We’re back to my series.
Step 4 is all about leaning into your values and priorities. In this episode I’ll be giving you simple and practical ways to bring yourself, your business and your decisions into alignment with what is important to you. And in line with who you are.
This topic can be explored more deeply, and as I create the video series for you, watch for it on my website.
We naturally build our businesses and make decisions through the lens of our values and the priorities in our lives. As a business grows, it can feel like it has a life of its own. As you navigate the growth, the overwhelm sometimes of it all. Reminding yourself of your core values and your personal priorities is key.
There are many great core values exercises out there. I want to simplify it for you today.
Identify at least 3 people you highly admire. They can be personal relationships but they can also be people you admire that are in the public eye. Now, for each person, think of what adjectives you would use to describe them. Write down as many as come to mind: honest, hard working, encouraging, tenacious. All of them.
Repeat this process with all 3 people.
Do you see a pattern? Are there some that are repeated with all 3 people? What words just absolutely pop off the page? These are clues, these are powerful indicators of the values in your life that are important to you right now.
This is a beautiful mirror. Let them sink in.
Write them down, which resonate with you?
Is there a space in your business that you’re not honoring the way you’d like to serve your clients, your team or your family? What value is being nicked? Circumstances can convince us that we can’t honor our values, but usually it is a tricky thought about money or time.
i.e. I want to share a very simple one from very early on in my business. Generosity is a big value for me. As I set up my initial packages, I had not structured my time and pricing to honor this value.
I felt like I wasn’t making enough money to cover my expenses much less the welcome gifts I wanted to give. Time wise, I wasn’t creating margin between my appointments so I could give my clients the full attention they deserved before and after our calls.
It felt awful. Totally a beginner’s error, not realizing I wasn’t pricing or planning well enough to give what I most wanted for my clients.
In my example, I didn’t think I could charge enough to cover ALL the ways I wanted to serve my clients. When I stepped back and decided what I wanted to offer and and leaned into what was important to me as I laid the foundation of my practice it created great results for me. Clients felt really cared for, and I was aligned with being generous and not stingy.
So how do we get out of alignment, usually a tricky warning thought or two our brain offers when we’re making decisions around time and money.
It can be as innocent as I don’t have time for that……
We can’t afford to do that right now…….
When you watch your brain making these conclusions, they are just warnings.
ASK BETTER QUESTIONS
What is a way that we can offer this? What is a way I can plan my time so my clients get the right attention? How could spending the time here create great results in the long run?
Values and priorities can be pretty blended in our mind.
But if I think about priorities, and want to see if I’m honoring what is important to me or a priority in my life, all I have to do is look at
Where I spend my time…..
Where I spend my money……
So long ago (before my pandemic lesson around cooking) I kept saying I want to cook more. I had a lot of reasons, cleaner food, but in reality I knew it was a great way to connect with my husband at dinner time I had SO many thoughts that got in the way, I was in hustle mode early in my business and convinced myself that I did NOT have time to shop or prep or cook.
My brain took this invitation around meal prep and cooking to think I did NOT have time for it. So I did not make time.
When the pandemic hit, I got creative. I was committed to making mealtime pleasant in the most trying of day-to-day circumstances. I’d look at my afternoon calendar and make sure that I blocked out prep time. I might even prep in the afternoon so I could cook easily after an early evening dinner. The payoffs have been so huge. I love the meditative time with prep work, I love having a lingering meal with my husband, it has been worth it to me to make this a priority. Again, this priority showed up where I spent $ (home kits to support my long work days) and time (planning my calendar ahead of time to make it a priority.
I saw this also in my friendships, and it is still a place I struggle. Relationships are really important to me. In CoVid, this was NOT easy. But before and after the worst of it, I could find myself saying that my friendships were important to me. But where were these friendships when it came to how I spent time. If I was busy with work and very focused on something (new podcast, new program, etc etc) I would get distracted and come Sunday night realize I had done NOTHING to plan for time with my besties.
I have to keep reminding myself of this . . .
If spending time with your family is a high priority, are you carving out the time? Are you setting up your week, your days so you are available to them when they need you most? Are you skipping luncheon meetings that suck up your time so you can leave at 4 and coach your son or daughter’s sports team? Are there friendships that are important to you but you both keep putting it off? Even quick phone calls can be so life changing.
How do you know you’re not living in your values and priorities?
There’s a rub. A dissatisfaction. PAY ATTENTION.
When we honor our values, fascinating growth can happen.
Where has your mind convinced you that you don’t have the time or resources to honor those values?
Where do you find yourself saying….I don’t have the time? Where do you find yourself saying but we’re tight on resources?
Look more closely, it might require some creativity.
It might require that you trust your business more deeply and take the time.
It might require you to make some sacrifices in other areas.
Regret proofing comes in these moments. Decision by decision is where we prevent regret.
Don’t ignore what got your attention today . . . You can stop regret in its tracks by honoring what is really important to you and those you love.