At times you can become acutely aware of what really matters. This is usually when the safety and wellbeing of what and whom you love dearly is threatened.
The real question is why
If you have ever embarked on a new project, relationship or career, remember how bright the image of the future seemed at the time. Perhaps after a while, the image starts to fray at the edges as the reality of the hard work required to uphold that image starts to take its toll. For example, if you still find yourself struggling a year after a major career change, you may wonder whether it is worth the pain.
If you know why, you can never fail
You may continue to struggle against your better judgement to turn this career into a shining success only because quitting feels like failing. It will, as long as you focus your attention on what you do. It is easy to judge ourselves and others based on what we do or say.
When was the last time you actually considered why you do the things you do? Beyond fulfilling the obvious primary needs like an income to provide for food and shelter.
Taking on a challenge requires courage and faith. You have the biggest chance to succeed ina difficult new undertaking when you are consciously aware of why this is important to you. When moving forward demands constant dedication and effort, knowing why will keep you going even when you have to make sacrifices. If you barely made it through high school because you just didn’t see the point, you may still be capable of devoting every free moment to studying for a relevant degree later on. All it needs is the promise and the faith that the path you choose leads you closer to a life in sync with your values. The outcome, the degree in this case, is simply one stepping stone on the way.
Is what you do a true expression of who you are as a person? Do you act on your values and do you always dare to stand for who you really are? Or do you compromise unwittingly for the sake of fitting in?
Values are lived each day
Values are the driving force behind the choices you make. They motivate us when we honor them. When at some point along the way you can just no longer muster the energy to go on, it is time to question whether you are on the right track. Why is this undertaking so important? Which values are you honoring? In our society a well-led life is often reduced to a culmination of achievements but in reality our true happiness lies in the process that led to them.
Reconnect with your values by asking yourself “why is this important to me?” Keep posing the question until the answer
…has personal meaning
…cannot be evaluated or measured – either by yourself or others
…is not a quantifiable objective
…acts as a personal guide for value-oriented behavior
If you discover that you value being a loving parent, you may consider what a loving approach looks like when you are in conflict.
If you value your integrity as a respected professional in your field consider how that shapes your behavior and approach to others.
Struggling for survival is exhausting
Your values determine the choices you make and the behavior you exhibit. When you find you are working too hard to keep your head above water, you could be in survival mode. Perhaps you are in an environment where you are required to uphold values that conflict with your own. You may continue because the repercussions of quitting create too many demons in your mind. If that is the case, that is valuable knowledge and then, you can take conscious action that leads back to honoring your own values.
Do you know why you do what you do?
Reconnecting with your values is as much a process as living by them. Need help to get you on your way? Don’t hesitate to give me a call and let me know how I can help you!
Stop surviving and start living!