Purpose – Activity: Map Your Values
The journey to setting meaningful goals begins with knowing where you want to go and why. That is why the first step in goal setting is to start with key values. Knowing your personal values is important for developing character. Creating a value statement of what you do and why provides a guide like a compass to the direction you want to take.
To clarify your values, it is important to understand the many meanings of the word.
“Value is a word that carries multiple levels of meaning. The ultimate measure of our effectiveness is the value we create. The ultimate measure of our satisfaction is the value we feel. The ultimate measure of our character is the values we embody.” -Tony Schwartz in “The Way We’re Working Isn’t Working.”
- the regard that something is held to deserve; the importance, worth, or usefulness of something.
- a person’s principles or standards of behavior; one’s judgment of what is important in life.
Core values have intrinsic worth and are fairly universal among cultures and religion. The Six Pillars of Character from Character Counts: Trustworthiness, Respect, Responsibility, Fairness, Caring, & Citizenship, are examples of core values. More core values are at passiton.com, as well as some personal values.
An activity to clarify values is the online value card sort from thegoodproject.org.
Personal Qualities are positive character traits. A great resource for identifying personal qualities you possess is letitripple.org. There is a film on the Science of Character, a periodic table of character, and activities with printable cards. Another resource is a free online test at personalvalu.es.
Personal values are subjective and can vary. You might place a high value on art or humor, while others may value something else. A Value Words list (pdf) can help pinpoint your top values.
Goal values – add value to your life with your goals.
It can be helpful to think about what would add value to your life in different areas when choosing goals. Another way to put this is: “What would make your life awesome?” The words that come to mind when you ask yourself this question are the qualities that will most improve your life if they are increased – your goal values. A more in-depth look at your energy levels in various areas can pinpoint which areas are priorities to focus on.
Learn how to choose goals that will add value with this short video explaining the Map Your Values exercise from my eBook, “Get Goaling.”
Choosing goals that are your top priority is one of the skills you need to learn to begin setting and achieving your goals.
This simple exercise from my eBook “Get Goaling,” makes it easy.
To get started, you need key values.
The value words I’m talking about are qualities that will most improve your life if increased.
For this exercise, print the Map Your Values pdf from the link above, and there’s also a link to a list of value words if you need ideas.
It’s pretty easy to pick a word to answer the question: “What will fill my life with value?” for each life area.
For example, in the physical area, the word “health” might come to mind.
If your health is good, you may think of words that add more value, like “strength” or “energy.”
Remember Maslow’s hierarchy of needs which shows that once basic needs are met, we move up to higher needs.
Look for a word that is realistic, and doesn’t limit you too much.
Once you have a word for each life area, mark the current level of each value, and you quickly see which areas to focus on.
The good news is many goals are already known to increase some values, so there’s no need to re-invent the wheel.
If you choose the word “health” for the physical area, clearly that value can be increased by following a healthy diet and increasing the amount of exercise you get. Make your goals SMART.
Some goals may be uniquely your own and require more planning.
Learn how to do this and more with the Daily PlanIt eBook, “Get Goaling.”
Looking at all these types of values is the first step on the path to a meaningful journey.
More ways to clarify values
- The Pave Your Life Roadmap at Idea Sandbox is a great tool for clear purpose.
- Core Values Assessment from “the Compound Effect” by Darren Hardy.
- More resources at Clues to Purpose, Discover U Part Five, and Develop Character.
This is one of the weekly activities for a Year of Personal Development.
See more tools at the Brand and Purpose Toolkit