Define Your Values and Live by Them

Define Your Values and Live by Them

My neighbour once remarked, over our common fence while we were both gardening, that many employees in the corporate world behaved like sociopaths. Now this neighbour is a Psychologist at a local hospital so he may know what he is talking about. My understanding from the internet is as follows: “A sociopath typically has a conscience, but it’s weak. He may know that taking your money is wrong, and he might feel some guilt or remorse, but that won’t stop his behaviour.”

If upon reflection you feel that you may be heading in this direction perhaps its time to find out what your values are and if you have any at all😇Early in my career, I was fortunate to come across “10 Natural Laws of Successful Time and Life Management” by Hyrum W. Smith. This methodology is strongly influenced by Benjamin Franklin, one of the founding Fathers of the USA. In essence when you align your daily practices to your values you will experience inner peace. What are the highest priorities in your life? Which of those do you value the most? Every person’s answers are different because our core values are individual. There is no perfectly ordered list everyone can follow.

The first step is to either buy or borrow the aforementioned book. It is widely available and easy to read. It goes through a series of exercises to help you define your values and prioritise them. You will need to spend some time to do this but, believe me, the effort is well worth it.

I went through this defining exercise some years ago and have kept a copy of these values listed, described and prioritised with me always. When faced with a moral and ethical dilemma at work I have gone back to this list of values.  The choices I have made have been no less difficult but I had the comfort of knowing that they were in line with what I believe. In contrast when I have neglected these values, I have regretted my course of action.

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