3 min read
Identifying a shared set of values creates synergy in your relationship. The foundation you cultivate with your partner will act as a guide when challenging decisions have to be made that conflict with individual values.
Draft a list of your most important values. Let yourself be inspired by quotes you find yourself saying, things you strongly believe in, and areas you would like to work on.
In our relationship, we use value stones to cultivate the energy that we would like to invite into our home. We like to customize and personalize traditional values. For example, “You catch more flies with honey than you do with vinegar”, for us is “heal with honey.” We do this by asking ourselves what is it about this idea that we find important and what we are trying to live by.
Activities to Explore
Practicing what you preach requires awareness. Having a conversation on what you value brings intentionality to your relationship. Placing your values in a visible place acts as a reminder to keep partners honest and committed to them.
Explore what you want your relationship to be built upon.
- Identify common themes in both your lists.
- Be curious and dig deep. Share examples and rationale behind your values.
- From what you learn, draft a set of shared core values.
Place the collection in a high-traffic area for better visibility (like the fridge).
We started our relationship with the assumption that “we understood” each other. We caught ourselves in a pattern of missed connections and hurt feelings. While doing this exercise we realized we had very different definitions and understanding of common words like punctuality and honesty. Today, we use our shared value system to work from a common foundation, creating a stronger and healthier relationship.
Even though values are written on stones, they are not set in stone. Time changes people and what they believe in, and with it comes a need to rebalance the values partners agree upon. Discuss how often you would like to revisit and update your list.