I was awakened last night by a mob of teenagers hanging out on the corner… clearly drinking… yelling to be heard over other yellers in the group… some were driving… not thinking about consequence. My biggest concerns were strewn beer cans and the males marking territory on a lamp post and nearby houses.
When I was a teen, I didn’t think about consequence much either.
If the teens had known their core values, would they have made different decisions? Would the young girls have packed into a truck with more people than seat belts and a drinking driver? Would the young boys have whizzed wobbly-legged on a light post in front of the girls? Hormones do most of the thinking in teenagers and I do remember it takes a lot of effort to not bend to peer pressure. (I wasn't very successful.)
Perhaps their fate is exactly as it was happening. Who knows?
All I know is… for me… knowing my Core Values helps me make much better decisions.
So… how did I find my Core Values? Well… they weren’t lost in the first place. I’ve always had them. All I needed was to remember what they are and re-member with who I am. It’s the answer to why I do things. Because I want to is not the answer to why. Why do I want to is the real question. What value does this bring to me?
Why is it all this coaching-touchy-feely-living life authentically stuff seems to go on and on and on about living life authentically with your values? It seems to be a broken record. I sure as hell didn’t want to dig into my own crap and sift through the refuse of broken promises (to myself and others) to figure any of this out. It hurt too much. Right?
Not so much. It’s not that it was easy to look at decisions I had made and why. It wasn't. It was sometimes painful and sometimes shameful... even if I didn't share it with others. I avoided thinking about certain events in my life because it made me feel bad or guilty. But… but… BUT… I felt world’s better knowing why I did stuff afterward. And judging by the few hundred people I have personally seen and helped go through the same exercises, not one… not a single one… regretted the process and coming out the other side knowing why they did stuff.
Will the teens regret what they did last night? Maybe. Maybe not. It depends on whether they are aligned with their values.
It is impossible to feel guilt if your actions are in alignment with your values.
Thankfully, I fell right back to sleep.Namaste
** For a start about redicovering your core values, see the attached link: Core Values