Why core values are important
What are the things that serve as your moral compass to guide you in your daily life? What are your best qualities that you lean into to solve problems? What are your core values?
What you value, the things you hold as basic beliefs to lead you along the path of life, are typically the source of our best traits. These are the fundamental principles we follow in making every decision and doing every action in our lives.
Knowing your core values helps you determine your best qualities and begin to know who you are.
Most people inherently know what their core values are. But sometimes, events happen to cause us to lose sight of them. We become like robots, simply responding without thought, emotion, or care to what happens.
Determining your core values
To determine your core values or discover what your core values are so you know your best qualities, you need to consider what is important to you. For example maybe you’ve fallen into a habit of eating fast food, spending hours binge watching reality TV and ditched the daily walk. You are miserable. You used to love exercising and eating healthy. You’ve come to realize these unhealthy habits are not a part of your personal core values. Instead, the qualities you value are health and wellness.
Follow these steps when searching for your core values:
Self-reflection. Read lists of values to spark ideas. Choose ones that stand out to you. Don’t overthink it. Go with your first instincts.
Remember times in your life that were especially meaningful or experiences that were a highlight. When you were angry or frustrated? What feelings do they bring up? Write these values down along with any others you feel are your best qualities.
Ask yourself questions.
- What’s important to you in life?
- What type of news story or behaviors make you angry? Inspires you?
- What would you do if you could have any career without worrying about money or other limitations?
- What are you most proud of in your life?
- What gets you excited or motivated to make changes in the world or with yourself?
Look for patterns of related words. The ones that come up most frequently are your core values. For example, if sympathy, kindness to others, and empathy for other people’s feelings are all on your list, your core value is compassion.
Narrow your list down to 5 to 10 values that best describe your values. These are the core qualities that make up who you are and how you live your life. Ideally, you use them all in every area of your life.
Stumped on what core values you have? Here is a list of the more common core values.
• Belief in Faith/Faithful
• Being a good steward of resources
• High Achievement
When you fall out of alignment with your values, you will be uneasy or feel like you don’t know who you are but you won’t know why. You may feel like you lack control or that you are lost.
Your core values are a part of who you are. Knowing them and actively living them every day helps you see and use your best qualities. That is who you are.