were to ask you what your personal core values are, would you be able to
core values are deeply held fundamental beliefs or qualities that dictate our
behaviour and help to clarify right and wrong in different situations.
Core values are at the centre of our self-respect, self-trust and
self-esteem. Given the important role
that core values play in our lives, it is surprising how few of us are clear on
what our values are or what their worth is in our lives…
clear on your core values allows self-trust
we may feel that we are faced with a decision which has us firmly between a
rock and a hard place, where both options are unattractive enough that we feel
uncertain and trapped, unable to choose between the bad and the worse option
available to us. If we have defined our core values, this is made easier,
as your core values double as your moral compass and can become your guiding
light through life. If a difficult
decision is made, in alignment with our core values, then whatever the outcome
is, we can at least know that we were true to ourselves and can know that we
have done our best in a less than perfect situation. The clarity gained
on decision making develops a sense of self-trust, as you know that your
decisions are true to your deep-seated beliefs.
core values are building blocks for your self-esteem
to some degree struggles with the concept of being “good enough” or doing “well
enough”. We often seek validation from outside ourselves, often in the form of
our achievements. The problem is as with everything in life, any given
outcome can go either way, which means that you can find yourself falling short
– through no fault of your own. If we
rather reset our gauge to the inside and use our core values as the benchmark
for “good enough” and live with the intention of embodying our core values, we
then have the ability to shield ourselves from the less than stellar outcomes.
By focussing on the process of doing something (how you went about doing
it), rather than the outcome, we have something we can control… We can rest
well and be proud knowing that no matter what happens, we did our best, we
followed our compass and acted with integrity.
values help build bridges
people that you meet will share similar core values with you – they may put
more emphasis on a core value that you don’t regard as the be all and end all
but the fact is we are all guided by a moral compass. This should be
thought of as a way to connect with others, rather than a weapon to defend
yourself with. Relationships are an
elemental need in life and are tied to longevity – studies have shown that the
more healthy relationships you have, the longer you will live. It
therefor makes sense to focus on our core values and that of others to find the
common ground as another tool to make those all-important human connections.
next time you find yourself in a conflict, take a breath and try to identify
which of your core values are fuelling your viewpoint and try to determine the
other person’s core value standpoint – you may find enough common ground to
build a bridge and a mutually agreeable solution.
core values can become your refuge
an endless stream of stress but through it, our core values can become a place
of refuge, peace and rest that we need. If we can focus on our core
values, like gratitude; humility; compassion and courage in moments of
struggle, it will help to ground and empower us.
living out your core values when things are going smoothly, while focusing on
what it would be like to exude these qualities in difficult times – it will
make it easier to call upon and focus your energy in times of stress and
hardship when the tough times do come about. If you find yourself
wondering off your chosen path, refocus your attention on your values. Each time that you realign yourself it will
become easier and easier until it is simply your natural response to any given