Well, your values are comprised of the things you think and believe are essential in the way you work and live your life. Your values are what should help you identify your priorities both at work and in life. It is also your values that you can use to determine whether the things that are going on in your life are part of your plans or intentions.
You can say that life is good when your decisions, behavior, and lifestyle actually match your values. This is when you can feel contentment and satisfaction. On the other hand, you will always have a feeling that something is wrong when such things do not align with your personal values. As a result, you will suffer from discontentment and unhappiness. With all that said, it is important that you make a conscious effort to identify your values and live your life according to them.
How do your values affect you?
Whether you are aware of them or not, values do exist. But what can make life much better and easier is your awareness of such values. Ideally, all the plans and decisions that you make should be in accordance to your values.
Imagine that you have to work 70 hours a week and you are someone who values your family, do you think you will suffer any internal conflict and stress? If you are someone who doesn’t enjoy being competitive and you are put in a situation where everyone is competitive, do you think you will find satisfaction in your workplace?
In such situations, the conflict between your values and the things you are actually doing can definitely affect the quality of your life. But when you get a clear understanding of your own values, it will be much easier for you to decide if you are in the right place or not. By being aware of your own values, you will not find it difficult to decide what job you should pursue, whether to accept or decline a promotion, or even whether you should keep or leave your job. Needless to say, these issues can have a positive and negative effect on how we perform at work. Thus, we should find a way to really understand what it is that we want in life so we could be in a better position to pursue our personal and career goals.
You will realize that your values are generally consistent and stable. But of course, there no boundaries or limits to them. This means that as you go on with your life, you may feel that your values are changing and are possibly getting bigger. This is because your standards of a good life also change as you gain experience and meet different kinds of people. With that said, it is vital that you always revisit your values to make sure that you will not lose sight of what matters in your life and what career moves you should and should not make.
Cecile Peterkin is a certified career and retirement coach, and a registered member of the Career Professionals of Canada and the International Coach Federation. She is also the Founder and Senior Career Strategist at Cosmic Coaching Center, provider of career and life management services for middle managers and mid-career professionals across Canada, United States and Europe.© 2014 Cecile Peterkin
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