Wednesday, 11 January 2012

The 52 Week Challenge - What Exactly Are My Values?

Here is my second post relating to Home Life Simplified's 52 Week Challenge, focusing on values.  A few days ago I read the challenge and my resolve already fizzled up.  Not because it didn't interest me, but because I thought "Ugh, when am I really going to feel like sitting down and actually thinking about this?"  See, thinking is not my strong point, but procrastination on the other hand is.  So I was ready to throw in the towel on week two.

Part of me likes the challenge of having to think about something.  Once again it's very much like a school assignment.  But the other part of me thinks, "Ok, school is over and I'm happy to keep it that way".  Unfortunately for me I think the years of being out of school (or even being out of the professional work force for that matter) have turned my brain to mush.  That is one of the reasons I started blogging in the first place, and a reason why I figured I should keep up with the challenge, at least for another week.  Though, once again I make no promises for next week's challenge!

Reading about values and how to define them felt very overwhelming for me, and very complicated.  But I started to realize that I am a simple person by nature, and after putting some thought into it, it was actually fairly easy to narrow down my list.  Once I was able to do that, the task of defining my values didn't seem so scary.

So here they are:

1) Balance
I am a Libra, and I have always felt a strong connection to this.  I like things to be in balance.  I like to feel balanced.  Whenever I feel overwhelmed by the negative aspects of life, I look to the positive ones and see that there are always just as many, if not more.  It's always nice to tip the scales in favour of positivity, but at least I never feel like they are every tipped towards the negative side.  I don't believe in extremes and you will never find me at one end of the spectrum or the other, rather I like to stay somewhere in the middle.  I feel like this value defines everything about me, from my personality to my background to how I try to live my life.

2) Family
I find family to be a tricky one because it can be so vague.  When I use family as one of my values, I am talking about the very special little circle that my husband and I have started together.  I love my husband and my children more than anything and they are the reason I do everything.

3) Health
I have always had excellent health and it is something I have taken for granted.  As I have gotten older I have learned to value my health and the health of those I love, to cherish it, and to take care of it.  It is an ever evolving process, to be 'healthy' in every sense of the world, but I feel like I have a really good handle on it these days and it is something that keeps me motivated and moving in the right direction.  I would like to see my health stay excellent for many years to come.

4) Authenticity
One of the things my husband has always said he loves about me is how honest of a person I am with who I am.  I wear my feelings out in the open.  I always figured I would make a terrible actor because I couldn't be anything other than who I am.  When I start to fret over what other people do or think, I just bring my thoughts back to myself and try to be true to the person I am.  It's very important to me that I be 'me' and not someone else, I think that is part of what grounds me and keeps my head from getting off into the clouds.

5) Reliable
This sounds like a strange value when you look a lot of the other ones on the list, but I have to admit reliability is always something I have felt is very important, and I do consider myself a reliable person.  It's not a 'deep' thing, the need to want or be reliable all the time, but I do hold a lot of value in it.  To me it is important to be where you are going to be when you say you are going to be.  If you can't commit to something, don't say you will.  I hate being let down, and I hate having to wait for people who are disrespectfully late.  Obviously there are always valid reasons in many situations, but in general it really bothers me when someone says they will do something or plans something with me and then doesn't follow through, or if they are late 'just because'.  It makes me feel like I am not an important person, so I am always careful not to do the same to others.

There you have it, my 5 top values in a nutshell.  I feel kind of silly when I see some of the other ones on the list, but then I wouldn't be true to myself if I were wishing I had different values.  I am who I am.

Oh, and I love Deb's last line on her post  about her own values: 
Your values are your values – this is the time to be true to who you are. If not now when?, only for the simple fact that "If Not Now, When?" is the title of the latest album from Incubus, my favourite band.  Of course this is not related in any way to my values, but it did stand out to me and just that little connection made me smile.


  1. I have really enjoyed reading about your values and why you chose them. I am also participating in this challenge and found the process of coming up with 5 main values difficult but very benificial.

  2. What solid values Martina. I hear you about authenticity and reliability too.

  3. I really love how true and honest to yourself you are - it is something many people struggle with, particularly under pressure, so it is admirable that it is your first point to remember when it gets tough!

  4. Thank you all for reading! This challenge is a really good practice, isn't it!

  5. I am glad you stuck with me/us another week hon - take it as it comes and do what you will...

    I for one am glad to read along with you. Authenticity is one of mine, but reliable is also an underlying thing for me. I feel the same way you do about it and am almost always early or on drives me crazy when people are habitually late (my ex-best friend from childhood used to just show up an average of 30 min late and leave me waiting ina restaurant alone etc - it said a lot about who she was really as a person but it took until my 30s for me to let her go from my life - obviously not just for the lateness but the other stuff from 20 yrs of "friendship")

    deb @ home life simplifiied

  6. Martina--I had the same reaction that you did when I read the challenge it first. I too was glad I did it though--it provoked some great thinking.