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Right Path...Wrong Path...OR...

How often do we take the time to reflect on the path(s) we have chosen in our lives? Given the fast-paced life most of us find ourselves in, I am guessing the answer would be “little” or “none”. I know that for me that was true. But as I have gotten older, reflection has become a larger part of my life and has caused me to ask myself some hard questions.

How often do we take the time to reflect on the path(s) we have chosen in our lives? Given the fast-paced life most of us find ourselves in, I am guessing the answer would be “little” or “none”. I know that for me that was true. But as I have gotten older, reflection has become a larger part of my life and has caused me to ask myself some hard questions.


How much reflection have you done in the last 12 months?


I look back on my life and can see several instances (or if I am totally honest … maybe more than several) where I have set a goal … worked hard to overcome all obstacles to that goal … achieved it and only then realized that what I thought I would feel … what I thought I would get … really did not have the impact on my life that I had thought it would.


I CAN REMEMBER WANTING

I can remember wanting to get this very expensive well trained dressage horse and working hard to get it. But when this beautiful gray gelding became mine … it was “nice”.

I look back on my law school internship and how hard I fought to become accepted as an associate with one of the most powerful firms in that Texas Panhandle town. Only to discover that I really did not like the standards that were acceptable to the firm’s owner.


GOALS NOT WRONG IN THEMSELVES

Now there was nothing wrong with any of the goals in themselves … nothing wrong with wanting nice/expensive things … nothing wrong with wanting to “play with the big boys”. In fact, many of the goals were the “things” I was taught I should strive for … i.e. the education, the family, the career, financial security … to name a few. But I think that what was “wrong” was not the goal itself but the importance that I placed on it … the value I gave it.


BUT ARE AS A STANDARD TO DEFINE ULTIMATE SUCCESS

For all of these things … these good objectives of my goals … were seen as the standard by which I defined my ultimate success. I ignored the reality that all of these things (and many more) are only held by a very thin thread … that thread can break in an instant … and all are lost/gone.

And when gone … does that mean that I am no longer successful. It does, if that is all that is how I defined success for myself.

But it doesn’t have to be that way … if we have the courage to “… start showing up and letting ourselves be seen.” (Brene Brown).

WHAT DOES THIS MEAN?

And what does that mean? I think it means that we have to become very clear on what our values truly are … our values … not the ones society tells us we should have … not the ones our family of origin has embraced … but OUR VALUES. I think it means that we have to be willing to live our lives according to those values … in this world … for all to see.


It is called “INTENTIONAL LIVING” … where every decision is viewed in light of how that decision fits with the core values we hold. It is living a life that is in alignment with our core values. And as a result of this decision-making process … what we want our life to look like … what we want our life to stand for … what our purpose is … becomes and is clear.


STARTING TO DETERMINE MY VALUES

So how did I start to determine what my values were/are? I found and used a process of “7 Steps” that helped me discover and create a distinct and meaningful core value system that serves me in every area of my life and work. I invite you to join me on this road of reflection.


Click the link below to download the process to discovering your core values.

7-steps-personal-core-values
.docx
Download DOCX • 29KB


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