As a teenager, did you ever get asked to sit down with anyone to evaluate what you truly value at the core of who you are?
If you did, did you get to do that with your parents or mentors early on in life before you went to college? Or, were you slightly coerced into valuing things as you grew up that matched what your parents thought you should value based on their assumptions and traditions of living life (maybe with an or else attached)?
In fact, this is often carried over into starting a business. If you're a business owner, did you sit down and write out your purpose in this business and what values it must carry into the world?
Regardless, if we're talking about life or a company, getting to the core and what values are necessary to create joy needs to be methodically thought out and deeply understood.
For me, as a child, I never had anyone to sit down with to talk about what I'm passionate about, or how to even evaluate me, let alone be taught how to look at my core value system. That is, not until my early 20s after some interesting choices I made that led me down some chaotic paths. It was then that I started to figure it out for myself. But, later on, I got even more clear on my values once I sat down with my coaches to discuss my future, and then found the right kind of therapist to discuss my past. I have found that this is the case for the majority of people. The issue we face as a human race is that it's incredibly rare to see or hear about children that get formally sat down and allowed to explore what really makes them really tick; not what their family or others around them dictate for them.
A solution would be to insert life strategy sessions into a child's informative years as they reach high school. This can be done through school programs or nonprofit organizations, but it'd be best if it came from parents on top of the other methods. This would allow the intuitive value system to come alive within each child early on, which could then cause a ripple effect of massive benefits and empower them to find their purpose earlier in life.
In regard to those that own or are starting a business, in my 17-year career working with companies, I see more often than not that a thorough plan around the VALUES a business should hold is not there. Especially, as it relates to the vision of the founder and how that is relayed in the early stages to all leaders within the company. That phase often is missed completely.
It's the same in our lives. Many of us struggle with finding purpose in our lives and staying true to who we are. Or, not even able to answer the question 'who are you' when someone asks that at a networking event. It's incredibly easy to get caught up in what someone else thinks we should do or say. This can move us down paths on our journey that go against what we value, and causes so much confusion, depression, unhappiness, and, most of all, a life filled with regrets. It's suffering.
There is a way to get on track. I call it a Life Progression Map (or for companies, I do a Business Progression Map) and the intent is to go through three stages of building out a strategy:
Going through my Life Progression Mapping process...
What that means is that you must quiet the mind, stop for a while to write, listen to what your intuition says, and feel what your heart is saying to you. You must shut out everyone else to make this happen. This process is about you and you alone, and you must ensure to not let anyone else, or yourself, judge your thoughts or censor your beliefs and outcomes. This is an authentic process to dig deep as that is exactly what it takes to help awaken that vibrant purpose that you're meant to live! And, you deserve that life!
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