Sounds simple, but working out my core values wasn’t as easy as I thought.
Forgive the brash title of this story, but the thing is, it’s our values that explain exactly who we are. Trust me.
During a recent interview with US psychology and behavioural expert Dr John Demartini, he asked me for my top four core values. Basic question, right?
I instantly responded with integrity, kindness, generosity and ambition. But he said to slow right down, and that I would learn far more about my core values by doing the following super simple exercises instead of just assuming I already know what they are.
Knowing and recognising your values helps you make many of the biggest choices and decisions in life, such as which job to take, how to spend your spare time and who to spend it with. They’re particularly critical when choosing a life partner.
Dr Demartini defines values as the seven key areas in your life; “There are seven key areas within your life to master in order to be self sufficient and empowered, and in order to realise you don’t need anyone else in your life. These areas are spirituality, career, business, finance, social, physical, and family,” he explains.
Demartini says these are super powerful. “Almost all domestic violence cases I see occur when the woman has 5 of these missing. They are truly powerful to live a whole and balanced life.”
Dr Demartini was married to the late Athena Starwoman, a super inspiring Australian woman. He has had decades of experience in his job talking to people, researching how we all think and working out how we live our lives to the full.
How to work out your values:
How do you spend your time? He says if you look at how you spend your time, that is a big clue to who you truly are. “Where you spend your time is critical as it shows you what you love. You will run out of time for things you don’t enjoy. So if you spend time working out, your body and health are important to you, if you clean your car for hours, that is important to you, family – that’s critical for you, facials, you want to focus on how you look, at the bar, you are social, religion, spirituality is one of your high values, and so on.”
Where do you spend your money? Your credit card statement speaks volumes about who you are too, as well as about what you love doing. We spend money on the things we love. If you spend money eating out, that’s important to you, or on travel, that’s a priority. Knowing your personal spending habits will empower you to make the right choices in life, in your future spending as well as in a man. If you love fine dining and your first date is at the local fish and chip shop, you will know immediately you are probably not suited if you have established that’s a critical part of your life.
Where are you most disciplined? Again, the areas of your life where you are naturally disciplined such as with your work, weekly routine, fitness, finances, religion, food, or study shows you what is truly important to you. We can’t discipline ourselves if we are not into what we are doing. By knowing who you are, you will attract and select the right person.
Where are you the most organised or ordered? This one surprised me, but again Demartini said organisation and structure around activities or things in our lives shows what we value. Are you super organised in your kitchen, at your children’s school or with their routine, in your kitchen, in your wardrobe, with your beauty products or even your stamp collection? They all tell you something about yourself and what means the most to you.
What do you think about; what is your self talk? “If you listen to yourself for a few days non-judgementally, you will learn a lot about how you talk to yourself and what messages you are carrying around every day,” Dr Demartini reveals. “These need to be positive and focussed on the future to go forwards, and visualisation really helps.”
What and who inspires you? Again, your role models and idols say a lot about you and your values, and therefore who will be right for you. Who do you find yourself googling? What articles do you read in magazines, newspapers and online? Who do you idolise? In essence, who are you now and where is your life going in the future?
Remember whatever your values are is ok, there is no right or wrong here, as long as you know what they are for you, and have people in your life who are closest to you who share some of them, or at the very least, respect yours.