1. Feeling constantly unhappy with our life, nothing seems to fulfil us. This points to a life totally out of sync with our values. It seems obvious but so many people live this type of existence either because they cannot see a way out, or they are living a life of habit and have forgotten what it feels like to live a life of purpose. This is a common situation for people who have gotten into a rut either through their work life , relationships or living situation.
2. Being consumed by our work. We work long hours thinking it is necessary to ensure that we keep our jobs or pave the way for promotion. What is happening here is we neglect the values that matter most to us such as family, relationships, friendships, health and our interests outside of work. Going down this path can lead to relationship breakups and mental and physical health issues. This can also be a trap for the self-employed or business owners. Often it can be a balancing act so it's important to always make time to asses your situation and ensure that you are giving time to all of your values and not just those that are work related.
3. Experiencing constant health issues. Today we live in a fast paced environment and it's so easy to get carried away in the tide, eating on the run or quickly grabbing takeaway food whilst trying to get that last report completed is never good for our health. It's important to take time out to enjoy a meal, either with friends, family or work colleagues. Preparing a meal can also be a grounding experience as can the simple act of showing appreciation for your food either by thanking the chef or thanking your God.
4. Feeling like your study is becoming a drag. We often undertake courses of study to further our career options or prepare for promotions. If it ever gets to the point where you are struggling to stay on top of it or you are just not enjoying it, then you really need to assess why you are doing it. There is a really good chance that this study is not aligned with your values and you are climbing that ladder which has been placed against the wrong wall.
5. You struggle to form any type of relationship with your work mates. This is a strong indicator that you are in the wrong type of work, working for the wrong company or working for a company whose mission statement is out of sync with your values.
6. You dread Mondays, give high fives to your work colleagues on reaching hump day Wednesday and celebrate Friday afternoons like you have just won the lottery. I don't think I need to say much more, except that it really is time to do a values audit.
7. You are constantly feeling tired and lacking energy. Now this can come down to several things such as your diet, your broken sleep due to breastfeeding your young one or a poor fitness regime. Two of these issues point to a need to assess your lifestyle against your values. It is quite a common situation for people to experience lack of energy or even depression when they are in a job that isn't aligned with their values. It's similar to an extrovert spending hours at a time in a library or an introvert attending a large party full of egotistical strangers. It saps your energy and you can only take so much before you need to escape.
8. You are constantly arguing with the people closest to you such as your kids or your partner. This often indicates that your life is not aligned with your values. Maybe it's because of financial pressures, the ongoing expectations of keeping your kids dressed in labelled clothes, feeling like you need to update your kitchen or bathroom as your best friends have just updated theirs. This is a trap many of us fall into due to the values that society place on us rather than living true to our own values.
9. Feeling uninspired by your work, often checking your watch or making excuses to take breaks to just get away from it for a wee while. I have personally experienced this feeling and it really is a strong indicator that you need to assess why you are working in your current role and whether it fits with your values and if it doesn't then start planning a way to change your situation.
10. We feel like we are frauds. A good proportion of us stay in jobs that we don't enjoy purely because of the money. We know that the work we do does not match our values, however, we make out that we are happy, but the quality of our work says otherwise. Often we are the only person who knows the real truth about the quality of the work we are delivering. Over time this will get us down. Take action before it gets to this stage.
I hope this post has been helpful. if any of the above resonates with you, then please read my earlier post regarding how to complete a values audit.
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