“You completely nailed it!” – The exact words of a recent client after we did this 90 minute personal values exercise to find out why she’s not happy in her work.
What I give you is your top SIX personal values. Three are your Idealistic Values; the ones that make you feel happy in your work and give you that warm fuzzy feeling of a job well done. And the other three are what’s called your Operational Values, and these are what will make you stick at something when the going gets tough.
When you have all of these six values present in your work you‘re onto a massive winner. You’ll feel happy and fulfilled AND you’ll stick at it.
It‘s the closest you’re gonna get to inner peace and a lottery win.
You‘ve probably done some sort of “values exercise” in the past. Oh yes, I value SECURITY and INTEGRITY and RESPECT – or COMMUNICATION and CONNECTION and LOVE. But what do they even mean?
I mean, TANGIBLY, what do those words mean? What can you do with them in relation to your lifestyle and business? Let’s be honest: bugger all.
You don‘t need a list of words telling you that you value honesty and respect or whatever because, frankly, they’re pointless without a detailed understanding of what those words deep-down mean to YOU.
The definition of FREEDOM, for example, differs wildly from person to person. Let me give you an example:
Creativity has an almost infinite meaning. If we identify CREATIVITY as one of your values, we need to understand what it means to you personally, otherwise you could think you need to be an actor or a painter when really you long to be a florist!
I identified recently that a client values CREATIVITY. Nice. Wonderful. What the hell does it mean? On its own? Nothing. But what we further identified was that she enjoys expressing her creativity through graphic design. Now THAT is something she can use!
Let‘s do another: One of the personal values of another client I identified was WELLBEING. Well, that’s a bit vague, isn‘t it? What’s she supposed to do with that? On its own, she can do nothing with it. What I identified for her was that she feels happy when those around her are taking care of their health. (That’s better, eh?)
One more? OK, one client got STRUCTURE as one of his personal values. On its own that word is pretty pointless. What I identified for him is that although he enjoys an element of flexibility in his work, unless there’s an underlying structure to it, he will quit. What a fundamental piece of information that he had NO awareness of until we spoke!