Sunday, February 26, 2006

What's Important?


Whenever I'm feeling really frazzled or down, I know it's time look at what's important. I'm not talking about what *should* be important or what commonly accepted wisdom says is important. I mean very specifically what's important to me. When I'm feeling out of sorts, it generally means that my life has gotten out of alignment with my values.

We all have of values. Many clients have told me that getting clear on their values is life-changing. Once you are conscious of what's actually important to you, it is so much easier to make choices that support who you are. So what are your values? If you have trouble coming up with an answer, think about a time you were really happy and/or really felt like yourself. What was happening? What/who was present? What did you value about that experience?

One thing that often gets in the way of us getting an authentic list is we have lots of ideas on what we *should* value (and so do our partners, bosses, families, to name a few). Maybe we imagine our parents would be mortified if we value excitement over security. Perhaps we feel guilty if we value fun more than hard work. But if we do, we do. If we create a life based on what others value or what we think we should value, we find that we're living a life that has nothing to do with who we are. We end up working hard to create an environment in which we feel like a stranger.

So, if you do make a list of your values, take a good look at it afterwards and say, does this really belong to me? Think of a time when you made a choice in line with that value, were you happier with your life? Rhonda Britten has a great technique to double-check your values. She suggests you list people who are heroes to you, people you greatly admire. What do you believe their values might be? Check them against yours. What do you see?

So really, truly, in your deepest heart, what's important to you? What makes your heart soar and your soul sing? When do you feel just like yourself and completely alive?

Jamie's Values
(aka what's important to Jamie)
  • Freedom/Authenticity/Integrity (being who I am)
  • Self Expression (putting who I am out in the world)
  • Creating/Building (making things and making things happen)
  • Love (being loving and loved, celebrating love, adding to my loved ones' joy and life, community, loyalty, compassion)
  • Beauty (appreciating, creating, celebrating)
  • Pleasure (sensuality, passion, fun, dancing, tasting life, joy)
  • Home (creating and maintaining a place of serenity, beauty, ease, support and welcome)
  • Celebration (every special and glorious moment of life)

3 comments:

Sacred Suzie said...

Your values make me smile Jamie, they really are "you" to the core. Thank you for this. It's got me thinking a great deal. I think I'm going to write out my values on my blog too! Thanks once more for the inspiration.

megg said...

Hi there -

I've been out and haven't been able to read much in the last few days, but I love this post & will have a think and come back to it when I am able to sit down and do this properly again. Good post!!

Wenda said...

Thanks for the inspiration Jamie. I am enjoying your blog so very much.