Skip to main content

Level Three

Level Three: The Bigger Picture

Personal Values & Discovering Your Good Life

Level Three teaches you how stress is related to your personal values and life goals.

Personal values are defined as those things that are most deeply important and meaningful to you. Personal values inform our priorities, way of living, and measure of success.

Why are values important? Understanding your values can help you:

Values tend to be stable over time, but they can also change depending on life experiences. The undergraduate and graduate years are a critical period for personal values, due to the developmental challenges experienced and important life decisions made during this time.

The Values Word Sort is designed to help you better understand which values are most important to you.

Download Values Word Sort (PowerPoint 68KB)

These 46 words (listed in random order) are designed to help you reflect on your personal values. Open the file above and drag the words to the corresponding sections. Use this criteria to rank each word:

You can only include 5 words in the Most Important section. These indicate your 5 most importantpersonal values.

This is by no means an exhaustive list! Feel free to add your own words too. Once you’re done, we encourage you to print the page or take a screenshot, as a daily reminder to help you keep in line with your values.

After the exercise, think about the following topics:

What does "the good life" mean to you? Knowing your personal values is important for developing specific areas in your life, such as careereducationrelationships, and self care. Thinking about specific life areas can help you better understand your own priorities.

How do you want to live your life? What kind of person do you want to be? These are questions many undergraduate and graduate students face. However, many things can interfere with your ideal way of living. Stress is one of the many barriers to fully living a life you value and enjoy.

Even though Level Three is about "the big picture," there are smaller changes you can make in the present to better address these larger values and by setting goals.

The most effective goals are SMART:

Click here to read more about SMART goals, originally created by George T. Doran.

Complete The Good Life Worksheet

 Good life Worksheet (PDF 1.04KB) to better understand key areas in your life and how stress affects those areas.

How to use the Worksheet: