What do You Really Value in Your Life? (Part One)

It’s amazing how many people talk about values but really aren’t totally clear on what they mean by that. When you value something,  you hold it in high esteem and will make the time and space to prioritise it no matter what.

And it’s quite interesting to ask someone what they think they value in their life. They may tell you all sorts of things but when you begin to look at their life under the magnifying glass, you get a completely different picture.

So why is this? It basically boils down to the fact that many people think they should be living their lives in a particular way. They may think they should be spending a lot of time with their kids; they may think they should put a lot of focus on their general health; they may think they should be going to the gym a lot more to keep in shape.

But when you look to see what is really happening, you might find something like this – they are holding down a job that keeps them away from home for long hours and this means they only see their kids for the last hour before they go to bed in the evening; they may be rushed and only manage to eat junk food for lunch and in their breaks; they may be really exhausted in the evenings and weekends and not be going to the gymn all that often at all.

So already we can see that there is a huge discrepancy between what that person thinks their values are (and would tell another person), and the reality behind it.

It would be much closer to the truth to say that this person values holding down a stressful job because it brings in a lot of money to enable them to have the lifestyle they desire (as an example); it could also be true to say that they have a very troubled relationship and therefore value every minute they can spend away from home. One thing is for certain. This person does not highly value spending time at home with their kids, no matter how hard that may sound.

And how do we know this is true? Because if it were, they would prioritise it and make sure that, no matter what, they spend lots of quality time at home with the kids. It’s a fact that they are not.

They also think they highly value going to the gym but turning up once a week at the very most and often not even that, shows that their heart is not in it despite the fact they may tell friends and family they are intending to go more often. Their preferred activity of resting on the couch with their feet up reveals a hidden value on giving themselves well-deserved rest and relaxation after a period of hard work.

And looking at the eating habits shows us the same thing. They will tell friends proudly how much they value a healthy life-style and yet they are munching their way through mounds of junk food each week. Again, their true values lie elsewhere. Perhaps the fast food is available just around the corner and minimises the amount of effort and time needed in each break to go and get some. Perhaps the healthy food just isn’t as tasty as the fastfood and so MSG & co. win the day.

There’s no right or wrong in any of this, but it is important to get real on what is happening so that you can better understand the underlying driving forces in your life.

So where does this descrepancy come from? Join me in part two to see.

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7 Responses to What do You Really Value in Your Life? (Part One)

  1. Grace Kelly says:

    I used to think I valued being alone, I would tell myself and everyone around me how much I was Miss Independent and loved to be alone.
    Trouble is that everytime I was alone , I CONNECTED more to other people…..therefore being alone really meant I valued meeting new people and connecting to others, it was a driving force to ensure I did that. The reality is we are never alone, this is comforting for sure!
    Interesting post Fiona, look forward to Part Two!
    Gratitude, Grace
    http://www.citygirlconfidence.com
    Blogs on Living Gracefully

    • Fiona Stolze says:

      Really interesting to hear about your insights on being alone. You are certainly a very community-based person from what I know of you. We are all like little budgies, aren’t we? Need to have other people to engage and connect with.

  2. Donna McCord says:

    Takes a lot of self examination to see where your priorities lie! In looking at my own life, at least now, my values seem to be my daughter, my husband, my God, my pets, my family (mom, dad, sisters) (not necessarily in that order) and then when I look more intensely, having my environment clean and well organized takes a lot of my time, and also my vanity! I spend a lot of time on trying to look my best (exercise, makeup, etc.) which now it takes longer to achieve my goal than it used to! LOL! But truthfully, I see that so much of my contentment and satisfaction revolves around my family…I will drop everything for them, and actually my whole job revolves around my husband when I think about it!

    • Fiona Stolze says:

      Thanks for commenting Donna. It sounds like your true values are in alignment with what you do. It’s easy to spot as things tend to be smooth flowing and harmonious. But it’s always good to regularly check in and see what’s happening.

  3. Omg, this is what I just wrote:
    It’s funny what we say and do in reality, what and who we want to be but who we really are.

    Huh??
    I left it because it sounded too funny… 🙂 Ok again, this is what I wanted to say: you are right! Interesting how we lie to ourselves. Time to analyze: what do I want and what am I doing?

    Franziska San Pedro
    The Abstract Messed Up Artress

    • Fiona Stolze says:

      Yes, we do lie to ourselves but are so often unaware that we are even doing it. Checking in with ourselves makes a lot of sense. And yes, your first comment was funny! Glad you wrote it again.

  4. Pingback: What do You Really Value in Your Life? (Part two) | Inspired Art and Living with Fiona Stolze

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