Personal values are the essence of who we are. They represent the core aspects of our self.
We all have little nuances that make us who we are. Discovering your personal values involves discovering what you’re passionate about and finding what’s really important to you. The more we understand ourselves, the more self-aware we become, and the easier it is to live a successful life.
In reality, most people coast through life without any consideration for what is truly important to them. If you’ve ever felt really frustrated or angry about something, it’s likely you were experiencing a ‘values conflict’. Sometimes – just understanding why we feel frustrated, can help us move forward.
A values conflict is often common among family members. For example, as a child, you may end up picking your parents values instead of your own. You may be pushed into becoming a lawyer by your father because he may have secretly wanted to be one. Law may have been important to your father, but it doesn’t mean it is to you. And you can never be happy when caught in the middle of a values conflict.
If you take the time to identify your values they will become your own personal framework for a successful life. Because, once you know what’s important to you, you’ll never waste another second on things that don’t matter.
As Mahatma Gandhi said, "Your beliefs become your thoughts. Your thoughts become your words. Your words become your actions. Your actions become your habits. Your habits become your values. Your values become your destiny."
So here’s an exercise to help you discover your own values. Just grab a notebook. Give yourself quiet space, no distractions, and at least an hour to reflect on what your core values are.