Recently, I shared a post on identifying your top 5 core values. It even included a handy-dandy core value calculator to help you drill down into the bedrock of what drives you. If you missed it, here’s a link to the original post.
If you’ve taken the time to formulate your top 5 core values, high-five! You’re already one giant leap ahead of the pack in terms of clarity. Giving you an exercise like that is one thing, but I want to check in with you.
Are you still feeling:
- Frazzled or overwhelmed?
- Scattered or confused?
- Not so confident, especially with decision-making?
- Disconnected from your sense of purpose?
- Like your shit is so not together?
If you said yes to any of the questions above, then I’m guessing one of two things happened:
- Your intentions were noble, but you blew off the core values exercise. If you did, I want to triple-dog-dare you to flip over to my other blog post and identify your top 5 post-haste. Then, circle back back here.
- You found some time and popped open my core value calculator. You made a bunch of mini-decisions until you came up with your…tah dah…top 5 core values. You patted yourself on the back for having this new sense of focus. You felt really energized and accomplished. Then, you completely forgot they existed until right now.
What the hell am I supposed to do with my core values anyhow?
Short answer: Use them - regularly and liberally.
Now, you might be wondering how to be livin’ more aligned with your core values. (Pssst, if you ever wondered what all the spiritual gurus mean when they ethereally talk about alignment, this is it.)
Here are 11 ways to start putting your core values into practice:
- Set a timer for 10-15 minutes. Scribble all the ways you've been exercising your core values already. Note: If you haven’t been exercising them, don’t punish yourself. Ask yourself: Which core value needs a little more action right now?
- Hang your core values by your bathroom mirror. While you brush your teeth or take a shower, ask yourself: What actions will I take today to support each of these core values?
- Hang them in your workspace. If you’re a crafty mothertrucker, cross-stitch ‘em, decoupage ‘em or make ‘em beautiful in your favorite way. When you’re feeling spent or unfocused, ask yourself: Is there any action I can take on one of these right now that will energize me?
- Post them in the visor of your car, so you can reflect on them if you’re stuck in traffic or recharging your sanity in your car during the work day. (I’m serious. You have no idea how many sessions I’ve had with clients hiding in their cars over the years.) Ask yourself: What’s the most important action I can take when I get to where I’m going?
- Jot them down in Evernote or Notes in your smartphone. Then, you'll have them across all of your devices all of the time. Hell, set them as your screensaver, too. Ask yourself: What would change if I popped open this list instead of Facebook, Pinterest or Instagram?
- Tack them to your fridge. You can consider them when you’re fixing some breakfast or dinner. Ever emo-eat? It’s usually a symptom we’re not really living the life we want to be. We’re not in alignment. Before you open your pie-hole or fridge door, ask yourself: Will this bite (or binge) really help me be in alignment? Which core value is being neglected right now?
- Wrestling with a tough decision? Pull out your core values and set a timer for 5 minutes. Quickly run through each core value asking: How will doing ____ help me honor my core value of ____?
- Having trouble saying no to someone without feeling guilty? Ask yourself: What about this request is not jiving with my core values? How can I clearly, assertively and gracefully communicate my answer is no?
- Pull out a journal before bed or just put your feet up for a few minutes. Ask yourself: How did I exercise or nourish each core value today? What can I do differently tomorrow?
- Weekly: Pull them out when you’re updating your schedule and/or priorities for the upcoming week. Ask yourself: What the most important thing I can focus on this week to honor each core value? Hint, hint: If you don’t have a regularly scheduled 15-30 minute block devoted to getting your head screwed on each week, I highly recommend it.
- Monthly: At a minimum, set time aside to check in with your core values each month. Seriously, schedule it right now before you forget. Ask yourself: Which core values have I exercised over the past month? What has that changed in my life for having done that? How do the projects I have scheduled for the next month intersect with my core values? Does anything need to change?
Remember, these are just ideas. You don’t have to incorporate all of them. Pick the one or two that seem super-easy for you to achieve or made you vibrate with that sense of knowing excitement. This is how you begin to get your shit together.
Because all those diet, exercise and other lifestyle goals you’ve been dreaming about are totally possible when you leverage what drives you. If you’re struggling to find time, focus and know-how for an exercise like this one, you might really benefit from Frazzled to Fabulous coaching with me. If so, stop making it so hard on yourself - let’s connect.