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Understanding Your Personal Values

Personal Values

Very simply put, your personal values are those things that you value or judge to be important in life.

This includes principles, ideals, standards of behaviour and ways of doing things that you believe should be upheld or adhered to.

“Your beliefs become your thoughts,
Your thoughts become your words,
Your words become your actions,
Your actions become your habits,
Your habits become your values,
Your values become your destiny.”
Mahatma Gandhi

Feeling Good or Bad

When you take decisions, act and behave in accordance with your values, you will show and experience integrity and, generally speaking, you will feel good about – and content with – life.

When what you decide and the way you act and behave does not align with your values then generally you will feel unhappy with a sense that things are not good or wrong.

The Essence Of You

What you feel is and is not important in life says a lot about who you are. Your values reflect your personal philosophy; they capture the essence of you.

Your values will play an important role in how you dress and present yourself, the way you conduct yourself in front of others, whether you will marry and /or have children, who you associate with, what you prefer to eat or watch on TV, the type of job you will seek out, how active you are in your community, what sort of possessions you treasure, what you like and don’t like, and so on and so on.

Personal Values

Which of these do you consider your own personal values? / image: futuresalon

The Driving Force

Provided that your basic needs are catered for, your values will normally act as the driving force behind your decisions and judgements.

Whether you believe something is ‘right’ or ‘wrong’; and whether you believe something is ‘good’ or ‘bad’ will depend on whether that something align with your values or not.

Getting clarity on – and understanding – one’s values, is an extremely important part of the life coaching process and now you can hopefully see why.

The Key To Effecting Change

Values, along with beliefs, are the key to effecting change in your life!

States of Being

Another way to think of a value is as a ‘state of being’ that you aspire to.

To get an idea for what a value is, think of the state of being or way of living that you wish to experience, and complete the following one or more of the statements:

“I aspire to live with ………………………………………… ; and/or
“I aspire to live a life of ………………………………………..”; and/or
“I aspire to live as ………………………………………….”

Values are normally expressed as nouns or adjectives, so for example, you may have chosen to write “I aspire to live with compassion” or “I aspire to live as a compassionate person”. So your value is ‘compassion’ (or ‘being compassionate’).


Please share this inspirational article and comment in the section below!



Comments (2)

  • Avatar



    “I aspire to live with feelings of contentedness

    “I aspire to live a life of joy with helpfulness”

    “I aspire to live as someone with no regrets ”


    • Avatar



      Thanks for your input, Meera. A life of joy with helpfulness is something we can all aspire to.


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