What are personal values?
Our personal values play an important role in how we choose to live our lives.
Our personal values are the lifeblood of our being and dictate what kind of person we are.
During childhood and adolescence, our values were developed through our environment; parents, friends, teachers, government and wider society.
When we grow up and gain more life responsibilities, our values change and evolve to accommodate the growing demand of children, aging parents and the daily problems we encounter in our lives.
And here’s the problem.
Our life’s events have molded us into people we’re not sure we really like.
Hence the goal of this article. To provide you with a list of personal values that will help you decide exactly what kind of person you want to be.
Be sure to bookmark this page as it will become a huge resource that will grow in the months and years ahead.
How to start building a list of personal values
If you have no idea what should be in your list, start by making a list of values and qualities you don’t want to be associated with.
What qualities do you despise in other people?
Write these qualities in a list and write the opposite (antonyms) next to them.
Don’t feel bad or ashamed for thinking about the qualities you dislike in friends, family, celebrities or politicians.
The goal of this exercise is to help you compose a starter list of personal values to live by.
Define Your Personal Core Values
Now that you have a list of personal values, you need to qualify them by asking yourself some important questions.
Why must they be qualified? Because composing your own set of core personal values is a lot harder than opening a dictionary and writing down every cool-looking word with an interesting definition.
Words on paper mean nothing if you’re not specific about how you intend to become it.
For example, if you want “optimism” to be one of your new core personal values, ask yourself the following questions.
- Why did you choose this particular personal value? (What examples and outcomes from your personal experiences could’ve been different if you possessed this value? What opportunities have you missed out?)
- How do you intend to make this personal value become a part of your mental makeup? (How must you behave? What actions must you take to acquire this value?)
- What does this personal value mean to you? (Define it in your own terms to live by. What will it do for you?)
Perform this exercise for each personal value in your list. Once you’ve done this, you’ll have an indispensable resource you can always refer to when you’re about to make a key life decision.
List of Personal Values
Here’s what you’ve been waiting for. Each personal value below contains a brief description with links that direct you to our designated hubpage if you want to learn more.
I would like to:Live a balanced lifeStrengthen my willpowerLead a happy, peaceful lifeBecome a respected role modelBe a successful entrepreneurBe a good team leader and managerBuild a loving home for my familyTo make it easier for you to digest, each personal value is assigned to a goal-specific category.For example if your goal this year is to be happier and find purpose in life, “happiness” fits into the “How to be happy” category etc.Of course, some personal values will apply to multiple categories.Simply click on the category which best matches your goal to see the list of personal values you'll need.
Live A Balanced Life
- Inner Harmony
- Meaningful Work
Strengthen Your Willpower
- Overcoming Adversity
Lead A Happy Life
Respected Role Model
Knowledge is power. With it you can change the world, without it you are ignorant. Having access to knowledge and education is vital for achieving your life goals and being known as an expert or trusted advisor regarding a topic.
Wisdom is applied knowledge in a real life setting that brings about a valuable life lesson to learn from. Having wisdom allows you to make better life decisions and to impart your knowledge and experiences onto others who are about to embark on the same journey.
Good role models always take personal responsibility for their actions. It’s about accepting and owning your actions and the outcomes they produce. To have responsibility or to be responsible means to behave in a way that protects the physical, mental, psychological, spiritual and financial interests of yourself and those around you.
Contribution is all about doing your part. Whether you’re in a team or working alone, learning the true value of contribution can mean the difference between solving the biggest problems which haunt the world daily or adding to it.
Influential people have an ability to change the hearts and minds of people. Being influential is about persuading people to make a decision based on what you say or do.
Whether you’re in business or not, we all serve somebody. These may be our friends, family and co-workers or our customers or strangers.
Choosing “service” in your list of personal values will help you to think more creatively and critically, so you can brainstorm new ideas to help people achieve their goals.
Start learning how to better serve others by asking yourself who do you serve? And how does this service improve their life?
Authority is a powerful personal value which can do wonders or set you on a power trip. When used correctly, you can inspire people to do their best work and compel others to believe in your ideas and mission.
Trustworthiness is a very delicate personal value. It can take years to build but only seconds to break. Being trustworthy requires you to be the person people can always depend on. To always stick to your word and deliver what you promised to do.
Having the trust of others will present you with powerful mutually-beneficial relationships you can’t help but keep hold of.
Making success one of your personal values ensures you’re always geared towards achieving goals you set for yourself. Success isn’t always about making a lot of money or achieving lofty goals. Simply being happy and content can be your “success metric”, as long as you’re not substituting it for complacency.
27. Good Reputation
Having good reputation as one of your core values will trigger your mind to always think towards doing the right thing. In business you will attract clients who will never leave you, and in your personal life, relationships worth fighting for.
Remember, your reputation is not about how many followers you have or who knows your name. Good reputation management is about trying to align who people think you are, to who you really are.
Good Team Leader and Manager
Build A Loving Home
- Self Awareness
We hope you've found this list of personal values useful. Which personal values did you choose and are there any we've missed? Let us know in the forums.