5 Sure-Fire Ways To Identify Your Core Values [Checklist to Starting a Business That Reflects Your Authenticity]
If you are a small business owner, you are probably already aware of the importance of having a checklist to starting a business. What I want to emphasize (one of the most overlooked tips for business success) is the importance of incorporating your core values into that checklist.
Why? Because living from your values is what makes life worth living to you. So, if you’re looking for ideas for starting a business, aligning with your core values and including them in your business model is worth serious consideration. Creating a checklist to starting a business that includes your values is not only successful but fulfilling and life-affirming as well. You can see my previous article on getting to know your values here.
I happen to be living a business success story right now. And believe me, I’m not saying that to brag. If you know anything about me by following me on social or reading my blogs (or the book), you know I have gotten here with some bumps and bruises from a shitstorm of things that have met me on my path.
The reason I bring it up is that I want you to know how to have a successful business, WHILE being totally true to yourself. I also believe that what you value most will dictate how you live your life and what success will ultimately look like for you. And if you don’t take the time to incorporate the things you value into your business plan, you will likely discover how business success can actually be a curse.
What does success mean?
If you think the word “succeed” is just about how to manifest money, no matter what the costs to your mental, physical and emotional wellbeing, I urge you to reconsider. It is my belief that the closer you live to who you authentically are, the greater your chances are of not just succeeding, but succeeding beyond your wildest dreams.
This may sound like a no-brainer, however, many people don’t take a lot of time to think about their values and how they get reflected in their lives. Our values are directly related to who we are authentically at the core. That’s why I want to share with you some of the ways to identify your core values so you can use them to map out your journey to ultimate success and YOUR version of the American Dream. My hope is that it will help you build an innovative business model that has the potential to bring you real-life satisfaction and real success.
As you explore these five areas, make some notes. Take some time to meditate and think about the things that come up. This process should give you some great ideas for creating a business that reflects your authenticity and is aligned with your core values.
What are your creative outlets? These are the things you do for pleasure and fulfillment. The things that make you feel alive and happy. I believe that having some kind of creative outlet is essential not just to enjoying success in business but also to be a success in life.
This includes anything you do for free for your friends or family members… or things you WOULD do for free. Creative outlets are big clues to what your core values are, as are the feelings you get when you are engaging in those outlets. These are the kinds of feelings it would be ideal for you to experience in your business, too.
What is your tribe and who do you vibe with? These are the friends and acquaintances that allow you to be your authentic self. It’s the community that makes you feel like you belong. No matter what stage in life you are in, finding a community to welcome you and not judge is essential to your success.
That’s because those kinds of people give you a space to explore what really matters to you. You can add the activities you engage in with your tribe to your potential list of values. And, like with your creative outlets, including the way you feel when you are vibing with your tribe. You can delve deeper into how to discover or develop creative outlets and find your tribe in chapter 3 in my new book here!
What do you buy for fun? What is the thing you will immediately throw down a wad of cash for the minute you see it? Since most of us value money, the things we spend our money on can offer some strong clues about our values.
These could also provide some fodder for an innovative business idea. If you’re producing or selling something that is that exciting to you, it goes without saying that it’s worth looking into incorporating it into your business plan in some way.
What are the jobs you have enjoyed most in your life? You can even get more specific and ask yourself what aspects of different jobs were most enjoyable to you. For instance, have you enjoyed organizing spaces or events in previous jobs? Have you enjoyed interacting with people? Or maybe you have enjoyed doing tasks that allowed you to work alone. This is a great way to uncover work values you hadn’t considered before because it points you in the direction of HOW you like to work.
What causes do you champion? Some good clues to this can be found in the casual conversations you find yourself having with family members and friends. It includes the subjects or issues you feel passionate about. And if you make contributions to charities, there are likely some great pointers to your core values there as well.
A good next step is to create an intention statement that includes the values you have the strongest emotional connection with. Here’s an example: I am ready to receive all things necessary for creating a business that incorporates the following core values: (your core values here).
Learn more about how to find success while living an authentic life in my new book here!