Defining Values

All the gold which is under or upon the earth is not enough to give in exchange for virtue. Plato

It’s easy to mistake who you are for what you do. I mean, most of our lives are built around having a job and doing work. We even greet new people with the question, “so what do you do?” But work is only a fraction of what makes us who we are.

We’re also our interests — what we like (and dislike). It’s our sense of humor. It’s the way we physically move throughout the world. It’s where we live. And who we associate with (that’s a big one), It’s what we enjoy doing in our free time. It’s who we love.

Arguably most importantly, we are defined by our values and principles we run our lives by. Sometimes we choose these values as we grow up. And, for better or worse, we absorb the values. What you value says a lot about who you are.

Holding the door for someone isn’t a big deal on the surface, but it says a lot about what you value.

  • Asking someone if they need a hand.
  • Taking a grocery cart back to the store after you’ve unloaded your car.
  • Calling a friend and asking them how they are doing.
  • Reading books that are above your pay grade (meaning, hard to read).

Putting in that little extra effort.

The little things we do or don’t do speak loudly about what we care about and don’t care about.

All of this is changeable, by the way. If you want to be kinder, then teach yourself to be kinder by doing something like holding the door for others. If you want to be happier then do something that will make someone else happier today. If you want to be wiser, spend your time with people smarter than yourself.

STAY BOLD, Keep Pursuing,
— Josh Waggoner | Daily Blog #836

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