Today, I want to talk about values. They guide our lives and are like a compass to keep us on the clear and narrow.
We learn basic values as young children – from our parents and caregivers – and then hopefully, we continue to evolve and adapt them as we grow into adulthood. Along the way, though, things can sometimes get murky.
Part of growing up can involve critically questioning the values we’ve grown up with and sometimes, we end up disregarding some of the values we’ve grown up with without setting up a clear new system of values to guide us. This can cause confusion and a sense that you’re “drifting” through life without a guiding set of principles.
The beauty of living a purpose driven life is that as soon as you start paying attention to what you want to accomplish and start to live your life with purpose, your values become crystal clear. You know without a shadow of a doubt what’s most important to you.
You may choose family over a big raise or overtime. You may choose working hard now and saving up over instant gratification. You may choose going out and making friends or exercising (or both at once) over sleeping in on the weekend. You get the idea, right?
When you live with purpose… no matter how big or small those purposes may be… you live based on values. When you look at your life and think about it for a minute, those values will become very clear to you. You’ll learn what’s most important to you. That in turn will help throughout the rest of your life moving forward.
Once you are clear about your values and have them defined, it becomes much easier to make daily decisions and choices that are in harmony with those values and that move you closer to your goals. With your value compass in place, you only have to ask yourself if what you are doing is in alignment with those values. That question, and the comparison makes your life a lot easier.
You no longer have to agonize or second guess yourself. Instead, you make your decision and are confident that it’s the right one, because it’s based on the values you have set as important to you and your life.
Having a moral compass and a clearly defined set of values gives you a lot of confidence. You know, without a shadow of a doubt, that you’re doing the right thing and are moving in the right direction. Between that and the passion and excitement a purpose driven life brings, you’ll feel like you’re on the right path. That takes a lot of stress, worry, and second guessing out of the equation, which is a very good thing.
You’ll find yourself calmly moving through life, making decisions, taking action, and moving along almost effortlessly. I’m sure you’ve noticed people around you who have a strong purpose and values. They stride through life instead of stumbling.
That’s the goal and that’s what I want you to get out of the upcoming 30 Day Living with Purpose challenge that starts on Monday, September 3 – Labor Day. It’s a great time to start the analysis, paying attention to your own moral compass of values and letting it guide you well on this sometimes complicated, and sometimes treacherous path of living life.