Beliefs and Values

“ Who are you? (when you’re not trying to please people or be who you think you should be)
“ What do you stand for?  (what is important to you)
“ List all the values you believe run your life and are important to you
“ List the beliefs you hold about yourself

Difference between beliefs and values.   A value is something you cherish and hold dear.  Is important to you and determines your decisions.  A belief often creates the value:
I believe hard work is the only way to make money.
Value = hard work/effort/struggle
However beliefs are not always correct, yet they still determine our decisions and our subsequent actions.

“ What beliefs and values did you learn from your parents or influential adults (good and bad)?   Belief: Eg I’m clever/I’m not as bright as my brothers and sisters
Value:  academic achievement

“ Challenge those beliefs.  Are they really true and are they really important to you?

“ Where will they lead you if you continue to hold onto them?

“ Are there any beliefs and values you want to get rid of, any that are holding you back?  (eg man in secure job wanting adventure)

“ Any you have adopted without questioning them?

“ Question them now.  Do you truly believe or value that?  Is it helping or hindering you?

Values (should) determine your priorities.  They’re the measures you use to tell if your life is turning out as you would want it to.
When you feel frustration in any area of your life, notice if a value is unmet or is being broken.  The chances are that this is the cause of the problem.

When the things you do and the way you behave match your values, your life is generally good.  The opposite is also true, so it is very important to make a conscious effort to determine what those values are and to constantly re-assess them.  As your definition of success changes, so do your values.  Always revisit them if you start to feel unbalanced.

Exercise
1. Divide your life into segments:-
(i) career/self-development  for those retired or not in a job
(ii) money/finance
(iii) relationships (personal/family)
(iv) relationships (friends)
(v) relationships (work)
(vi) health and fitness
(vii) environment  where live
(viii) any other you can think of

2. Which values do you have in each?  (obviously some will overlap with others.  Just do couple initially)
3. Are they all being met in each segment?
4. Where they are not being met, how do you feel? (eg frustrated, angry, lethargic, giving up?)
5. What needs to happen in order to get that value met again?  (list all ideas as they come to mind and choose one activity to focus on)
If you’re having difficulty determining your values in any particular area, take that area and think of three outcomes you passionately want to achieve, have, become or do.  These can be large or small, the only rule is you must feel you really want them.

a. Write those 3 outcomes at the bottom of a page in 3 separate boxes
b. Choose any of the outcomes to start with, then imagine you have already achieved this particular goal.  Time travel to that time in future when you are enjoying this fully.
Ask yourself:  ‘Now that I have this fully and completely, what does it give, or allow me to experience?  What does this allow me to do or be?’

c. Write your answer directly above your outcome.
d. Repeat the process with this new outcome, imagining you have it fully and completely.  Ask yourself the same questions.
e. Keep writing your answers above until you can’t chunk any higher.
f. Then repeat process with the other 2 outcomes.
g. Once you have these 3 lists, you’ll notice your higher values.  You may also notice certain patterns.
h. Take some of the key words and values and -
- write letter as though from a close family member to be read out at your funeral
- letter from close friend – what impact did you have on them?
- letter from work colleague.  How did you positively affect those you worked with?

Now go back to the top four questions and adapt or amend your answers if necessary.
Go out and live them!
If you didn’t need to change them, you know yourself well!

By Sharon Juden, Life Coach and Hypnotherapist in Berkshire

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