Core Values



Core values are the core of who you are, the filter for your personality, and what drive and motivate you. However, if violated, they can trigger you causing negative emotions, distrust, and conflict. Knowing your KEY CORE VALUES empowers you to respond instead of react when violated.

Integrate purpose into your for-profit business model through a long term commitment to a cause that is aligned with your core values and those of your community.
— Simon Mainwaring

Core values are formed in childhood from both positive and negative experiences. For example, you might have lived in a home that highly valued education forming a core value where you place priority on learning and acquiring knowledge.

Negative experiences can be even more powerful causing immediate reaction to anything similar to what you experienced and leave you wondering why you reacted that way. For example, if you were bullied, you might have developed a strong compassion core value. If you view anyone who acts like a bully and doesn’t show compassion for others, you might become hostile.

A Few Questions

Let’s go through a few questions to see what might be your primary core values.

1. What is most important to you?

2. What motivates you to work hard?

3. What are your redeeming qualities?

4. What are your moral absolutes?

5. How do you define right from wrong?

What Ticks You Off?

One great way to discover your core values is to evaluate what makes you angry and then why that makes you angry. Think back to the last time you were upset. What happened? Who was involved? What was your reaction? What was their reaction? Did their reaction help or hurt? Did your reaction help or hurt?

1. What was the core issue or situation that upset you?

2. What was the negative emotion you felt? Many immediately say they were angry. But actually anger is often e a “once-size-fits-all” emotion that masks other emotions. For example, maybe you felt betrayed? Insignificant? Forgotten? Bullied? Worthless?

3. Now ask yourself why you felt that emotion. What about the incident or what was spoken during it that triggered that reaction?

4. With this in mind, think back and see if your reaction to similar events is a pattern. If yes, go back even further in your life and see if something repeatedly happened to you or was done to you that made you feel that same emotion. 

5. And, finally, If there are repeated incidents of similar things happening to you throughout your life, have you developed a core value in response? If so, what is it?  For example, people keeping their word is a core value to me because as a child I had a parent who didn’t keep their word.

A Real Life Example

I’m good enough; I’m smart enough. Self-affirmation is where people list their core values. These are things that really make them who they are.
— Amy Cuddy

Let me give you a real life example. A few weeks ago, I was up at our new location working in the store room and was overwhelmed with a sudden feeling of intense sadness. It was so intense that I simply left. I no longer wanted to be there. In fact, I know longer wanted to rent the building! 

A few days later, I was back in the storeroom and I knew what had happened. It smelled like a place I lived when I was 14-16. I was incredibly sad during that time. In fact, it was a sadness that ended several years of sadness. Once I knew what had happened, I realized I had more work to do. But the point is wounding and triggers can hit you out of nowhere. 

Most have at least 3 core values operating in their life. This website: has a great list to get you started on figuring out your core values so you recognize when triggered and respond instead of react. 


1. Core values are the core of who you are, the filter for your personality, and what motivates you.

2. They are often formed in childhood through negative or positive experiences.

3. Negative emotions or overreaction occurs when a core value is triggered.

4. A key to discovering your core values is thinking back to the last time you were upset. 

5. Most have 3 main core values.

6. If you feel an emotion out of the blue for no reason at all, a core value or emotional wound was triggered.

7. Pause and recognize that so you can respond instead of react. 

I’d love to hear your 3 core values. But since none of you talk to me and have been violating my love language of quality time, I won’t hold my breath. LOL! 

And, finally, please share this training with others you think it might help. I see all kinds of relationships—business and professional—negatively affected by these hidden things. Let’s spread the love and help others! You can invite them to this FB group or send them to at 

Until next week

Sherri Wilson