7 Day Value Recognition Challenge

Hi folks!

If you’re anything like me, there have been plenty of moments of struggle over the past weeks due to Covid-19 as well as your day to day challenges. I had a call today with my mentor and friend, and I offloaded a detailed description of those challenges as they patiently listened.

I said things were difficult. I was struggling to keep my family happy and comfortable, and I’ve coping in unhealthy ways to avoid facing negative feelings about my performance. I had been short with my son, impatient with my wife, disconnected at work and arguing with my friends. It felt like everything I was doing was a mistake. When I was done he asked me how I felt having said all that out loud.

I said, “I’m not living up to the standards I want to set for myself”.

I’ve been going through a workshop where one of the goals is defining a personal mission statement, and I didn’t think I was meeting the values I had defined for myself. I also was worried about my momentum and where I was heading. I know that building good things on top of each other and in a row can lead to more good things. After some back and forth, a design for a challenge had been born.

I’m happy to introduce the 7 Day Value Recognition Challenge.

The steps are simple

  1. Build or share a personal mission statement. If you don’t have one, spend 5 minutes writing down the things that you consider your values. It can help to think of people who inspire you, and what about them inspires you. Whatever that is, it’s likely a value you hold.

  2. Distill that mission statement into values. Things like kindness, professional success, or honesty. Post the statement and these values to this topic.

  3. Each day for the next seven days, post to this topic with one example of something you did that was in line with one of those values.

It doesn’t have to be something big. If building or maintaining your health is one of your values, walking to the end of the block and back counts. Victories are victories, whether large or small. The goal is to shine a light on the things you’re doing well instead of the times you didn’t hit the mark (which are all too easy to remember already), and build up that positive momentum.

I’ll be participating myself, and I invite you to join me. Together we are stronger than apart, and we can lift each other up and hold each other accountable at the same time. Let’s get some momentum in the right direction.

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My personal mission statement (stream of consciousness):

Raise a good son. Provide for my family. Make the world better. Help those who need it. Reduce injustice. Provide opportunity. Help others build towards their dreams. Have fun. Develop my skills and expertise. Experience and appreciate the beauty of the world. Know more. Know God. Share my knowledge with as many people as possible. Create more beauty in the world. Pay back, or pay forward kindness. Teach my son as much as I can. Help my wife become a nurse. Build tools and software that makes people’s lives better. Teach and show men how to be weak and vulnerable. Let people know it’s ok to not be ok.

The values I’ve distilled from that are:
Kindness
Grace
Capability
Knowledge Sharing
Charity
Supporting Others
Contributing to all humankind
Love

Today was a challenging day, and my son has also been struggling. After acting out I initially responded in kind, coming quickly to anger.

However, cooler heads prevailed. While my son had acted inappropriately, I felt that this was a time to show the grace and forgiveness I had found important when defining my values. I spoke to him calmly, told him I forgave his actions and was going to give him a pass. I told him we’re all only human, and sometimes people deserve another chance even if they’ve wronged you.

We’ve both been much happier since, and while today is still challenging I’m holding on to that moment when I lived up to my values.

See you tomorrow!

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What up Hex! I’ll join you. And firstly I want to put up a fist :fist: in solidarity with the COVID stuff jamming up goals. It feels very much like I’m stymied and stagnant right now, and I want to complain, “Well I can’t get any momentum!” or “Just gotta ride this thing out” - both of which are fakeries, and my heart knows it. This weekend I’m evaluating how my April went and creating May goals, so today I’m going to put up my Mission Statement and Values, and begin the 7 day challenge on Monday.

My personal mission statement:

  • Know God, orient my life toward His kingdom, bring that kingdom down to earth. As such, I highly value the Principles which help me to achieve these ends. To know the Principles and put them into practice, I must cultivate my Mind, Body, and Spirit. These Core elements are my #1 priority, and without them I can’t see or adhere to any of the principles.
  • My flow goes like this: cultivate and empower my spirit, mind, and body, in that order. In this cultivation practice, I discover and become convicted about Truths. The truths could be different on different days - I could become convicted that I need to apologize to my wife for being annoying, or that I need to stop eating too much damn brisket. When I have a particular truth, I apply the Principles to it, and put it into practice.
  • I’ve discovered these Principles so far, though I think there are more: Integrity, Proactivity, Courage, Disciplined Stewardship, Positivity, and Love. So, for example, if I’m (and this happens often) putting something like folding and putting away laundry over my relationship with my wife, I try as hard as I can do: have the Integrity to follow through on the truth I believe, the Proactivity to begin whatever actions I need to do, the Courage to apologize or be vulnerable with her, the Disciplined Stewardship to set up goals so that I don’t go there again, and Positivity and Love to put into perspective for her and I what is most important.

I’ll write more on Monday with some May goals, and will write on it for 7 days

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Dude this is amazing! I’m so freaking about this! I’m gonna share this on stream… and I’ll get back to writing something here in a bit!

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Love this @HexAmbrosius – thank you so much for issuing this challenge. I accept. Here we go:

  1. Things I admire in others I know:
  • People who workout and develop their strength
  • People who are consistent in relationships and go-the-distance with others
  • People who are good with their hands, who build things, who tinker, who are engineering
  • People who take things and apply them to their lives
  • People who have control over their money
  • People who love and accept themselves and others
  • People who laugh and bring joy and are bringers of lightheartedness
  • People who have fierce intention and sight
  • People who fight to take every thought captive and battle to believe the truth
  • People who are intentional with their kids, who make fun things happen, who are proactive and plan cool activities
  • People who cultivate a loving home, a rhythm of life, and invest in the education of their children
  • People who are present with their kids and bring fun, presence, “yes”, energy, and aliveness
  • People who have deep faith and deep relationships with God, who say “yes” and follow His voice
  • People who exercise beautiful creativity, creating worlds and pieces of art that are delightful to step into
  • People who are courageous to share their faith with others in real life
  • People who have deep integrity, who follow through when they say yes
  • People who have daily, real, raw intimacy with Jesus

Other things / stream of consciousness: I want to empower my wife to be amazing. I want to shape my kids and teach them all I know, to let them stand on my shoulders. I want to care about what they care about and see their heart and be students of them and encourage their passions. I want to lift them up where they want to go, to be a foundation and a boost, not to force or coerce into a certain way; I want to shepherd and encourage and empower and unleash their hearts. I want to help people find freedom and grow; I want to make their lives better. I want to build cool things. I want to make cool memories. I want to surround myself and my house with things that I enjoy and that have cool stories. I want to tell stories about all God’s done in my life. I want to have mastery over my kingdom – to feel like all is well, organized, taken care of, but also to have the wherewithal and chutzpa to handle anything that breaks in my kingdom on my own. I want to be a student, to learn from others who have mastery and expertise. I want to be an inventor, making awesome things at work and for my family. I want to have unique value, to be something that hasn’t been before, that’s needed and wanted and good. I want to be strong, to be fierce, to believe the truth, to know who I am, to be solid in my identity, to bring my strength and not my insecurity. I want to offer and not look to extort. I want to laugh and make others laugh, to bring joy, to rest, to be kind to myself and others, to enjoy laying down in the sun, to Sabbath, to play, to giggle, to be silly, to tickle my kids, to say “yes” to fun, to know how to not be so serious, to be spontaneous. I want to work on a team, to rally people to a good cause, to unify others towards a noble end, to make a difference, to feel connected, to feel like we did something together. I want to love deeply, to give of myself, to see my wife, to be where my feet are, to believe in her and help her fly. I want to be romantic, to be thoughtful, to be creative, to be inventive, to be intentional with my family. I want to grow us up into a family that loves to be together, that has deep character and faith, that has wild adventures and easy laughter, and that trusts and confides in each other. I want my kids to have uncapped imagination, to wonder freely and often, to explore and love to explore, to be learners and curious minds, to become themselves fully and completely. I want my kids to know their daddy loves them, to know they are the beloved, and I want to trust God to Father them in all the places I can’t or don’t. I want my wife to know she is the apple of my eye, my first and foremost, and my favorite always. I want to spend my life on them, with them, for them. And I want to be in the arena, in the Courageous Middle, to get messy, to be imperfect, but to try and fail and try again. I want to reach the end of my life and know that I spent it on the people that matter, and to know that I lived my life with God the whole way there. I want to have been me, to use what I have, to love how only I can, and to have been brave and courageous for things the mattered. I want to rest easy knowing when I go, the ones I love won’t question how I felt about them, and know that I can entrust them to God, and that I’m coming home to Him.

  1. Values distilled from the above:
  • Become Wholeheartedly Myself – Develop and exercise my masculinity and identity
    • Develop My Strength (of character, mind, and body)
      • Fierceness of mind (fighting to believe the truth for myself and others)
      • Love, bless, and steward my body
      • Become good soil
    • Be Nathaniel
      • Be an inventor & generalist
      • Love and accept myself
      • Love rhythm and music
      • Love and exercise my “weird”
    • Be God’s Spear (of light, lightning, love)
      • Follow God with courage
      • Share God with courage
    • Become a good king over my kingdom
  • Love Well – Intentional for my family and those I shepherd
    • Know You Are Loved
      • Faithful, loyal companion (sticking with people that matter to me)
      • care for their hearts
      • be present, see them
      • believe in them and encourage their passion
    • Be Intentional
      • plan / think ahead / invent for them
      • build deep faith and character
      • be a student of what matters to them
    • Have Fun
      • play
      • easy laughter
      • wild adventures
      • “yes”
      • spend my energy on them
  • Try Again – Courageous Middle / Arena

V1.1: 4/30/20
V1.2: 9/22/20

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Wed 4/29:

  • Got swing and power washer – forwarded wife’s passion
  • Did mulch – good king/steward
  • Fought for the truth that I was doing something that mattered when heard lie that I was doing the wrong thing while power washing – fierceness, accept self
  • “Yes” to water balloons and fire/movie with kids – “Yes”
  • “Yes” to rock Ellie – “Yes”, beloved
  • Present multiple times with Taylor, hug, smile, kiss, present – be present
  • Offered my strength to a friend to help them through a rut – Strength
  • Used back of axe overhead slam to break board into 3 for trash can – generalist
  • Bagged my trash instead of cramming it into trash can so they’d take it – good steward
  • Helped with dinner so my wife could have a break – care for her heart
  • ran with Ellie in the morning on our “Day date” – beloved, spend my energy on her
  • got to work on time – good steward, care for wife’s heart
  • Had hope even when I felt things weren’t going well, decided to give this challenge a shot, decided to invent and have hope instead of cynicism – try again

Love this exercise because I’m like wow – even some of my small decisions are me living out my values. For instance, bagging my trash, didn’t realize I was living out a value doing that, but I was! So cool. I often find myself discrediting what I’m doing because I’m not living out a value that I feel is more urgent (example, power washing the swing instead of spending time with kids), but realizing that I’m living out a value while I’m doing it allows for me to not choose from a place of shame but a place of preference. I realize I’m doing something good, and I have a choice between two good things…it’s a much kinder place to make a decision from – I am doing something good right now, it is okay to make this choice, I have an opportunity to choose something else based on another value right now.

It comes back to what my mentor said:

Balance is not perfected, it’s managed.

I feel there’s a lot of hope in that statement. I don’t have to be wrong or bad because I chose one value over another. If I sense an imbalance, I can correct for that instead of shaming myself. I’ll never get it perfect, the table is always adjusting. I can just adjust as needed, and try again.

Love this exercise

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  1. I want to be someone who truly cares. Someone who goes out of their way to help those in need. I want to be a good father. A good husband. I want to spend time wisely. I want to love God and people more than anything else. I want to show what I treasure with my actions and words. I want to prioritize my family. I want to take care of myself. I want to do things that are healthy. I want to think deeply. I want to be humble. I want to inspire others. I want to be a good example of how to do all the above. I want to not be afraid to fail. I want to learn from my mistakes. I want to be honest.

  • Kindness
  • Honesty
  • Stewardship
  • Seeking Wisdom
  • Inspirational
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  1. Someone who is reliable. Someone that people can feel comfortable coming too if they need support. Love people for who they are, no pre-judgments. Trustworthy. I want to love God. Be able to have a life free from suicidal tendencies/self harm/drugs. I would like to be able to say I’ve overcome my toxic relationship with food.

  2. Honesty.
    Self acceptance.
    Trust.
    Strength.
    Stewardship.

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Day 2 and I’m back. I’m posting my values here as a reminder:

Kindness
Grace
Capability
Knowledge Sharing
Charity
Supporting Others
Contributing to all humankind
Love

Today, Casey was kind enough to share this post and talk about it on his channel. During that stream I was able to talk about why I posted this, share my vulnerability, and encourage others to participate. This falls well within my value of supporting others, and felt like a pure expression of it. Knowing that sharing my struggles, warts and all, is inspiring others to think about and practice self care makes the awkwardness and anxiety of this worth it. It’s been scary to participate in this so far, but the multiplicative effect that sharing our weakness can have is as evident as ever.

I also found it much easier to find an example today. I’m not yet sure whether I’m living my values more fully or viewing myself more honestly. I hope to explore this in the days to come.

See you tomorrow!

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I want to Glorify God in what I do. I want to raise a good son and be a good father. I want to improve the lives of those around me. I want to be someone that people can count on. I want to produce quality in everything I do. I want to enjoy my job and what I do. I want to take care of my mind and body. I want to inspire others. I want to not be afraid to fail and chase my dreams. I want to be honest.

Values:

  • Patience
  • Kindness
  • Grace
  • Humility
  • Generosity
  • Selflessness
  • Reliability
  • Integrity
  • Faithfulness
  • Wisdom seeking
  • Loving
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Day 2 and I’m back.

Me too @HexAmbrosius :hrtlovefist: Let’s do it

  • present multiple times with my children; has been really cool for that to be top-of-mind and to be present…I love seeing them.
  • date night with wife, spending my time and energy in the right place
  • cuddles with Ellie at night, beloved
  • played “Tangled” with Ellie, recalling something she wanted to do / a thing her heart loves to do (dramatic play of movies we’ve seen) – spending my energy on her, student of her heart
  • played with boys, said “yes” to them on the scooter and playing ball – spending my energy on them, “yes”
  • played at bedtime with my boys, tickled, jumped, had fun, took it slow and was present – beloved, present, play, easy laughter
  • in the arena starting up this development team
  • help Taylor with dinner
  • laugh a lot with Taylor
  • followed God with courage when woke up @ 430a to say “yes” to what he invited me into, led to really powerful prayer over my family / kingdom, and a cool encouragement (“you are the one who is more than enough”) – fierce for the truth, strength, follow God with courage, good king
  • day date with Ellie – beloved
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Day 2: Tonight I’ve been struggling majorly with urges to relapse, and just not wanting to fight anymore… I wanted to just hide from everyone. Instead, I spoke up to the people that care about me, and was honest with them about how I felt and trusted that they would be there.

Speaking out about the way I was feeling falls in line with my values of honesty and strength. Also, trust too I guess because I had to feel safe enough to express what I was feeling in the first place.

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OKAY THIS IS SICK @HexAmbrosius

Things I value

  • prioritizing physical health as a part of mental health

  • Being kind

  • constantly learning

  • making sure my motives are pure

  • Waiting on God’s timing instead of my own

  • loving people well

  • Taking the time to connect with people

  • Spending intentional time with my family

  • Having God at the center of my day

  • Remaining positive and joyful despite circumstances

  • always remain grateful and humble

Mission statement: I want to be someone who leaves a legacy of being able to figure out what they really want and help lead them to that (stole this from love Does cuz that’s how he describes Jesus lol) I want to love God first and then people. I want to be someone who exudes joy and kindness. I want to be someone who searches for the good in the bad. I want to be someone who is constantly learning, always growing and never stagnant. I want to always prioritize relationships over results. I want to learn when saying no is necessary for me to have time to prioritize people. I want my eyes to be constantly placed on God. I want to start my day with God and end my day with God, and be intentional about the time I spend scrolling.

Really excited to start this!! Going to begin tomorrow :slight_smile:

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Day 3 and I’m back. I’m posting my values here as a reminder:

Kindness
Grace
Capability
Knowledge Sharing
Charity
Supporting Others
Contributing to all humankind
Love

Today has been a quiet day.

Last night my wife had a challenging time, connecting with an old friend and becoming very emotional. I showed love and grace in that situation, supporting her wholeheartedly without judgment. It took reminding, but I felt that the lack of judgment was genuine.

Today I’ve been working with other volunteer developers to build tools that extend HeartSupport’s reach and power to connect with people. I’ve been able to share knowledge and increase my own capability. I’ve also been able to contribute to humankind by increasing the mental health support available during a time when the need is as great as ever.

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Day 4 and I’m back. I’m posting my values here as a reminder:

Kindness
Grace
Capability
Knowledge Sharing
Charity
Supporting Others
Contributing to all humankind
Love

Today has been a busy day.

I’ve spent most of the day today living my values, and it’s been feeling great. Specifically I’ve been working on the tools I referenced yesterday. This is charity in the sense that I’m donating my time, as well as contributing to all humankind if the tools work they way they’re supposed to.

I’ve also noticed a shift in the way I’ve been talking to my wife and son. There is greater kindness present in nearly every interaction, and grace where there had not previously been.

I continue to wonder whether I’m noticing the things I’m already doing right more, or I’m living up to my values more closely due to an increased focus and awareness of them. I’m beginning to believe it’s the latter, and I think that continuing to remind myself what my values are encourages me to meet that mark. Given this, I think I’m going to take some time to distill this into an actual statement and print it out somewhere as a daily reminder.

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Day 1 for me!

Per the above, the principle of Vitality is very important to me…especially as I get older. Let’s face it, I’m tired. Henry beats the best energy out of me! ha. There is a huge difference between John that watched TV all day, ate chips, and went to bed at 11 and the John that eats well, stays off his annoying phone, and went to bed reading a book at 9. That latter John is much more effective at fulfilling the values he holds dear, so Vitality is important.

One of my goals for May is called “Phone home base”. It’s actually a re-do of a goal I created back in January, and basically it just means that when I enter a room to spend some time in it, I put my phone in a location where I can’t reach it, on Do Not Disturb. If I don’t do that, it means that my phone is right beside me, dinging incessantly, dumping either “threat” hormones into my body or inviting me to try a find a dopamine “reward” with a notification from a friend. If I let it, the phone will use me, so that bad boy goes facedown somewhere else. Since January, I’ve been slipping on this, so I dusted it off to rehash for May. I call this “retaking ground” - I like using military language. I’ve beaten the enemy on this field before, but he crept back in and retook the field. So now I have to go punch him back.

That’s my log today! It’s awesome to see everyone participating in this - awesome topic Hex

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Day 1 (Thurs):
Today i practiced stewardship by devoting an appropriate amt of time to working on a project that needs to get done soon.

Day 2 (Friday):
Kindness: I served pizza, got popcorn, water, band aids, and other things my kids needed without complaining. Was a great feeling, even tho I was tired.

Day 3 (Sat):
Spent some time today learning more about advertising, a fun puzzle for me to tackle.

Day 4 (Sun):
Today I taught my kids about spray painting andwe painted pictures together. I thought that was inspirational.

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Okay, had some awesome times this weekend. I am completely tech free on the weekends, so I didn’t get here to check in, but I’m exercising one of my values to accept myself even though I’m not doing this perfectly!

A few highlights from the weekend:

  • I spent my energy on my kids a lot…it was one of the best weekends that I’ve had as a dad…I was present and intentionally so in multiple areas…I said “Yes” to play, to taking care of them, to slowing down.

One of the biggest things that changed the game for me this weekend was my wife telling me that we didn’t need to be so rushed. I didn’t realize how much pressure I put on my kids to just move quickly between activities…hurry up through the bath, hurry up through getting down from the table, hurry up through getting dressed…when I just let go of being “hurried up”, I was so much kinder, more patient, more about coaching them than forcing them. It was really really good.

Additionally, letting go of other priorities…on Saturday, we tried to really lean in to the “Sabbath”, and halfway through the day I surrendered any “house tasks” and just allowed myself to not be productive. I told myself I was going to stop thinking about work and stop thinking about making things better…and the day was honestly fantastic…I chose to get dirty with my kids and do a “car wash” that Taylor had initiated, and we started a water fight where we chased each other with the hose and sponges and buckets and it was an absolute joybomb.

On developing the character of my kids, one of the things is that I want to develop the masculine souls of my boys. When I accidentally kicked a ball off the side of a cliff into a creek, instead of doing what is convenient (IE going to get the ball myself), I suited up my boys in creek gear, and we dove in together…it was really cool to create adventure.

I also accepted myself / let myself rest last night. Instead of trying to do a ton of stuff like I had planned, I just allowed for my day to be over, which was good.

I learned that my daughter really likes “to be taken care of”, so I’ve been leaning into that by getting her bandaids and water and rocking her when she needs it to really speak to that part of her heart that wants to be cherished and loved.

I chose to take it easy today, to be kind to myself by taking a walk before starting work instead of diving into my day when I felt stressed. I took three minutes to play guitar when I was wound up.

I fought really hard to believe the truth about myself this weekend. In a dozen situations when I felt like I was worthless, I fought hard to believe the truth, and I feel like I did a good job at that.

Having this template, seeing my values, I feel like I’ve been living more into my own story, and choosing to be proud of who I am / where I’m at in life / leaning toward the life I want to create. It’s been really beautiful when I have moments where these values come to the top of my mind as I’m thinking about / evaluating my life / what to do…like choosing to be present, or choosing into a value. It’s served as a really awesome compass, and I’ve enjoyed this a lot.

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Day 1:

Patience.

I am not good at this area, but I pray to God to help me. I am tired of this lockdown, quarantine, and I want to live life. We weren’t meant to survive only. Even if there is no cure for COVID-19, God is still good. I will still love Him.

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Very inspired by the way you’re tackling Vitality, John…I’ve actually felt personally energized by you in particular for this…also love the name of that value + how you live it out.

And also love the frame of “retaking ground”. Brilliant!! Taylor & I call it “trying again”. Same concept…such a powerful value to embrace when we can get over the misconception that doing something again means you’re a failure. You’re retaking ground, you’re already strong here, it’s something that’s important, it’s worth doing, and you’re going to own it. :hrtyeet:

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