Tags: needs

Hyperdrive

G O A L S




13:15

This video from Mindvalley co-founder and CEO Vishen Lakhiani attempts to redefines goals-setting, and explains why the ones we have now are keeping us from reaching our fulfillment potential by discussing the difference in our motivations by way of societal goal-setting. A self-proclaimed "total personal growth junkie" he's out to "heighten human consciousness" and has spearheaded Awesomeness Fest a sort of TED Talks to share ideas on personal growth. He says, "Because goal setting, or at least the way most of us are trained to do it, actually gets us to be obsessed about the how of attaining our goals, rather than the passion, the vision, and the beauty of the goal itself."

Where have we heard this before?

A Spoonful of Sugar: I damn near preach that the journey, not the destination is what makes the destination worthwhile. I think you'd be hard press to enjoy all the destination has to offer without the fulfillment of how you got there.

Mennonite Pirates: A means to an end more poignant insofar as the journey is the point of the journey no matter the artificial borders we construct as destination.

So many of us in our younger years think that a means goal is actually a end goal; we confuse the two and both of these things are really, really, really different....End goals are beautiful, they are the end result of being human - end goals are about experiencing love, travelling around the world, being truly happy, contributing to the planet, learning a new skill. Means goals are the stuff that society tells us we need to have in place to get to happiness. For example getting a good GPA, getting into college, getting into a particular firm, being with one particular someone, getting a good review at work. The problem is we get so obsessed over these means goals that we lose sight of the end goals.

He goes on to talk about how all end goals fall into three buckets (and readers of this blog will no doubt also be familiar with these):

  • Experience

  • Growth

  • Contribution


He even quotes (HEXAREQUISITE, Pt. II - Needs of the Spirit) Tony Robbins! His suggestion that by setting end goals rather than means goals, we open ourselves up to more possibilities which fall outside the societal norm, thus gaining true happiness faster than "ordinary people."

Simply by asking, what drives you?

I will one day share a stage with this man.
Halloween

HEXAREQUISITE, Pt. II - Needs of the Spirit


Having discussed Tony Robbins "Personality Needs" in HEXAREQUISITE, its time to address the last two, what he calls Needs of the Spirit. I don't put much stock into that voodoo that you do and I roll my eyes at the new age passivity of the public face of peace. I marvel openly at those who practice both individual spirituality and organizational religion - as well at those who do not, and I giggle to myself when anyone attempts to instruct me on their polar vies of politics much as an armchair quarterback confidently critiques a televised billion-dollar glamour industry play in four-quarters. I am gentle with my children when they need me to be and hard on them when required. Knowing that many different people do many different things for many different reasons isn't enough. Knowing why unlocks compassion. The "golden-rule" is flawed, but its a fantastic starting point. Sociology isn't in the knowing that cultures differs, its in endeavoring to know why. Only through knowledge can we begin to understand not only ourselves, but others - and this solves a whole host of both existing, and potential problems.

NEEDS OF THE SPIRIT - unlike personality needs, which we all find a way to fulfill in one form or another, while essential to human fulfillment, not everyone finds a a way to satisfy these, although they are necessary for lasting fulfillment:

  1. GROWTH:
    The first one is growth, which is one of the most powerful needs. Simply said, if you are not growing you are dying. Unused muscles and neurons, atrophy; unused knowledge and skills, forgotten. If you help others to be fulfilled, you will be fulfilled. Friedman (2005) observes:

    “When you have a pathway to be The Man or The Woman, you tend to focus on the path and on achieving your dreams. When you have no pathway, you tend to focus on your wrath and on nursing your memories.”

    Yet, it is also true that with reflection — the analytical examination of our memories, we can choose the right pathway to fulfilling our dreams, otherwise we could only be repeating the same mistakes we made, never really learning the lessons we ought to have learned. Problems, adversities and challenges make us grow strong, but it is the decisions we make that are the bedrock of our own individuality. It makes us, who we are!*

  2. CONTRIBUTION:
    Robbins’ second primary need is the need for contribution. Often, we will do more for other people than what we will do for ourselves. To meet this need on a higher level we need to be willing to consistently give to others that which you wish to receive. A possible rewording of The Golden Rule: do unto others what you like others do unto you? Thus, to have a rewarding life, we need to go from being “culturally successful”, to being fulfilled. To help others when and while we can is even more rewarding than helping ourselves to fulfill own desires, wishes and dreams while trampling the humanity of others.*

When our needs for love, growth and contribution are satisfied, they tend to encompass all our other needs. When we focus on something beyond ourselves, most of our problems and sources of pain become less significant. Contribution is the human need that effectively regulates your other five needs - If you are focused on contributing to others, you have the certainty of being able to contribute (there is always a way); you have variety (contribution is highly interactive); you have significance because you know you are helping others and improving their lives; the spiritual bond created when you help others gives you a deep sense of connection; and you grow by creatively helping others.*

It would seem that while the entire population of the earth is understandably at different levels of needs, in order to have a fulfilling, intimate relationship with someone - mutual understanding - it is imperative that the parties involved understand and acknowledge their own levels of need. Someone who's priorities are meeting personality needs will be unable to reach intimacy with someone who's goals are fulfilling needs of the spirit. Not necessarily incompatible, but as we learned about personal values this is reflected in behavior and when individuals engaged in relationships are striving for dissimilar needs, obvious conflict would deny each party fulfillment of their own needs and render them unable to meet the needs of the other.

This is not wrong, simply problematic. Seek relationships with those who's needs mirror your own, otherwise fulfillment - a rewarding life - will never be met. This is not to say that we need to strive to find people who believe everything we do and only agree with our beliefs, rather finding people who have a desire to pursue growth and contribution no matter ideologies over the pursuit of tangible goods or self-serving personality needs.

As Tony Robbins himself infers, not everyone will ascend to fulfillment because "People at the lower levels of moral reasoning tend to come up with simplistic solutions. When these solutions don't work or backfire, they become baffled.* Given that intimate relationships are based on the mutual cooperation and understanding to equally fulfill all needs of self and all needs of others, someone in a "mixed" relationship who pursues personality needs may be incapable of balancing their own needs along with the needs of others, one of the earmarks of post-conventional values.

It is very hard to get to this level if a persons values the other human needs before contribution. Again paradoxically the easiest way to fulfill all the human needs in a positive way is to focus on the needs of the spirit first. By valuing these needs the highest you will experience love because you will be in a state of love...which will elicit the experience of love for others. There will be great variety as this is what is required of growth and you will feel significant because you are contributing, having a positive influence on those around you.*

It all comes back to intrinsic motivation. Those of us who eschew material pursuits do so because we do not require them to make us happy - our happiness comes from who we are and out ability to positively illicit conflict resolution through a genuine understanding of ourselves, our needs, and understanding and meeting the needs of others - though I cannot resolve meeting the needs of those who's primary goal is solely having either their needs met (pre-conventional values) or only meeting my needs (conventional values). It conflicts with the symmetry and balance of post-conventional values.

If a person doesn’t value growth highly enough then the motivation won’t be there to go through the necessary challenges that come along with the journey in the new direction. When a person refuses to meet the challenges of life they develop what are called safe problems. These are lingering issues that lie within a persons control to change...They are called safe because they stop having to deal with the quality problems that require growth.

The reason why growth is often experienced as painful is because it flushes up all the old conditioning from childhood that is buried in the subconscious. This is exactly why growth is so important for a happy life because by flushing up these old, outdated patterns and beliefs they can be cleared from the mind which allows the life energy to flow freer within a persons energy system. Having access to the energy of life puts a person in a different state, a state where problems are challenges which can be solved easily and creatively.*


In revisiting why defining values is so very important, I turned to Steve Pavlina's dissertation where he explains, "The ultimate goal of living your values is to eventually bring them into alignment with universal principles. As you experience living with different sets of values, you'll learn what's truly important to you. Your values are your current estimations of truth. They represent your answer to the question of how to live. Some sets of values will fail to produce the results you want. They may leave you feeling restless and unfulfilled. Other sets of values bring you closer to a feeling of congruence. When you act with integrity to values that are themselves aligned with universal principles, you get the best possible results."

Who EVER wants to settle for "restless and unfulfilled?" We all strive for "the best possible results." To that end I took a second look at his list of 413 values and attempted to craft my own personalized prioritization of values:

Transcendence
Curiosity
Symmetry
Knowledge
Open-mindedness

For me, these feed into each other, and through them I will gain accesses into other equally important endeavors, such as the welfare of my children. In my mind, I would be unable to focus effectively upon their welfare without first employing the above five. Ensuring their needs were met without also meeting my own would be doing them a disservice. Open-mindedness is required to absorb knowledge, knowledge assists in balance (symmetry) through which I discover by way of my insatiable curiosity: Transcendence, the ability to overcome these human trappings and become more than I am - to instruct my children in the very tangible lessons of happiness and positivity through personal development.

Personal Development*

  • improving self-awareness

  • improving self-knowledge

  • building or renewing identity

  • developing strengths or talents

  • improving wealth

  • spiritual development

  • identifying or improving potential

  • building employability or human capital

  • enhancing lifestyle or the quality of life

  • improving health

  • fulfilling aspirations

  • initiating a life enterprise or personal autonomy

  • defining and executing personal development plans

  • improving social abilities


What is in your list? Perhaps more importantly, why? Are you waiting for it to happen to you, or are you fighting for it - joyously seeking it every moment of every day?

Live life fully while you’re here. Experience everything. Take care of yourself and your friends. Have fun, be crazy, be weird. Go out and screw up! You’re going to anyway, so you might as well enjoy the process. Take the opportunity to learn from your mistakes: find the cause of your problem and eliminate it. Don’t try to be perfect; just be an excellent example of being human. ~Tony Robbins*

Department of Peace

HEXAREQUISITE



So often people blame events for how their lives have turned out.
Yet what really shapes our lives is the meaning we attach to events.
~ Tony Robbins




We went out to eat the other day, and was served by a bright-eyed, cheerful young lady who took the time to speak directly to us, ask us about our day AND keep our iced teas filled. "She's going places," my wife quipped. As she brought us the bill she thanked us for looking her in the eye while speaking to her, "So many customers nowadays won't even do that!" We left a 50% tip.

Attempting to connect motivation, values, goals and needs to better understand myself and others is a daunting task insofar as not only are they all separate entities, they seemingly feed into each other from a myriad of directions, making their interoperatbility a single cohesive unit.

Wikipedia defines the four as follows:

Motivation is the psychological feature that arouses an organism to action toward a desired goal and elicits, controls, and sustains certain goal directed behaviors.

Values can be defined as broad preferences concerning appropriate courses of action or outcomes.

A goal is an objective, or a projected computation of affairs, that a person or a system plans or intends to achieve.

To most psychologists, need is a psychological feature that arouses an organism to action toward a goal, giving purpose and direction to behavior.

So once again we're going to tread the waters of actions and behavior. Color me unsurprised. As we've previously discussed how values and behavior are connected we'll now assume motivation is the the trigger for need and explore how behavior reflects it.

When I think of needs I immediately visualize Masolw's pyramid. And more recently Tony Robbins' "Six Human Needs" This is brought into play because...

IF:

The main benefit of knowing your values is that you will gain tremendous clarity and focus, but ultimately you must use that newfound clarity to make consistent decisions and take committed action.

Consciously knowing and living by our values is extremely important. Values act as our compass to put us back on course every single day, so that day after day, we're moving in the direction that takes us closer and closer to our definition of the "best" life we could possibly live. The "best" is your own ideal, but generally as you get closer to this ideal, you'll enjoy increasingly positive shades of "better" even if you never reach "best." And this makes sense because many results in life exist on a continuum. There are some discrete entities like being married or not married, but your health, financial status, relationship intimacy, and level of happiness are generally continuous, meaning that they can gradually get better or worse. It seems reasonable that more health, happiness, wealth, intimacy, inner peace, love, etc. is better than less.
*

AND:

Decisions shape destiny.

THEN:

Our needs are what we are pursuing by way of our decisions. Whatever our needs are at any given time, our values will shift to accommodate them and our behavior will immediately reflect to achieve it. Ergo, the future we desire!

Knowing - identifying exactly - our needs, suddenly becomes more than just an esoteric pastime. They are fundamental to not only our every day lives (as reflected in our behavior), but also to our very future, to which is tied health, happiness, wealth, intimacy, inner peace, love, etc. That is a veritable laundry list of positive items that can result from just one question. What are our needs?

Mr. Robbins separated human needs into two areas which he called "Personality Needs" and "Needs of the Spirit" which I think deserve a second look given they might help us define our future and positively modify our behavior to obtain it. For this entry, we'll focus only on the first four personality needs, linking to four different sources at an attempt at well-roundedness...

  1. CERTAINTY:

  2. We want to feel safe, avoid pain, and feel comfortable in our environment and our relationships. Every individual needs to have some sense of certainty and security. Even though some certainty is necessary to all of us, what constitutes certainty varies from individual to individual. Code words for certainty are comfort, security, safety, stability, feeling grounded, predictability and protection.* If people have a high reliance on the human need to feel certain in life it can inhibit a truly happy life because an important part of meeting the needs of the spirit involves being able to feel uncertain, since a large part of growth relies around the ability to go outside oneself and to push boundaries.*

  3. UNCERTAINTY/VARIETY:

  4. If you get too much certainty in your life you become bored and your life becomes monotonous. Many people have this challenge so they crave variety or uncertainty in their life. It can also be described as surprise, difference, diversity, challenge or excitement* for variety and challenges that will exercise our emotional and physical range. Everyone needs some variety in life. Our bodies, our minds, our emotional well being all require uncertainty, exercise, suspense, surprise.

  5. SIGNIFICANCE:

  6. A sense of being needed or having a purpose, uniqueness or the need to feel important. "There's a healthy way to pursue both [significance and variety]," Robbins says, "and an unbalanced way: When you buy a yacht for significance, there is always going to be someone with another, nicer yacht. How long can that significance last? When the desire for significance or certainty is driving you, you're going to be unhappy," he said. "You have to switch your priority to growth or love. Those are better leads."*

  7. CONNECTION/LOVE:

  8. The fourth and final need to fulfill for everyone walking the planet is the need for love and or connection. A lot of the time people settle for the feeling or connection because love requires the ability to be able to grow and contribute to someone or something outside yourself. [If we don't love selflessly] it is hard to experience love which can only come when someone else’s needs are put before their own (which paradoxically is the easiest way to fulfill our deepest needs). Adults tend to find it easier to experience love from family members and their children than with an intimate partner because with family and children there is a sense (illusionary) of certainty that they will never leave them.*

While we all probably understand these things at different levels, what seems apparent is that pursing or meeting solely our personality needs will lead to attachment and suffering at one end, and mediocrity at the other. Yes we need these things to survive, but I would argue there's a chasm between those who seek survival, and those who seek to live.





Anna Seal

Why We Do What We Do





The only thing I knew about this guy before I saw the video was that he played himself in the Jack Black movie, Shallow Hal. And the no-pants thing in the elevator was HYSTERICAL. Apparently Jack Black ad-libbed that - it wasn't in the script.

I'm always nervous about watching videos over sixty-seconds in length - as busy as I am my attention span is put to far better use with the written word, so I was dubious about this comparatively lengthy 21-minute presentation. Five minutes into it I was completely captivated, and I don't even recall the remaining time passing at that point.

For those like me, I'll touch on the highlights from my perspective: Decisions shape destiny. "So, the question we've got to ask ourselves really is...what is it that shapes us? And we live in a...mindset that we are our past. And everybody in this room -- you wouldn't be in this room if you bought that theory -- Most of society thinks biography is destiny. The past equals the future. And of course it does if you live there. But what people in this room know, and what we have to remind ourselves, though -- because you can know something intellectually, you can know what to do and then not use it, not apply it." We don't have to be slaves to that which we were taught.

"Your model of the world is what shapes you long term. Your model of the world is the filter. That's what's shaping us. That's what makes people make decisions." Your model of the world. Your worldview. That very malleable thing that can help us break free from the chains which bind us if we take the time to compare that which we don't understand to our own belief system - either that thing we don't understand is wrong, or our beliefs surrounding it are. How many of you have the courage to question your beliefs?

And then he talks about needs. Needs each of require. He breaks it out into four "personality" needs, and two needs of the "spirit" which are growth, and to contribute beyond ourselves. "We all need all six, but whatever your lead system is, tilts you in a different direction. And as you move in a direction, you have a destination or destiny. [The first piece is the target that shapes you] The second piece is the map. Think of that as the operating system that tells you how to get there...So my invitation to you is this: explore your web, the web in here -- the needs, the beliefs, the emotions that are controlling you, for two reasons: so there's more of you to give -- and achieve too, we all want to do it -- but I mean give, because that's what's going to fill you up. And secondly, so you can appreciate -- not just understand, that's intellectual, that's the mind -- but appreciate what's driving other people. It's the only way our world's going to change."
shedding, gloves off

Rules of Engagement




Ever Seeking



I've finally defined what is alive in me. Curiosity. About, as it turns out, very nearly everything. Its what drives me. Self-improvement is a rabid byproduct of my discoveries. That and the humbling knowledge that the more I know, the more I know I don't know. And as I am wont to do, I strive for balance between the two.

Here recently I've been very distressed over my apparent inability to effectively communicate. While stating your needs in a non-judgmental way may be enlightening for two parties who want to embrace non-violent communication, convincing someone who is less enthusiastic about it has proved challenging. It reminds me of the t-shirt which reads, "I CAN EXPLAIN IT TO YOU BUT I CAN'T UNDERSTAND IT FOR YOU." Dorothy Parker and horticulture for a dawning new age.

I'm half way through Sun Tzu's The Art of War and I'm waiting for him to get to the valuable lessons of defeat. For all of his enlightenment, so far he hasn't shown a penchant for lessons learned through failure. I suppose that 2500 years ago in China that meant only the finality of death. My first work of non-fiction should be The Art of Defeat as a guide for the next two and a half millennium. Then again I am learning quite a bit about the adverse psychology of siege warfare both in the pages and in real life; entropy at an escalating scale.

But every once in a while I find something new to consider. In this case I present to you from the critical thinking textbook, THINK a short introduction to communication styles and how important it is to not only know yourself, but your communication partner in order to achieve that ever-elusive intimate level:

The way we communicate cannot be separated from who we are. Understanding our own styles and those of others facilitates good communication in relationships and and critical thinking skills. There are four basics types of communication style: assertive, aggressive, passive, and passive-aggressive.

  • The assertive style is how we express ourselves when we are confident and our self-esteem is strong. Like effective critical thinkers, assertive communicators are able to clearly communicate their own needs but also know their limits. Assertive communicators care about relationships and strive for mutually satisfactory solutions.

  • The aggressive communication style involves the attempt to make other people do what we want or meet our needs through manipulation and control tactics. Passive communicators do the opposite.

  • Passive communication is based on compliance and efforts to avoid confrontation at all costs. They don't want to rock the boat and often put their needs after those of others.

  • Passive-aggressive communicators combine elements of the passive and aggressive styles. They avoid direct confrontation (passive) but use devious and sneaky means of manipulation (aggressive) to get their own way.

Effective communication skills are one of the characteristics of a good critical thinker. A healthy, assertive communication style and the ability to correctly interpret others' communication are important in the establishment of an intimate relationship. As relationships develop, how effectively and appropriately each person communicates appears to outweigh other factors, such as appearance or similarity, when determining relationship satisfaction.

Unfortunately, many of us are notoriously inaccurate at interpreting others' communication. In a study, participants correctly interpreted only 73 percent of their intimate partner's supportive behavior and 89 percent of their negative behavior. Failing to notice the communication of affection may leave our partner wondering if we really care. At other times, we may misinterpret our partner's behavior as angry or pushy and needlessly provoke an argument that is based on our misperception. Thus, it is important to establish effective communication behaviors and patterns if you want a relationship to succeed.




psychology

Values: The Beating Heart of Behavior





I recently made the deductive statement that one's personal values surely changed as one ascended from one hierarchical need to the next, but when asked to back up my claim I found I wasn't immediately able to deduce why that may be the case. After all, aren't values inherent to who we are not only immovably individual, but also collectively cultural? This is what I have set out to prove or disprove.

In starting my search, I first had to define values - aren't they our guiding principles to differentiate between right and wrong and good and evil? Much easier to subjugate when I was younger, but now that I'm older and have my own thoughts about things, not so much. Perhaps maturity modifies ones values? After all, the passing of time allows intervals for experience; experience may yield lessons; lessons afford us the opportunity to learn; learning expands knowledge; knowledge which can be utilized grants us wisdom; wisdom changes us irrevocably. But is wisdom alone maturity?

"Maturity indicates how a person responds to the circumstances or environment in an appropriate manner. This response is generally learned and encompasses being aware of the correct time and place to behave and knowing when to act appropriately, according to the situation and the culture of the society one lives in."* So a learned response! And what is this about behavior all of a sudden, I thought we were discussing values?

People act according to their values which come from beliefs that stem from their worldview.*

So...values dictate to us how we act; behave. Interesting! I suppose one ought to start with their worldview in order to understand how that translates to behavior, because values seem to be affected by the beliefs which are spawned from it. So what is a worldview? James W. Sire, in Discipleship of the Mind, defines world view as, "... a set of presuppositions...which we hold...about the makeup of our world." Ah, presuppositions!

Presuppositions rest upon that which a person considers to be the truth of what exists. People's presuppositions lay a grid for all they bring forth into the external world. Their presuppositions also provide the basis for their values and therefore the basis for their decisions." ~Francis Schaeffer

Basically, your worldview is what you think the world ought to be. Where have we heard that word "ought" before? SHOULD STATEMENTS – Patterns of thought which imply the way things "should" or "ought" to be rather than the actual situation the person is faced with.

Basically worldviews are manifestations of cognitive distortion! Now we're getting somewhere.

If you deny that your worldview fundamentally affects what you think and do, then you must acknowledge that your behavior is impulsive, reflexive, or emotional at best; ignorant or irrational at worst. Assuming that a worldview can be incorrect or at least inappropriate, if your worldview is erroneous, then your behavior is misguided, even wrong. If you fail to examine, articulate, and refine your worldview, then your worldview may in fact be wrong, with the above consequences, and you will always be ill-prepared to substantiate your beliefs and justify your acts, for you will have only proximate opinions and direct sensory evidence as justification.*

If we are supposed to, "examine, articulate, and refine" our worldview, then by default a change in our beliefs, values, and behavior will follow. Not only does it alter our values, but so does everything connected to it, every single time we reevaluate. And I aggressively reevaluate without provocation.







Like a stack of dominoes, once your worldview is modified, so then are the beliefs which are built atop it - "You want your beliefs to change. It's proof that you are keeping your eyes open, living fully, and welcoming everything that the world and people around you can teach you."* This means that peoples' beliefs should evolve as they gain new experiences, and when a person changes one belief, a multitude of other beliefs seem also to change simultaneously and effortlessly. Dispositionalism suggests that by changing the surrounding beliefs and desires, very different behavior may result.* As we have seen, the link between beliefs and behavior, are values.

If our worldview can and should change as we learn more, which can and rightly should then change our beliefs, then absolutely our values not only can change to match, but also should. This is covered in chapter 9 of the critical thinking textbook, Think where they discuss Lawrence Kohlberg's Development of Moral Reasoning. Development; growth, a process. Not only can values modify themselves, there is an identified, repeatable sequence - it is how we know what values are and measure them. A person's stage of moral development is correlated with his or her behavior.

  1. PRECONVENTIONAL VALUES
    • Stage 1
      • Does only what needs to be done to take care of self and avoid punishment.

    • Stage 2
      • Satisfy own needs first, consider other's needs only if it benefits you.


  2. CONVENTIONAL VALUES
    • Stage 3
      • Put other's needs first, maintain good relationships, conform to peer norms and seek approval from others.

    • Stage 4
      • Respect authority and societal norms; maintain existing social order.


  3. POSTCONVENTIONAL VALUES


Unfortunately less than 10% of American adults ever reach the postconventional level or moral reasoning; values. People with lower levels of moral reasoning tend to come up with simplistic solutions and then are baffled when they do not work. People outgrow their old way of thinking *when* it becomes inadequate for resolving more complex problems. Movement to a higher stage is usually triggered by new ideas or experiences that conflict with their worldview.

Now comes the really interesting part. You don't have to continue living by the same values. You can consciously change them - even radically if desired. You can go from a person who values peace most highly to one whose top priority is success, or vice versa. You are not your values. You are the thinker of your thoughts, but you are not the thoughts themselves. Your values are your current compass, but they aren't the real you. Why would you ever want to change your values? You may want to change your values when you understand and accept where they are taking you, and you realize that what you appear to value right now will not enable you to enjoy the "best" possible life for you.*

Which brings us to behavior. Behavior is the visible portion of our values - which we now understand to be a very fluid thing based on our ever-changing environment and our open-minded incorporation of new data. You cannot be open-minded and remain unchanged. Because of the trickle-up effect we've just outlined, if you find yourself behaving the same year after year, month after month or even day after day you know you are close-minded because your worldview has not changed.

So what are values? Here's a list of 418 of them. The author of that list says, "The next step is to prioritize your list. This is usually the most time consuming and difficult step because it requires some intense thinking." But don't forget our magnificent ability to think we are things we are not! From my Relationships post:

But being honest with yourself is is not so easy. There's a little thing called self-deception that gets in the way.*

I run across this all the time - people who think their values embody something like benevolence and goodwill but who's visible actions denote fear or greed. So while your behavior may be inconsistent with your stated values, there is no such thing as a right or wrong list. Just be aware that someone else's value priority may be different than your own, and this will absolutely manifest itself through behavior.

Me and my values? They are changing all the time. Every time I have a new thought, or leap to a new conclusion, or reach some personal milestone. My values these days are meta-values, those which underpin the kind of peace which can only come from a successful familiarization with one's self. In attempting to compile my list from the 418 options I was shocked I couldn't find my highest priority on there:


Symmetry.