Why putting our values in hierarchy is important
Assuming that you have taken your time to identify your values, it’s very important to become clear about the hierarchy they are in as well. Why is that?
Because we can share values with the people we surround ourselves with, but have completely different ways of living them depending on what is most important to us.
To show an example;
Lets say that you and your newfound romantic partner shares these top values; Love, Health, Adventure, Fun and Wealth.
Your hierarchy might look like this:
What does this hierarchy tell about you?
Well, it tells me that you might be a fun-loving, adventurous person who also is ambitious, and maybe not the kind of person you would find in the gym, but you are probably taking somewhat good care of your body in other ways, in fun and adventurous ways like skydiving, mountain-climbing or something like that!
So, and you meet this wonderful person and you share these values with him/her, but their hierarchy(of the same values) is the complete opposite and looks like this;
What does this say about the other person?
If health is the most important thing in the world for this person, you will probably find that they are more ‘responsible’ than you perhaps when it comes to their health and wouldn’t risk jumping out of a plane with you.
They might need more intimacy than you because their need for giving and receiving love is bigger than yours.
And they might not work on their goals and careers as much as you, because money is not that important to them.
A conflict in values could look like this; his/her need for love may become clinginess to you, and the adventurous side of you might eventually decide to have an affair with a person that is not as ‘needy’.
There might be some issues of accusing each other to not be there for one another; one of you hangs out in the gym all the time while the other one pursues success; working a lot etc. To name a few.
When we know the other persons values, we can understand more easily where they are coming from and with that knowledge we can also see more clearly why others are doing what they are doing and behaving like they are, even at times when we thought we shared the same values with them, and by that we can prevent issues in the relationship.
We are most happy in our lives when we live in congruent with our own true values, and we are most fulfilled when we live in alignment with what is most important to us so it’s important to respect each others hierarchy of values as well.
~No one is right or wrong, only different! 🙂