Monday, May 30, 2016

Values and Action…Otherwise known as "Actions Speak Louder than Words"

Belief: confidence in the truth or existence of something not immediately susceptible to rigorous proof.
Value: to consider with respect to worth, excellence, usefulness, or importance, to regard or esteem highly.
Actionsomething done or performed; act; deed. An act that one consciously wills and that may be characterized by physical or mental activity: habitual or usual acts; conduct:energetic activity.

So I have been giving a lot of thought to beliefs. I, for one, have held several beliefs in my lifetime. As I have gained knowledge contrary to my beliefs, I have had to examine said beliefs and decide what to do with the fallout. Beliefs are formed early in life and are indicative of one's personal, social or professional truths that have been created by reason, time, education, or experience (Ennis, 1994; Nisbett & Ross, 1980; Pajares, 1992; Rokeach, 1968). The earlier the beliefs are formed, the harder it is to change them (Nespor, 1987; Nisbett & Ross, 1980; Rokeach, 1968). Further, experiencing a belief shift as an adult is a fairly rare occurrence, as individuals tend to hold tightly to their beliefs even when presented with scientific explanations contrary to their beliefs (Nespor, 1987; Nisbett & Ross, 1980; Rokeach, 1968; Ennis, 1994). 

Why do I even bring this up? I have been frustrated as of late as a number of issues regarding belief systems have been brought to my attention. People (not naming names) have in a sense "preached" their dogma, been confronted with conflicting information, considered their beliefs in light of new information and changed their beliefs. This has caused an uproar as other people have called them hypocrites even to the point of death threats. And this has happened in an arena where you would expect love and compassion to rule. I am sickened by it.

This has given me pause to examine my own life experiences. I will be the first to tell you that I have had a number of deep seated beliefs that have been challenged over the years. As I have gained new knowledge, I have had to decide how to reconcile my beliefs with my new found knowledge. My decisions have not always been popular with the masses. So I have decided that values and ensuing actions are much more important in this thing we call life. It doesn't really matter to me what your beliefs are. It matters more to me what you value and how you live your life. 

What do you value? How do you act in accordance with these values? Again…actions speak louder than words. 

For example, I truly value my health. Therefore, you can expect me to act in a manner that supports my health. For example, you will find me working out 6 days a week, trying my hardest to get more greens and protein into my diet, as well as practicing mindfulness.  

I value teachers. Therefore you will find me advocating for them, doing my best to support new learning for all of us and sticking up for them when society wants to be negative about our education system. 

I value children. Therefore you will find me treating them with respect, cultivating relationships with them and listening to them. And if you are not the type of person to do the same, you probably won't be on my team. 

I value my family. Therefore you will find me hanging out with them, sharing experiences, and time. 

I value diversity. Therefore you can expect me to support gay marriage, black lives matter, organizations that support autism awareness, people with downs syndrome and women. 

Are you following me? My actions become the rigorous proof missing in belief systems. I give energetic activity to those things I value

What do you value my friends? And are your actions lining up to those values? Will you pause with me to consider this? Namaste!