Values are the silent partners guiding our actions. They are the reason why we do what we do, even if we’re not consciously negotiating our decision-making with values at the forefront.
1. Values are the driving force behind our motivation, spurring us on to get things done or holding us back in fear.
2. Values are the source of conflict inside of us, as one competes for attention over another.
3. Values are the source of conflict with others, as your priority values come up against someone else’s.
4. Values shape your sense of purpose and direction, making you feel like you know where you’re heading and why.
5. Values can hold you back, as you live out the values you caught from your family, church, community, workplace, or culture, rather than choosing the values that resonate with who you are today.
The best news is that values can change and should change as we mature, but that requires a self-awareness about values in the first place.
Values drive our actions often from a place of guilt, shame, fear, or pride. Yes, that can definitely be a problem! And that’s one of the many reasons why identifying the silent partner of values as a way of uncovering the discrepancy between beliefs and actions can be one of the most powerful exercises you can do ushering in internal peace and improving your relationships, especially within your marriage.
For example, a husband may say family-time is important, but instead of sitting around the dinner table engaged in conversation, he is distracted by what happened at work, wondering if that email from a client came through. He is dealing with a core value conflict of being a fully-present dad and fully-engage business-man. A wife may say that sticking to a budget in managing the family finances is important, but she continually overspends on needs presented in her social media feed. Her core value conflict is between financial stewardship and generosity. These core values are both internal as well as external and leads to personal anxiety and communication conflict.
While there will always be conflict, internally and externally, once you identify values, you can get to the solution sooner. Even more beneficial is the process of taking the time to identify values and move through the process of establishing a personal and family values-driven vision statement with specific steps to take to live out those values day to day.
The Core Values for Couples Worksheet is designed to help you move through that process of identifying your core values so that you can find that congruency in how you’re choosing to live each day.