Dreams and Goals Reality Check: Are They In Alignment With Your Values and Purpose?

Dreams and Goals Reality Check | Questions to ask yourself if your dreams and goals are in alignment with your core values and purpose

As we discussed in our earlier post (here), self-awareness is the key and the first step to moving toward your dreams.  You need to be clear on who you are, who you want to be, and where you want to go.  

So hopefully, you’ve spent the time and given yourself the mental space needed to honestly and thoroughly complete the 25 (or 50 if you opted in for our workbook) self-assessment questions in the earlier post.

If you missed the prior post with the 25 self-assessment questions, find them here.  

The Second Step in Goal Setting

So, what do you do now that you’ve identified what is important to you, what is holding you back, and what big dream or goal you’re working toward?

Are my dreams and goals in alignment with my core values and my purpose in life?

Now, you’ll need to do more self-reflection by evaluating whether or not your dreams and goals are in alignment with your core values and your purpose in life.  If your dreams and goals are not in alignment with your values and purpose, it’ll be very difficult to achieve them as you'll be fighting an internal battle the entire way.  And, if you do go on to achieve them, you’ll inevitably experience conflict and you won’t feel fulfilled as a result of achieving that goal or dream.

I’ll give you a personal example.  When I turned 40, I felt this incredible calling to express my creativity, which was being totally stifled at my corporate job.  So I enrolled in a makeup artistry class.  A whole new world of models, photo shoots, TV production, and pageants opened up.  I had some early success (I became the “go-to” makeup artist for a local model) and as a result, I was taken under the wing of an influential makeup artist who was working in Los Angeles on major movie productions.  Her career was taking off, and she was calling on me to assist her.  I was thrilled!  

Trouble was, the call times for these events were during the weekdays for corporate photo shoots and TV (during my full-time job normal work hours) and on the weekends for pageants and other events.  She asked me to take a special effects training class in Los Angeles with her.  To build up my portfolio, I needed to do those events and take that advanced training—but I was also experiencing a major internal conflict.  I had two young children at home.  They had homework, basketball and baseball practices, games, snacks, and potlucks.  And I had my full-time corporate job.  

In the end, I decided to let go of my goal of becoming a full-time makeup artist.  After some time, I realized that this goal was at complete odds with one of the most important things in my life, which was (and still is) to be the best mom I can be to my two boys.  A makeup artist’s schedule is untraditional and not family friendly.  I faced the realization that although I loved the creative expression and the energy at the events, it was taking away from the already limited time I had with my kids.  And that made my decision easy.

So how can you be sure you’re in alignment?  I recommend that you honestly reflect on the questions below to avoid the pitfall that I fell into.  I spent lots of time and money investing in makeup artistry classes, and in the makeup to fill my “kit”, only to realize that I was pursuing a goal that wasn’t in alignment with my values and purpose.  Don’t waste your time and energy on a dream or goal that is destined to fail or that’ll cause you further internal conflict.

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Let’s get started.  Here are the questions to ask yourself to determine if your dreams and goals are in alignment with your core values and your purpose in life:

1.  Is my dream or goal aligned with my core values?

2.  Are there any conflicts between my dream or goal and my core values?

3.  Does this dream or goal conflict with my purpose in life?

4.  Is this dream or goal in alignment with my ideal self?

5.  Does this dream or goal conflict with any other goals I’m currently pursuing?

6.  If so, how will these conflicts affect my pursuit of this dream or goal?

7.  Who does this dream or goal affect?  How does it affect them?

8.  Do I need to change my priorities in order to pursue this dream or goal?  Am I willing to do so?

9.  What sacrifices will I need to make in order to pursue this dream or goal?  Am I willing to do so?

10.  What will happen if I don’t achieve this dream or goal?

And finally, after reflecting on the above questions, ask yourself

Do I still want to pursue this dream or goal?

If the answer is yes, then you're ready to move on to the 3rd step in the process of creating a concrete action plan to move toward your goals and dreams.  Read about it here.   I hope you found this helpful.  If you did, share it with a friend or pin it to your Pinterest Boards!  See you in the next post!