general sense of what value is, so each person’s ideal goals and descriptions are going to be unique. Rely on your own list and goals and use that to help propel you forward. It might seem too easy to work in terms of motivating you, but this forces you to get in touch with those important emotions, and you’ll feel the energy before too long.
Jones, J. (2017). Living a Valued Life: 5 Steps to Clarify Your Values. Psych Central. Retrieved on March 22, 2018, from https://psychcentral.com/blog/living-a-valued-life-5-steps-to-clarify-your-values/