What are your Values?

Have you ever done the Values Sort exercise from Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT)? Here is my version: Values Sort & Values Based Decision Making, which I use frequently with clients.

The thing about the values list is that all of them are considered positive. It got me thinking about the concept of “opposite positives.” When it comes to values, the opposite of love is not hate…so what is it?

Another tool I use often in therapy is the Feeling Wheel, which is a tool developed by Gloria Wilcox, PhD. In the Feeling Wheel, each emotion has an opposite emotion – on one side are the positive and the other side the negative emotions. But there are degrees of these, and varying intensities of emotion. What is a positive emotion to some may not be to others, at least not to the same degree.

That struck me as similar to Values – what is positive to some is not to others. So with some thought and trial and error, I came up with this Values Wheel:

I think of it as a tool to help clarify the conflicts in values and the goals people have – sometimes, the clarity of what you do not want is helpful to determining what you do want.

When doing the Values Sort exercise, people often identify things that they do NOT want – and I always ask them to think of it as what they would like added to their life, not taken away.

These may not be opposites to everyone. But my goal is to make you think, to help you figure out what your values and goals are – it is different for everyone! Let me know what you think! Information@windoverwater.net