It is not very often that we stop to think about what matters most to us in our lives. Have you ever stopped and thought 'what are my values?'. Many of us don't know what our values are, and we just align with the values of those around us, or what social media says is important, or what our parents say are important. It's easy to know the things you feel you should value, and you might find yourself saying something like 'I saw this on Instagram and I really should...' It's helpful to know what our values are, so that we try to live our lives in line with them. When we do this we feel happier because we are doing things that really matter to us, or spending time with the people that matter to us! Everyone has different values. It's what makes us unique!
Do you want to find out what your values are? If yes, see the exercise below!
Below is a list of values.
Have a look at these and pick 3 to 5 ones that stick out the most to you. There might be others not on the list that you would like to add too! Get a pen and paper and write down your chosen values. Then, under each one write down what that value means to you? While you are doing this, think about times in your life where you have felt really happy or excited. What were you doing around this time? What values were you living in line with? Think about about how these values play a role in your life right now. Do you do activities in line with these? What do you need in your life to feel happy and fulfilled? Is your behaviour right now in line with these values and if not, can you change this? For example, if you know nature is important to you, can you spend more time outdoors surrounded by nature. Or if friendships are really important to you, can you make more time to spend with those you care about? Other ways we can try and work out what really matters to us is to ask ourselves questions such as: What is the most important thing to me right now? What do I want my life to stand for? What makes a good life? What makes a friend? Imagine you could achieve anything – what would it be?