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  • Dawn S. Kirk

Define Your Core Values-Set the tone for your life!

Updated: Jul 15, 2019

After 14 years in my career, I found myself in a place I never imagined I would be. I had lost confidence, I was angry with myself, I was unfulfilled in my career, and I had a great deal of mommy guilt, which manifested itself in panic attacks. Why? I got caught up with the external appearance of success, and I wasn’t true to myself. My life was inconsistent with who I was and what was most important with me. I had my epiphany in a training class. In this class, I was forced to define and write down my core values. I had avoided doing this because I knew I would have to be accountable to myself. It

was at that moment; I realized I had been putting my career ahead of what was important to me. I am now clear on my core values, which are faith, family, friends, wellness, leadership, learning, and inclusion. From that moment forward, I have made decisions based on my core values, which has led to living my personal and professional life in harmony vs. conflict. Having the support of a professional coach can help you through the process of establishing your core values.

Core Values are guiding principles that define who you are, what you stand for and determine your behavior and action. Your core values formulate your decision making compass of life. They help you determine what to say yes or no to. During the process of establishing your core values, this is where you explore who you are, what you want, and why you want it. Creating core values is the 1st step to creating personal and professional goals that create harmony in life. They can help you be accountable in the pursuit of your goals because they act as a reminder and framework for what matters most to you.

Have you established your core values? If you haven’t, it’s time to take the lead to set direction in your personal and professional life. Developing your core values does not have to be difficult, but it does require you to slow down and intentionally think about what matters most to you. Outlined below are 3 actions you can take now to get started.

1.) Schedule an appointment with yourself- This appointment should be a window of uninterrupted time where you can relax, reflect, and think. This could be while laying in bed just before falling asleep, at your favorite coffee shop, on your lunch break, or while taking a walk. Start thinking about the things that matter most to you and your goals. Write them down.

2.) Determine Your Non-Negotiables-After thinking about what matters most to you, start thinking through personal and professional scenarios that impacted you positively and negatively. If you could go back and change how you handled those matters, what would you have said or done differently? What boundaries would you have set? How would you communicate and connect with others differently?

3.) Evaluate your life-After your determine what is important to you, and establish your non-negotiables, compare this list to how you are living your life. Does your life align with your core values? Are you living in a manner that communicates your core values? Would people know what you value by observing your life? If not, what changes could you make?

You can learn more about the benefits of having a professional coach to support the development of your core values by booking your complimentary consultation at

I look forward to you reaching your goals!

-Dawn S. Kirk

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