Oftentimes we say we want to do such and such, make this change, implement a new habit or routine, yet we don’t follow through or stick with it. This is because we are grabbing ideas out of thin air, as they sound cool or as a result of a frustration.

The impulsive nature of this approach almost guarantees we won’t stick with the idea, regardless of how ingenious and awesome it is. To make changes and create what we want, we have to be driven by our values.

Usually we are not aware of our true values and what is really important to us. We go about our life by default, putting things in it by chance, haphazardly, and on whims. We end up filling up our days with things that are not that important, that create noise, that don’t move the needle, and that at the end of the day are actually detrimental to creating our best life.

We end up with jam-packed calendars and agendas and commitments that don’t give us much satisfaction or reward, or make an actual difference in our lives. We end up squandering our time, energy, bandwidth, and sometimes even financial resources. We run ourselves ragged and don’t make a dent in creating what we desire, if we even own what we desire.

The key to creating what we desire, living our best life, and having our best human experience has to do with owning our what, what we desire, and our why. Our why influences our values and our values drive our desires, our dreams, and our goals.

But when we are operating blind, we set up our world by default, creating a big gap between our current experience and our dreams. We don’t focus on the right things!

When we operate blind and unaware of our why and values, everything gets skewed. Our focus, how we operate, our dreams, and our goals are off. How are we to create our best life and have our best human experience if we are totally going about life the wrong way?

If we are chasing the wrong dreams and setting up the wrong goals – that is, if we even do that and don’t live completely by default – how are we to set up our days to really support us?

Identifying our values is extremely important, as they serve as a filter in our life, helping us to stay focused on what is truly important to us and to operate in alignment. Life is then more peaceful, joyous, and abundant. This is why I’m intentional about operating from my values, personally and professionally.

Here are mine: connection, development, diligence, integrity, excellence.

All the things that are important to me and the way I operate are captured with these five core values. In a nutshell:

  1. Connection to higher power, self, family, and other loved ones, community, and the world at large.
  2. Personal, professional, and business development and growth.
  3. Fully accountable, proactive, dependable, intentional, and responsible to others.
  4. Honorable, truthful, trustworthy, loyal, fair, and transparent.
  5. Highest level of wellness, performance, efficiency, aesthetics, value provision, and service.

These help me make decisions in all areas of my life, including things like relating, commitments, activities, and projects. Values are not mutually exclusive, static, or in a vacuum. I like to look at these as enhancing each, so I experience mine as leveraged values.

Now is your turn to identify your own five core values!

Once you have identified your core values, review your life from this lens. How does it measure up? What is out of whack? How are you operating out of alignment? This creates significant dissonance for us that can lead to mental health issues along with a dissatisfying life if not addressed.

So, let’s get you more aligned. Now is the time to design the life you want flowing from your why and your values. These should inform everything you allow to take up space and time in your life.

I love to teach life design through creating daily routines to fully honor and support us. For what is life but an accumulation of days? Our job is to live intentionally and make each day amazing!

To create our best life and our best human experience, it’s incredibly important to connect to our why and identify our core values, letting them guide how we live.

ASSIGNMENT: Use the right fuel to better drive your life!

  • Have your why handy.
  • Identify your five core values.
  • Review your life for any dissonance and misalignment, and make a list of everything that is out of whack.
  • Pick the one thing that is the most out of whack and address it immediately.

Playing with this concept is so enlightening, liberating, and empowering. Living an aligned life is key to creating life-work integration and living our best life and best human experience.

Happy aligning!

Originally published on Ellevate.

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