Values and Beliefs are the two most important factors which decide our actions and quality of our life. Our parents, relatives, friends and people whom we interact in our day to day life mostly influence our Values and Beliefs. Values provide us the purpose of our life. Those who align their decisions with their values are more fulfilled, have high self-esteem and are highly energetic because they are living their life based on what is important to them in their life. If daily activities are not aligned with our values, one feels demotivated and less energetic in their life.
After a long time, I met one of my old friend last month. He is running his own business and also serves as secretary of one local political party. He told that he is busy all throughout the day and feels something missing which puts him in depression. After hearing his issue, I asked him to list down all tasks he performs throughout the day in the night for one week. He did that for one week and when we met again. He told that after listing down activities, he understood what the issue was. He spends too much time on politically related activities and neglects his own business as well as his family. Like my friend, many people are caught up doing unnecessary activities. They do not get time to retrospect themselves and correct them as they are so deeply into their routine. By understanding the difference between Values and Beliefs, one can focus their efforts and time to achieve fulfillment.
Difference between Values and Beliefs
Values are things which are crucial in our life. It could be power, helping others, pride, etc. Values are formed based on some of the beliefs we hold. Even if the yield is less, why few people have the interest to grow their vegetables using organic farming?. However, farmers who earn their living by farming may not place the same value on producing the food organically. Instead, they would be concentrating on the yield.
For every value, you might have set of beliefs. Beliefs are based on religious, ethnic or moral values. Understanding our beliefs reveals how we lead our lives and who we are (not how we pretend). For example, if your value is devotion, then one of the belief you might hold could be that
if you do not pray to god every Sunday, something bad might happen in your life.
For detailed explanation of Values and Beliefs, watch the below video
Identify Your Top 3 Values and Beliefs
List down top three values and beliefs you hold. The key to identifying Values is to determine what you stand for in your life based on what you believe and willing to support. Think about the following scenario to identify you values.
1. What three things would you pick when you house is on fire?
2. Recollect three days where you had the high sense of achievement and satisfaction. Identify what made you highly satisfied.
3. If you are given the power, What three changes you want in the society or do in the society.
4. What would you want to be accomplished and feel proud to remember on your death bed?
Answering the above questions will reveal the Values we have in ourselves. After identifying these values, you can think if there are any underlying beliefs for each of these Values. Make sure that none of the beliefs listed create a negative feeling in you. Identifying the beliefs eliminate the false signals and temporary pleasure from your list.
After listing down, calculate how many actions your performed or how much time you spent towards three of your top values in a day or week. If you spend more than 50% of your time towards fulfilling your values, you would feel inner satisfaction and are leading a happy, prosperous life. If not, it is high time you start thinking about your lifestyle.