Dare to Lead: Brave Work. Tough Conversations. Whole Hearts., by Brene Brown. This is one of those books that will become a standard in my coaching and consulting programs. I’ve read it through already and will re-read it because it is just that good. Pay particular attention to the chapter called Living into Our Values. If you haven’t yet done a core values exercise (where you select from a list of values), you’re in luck because this chapter will take you through that exercise and ask you to select 2 core values.

I’ve done this exercise before and was asked to select 5. I thought that was hard because that list had 52 values. This time I was asked to select two. It takes a while, but wow, how powerful! What I love about the way Brene approaches this are the prompts and questions that help you understand where you really live those values and what to do if you see yourself in conflict with them. From page 190 in the book: “Ask yourself: Does this define me? Is this who I am at my best? Is this a filter that I use to make hard decisions?”

My values are connection and creativity. I see those everywhere I look and I am most productive and happiest when I can easily identify how a project, a conversation, or a quiet moment embodies those two values. And on the flip side I get really uncomfortable when I sense a lack of connection and creativity. Good news, though– Brene Brown provides some great insight on what to do to work through that discomfort.

I’d love to hear what your core values are! When you take the assessment, let me know here.