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Thursday, January 5, 2012

Living your values

"Live truth instead of expressing it." 
- Elbert Hubbard

"But do you know what your values are?
I was recently asked this question by the most important person in my life.   I had listed "Live my values" as one of my New Year's resolutions, and had just shared this with her.   

"But do you know what your values are?"  
Of course I know what my values are...don't I?  After my initial auto-defensiveness subsided, I actually stopped and asked myself the same question.   

"But do you know what your values are?" 
Over the next few days, I considered this idea very carefully.  It turns out that, 
happily, yes, for the most part I do know what my true values are, thank you very much.  It also turns out that, sadly, I have spent many of the past few years living in a way that does not actually reflect them at all. Instead, I was speaking the words and assuming that this was enough, without any real consideration of how my lack of action was the true expression of my beliefs.  This realization made me reconsider who I thought I was, who I wanted to be, and what I needed to commit to doing to become the person I envisioned as "me". 

So, what are my values?  
1) I must be true to myself and, to do this, I must honestly know and appreciate who I truly am. 
2) My partner and my daughter are my  number one priority.
3) My chosen family and friends are a close second.
4) I must love what I do.  I must be challenged and excited by my work.
5) I want to give to be truly compassionate and giving to my fellow human beings.
6) Hard work and dedication are important, but so is a work-life balance. (See numbers 1-3)

Looking at this list, I see my future.  For the first time in a very long time, I am present and aware of what I want.  I am also clear on the path that I must take in order to live the life I have defined. 

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