I’m reflecting on what is really important to me.
As part of my internship, I sit in on career counselling appointments. A question often posted to the clients by my supervisor is, “What are you values?”
Such a simple question inspires so much reflection and contemplation in the clients, and the moment that this question is asked is often when the appointment opens up, and a solution or next step begins to take form.
I’m giving myself the same treatment here on the blog, with a long list of questions that I’ve been reflecting on in my journal.
- What are my values?
- How would I name them, define them, and rank their importance?
- How do I communicate my values?
- What do I put my values into practice every day?
- When do I find myself aligned with my values, and when am I out of alignment?
- What happens in my life when I attend to my values? What happens when I do not?
My goal is to come up with five ranked values and short descriptions of each. Naturally, I have more than five main values in my life, but 5 is a good place to start.
From this list of five values, I’ll work through the ways that my values emerge in my life, i.e. how I communicate those values and how they come into play in my everyday life.
Finally, I want to reflect on what happens when I’m living and working in accord with my values, and what happens when I don’t. I’m pre-emptively linking a lack of alignment between my life and my values to unhappiness and anxiety (and some exceptionally poor decision making!) but this may not be the case.
In some moments, a lack of alignment between my life and my values could have inspired what seemed to be a radical change or an abrupt choice. In fact, the decisions I made were a snap back to my values, not a snap judgement. That’s a gentler way to examine some of the choices that I’ve made in the past, and I’ll be interested to see if this idea holds water when I take a closer look.
I want to be careful to think about my values now, before I’m finished with my program and turned free into the ‘real world.’ Life is already moving very quickly, and I want to be on solid emotional and philosophical ground as I move forward.