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What are my Values?

Let us focus on "What are my Values?".

I would like to bring your attention to core values. Our values drive our life but many times we may not be aware of them. The other day I was reading about a Chinese businessman whose net worth is more than $22 billion. A few years before he started his business with 22 piglets and now he has more than 22 million piglets and is one of the richest people in the world. When I read it I asked myself, would I ever like to be rich doing business in selling pigs and their meat. I'm not judging what he's doing but I was asking myself can I do such a business to make money. The instant answer was "No". In the early 1990s, I was interested in having my own business. At that time there was a lucrative market for prawns. Prawn cultivation was big in the area where I was growing up and there was a lot of export opportunity. Then the same question came up in my mind. Can I sell prawns to make money? My instant thought was "No" and there was no second thought. I have no personal judgment to those in the meat farming industry. (Though we are all aware that meat industry is doing a great damage to the environment). One of my friends was doing business in poultry farming at the time and we continued to be good friends. We all know that we need money. Money is a transactional reality. There are many ways people are earning money. When evaluating our sources of income, it is important to ask the following; How would we like to earn that money? In what type of an environment would we like to work? What type of people with whom would we like to work? What type of work would we like to do? What is our motivating factor for and what is it that we value? Most of us know the answers on some level, but we have to clearly state them. Decision making becomes easy when we are very clear about our values. I invite you to focus on your values by completing the following exercise:

  • Quieten your mind - take a few minutes to practice deep breathing and centering your mind on the present moment before beginning this exercise.

  • Section out your life - On a piece of paper, section out each area of your life; career, relationships, spirituality, family, health, financial, etc.

  • Contemplate - Within each section of life, list out any values that come to mind, and prioritize them from most valued to least valued.

  • Allow space and then revisit - Once the list for each category of life is made, set it aside for some time and allow the list to be percolating at the back of your mind. After some days, you may be inspired to change the list a bit. Some items may drop off the list or some may be added or the list may change in priority.

  • Assess against current life situations - As your list come together fully, ruminate with each category of life and see where any change is necessary in daily life. Practice this with compassion and ease, understanding any shifts are part of the process.

  • Make a final list - We need to integrate different sections of our life into one. Our life is one whole and we need to integrate all our roles into one.

Gaining clarity in our values will significantly help us move in the right direction in life and open the doors to meet the right people.

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