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It's not hard to make decisions when you know what your values are.

Can you believe January is almost over? I can’t. The months seem to fly by for me since in fashion, we’re always talking about Spring/Summer when it’s cold outside and Fall/Winter or Holiday when the temperatures are pushing 100° here in Texas!

In these past few months, I’ve spent a great deal of time thinking about where I’d like to take Amy Holton Designs in 2015 and I spent a lot of time preparing for it in 2014. This year, I’ve delved much deeper into goal planning for my business and how it ties in to who I am personally.  In an effort to accomplish this (as well as define some much-needed work/life boundaries) I’ve been working through a goal setting and year planning process in which the author has you define your core.  One segment of this is defining your principles. For whatever reason, I became very hung-up on this though I know I have very strong core values. While the author uses the words principles and values interchangeably, the words do have different meanings and I struggled with my business vs. personal take. I procrastinated for a while, then sat down one day and committed a chunk of time to working through my mental block. After spending some quality time with my good friend Google, I found an article that eliminated my barrier in three simple lines…

If it is something you wouldn’t trade, a non-negotiable that can be a competitive disadvantage for you, then it’s probably a value.

If it is situational, if you will trade it in if the offer or conditions are right, then it’s probably a principle.

Values are enduring and rarely change. Principles evolve to your circumstances and can change (they don’t have to, but they can).

This was exactly what I needed to read.  Sometimes it just takes someone saying the same thing in a different way to give you some clarity. In defining my business, I knew things would change over time however, in my personal life, as well as in business, there are most certainly some things that are non-negotiable. I resolved my dilemma by defining principles for my business and my values for me as a person, knowing my values would naturally guide me professionally as well.

It seemed like such a simple exercise but the obsessive perfectionist in me took over and made it far more difficult than it should have been!
(Ask me, or my husband, how often this happens…)
I’ve never really sat down and tried to put words who I am at my core and the exercise really did offer more clarity than I expected going in. I’m interested to see where the rest of the process will take me. What about you? Do you have a system you use for your yearly goal-planning? Have you ever sat down and put into words what truly defines you at your core?  Do you consciously refer back to these values when making personal or professional decisions? It’s been an interesting process so far. Let’s see where the year takes me!

Thanks for checking in. I enjoyed having you!
Here’s hoping 2015 is treating you very well so far.

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