Your Core Values are Decision-Making Filters


Last week I wrote from my new home in Virginia, and mentioned that when we arrived at the place we’d rented, sight unseen, it was not what we were expecting.

Now, it didn’t phase me that the heat wasn’t turned on until the day after we arrived, although eating take out on the floor of an empty place isn’t as romantic as they make it look in RomComs, especially when that floor feels ice cold to your Sunny San Diego-spoiled tush.

And it wasn’t a big deal that the kitchen sink was broken for the first week, because it meant we got to bring home fried chicken from multiple spots around town. (This was before we started our nutrition reset.)

But what got me, what really got me, was the fireplace.  It had been the #1 reason we chose to rent this place over the other listings, and we definitely had a shared Vision of curling up in front of a crackling fire, all wrapped up in cozy blankets with our pup snuggled nearby.

That was before the chimney inspection.  Turns out, it’s not up to code in more ways than one, and lighting a fire in there would literally be hazardous to our health.  I wasn’t just disappointed, I was mad.  And it wasn’t just about the fireplace, it was about the philosophy. I felt like we were presented with one thing in the photos and then given another.

Part of my Vision is about being spontaneous and not doing things just because that’s the way they’ve always been done.  So I was flat out ready to burn it down (NOT literally), break the lease and find a new place to rent before the movers arrived with all our stuff..in 2 days.

For a solid chunk of time that night, I was in go-mode.  I was scouring multiple rental sites at the same time, flipping through photos until my carpal tunnel started acting up and tracking down the property managers who opened earliest the next morning.  And y’now what?  I loved it. The thrill, the excitement, the idea of doing something outside the norm because it just felt right – that all fed my gypsy soul.

But, one of my Core Values is Integrity.  And to me that means asking myself the question “Am I staying true to my instincts over my impulses and living in a way that does justice to my freedom?”

And so, after cooling down and getting some great advice from wise people in my life, I knew I had to be honest with myself about whether I was really following an instinct or chasing an impulse. I decided it was the latter, and we decided to stay put.

It’s easy for Core Values to seem like a nebulous concept, or something big organizations put on a flip chart during their annual retreat.  But at the end of the day, they’re decision making filters to help you make choices that feel aligned with who you are and where you want to go.

What impulses and instincts are you grappling with right now, and how can your own Core Values help guide you through?

Last week I wrote from my new home in Virginia, and mentioned that when we arrived at the place we’d rented, sight unseen, it was not what we were expecting.

Now, it didn’t phase me that the heat wasn’t turned on until the day after we arrived, although eating take out on the floor of an empty place isn’t as romantic as they make it look in RomComs, especially when that floor feels ice cold to your Sunny San Diego-spoiled tush.

And it wasn’t a big deal that the kitchen sink was broken for the first week, because it meant we got to bring home fried chicken from multiple spots around town. (This was before we started our nutrition reset.)

But what got me, what really got me, was the fireplace.  It had been the #1 reason we chose to rent this place over the other listings, and we definitely had a shared Vision of curling up in front of a crackling fire, all wrapped up in cozy blankets with our pup snuggled nearby.

That was before the chimney inspection.  Turns out, it’s not up to code in more ways than one, and lighting a fire in there would literally be hazardous to our health.  I wasn’t just disappointed, I was mad.  And it wasn’t just about the fireplace, it was about the philosophy. I felt like we were presented with one thing in the photos and then given another.

Part of my Vision is about being spontaneous and not doing things just because that’s the way they’ve always been done.  So I was flat out ready to burn it down (NOT literally), break the lease and find a new place to rent before the movers arrived with all our stuff..in 2 days.

For a solid chunk of time that night, I was in go-mode.  I was scouring multiple rental sites at the same time, flipping through photos until my carpal tunnel started acting up and tracking down the property managers who opened earliest the next morning.  And y’now what?  I loved it. The thrill, the excitement, the idea of doing something outside the norm because it just felt right – that all fed my gypsy soul.

But, one of my Core Values is Integrity.  And to me that means asking myself the question “Am I staying true to my instincts over my impulses and living in a way that does justice to my freedom?”

And so, after cooling down and getting some great advice from wise people in my life, I knew I had to be honest with myself about whether I was really following an instinct or chasing an impulse. I decided it was the latter, and we decided to stay put.

It’s easy for Core Values to seem like a nebulous concept, or something big organizations put on a flip chart during their annual retreat.  But at the end of the day, they’re decision making filters to help you make choices that feel aligned with who you are and where you want to go.

What impulses and instincts are you grappling with right now, and how can your own Core Values help guide you through?

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