Each one of us walks our own path through life. We are individuals with unique beliefs, views, experiences, and desires. We receive plenty of recommendations from friends, family, coworkers, and others with good intentions to help improve our lives. Applying these recommendations may indeed result in some level of success. However, during our Financial Independence journey we will face life-altering decisions – critical decisions that will require more than an anecdote or an example from an online article to make with confidence. What if there was a more fundamental way of making decisions, a method that moves us closer to who we really are and allows us to live a more authentic life? Let’s consider values-based decision-making.
The main features of values-based decision-making as described in The Six Modes of Decision-Making are:
- Thought precedes action—we reflect on the values that we believe will allow us to get our needs met and make decisions accordingly.
- The decisions that are made are not based on past experiences. They are based on the future we want to create.
- We are in control of our action and behaviors.
- We can consult with others to support and enhance our decision-making.
We make values-based decisions so that we consciously create the future we want to experience. For example, if we value trust, then we should make decisions that allow us to display trust. If we value accountability, then we make decisions that allow us to display accountability.
The purpose of this lesson is to identify our values and begin making decisions based on these values.
Watch: 3 Steps To Figuring Out Your Core Values by Carrie Green on YouTube
Read: What Are Your Values? Deciding What’s Most Important in Life by The Mind Tools Content Team of mindtools.com
Read: Let Your Values Drive Your Choices by James Clear of jamesclear.com
Watch: What Matters Most in Life? by Dennis Prager of prageru.com
Take Action: Using the Mind Tools process above, determine your top values. Record them somewhere you will see often. A folded 3×5 index card kept in your purse or wallet may work well. As you are faced with decisions, major decisions in particular, keep these in mind. Continue to validate or reaffirm your values over time. Sharing these values with your significant other can also help them understand why you make the decisions you do. Encourage them to determine their values using the same process and share with you. In the comment section below, feel free to share your top 3-5 values.
Read: A Valuist: Intentional Living by FI Monkey of choosefi.com
Watch: How To Determine Your Core Life Values by Project Life Mastery on YouTube
Quote: “When you realize the value of all life, you dwell less on what is past and concentrate more on the preservation of the future.” – Dian Fossey