How To Create A Values Aligned Community
The power of this type of community lays in the positive impact it can have on our lives, families, communities, and world. When creating or becoming part of a values aligned community, I invite you to engage in the following 10 step thought process:
Guess. Yes, guess what a values aligned community means to you personally and/or professionally. (Hint: it's totally fine to get this "wrong" [whatever that means] at the beginning and fine tune it over time.)
Identify why it matters to you to create a values aligned community and/or be part of one in the first place.
Get clear about what you care about and why since that will help you understand what your values are. (Hint: your values are likely to be a North Star in your life and/or touchstones you come back to time and time again in terms of how you understand and move through the world.)
Think about the behaviours that exemplify those values. These behaviours aim to reduce systemic harm in our society.
Identify how you live into your values through your every day actions.
Identify a handful of people in your life, interest community, work, or historical/cultural figures who live into similar values through their actions. (Hint: notice what they have in common since this will give you an idea of what to look for in community members)
Pay attention to the difference between an interest based community and a values aligned community. People can share interests without sharing values and vice versa. Chances are that a values aligned community will include people with different interests. To offer an over-simplified example, a hiking group is more likely to be an interest based group of people who enjoy hiking including people who may or may not value ease. A community of friends that values ease, and may or may not include people who enjoy hiking, is more likely to come together to support each other to live life with more ease in different aspect of their lives.
Explicitly express your values to community members you want to connect with and think about how you can come together around these.
Depending on which area of your life you want to create or be part of a values aligned community personally or professionally, start with one. One person. One core value. One reciprocal relationship based on mutual respect and go from there.
Invest time in reciprocal relationship building, which creates opportunities to celebrate wins and sustain losses.
After giving this thought process an initial and (wonderfully) imperfect go, I invite you to consider the following 4 values, 3 goals, and important cues as an example of what to tune into. Paying attention to these cues as you create and/or engage with values aligned communities can make a world of difference as to where you invest your time, energy, and resources. Check them out below:
Values - Physiological safety and ease:
Goal #1 - Develop nervous system flexibility or our nervous system's capacity to adapt to change through self-discovery and community building:
Physical Cue: What does your body or nervous system feel like before, during, and after you connect with community members?
Spiritual Cue: When you connect with different community members, to what extent does it feel like there's a connection to something greater, like your values?
Value - Curiosity:
Goal #2 - Become the leader you want to be in your personal and/or professional lives:
Mental Cue: What thoughts, ideas, and plans become possible when you discuss things that are important to you with your community members and are there opportunities for reciprocity?
Value - Loving kindness:
Goal #3 - Prevent and recover from different types of burnout through awareness and self-advocacy initiatives:
Emotional Cue: What do you feel like after you leave a conversation or an event with community members?
For coaching on defining your values and finding or creating a community that reflects these, book a Discovery Call with me today!