We all have a set of values that are unique to us. If happiness is your goal, identifying your values is an important first step. Your values are the things that are important to you. It’s connected to your sense of self. When we live from our values, we feel happier, more confident and have more fulfilled lives.
According to Dr. Martin Seligman the founder of Positive Psychology our core virtues are:
- Wisdom and Knowledge
- Love and Humanity
- Spirituality and Transcendence
There is a test you can take on the Authentic Happiness site which can help you identify your strengths – VIA Survey of Character Strength. You complete a questionnaire and receive a report free of charge which identifies what you value.
My top 10 are:
Speaking the truth but more broadly presenting oneself in a genuine way and acting in a sincere way; being without pretence; taking responsibility for one’s feelings and actions.
Valuing close relations with others, in particular those in which sharing & caring are reciprocated; being close to people.
Liking to laugh and tease; bringing smiles to other people; seeing the light side; making (not necessarily telling) jokes.
Having coherent beliefs about the higher purpose and meaning of the universe; knowing where one fits within the larger scheme; having beliefs about the meaning of life that shape conduct and provide comfort.
Being aware of and thankful for the good things that happen; taking time to express thanks.
Expecting the best in the future and working to achieve it; believing that a good future is something that can be brought about.
Being able to provide wise counsel to others; having ways of looking at the world that make sense to oneself/others.
8. Appreciation of Beauty & Excellence
Noticing and appreciating beauty, excellence, and/or skilled performance in various domains of life, from nature to art to mathematics to science to everyday experience.
Approaching life with excitement and energy; not doing things halfway or half heartedly; living life as an adventure; feeling alive and activated.
Thinking of novel and productive ways to conceptualize and do things; includes artistic achievement but is not limited to it.
The report gives you 24 strengths and for me this is accurate AF.
I always reacted badly to any form of dishonesty from others but more importantly from myself. I would persecute myself relentlessly for the smallest things. When I got this report I had such a good laugh. My top value is Honesty!
I have to be honest in all things – anything less than that I feel bad about myself. Because I am aware of it now – dishonesty from others no longer affects me in the same way. I know it’s a trigger so letting it go is as simple as a conscious deep breath.
What’s your signature strength? Comment below.