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In this step, you will learn what values are and why they are important to reflect on from time to time.
© Denise Jans via Unsplash
A first step that we take in this course to get to know your personal and professional identity is diving in the topic of values. As in the previous steps about PIF and socialisation, it has been mentioned that values are both part of your own identity, and that (shared) values are part of your (social) context.

Values refer to the importance that people attach to different activities, relationships, possessions, goals and aspirations (Park & Folkman, 1997, p. 123). In other words, values are what you find important in life. Common values are, for example, responsibility and trust. Values are part of your identity, both your professional and personal identity, which might overlap more or less. The way we interpret and carry out a value might, furthermore, differ per (cultural/social) context. For example, how you explain the value of responsibility can be different for your personal and professional context.

Values underlie our behavior. They influence how we act, either consciously or unconsciously. By reflecting on your values from time to time, it becomes clear why you make particular choices and why you act in a certain way. They can also give you insight into what might underlie the behavior of the people around you.

When you are aware of your core values, you can use them as a compass or a guideline when facing complex decisions or when working on your goals.


© University of Groningen
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