What are your values? Being honest? Putting yourself first? Selfless service? Being a minimalist? Or owning everything you want? Do you crave career satisfaction? Or are you money oriented?
Today’s world is full of distraction. Every single day, we get bombarded by a number of notifications from spams to news to messages from genuine people, on our mobile devices which have practically become our third limb. We are stuck in this maze of instant gratification of our own making. We are busy to even pause and reflect on what are the things that we value in life when opening up the next Twitter thread or YouTube video can save us the mental process of thinking. Even if you sit down one day and jot down the things or values that you consider important in your life, it does not take you long to forget them as soon as something else grabs your attention.
In such a scenario, it helps to keep that list of the things that you value close to you and look at them every day or at least every week. Because if you forget your values, it doesn’t take long for you to get distracted from your path and get bogged down by your insecurities. Anxiety follows, and soon you find yourself waist deep in a swamp of your own making.
It is important to reflect upon the things that you really value in life and would like to live your life following those ideals. However, it is more important to not forget them when other things in life which are contrary to your value seem more appealing. Those other things might seem more appealing at the moment but if they are not aligned with your internal values then they are not going to give you the satisfaction and the happiness that you crave in life. It doesn’t matter whether you are money oriented or want job satisfaction, what matters is that you align your actions with your values because the satisfaction of your values is what is going to give you the mental fulfillment that you require in life.
My friend Alex was recently going through a depressing phase in life. He was feeling worthless and shitty. He was also comparing his life with his other friends and that was making him feel more crappy. The problem wasn’t just that he was feeling worthless, it was aggravated by his comparing himself with others. The people he was comparing himself with had a different set of values, you see. He was ignoring this fact and that was what was pulling him down in a mental bog. Once he realized that the people he was comparing himself to, had a different set of values than him and that their values were the not the ones that Alex valued in his own life, he was able to focus on his personal values and leave his anxieties behind.
Once you take into account the values that you believe in and are willing to live your life by, your priorities become clearer and you gain a sort of mental peace that comes by focusing on the things that really matter to you.
I wrote this after going through a similar experience as my friend Alex and also reading the book The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck written by Mark Manson in which he also talks about values. I would totally recommend you to pick up that book and give it a read.