Clarify Your Values

Many people find it difficult to think meaningfully about their ideal life. Try this exercise instead and clarify your values by looking at things you dislike instead.

Many exercises that help you find your values ask you to look at your ideal day, your ideal life, or your ideal partner. But that’s often not helpful because life is not always ideal. Values need to shape our real lives right now and reflect the way we live in non-ideal conditions.

This exercise looks at what you don’t like or don’t want as a way to discover where your values truly lie. It can be overwhelming to think of what you do want in life, but it’s easier to think of things we don’t. Values show up in the things we choose to reject for ourselves.

Values Exercise

Fill out the following statements with sentences or bullet points, and don’t worry about how much you may put down. And once you have a picture of what you don’t like and don’t want in your life, look at how you can change your life to minimize and eliminate the things that you don’t value and replace them with things you do value.

  1. I feel most unhappy when I…
  2. I dread …
  3. I am good at but do not particularly enjoy…
  4. I can NOT imagine doing … every single day for the rest of my life.
  5. I don’t understand why anybody would…
  6. … does not appeal to me.

Want Help?

If you want help looking at your life with a view of minimizing what you truly dislike, therapy can help you look deeper at your experiences and pull out the deeper values inherent in your choices.

Contact me here to schedule a consultation.