Last week I attended a local 'Women in Business' event, it was held at one of my favourite places locally to where I live and to where I practice. The evening was a chance to network, eat yummy local Yorkshire farm food and listen to an inspiring woman in business talk about her success. The talk was from Victoria Robertshaw, co-owner of Yorkshire based Keelham Farm, about their journey and success from being a humble farm in 1929 to a multi-million pound business in 2016. Victoria's success story resonated with me, because the story she told was based around 'values'.
At Keelham Farm, they run their business by "doing what feels right, based on a set of values, which makes them unique, hard to quantify and even harder to mass produce", but that's how they like it. They've nailed the Keelham way because they know what they are about and what they need to focus on, and that's their secret to success. It's helps them to grow their brand and its an inclusive approach which ensures that their team of over 300 people are living and breathing the Keelham Way.
As I sat there listening intently to Victoria talk, it made me think about personal values, and the importance of nailing these as individuals, because our values are the essence of who we are. I often see women in the Bringing Sparkle Back clinic who are suffering from 'value conflict' - be that in an unhappy relationship, a career that is sucking the life from them on a daily basis or the mum who has lost her identity and is unsure of where to go and what to do next. When we are in conflict with our values (whether they are conscious values or not) it goes against the very essence of who we are and it becomes a struggle, like a wading through treacle kind of struggle. Living someone else's values can also be a cause of value conflict.
If I was to ask you to share with me your core values, could you? You are probably more likely to be able to tell me the values of your employer or one of your favourite brands.
In the Bringing Sparkle Back clinic, we focus on self discovery and self awareness. We tackle those questions about who you are, what you stand for, what makes you passionate, what makes you truly happy, and what's important to you, because they are crucial questions in determining the very essence of who you are and what you are all about.
It's so easy in life to coast through, not focusing on the things that are important to you and as a result, life just kinda happens to you. If you don't know what's important to you, how can you live a meaningful life? Your values should drive you and focus your efforts of what's meaningful to you. Without that focus, life becomes a bit of a scatter gun approach, you might get lucky, but then you might not.
You see, you are a brand, your own very special, unique brand with a whole set of unique selling points. The more you understand and grow your brand in line with your values, the more successful and happier you will become. That's one of the key secrets to Bringing Sparkle Back.
Catherine Asta Labbett, is the founder and owner of Yorkshire based 'Bringing Sparkle Back' delivering Psychotherapy, Relationship and Life Coaching exclusively for women.