Uncover Your Core Values
What drives you to act, behave, and speak in the ways you do? Underneath every one of your thoughts or beliefs is a value at the core of your essence. When your values are honored, you feel good about life and your place in it. When you are not making life choices that reflect your values, however, you can start to feel pretty bad.
One of the lowest times of my life, for example, was when I was in the middle of career burnout. I was in a job that I hadn’t enjoyed for many years but was convinced I couldn’t make any changes. So, I slogged on, trying to find the ever-dwindling positives. I had zero energy, (physical, mental, AND emotional), and I wasn’t being the best version of myself at home or at work. I was angry and depressed all the time. I wasn’t an effective teacher with my students anymore, and my flute playing wasn’t doing great either. It was nearly impossible to feel happy or excited about any of the things that used to bring me joy.
“How did I end up here,” I wondered. “And how do I get out?!”
I later realized that this is what happens when our values are not taken into consideration in our life choices.
As a result of how I was feeling physically, I had to leave the job. This allowed me the time to reflect and accept what had just happened and to stop resisting the need to make changes.
Out of the “fog,” I could finally ask myself what I did like about my line of work. After many days of introspection (I love to journal!), I discovered that what I valued most was being able to help the students that WANT to be helped. For whatever reason, I was getting a lot of students that didn’t really want my instruction. They wanted scholarship money and an easy ‘A.’ I could see right away how my value of serving those who want what I have to offer was NOT being honored, and therefore, draining all of my energy for anything else I wanted to do in my life.
Knowing your values is such a great way to stay engaged in the creative process of your life. As Simon Sinek says, “Achievement happens when we pursue and attain what we want. Success comes when we are in clear pursuit of why we want it.” What kind of success could you achieve if YOU had a little more clarity in your life?
If you want to find out, first uncover your core values!