It is never too late to get started on defining your core values. And they may change through the different phases of your life.
CORE VALUES: Of course our Torah values. Beyond those, what are your core values? Some possibles: Shabbos is time for family bonding. Our children should have lots of experiences in nature. Live with less (minimalism). Even the youngest children can be involved in community work. Our home is open to all who need a place.
BENEFITS: Having well defined personal core values helps us avoid making choices that work against who we want to be. Our values become a clear set of guidelines for our choices, words and actions, consistently moving us in the direction aligned with our core beliefs and personal vision.
Our life becomes one of our choosing, not one that is directed by the decisions or whims of others. Our values help us build and maintain our identity as unique individuals.
Living by our values increases our personal growth and sense of personal meaning. Thereby increasing our joy and true happiness.
Having clear values can guide us in times of confusion and conflict. This reduces stress and frustration.
CONSEQUENCES: Not living the life described above. In other words, making mistakes, stress, confusion, frustration, unfulfilled potential, and… and …. –
Defining your core values takes time and mindspace. Ideally, this reflection is done in long spurts of solitude; but that isn’t realistic for most. So, use your free minutes when you have them, or carve out short thinking breaks. Defining your core values takes 5 minutes – 5 minutes here and there. Instead of picking up your phone or reading cereal boxes, be alone with your own thoughts. You really are quite interesting.