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How well do you Know and Live by your Core Values?


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Your core values matter, all the time.  There is much talk about core values. There are courses on identifying your core values. I have written and taught extensively about core values. I am a believer in them as the core of who we are as people.

A few things to know about your core values. People can always tell what your core values are by how you act. Your behavior is a compelling demonstration of them. If you say family is your most important core value but you work ridiculous hours and don’t spend time with them then family is NOT your most important value.

I don’t have an opinion or judgment about what your primary core value should or shouldn’t be but I do know this, if you are living out of alignment with that value you are tense, anxious and frustrated. That seems obvious to me.

What is not obvious are the glaring pitfalls of a life committed to living in alignment with your core values. That’s right there are pitfalls associated with a life committed to alignment.

  • First pitfall is that you run the risk of using them as a weapon of judgment or separation. Just because your primary core value is (name a value) doesn’t mean everyone’s should be. If you use your PCV (primary core value) as a weapon to judge or marginalize people because they don’t align with your PCV then you are not using it for good.
  • Secondly, being unclear about the difference between having different values and values that are in conflict with yours is very different. If a person has a PCV of integrity and you don’t then so be it. BUT if a person has a core value of integrity and another person is a liar and a cheat then the values are in conflict with each other and it would be very difficult to be in relationship with that person. Do not allow yourself to damage relationships because of difference in values that aren’t necessarily in conflict.
  • The third pitfall is believing that there is no flexibility in the application of your PCV. A person has a core value of authenticity. There are going to be times when being 100% authentic all the time may be unwise. Choosing not to tell your significant other they look horrible in that outfit may not be authentic but it certainly is smart.
  • Finally, the biggest pitfall is giving up on a life committed to your PCV because it’s hard. Be committed to your PCV. Be kind in its’ application in your life and in the long run you will  be at peace.

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