Recently in debriefing table discussions during a presentation on Return On Integrity, a participant confidently suggested that he knew his core values while simultaneously acknowledging that he couldn’t actually name even one of them. While his own personal experience may be paradoxically correct, my research and experience with multitudes of busy professionals would suggest there is a far greater chance that such a perspective skims the surface of a deceitful vagueness.

Let me be clear. Core values are not black and white.

Nor are values about making everything black and white. Far from it. A black and white perspective is most often drawn from our needs, wants … and ego. Not from our core. Our experience in the world is in 3-D living color. It is the clarity of our core that allows us to navigate the vagueness of our colorful experiences in a way that continually helps us further understand the richness we intentionally define at our core.

In fact, a deceitful vagueness within our core often ignites a deepening need for “security” within our wants, needs and beliefs to see everything in black and white.

Often, we claim to “know” our core values without ever having tried to dig for them … much less trying to understand them.  The perception of “knowing” can create a deceitful vagueness.

It also can create a significant risk…

For the vagueness of our values is often the subtle breeze behind our drift.

As always, would love to see your comments and insights below: