Our Values Inform the Actions We Take, and The Paths We Make
Yesterday, I participated in an activity at work that encouraged us to think about our values and how they can inform the way in which we approach our work.
We each started out with a full deck of 52 cards. Each card had a specific value on it, along with a definition. Some examples were faith, integrity, compassion, structure, teamwork, etc.
After we shuffled our individual deck of cards, we were each asked to break the deck in half, separating the values that resonated with us the most, from ones that didn’t resonate as strongly. This had a particularly short time limit attached.
Next, we were asked to narrow down the half deck of cards we had left into 15 cards, in an even shorter amount of time.
After that, we narrowed our hand down to 5 cards, and then, with only 45 seconds, were tasked with narrowing down those five, to one, single card.
The act of narrowing down the different values was extremely thought-provoking, and the existence of the time limit forced me to go with my initial, gut feeling when making decisions. There was no other way to be except to be honest with myself.
In the end, there were some similarities, but there were also differences in the value that was most strongly held and considered by each person in attendance. It was a good reminder that, although we may find ourselves in groups working collaboratively toward a common goal, each person may have a different perspective regarding how to get there.
I appreciated having this opportunity to learn about some of the people I worked with, as well the opportunity to learn something about myself.
What was my value you might ask?
I took some time to really think about this. When I reflect on the trajectory of my life including where I started, how I got to where I am currently, where I wish to go, how I want to use my life, and how I want my life to be used by others, for me, it all made sense.
Our values inform the actions we take, and the paths we make. Not only was I reminded of how important it is to recognize that our values and styles may be different from others, I was also reminded of how important it is to learn about, and recognize the importance of what others value and how helpful that act can be towards fostering mutually supportive, beneficial relationships.
From Aspiring Humanitarian, Relando Thompkins, MSW, LLMSW