Recalibrating Your Inner Compass

In our relentless pursuit of productivity and effectiveness, consumed by external demands, we often find ourselves feeling disoriented. This is a clear signal of something misaligned or not as it should be or in other words we lost our connection with our inner compass. Buried beneath the layers of expectations and responsibilities lies a powerful guiding force – our core values. These values define who we are, shape our decisions, and fuel our sense of purpose. Identifying and staying attuned to our core values is the foundation for meaningful and authentic living.

The Search: Reflecting on Our Beliefs

Before we identify and align our life with our core values, let's start with a crucial step: reflection. This can take shape in various practical ways. One effective method is to keep a journal, jotting down your thoughts and experiences that have influenced your beliefs over time. Another approach is recording audio messages to yourself, where you candidly explore your motivations, convictions, and what truly matters to you.

Questions you can ask yourself during reflection:

  • What brings me a sense of fulfillment and purpose in life?
  • When have I felt most proud of myself?
  • What kind of impact do I want to have on my community or the world?

Through this process, we naturally connect with our deeper "why," cultivating a more authentic understanding of ourselves.

Living with Intention: Identifying Your Core Values

After spending time reflecting, you can begin identifying your core values by observing recurring themes or patterns in your responses. Notice which values consistently emerge as guiding principles in various aspects of your life.  You can also ask for input from those who know you well, and see if they notice similar characteristics and desires in you. Use these insights to narrow your reflections into 2-3 core values that resonate deeply with who you are, who you want to be, and what is most important to you.

Embracing Alignment: Walking the Talk

After identifying your core values, the process of aligning your behaviors and actions with them involves practical steps. Begin by articulating specific behaviors that resonate with each value. For instance, if "integrity" is a core value, this might mean always being truthful, even when faced with difficult situations. Set tangible goals that reflect your values – if "health" is important, commit to regular exercise or balanced eating. Create a daily ritual of reflecting on your values and considering how you'll embody them throughout the day. Use visual cues, like sticky notes, to remind yourself of your chosen values and why they are important to you. Seek out role models who embody these values and seek their advice and wisdom.

Nurturing Growth: Cultivating Your Values in Leadership

Regularly revisit your core values, reinforcing their significance in your daily life. Check-in with yourself every two weeks or monthly to see how your daily activities and actions reflect your core values. Questions you can ask yourself when checking in are:

  • In what ways have I integrated my core values into my daily routines?
  • Are there any areas of my life where I feel disconnected from my core values?
  • When facing challenges, do I draw on my values for guidance and strength?

Make adjustments as needed. Seek out opportunities that allow you to express and embody your values, whether in personal relationships or professional endeavors. Surround yourself with individuals who share your values, as their support can fortify your resolve. Most importantly give yourself grace. Remember no one is perfect and perfection is not the goal. It's not about arriving at a fixed point; rather, it is the ongoing pursuit of a life rooted in values that is shaping who you are becoming. Take a moment recalibrate your inner compass and see how it changes the direction of your life at work, home and everywhere in between.