Core Values: Here Are Mine, What Are Yours?

A few years ago I worked with a personal transformation coach for those who want to start a business, Tom Volkar

In one of the exercises he read a long list of descriptive words, and picked out the ones that resonated with me. Then I wrote them down in small cards and reflected on which four of those resonated with me most deeply.  He taught me that when you engage in endeavors that incorporate all four values, that’s when you’ll experience the most energy / motivation, and that it’ll be most effortless to sustain that activity.  Here are the four that remained.  

  • Create
  • Explore
  • Be Visionary
  • Express Compassion

Of those, the last one really surprised me.

Musicmaking obviously involves the first two, and I was aware of my desire to think deeply and share insights.  But compassion?  I really had to think about this one.  

In my most recent journey I am returning to my desire to write songs, and the songs that are coming out now are most vulnerable, revealing, and transparent.  To me vulnerable music is also most compassionate, in that when people resonate with it it really touches somewhere deep inside.  It creates that experience of talking to a trusted friend who understand how you’re really feeling underneath.  

I’m not doing it because it “helps people” though. I’m not doing it to justify myself or my music.  I’m doing it because making vulnerable music is fun and fulfilling like nothing else.  It excites and energizes me.  It gives me the reason to live. 

What I’m learning is that life is about discovering who you are and adjust what you do so that it’s more in-line with who you are.  I am changing, but yet who I am is really not changing. 

So what about you?  What are your core values? What activities embody the most of them?  I’d love to know.