The Values DEck
Your Step by Step Guide
Values are the thing that makes us tick, they are the reason we keep fighting - even when we don’t know what we're fighting for. We have taken the latest on values and compiled it into a card deck for you to use. The guide below gives our suggestions on how to make the most use of this tool, but don't let that limit you. We are excited to be alongside you on your journey however you use this deck to support your emotional health!
Core Values Finder
Time to complete: 1 hour
Before you begin, remember that there is no right or wrong. Listen to your gut and trust the process.
- Sort through the full deck of cards and create two piles: one pile of values thatyou 'vibe' with and another pile of values that you don't. Discard the second pile.*Vibe: A feeling that makes you say, "Hey, yeah that fits!"
- Take your 'vibe' pile and separate it into two more piles: one pile of values that come from external sources (i.e. family, society, peers) and a second pile of values that come from within yourself.
- Look through your values to see which ones truly serve you. Decide which of these externally influenced values you want to keep, and which are you ready to let go of.Discard the values you'd like to let go of. Repeat this process for the stack of internally influenced values. Combine remaining values.
- With your remaining values, create two new piles: one pile of values that are intrinsic and another pile of values that are instrumental. Discard the instrumentalvalues.*Intrinsic: Valuable in and of themselves*Instrumental: The value is an instrument to achieve another value, it is the means to an end.
- Pair down your final pile to your top 10 core values! For a bonus, try to rank the minimum order of importance to you.Congratulations, you have discovered your core values! Now that you have identified these, use them as your compass in life. When you are feeling lost, a tough decision is looming, or you just need to re-center, look toward these values for guidance. Ask yourself, "How can I move forward in this situation while living by these values?"Remember that our values change throughout our lives and THAT IS OK! If you find yourself looking at your values and feel as though they don't 'vibe' anymore, that is a sign that it is time to re-do the Core Values Finder.Core Values Finder,
Time to complete: 15 minutes
- Sort through the full deck of cards and create two piles: one pile of values that you ‘vibe’ with and another pile of values that you don’t. Discard the second pile.*Vibe: a feeling that makes you say, “Hey, yeah that sounds like me!”
- Go through the remaining cards and create a pile of the values that feel most important to you and your life.
- Lay the remaining cards out in front of you. Identify values that feel similar (i.e.freedom and independence) and decide which between the two you ‘vibe’ with most, keep this card and discard the other. Continue this process for all values that feel similar.
- Pair down your final pile to your top 10 core values! For a bonus, try to rank the min order of importance to you.
MORE WAYS TO USE THE VALUES DECK
Pull a card at random and place it into the journal prompt structure outlined below. Repeat as often as you wish!
- Lately, the value of _____ has shown up in my life by…
- If the world valued _____ more, things would look different in the following ways…
- If I acted with the value of _____ in my relationships, it would change my relationships by…
- I could incorporate the value of _____ in my life by…
- Some people I know that value _____ are… This is how they act out this value:
- If I didn't value _____, this is how my life would be different…
If you find yourself struggling to move forward with a decision or situation, you can utilize this guide to get you thinking about taking values-based action.
- Get a clear idea of the decision or situation, identify any thoughts or feelings that come up when you think about this situation. Write it out to achieve the best clarity!
- Pull out your 10 core values and place them in a circular layout, set aside the rest of the deck
- One by one, talk through how it would look if you acted by that value in the situation at hand. What action would you take? (Remember even inaction can be a form of action). What thoughts might arise if you followed this value? What feelings might arise if you followed this value? How could following this value serve you in this situation?
- As you talk/think through each value, place ones with possible outcomes you favor, in the middle of the circle.
- After you've gone through each value, take those in the middle and use these to identify your final course of values action.
The Research that inspired us
Values are kind of like snowflakes: no two are the same, they can feel overwhelming in large quantities, and they are pretty hard to study unless you're in a super controlled (read cold for the snowflakes) environment. Values by nature and individual, ever changing and different depending on culture. Thus, creating a list of values that touches various world views was a challenge. We dove into research and found ourselves coming back to the Schwartz Theory of basic values (Schwartz, 2012). Using this framework we compiled values vocabulary that highlighted each of the 10 basic values listed in Schwartz' theory. It's clear through our deep dive that values matter. As a key component of Acceptance Commitment Therapy (ACT), values are the foundation and reason behind our actions. We hope this deck will allow you apply the research and use it for real life and mental wellbeing practice!
Henriksen, K. (2019). The values compass: Helping athletes act in accordance with their values through functional analysis. Journal of Sport Psychology in Action, 10(4), 199-207.
Hank, Robb. (2007). Values as Leading Principles in Acceptance and Commitment Therapy. International Journal of Behavioral Consultation and Therapy. 3. 10.1037/h0100170.
Schwartz, S. H. (2012). An overview of the Schwartz theory of basic values. Online readings in Psychology and Culture, 2(1), 2307-0919.
Our values are what make us tick. They are the reason we keep fighting even when we don’t know what we're fighting for.
The Values Deck ($38)
We have taken the latest on values and compiled it into a card deck for you to use. If you are a therapist, this values deck will be a perfect addition to your practice so you can continue doing the amazing values-based work that you already do. If you are someone working to support your mental health, this values deck can help you identify your core values, you can use it to pull a "value for the day", or use it as a foundation for a journal prompt - the options are endless! The Values Deck, a deck of 84 values cards, comes with guided directions for our suggestions on how to make the most use of this tool, but don't let that limit you. We are excited to be alongside you on your journey, however you may use this deck to support your emotional health.
The Values Deck Therapist Expansion Pack ($12)
This pack offers a set of 24 blank cards for your client to write their top 5 values after they have completed the values card sort in session. Our hope is for your client to be able to keep a tangible reminder of their values work, without disrupting your deck of cards.