Thursday, October 06, 2011

Conscious Choosing: Values

How do we incorporate our values into our daily life?

Values are probably the most underrated and often ignored part of the combination of knowledge, values, and vision. Knowledge is always easy to convince people of (who doesn't want to consider themselves from time to time), vision is easy to get enthused about (the future is always exciting), but values are those hidden things which are too often easy to ignore or override in ourselves.

Ignore? Value, like knowledge of self, often requires us to sit down and think deeply in sustained ways about what our values are. Some are very easy to nail down but others are far more subtle, influencing us in ways that are surprising once we identify them. But without knowing them, they simply become ignored - or overpowered by other things we think are values.

Override? Too often in my own life, I have sacrificed expediency for my values. Values are often things which are not immediately or physically rewarded; the rewards are often internal, the result of a life which is in harmony with itself and what it believes. It's often difficult to explain to others the benefit of such an inner harmony - especially when the press is often to accomplish things now.

But in order to avoid ignoring or overriding our values, we need first to define them. And obviously in some detail and depth: the clearer we are, the clearer we can be about the conscious choices we will make and why we make them.

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