What’s your value system?

it stands to reason that we can all define value differently depending on not just our culture but our status in society and probably age and gender as well. Those are the big ones anyway. So that begs the question – What’s yours?

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What’s your value system?

A few years ago I wrote about value but from the perspective of teaching and culture. In that post I focused on how different cultures influence our value systems and I had that insight from having lived in a foreign country and comparing my students’ answers to my own. I had noticed that there was a gap in our thinking. However, it stands to reason that we can all define value differently depending on not just our culture but our status in society and probably age and gender as well. Those are the big ones anyway. So that begs the question – What’s yours?

Your personal value system

My intuition tells me that actually it’s more similar than we’d expect. The real difference is between people who actually think about it and write it down versus the majority who simply, don’t. I have been the later all my life and recently, have joined the former and thought I’d share it and see if we got a match! Nobody ever told me to think about it, I guess even if they had I wouldn’t know what to say or think.

What do I value? Can I honestly say that it’s concrete and won’t change ten years from now? Twenty? Thirty? All fair-game questions, so let’s get into it.

Discipline, endurance and focus

Those are my top 3 values at the moment. It was a journey to get here and discover them but now that I have tested them out for quite some time and compared them to other stuff I’m pretty settled on them. In my opinion they can be applied to anything we do, whether it is family, work or leisure activities. They can be applied to relationships in all three of those areas as well as my current predicament – parenting! Did I miss anything? Oh right, passion.

Passion is overrated

I read that somewhere and thought, what? Come on, I’ve been told my whole life to have passion and now I’m reading that it’s crap! What the hell? But with a little reflection it might make sense. I mean can you have passion for something without trying and working at it and improving? Maybe but it can’t be much or maybe we mislabel it as passion when really it’s one of the three above. The three I have settled on can be called different things – determination, drive, motivation, concentration, empathy, sympathy, and of course passion.

So what?

What’s the point of the value system? It’s a guide, a template if you will. For yourself. We all need a structure to stay on our path of what we want from our life. How are we going to get there without some parameters? It will be very difficult. Discipline I’ve realized is paramount. It allows for you to stay accountable for what you are set on accomplishing. Want to be fit? What about that promotion? How about that donut? Is something annoying you? Development? Relationships? Friends? Got a good day-routine?

You get the idea. All of those, discipline covers it, you need to keep steady and stay focused on the prize. But, it’s not enough. Because it takes time, like anything and everything. If any of us want to accomplish something meaningful we need to respect time and commit to it long-term. When this happened for me, it was an epiphany and eye-opener that confirmed what I had heard and read but never felt. The journey doesn’t have a goal, you just stay disciplined and commit and you see the results come without knowing when.

Focus

This one is well known, but potentially the most daunting. Everyone and everything is vying for our attention and in today’s smartphone-dominated world our attention is a commodity and we are the victims. All I know is, everything requires deep concentration, a focus that is uninterrupted and constant and that is becoming increasingly rare these days. I mean people can’t even sit and enjoy what is right in front of their faces because it’s glued to a screen so if we can’t get that under control than well, we are doomed, just like this planet.

So what’s your value system?

It’s not rocket science, just think about what you get value from, is it a habit? a behavior? a character trait? or maybe it’s time-related, relationship-related. Pick those values, write them down and stick to them. Don’t flinch.

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