A few weeks’ back I discovered an incredible resource by Peter Walker. Okay, it was actually just a simple list, but as I read it through I realized that even though I loved all of the things on this list, I had never accepted that they were true for me. Which was brain-boggling for me. How had I gotten this far into life without realizing that these things could be true for me?
Well, I figured that there is no time like the present to make changes in my life, so I started thinking about how I could capture these ideas so that they could start to be real in my life, and I came up with the following graphic:
As I went through it, I realized how many of the hard, tricky bits that have happened in my past came down to me not understanding these concepts. For example, I wasn’t good at saying ‘no’ so I ended up saying ‘yes’ far too often and burning out. I didn’t know that I could reject unsolicited feedback from people – especially those in authority – so I took onto myself all sorts of unasked for and unhelpful ‘advice’ and ‘suggestions’ that made it feel more and more difficult to go through life. And it’s been years since I knew that I was allowed to or able to play or rest or ‘waste time’.
The risk at that point was that I might start to beat myself up or feel like this was just another indication that I was a failure.
But I very quickly started to realize that in spite of having lots of messages around me and sloshing through me over the years that had said I didn’t deserve any of these things, or they weren’t true for me, my values had continued to push me forward to understanding these truths. My value of honesty had forced me to realize that I had my own opinions and thoughts and beliefs on a number of issues that I didn’t necessarily share with the authority figures I had been holding up in my life. My value of connection had pushed me to build healthy and mutually supportive relationships, which I am so grateful for. And my value of transformation had pushed me to continue to grow, evolve and prosper to become the best ‘Heather’ I can be.
So my question is – how can you see your values at work in helping you to become the best version of yourself possible? How can you look at this list and see how far you’ve come? And how can you tap into your values to reorient yourself towards healthier practices today?
If you’re interested in getting a better handle on your values to help you become more fully the person you’re looking to be, I’d love to chat more with you!