I heard Suze Orman on TV recently at the gym. You may have heard her say: “People first, then money, then things.” Think about that order for a second.
Today, she talked about our economy since 2008 … that we need to to let it go, the idea that things will return to the way they were. But the good side, she continued, is that we are “returning to basic American values.”
Our values, in a few short words, describe who we are, what we are passionate about, what matters the most. Courage, excellence, learning, self-awareness, creativity,integration, knowledge – all values I’ve heard from coaching conversations.
When we organize our lives based on our values, we are in sync, in flow, comfortable in our skin – however you feel it, you know it. And we know when something doesn’t fit quite right in our life. “A life that fits” begins with knowing your values and builds from there.
Back to summertime
As we approach summertime, we’ll have a blank slate, or at least a different pace in our lives and for our time. In education, you may not work or you may do something very different. If you’re in a company or at a college, you may work a shorter work week. And if you work for yourself, you can do any of those. Choices, choices.
As the graduations and parties finish up, as we move into our summer schedules, think about what’s important to you. This will help you make those choices.
Haven’t thought about values or what you stand for in awhile? If you’ve recently gone through a major life change, now is a great time to check in with yourself. Your circumstances have changed; have you, perhaps?
Use the list of values below as a start. Add your own, refine or start from scratch. This is where we often start in coaching for organizing.
One of two things happens to us
- Our summertime weekends fill up. Our days get packed. It happened so suddenly we think.
- Or we don’t see this right off and end up in chaos, in the middle of the summer, wondering where “all the time went.”
So there’s still time right now!
How would you like to spend your time?
Think about your values and what’s important to you, for summertime.
Priorities may very well be different this time of year; stop, think and acknowledge this, so you can do something .
What’s the “do something?”
- Do your values exercise.
- Take out your calendar.
- Rough estimates: how much time are you spending on what matters to you? No tallying here, just a glance at this week/weekend to see how your time is spent.
- What’s getting in the way – who and what are your obstacles to living based on what matters – your obligatory events you don’t really want to attend, the people who take up your time or drag you down, too much grandchild sitting, no babysitter.
- Getting rid of and letting go of what gets in the way is, I know, the hard part. How do we blow up the rocks that are in our way? We meet the issue (the rock) head on. Or we look at different perspectives, which offer us choices (go around the rock, under the rock, above the rock). And sometimes, we need to know what’s missing from our path before we can let go of what’s there.
Don’t get stuck staring at the boulder in front of you. How? Become aware of where you are now, what’s important to you and what’s in the way.
Live to your values and a lot will be easier.
Sample values list —
If you’d like support exploring your values, that’s where we start in coaching for organizing.