What does 'living in alignment' actually mean and how do we actually do that? That's exactly what I dive into for this episode. When you're feeling stuck or like something is just "off" in your life, or that you're afraid you're missing out on living a truly fulfilled life - it's because you're likely out of alignment.
We'll talk about aligning your values, priorities, and mind and how to do that so you're living an authentic, purposeful, and fulfilling life.
Free Consult Call with Katy
Core Values List
Episode 2: Balance is a Myth
Episode 17: A Life-Changing Through Model
Hey everyone, welcome back to another episode of Motherhood Aligned with me, Katy Weade, your resident podcast host and Life Coach for moms. Whether this is the first episode that you’re tuning into or if you’ve been with me since I launched the show a whole 21 episodes ago, thank you so much for being here. As always, my goal is to continue to bring you topics that you’ll find valuable as you’re navigating being the best mom you can be, while also enjoying and making space for all of the other areas of your life, too. As moms we wear so many different hats and juggling it all can really take a toll on us. I want to help you cut through all of that. So you may remember, one of the very first episodes of this podcast was called Balance is a Myth and it got a lot of really great feedback. It resonated with so many of you, because it’s true.
I’ll touch a bit on the concept of why I believe balance is a myth as a refresher, but what we’re really going to dive further into today is the concept of Alignment and HOW to be aligned. Living an “aligned” life rather than a “balanced” life is something I think about often. As I mentioned in episode 2, so much so that I named this podcast and my coaching practice Motherhood Aligned. So I wanted to share with you in more detail what aligned means to me and how I incorporate the idea of living in alignment into my everyday decisions and life plan.
Ok, so as a quick refresher you may remember that I used the visual of an old time scale with two platforms on either side. When you put something heavy on the left side then the right side will inch up into the air until you put something of equal or more weight to even it out or weigh down the other side. So, let’s say we put work on the left hand side of that scale and home on the right hand side. If you’re extremely busy at work for a big project going on that left hand side is going to be carrying a lot of weight and it will be really hard to balance out the right hand side. And vise versa, sometimes there’s a sick kid or something else going on at home that is going to outweigh whatever is happening at work. So trying to balance these two very big parts of your life will always feel like a game you’ll never win. And where is there room on this scale for everything else? Self care, time with friends and extended family, and everything else you’ve got going on in your life.
So as I said in episode 2, to me, living in alignment means prioritizing and putting a plan together to make sure you’re being purposeful with your time and energy in a way that won’t drain you because it is actually fulfilling you instead. It’s about aligning work, home, health, friendships, and any other major life category that is important to you with what you truly desire. So HOW do we do that?
I think the first step to living in alignment is to identify your personal values. Because our values are, or at least should be, the guiding principles of our lives. In a nutshell, personal values are the things that are important to us. At the core, they are what motivate us to make our decisions.I think too often we’re not connected to our values or purposefully using them to guide our decisions, which can cause us to feel out of alignment. We can use our values as a guiding foundation for decision making. Our values can also inspire us to make changes for the better in our lives and stay true to who we aspire to be. There’s a quote from the book Unaplogetically You by Steve Maraboli that says “A lof of the conflict you have in your life exists simply because you’re not living in alignment; you’re not being true to yourself.” And I agree.
So there are a few ways you can identify your values, but what I like to do is first spend some time reflecting by journaling about what really matters to me, what’s most important. You can think about things like who and what inspires you, what makes you feel most alive and like yourself or most authentic? You can also jot down situations that have felt off in some way. What was going on and why was it negative for you.
After you’ve done some reflection, find a really great list of values and circle each one that speaks to you, based on what you’ve already journaled. This isn’t about just circling what sounds good or what will make you look good. What do you authentically value? Because when we know and honor our core values consistently, we experience more fulfillment. Then from there you can group any similar values together and rank them in order of importance. The list can be as long or as short as you’d like, I’d suggest keeping the list to mayb 5-10 and then really narrowing in on the top 5. just make sure they are all reflective of how you prefer to live your life. These will serve as the basis of your core values system.
You may not be living in alignment with each of the values right now, but it will help you in your future decision making so you can move towards alignment. Identifying your values this way will give you a pretty good idea if you take the time to really think them through and how they impact your life. I will link to a good resource in the show notes that lists a bunch of values.
Your values can change over time and will be unique to you. For example, somebody may have wellness as a top value. This would show up in their lives when it comes to things like exercise and nutrition, and things like mindfulness and mental health. While somebody else may have Achievement as a top core value which might show up as a larger importance for that person to challenge themselves at work and always be climbing upward.
The bottom line is, once you’re aligned with your values you should grow close with them. Use them to get to know yourself even better and to make choices based on what you value most.
Once you have your values down and you feel pretty darn good about them, I want you to make a second list. These are your priorities in life. Spend some time thinking about this. What is REALLY important to you. You can journal this out a bit again, but ultimately come up with a list of priorities that you can rank in order of importance. I used to find that my top priority was more time with my kids and my top value was family, but my life didn’t really reflect that. I was in a job that required me to catch a train often times before my kids woke up and if I was lucky I’d get home just in time to have dinner with them and put them to bed. Talk about out of alignment. I was really struggling because my lifestyle was not reflecting my values. I recognized this and redesigned my life to align with my values and priorities. Another example of being out of alignment could be for example if you say you value wellness, but you aren’t taking care of yourself in a way that reflects that - you’re going to continue to be unsatisfied until your life embodies your values.
Which I think brings us to the next one - aligning your mind. This is the hardest part because it takes a lot of work. Your mind wants to keep you safe with what’s familiar. So making changes in your life can be difficult and we often revert back to old habits. Now you may remember back in episode 17 when I introduced Brook Castillos thought model from The Life Coach School. Again the basic premise is that our circumstances are neutral, we then have a thought about the circumstance, which produces a feeling, which fuels our actions, which produces our results. It brings clarity to how both you and I can be presented with the same exact circumstance in life, but have completely different outcomes. It all comes down to our thoughts. Sort of like that old saying “whether you think you can or you think you can’t, you’re right”
But here’s where it gets really good. When you get to a point where the result you desire matches your circumstance, you’ve done the mind work to find alignment. WHAT?! I’ll use my earlier example of this. In the past, my circumstance was work was keeping me away from my family. The result I wanted was work that would allow me time with my family. I needed to work on my thoughts, feelings, and actions to change my result. Fast forward to today, my circumstance is work that allows me to be with my family more and my result matches. ALIGNMENT! Now obviously the work is in the middle, between your circumstance and your result, but hopefully you can see the relation and that there’s a mindful method to getting what you want. THIS is the heart of what I work on with my clients.
I want you to think about a circumstance in your life right now that is out of alignment with how you would like it to be. Maybe it’s your weight, or your relationship with your child. The circumstance is just the way it is right now, basically a fact. Now what would you prefer that circumstance to be? We need to get you to a point where your results are aligned with your circumstance.
So my question to you is - where are you out of alignment? Are you living according to your values? Have you prioritized what’s most important in your life? And are you doing the thought work that will propel you into action and give you better results in your life?
This is your one shot at life and you deserve to live it in an authenic way that will leave you full of abundance and feeling fulfilled. If you’re feeling stuck or have big goals you still need to achieve I urge you to book a free consultation with me as your next best step. We’ll at least get everything out on paper and give you some direction so that you can start redesigning your ideal life and creating alignment. I’ll put a link to my calendar in the show notes so you can book your call.