The Value Map, an exercise

Posted by in Creativity

About a month ago, I decided to ask the dreaded question: “Am I fulfilled with what I am doing?” To many, from the outside, I live a dream life of freedom and travel. I can name drop international brands as clients and still work with startuppers and solopreneurs. I can share a cool office space and enjoy good time with my coworkers, and work remotely from solo road-trips in foreign countries. You’d think I have it all… But I’m still questioning the meaning behind all this and the contribution I’m making to the world. So, after exploring Sparks a bit and trying to figure out what lights my fire, it was time to design my value map.

Why and how do you create a value map?

“The point of life is happiness.”
—The Dalai Lama

The whole idea behind the value map is to provide a path toward happiness. The feeling of happiness that you get when you do something great, something that rocks your world, something that you’re proud of. Something that just perfectly resonates with who you are and what you stand for.

So where to start? Inspired by Danielle LaPorte’s The Desire Map: A Guide to Creating Goals With Soul, I started with words. I wrote down 30 of my basic values.

This gave me a better idea of what I wanted more of in my life, but it still was too vague to really express what I stood for. So I circled the five values I felt most strongly about.

I know, my five core values are probably very different from what you might have picked in that list. Actually, you probably wouldn’t have the same list at all… But that’s me, and, in order to feel fulfilled, that’s what I need the most in my daily life.

The last step was to mix this together in a form of manifesto that will give my values a bit of context and definition. There you go:

I want to make sure that at every moment, and in every aspect of my life I have the Freedom to choose and that I make each of my move intentionally and with a sense of Adventure ; to find ways to express my Creativity through my main activity and through other activities that I participate in ; and to be physically and emotionally Growing toward my better self and Inspired to do and be more.

This has become foundation of my decision making. Whatever it is, if it doesn’t feed into this value map, chances are I won’t consider it.

What is your value map? Don’t hesitate to share it with me in the comment section.

Cover photo by Ian Schneider