Core values – what does that mean?

This is one of my favourite exercises to do with clients, as it is such a game changer for them. They can gain a totally new perspective and an understanding of why negative behaviours have perpetuated or why they feel so dissatisfied. It can also highlight all the good things that they were not seeing.

When I do a values exercise with a client, we often start with the obvious. That is because it can be hard to appreciate what we mean when we say, “core values.”

So, to explain what we’re looking to for I will often say “what is important to you?” and the response is typically family, home, job, freedom, and I could go on. Although these things obviously are important – to get to our core values we must understand what these things represent.

If for example we take family, it may sound obvious that our family are important to us, but at the “core” of it, often family is an umbrella word that represents belonging, our pack, understanding and acceptance. These things are a lot nearer to our “core values” and what is important to us.

If we look at home – that can represent security and safety. Understanding, truly understanding what our core values are is so important, because these will be our motivators and drivers.

Sometimes at the end of this exercise with the client they really surprise themselves with what their true core values are because these motivators and drivers are in our subconscious mind and not necessarily something we think about day-to-day.

In a world where everything moves incredibly quickly, and we have access to information 24/7 it’s important to be able to step back, take a breath and evaluate why we do the things we do, and if the things we are doing are serving our higher good.

Once we know what our absolute core values are, decisions we have to make in our life big or small become so much easier. That is because we know and understand what drives our behaviours – negatively and positively.

Have you ever turned down a job, for example because things didn’t feel right?

Have you shied away from a friendship that you thought initially would blossom?

Have you chosen one activity over another without really knowing why?

If you answer yes to these questions, I bet if you go back and really think about it, it will be because something about the person, situation or circumstance didn’t align truly with your core values.

When we are in alignment with our core values in our friendships, homelife and work life, things feel easier. Feeling great about your life and making good choices for yourself just got easier!

Some people call it being in the flow…

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