Meet my CGI values mascot!
A few years back, I wanted to create a visual reminder of my core values. At the time they were Activity, Authenticity, Gratitude, Accountability and Initiative. I sketched out some ideas. In Finnish the first letters could be arranged to spell VAAKA (scale ⚖️.). This brought in an added reminder for balance that I quite liked, but it felt too static for Activity and Initiative. I eventually drew up a rough version of a penguin taking a step forward (check out instagram to see version 1.0).
Earlier this year I chose to reconsider my personal values. The process resulted in the three core values of Compassion, Gratitude, and Initiative.
Compassion (❤️) - By practicing compassion and self-compassion, I will open myself up to the present moment, recognise our common humanity and pursue to support those suffering (myself included) non-judgementally. I see compassion as embodying key aspects of authenticity and accountability.
Concrete ways to practice this value: Active listening and self-compassion meditation exercises.
Gratitude (😊) - Recognising what I have and stopping to appreciate it. I've found openly expressing sincere gratitude to be extremely rewarding. Sharing is caring.
Concrete ways to practice this value: Gratitude journal. Thanking others, and yourself. I occasionally thank my legs after a run.
Initiative (👟)- Taking that first step. I love to plan and make lists. Unfortunately, even the best plans are useless without action. Similarly, waiting for the conditions to be "just right" can leave you waiting for a long time. Also, it doesn't help that our brains are great "excuse" generators. If taking that first step won't cause harm to yourself or others, take it. Getting started helps build momentum to get the ball rolling. At times taking initiative involves asking for help.
Concrete ways to practice this value: Thank your mind for its concern (the excuses), take a breath and step into the task. When necessary, take the smallest possible step. This could involve putting your phone down. Opening the drawer where you keep your yoga mat or training socks. Ask for help.
Personally, this is the most challenging of the three values. It is also one reason* my mascot is a penguin taking a step forward. Penguins are clumsy on land. They stumble and fall. Yet they keep moving toward their destination. This penguin is a permission slip to myself: "You are allowed to make mistakes along the way."
What would your values mascot look like?
Please get in touch for help with clarifying your values.
*Other reasons: Penguins are awesome and I love nature.
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