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Ep #255: Embracing Your Values: A Journey Beyond Codependency, Perfectionism, and People Pleasing

Feminist Wellness with Victoria Albina | Embracing Your Values: A Journey Beyond Codependency, Perfectionism, and People Pleasing

Our values offer us a sense of being true to ourselves, which is critical for overcoming our emotional outsourcing habits of codependency, perfectionism, and people pleasing. Embracing our values is about shifting from external validation to internal authenticity, and journeying from societal imposition to personal liberation. 

Your journey towards value alignment is also not just personal. It’s a radical act of transformation in the face of systemic challenges like patriarchy and coloniality. It brings us right back to interdependent connection with community, which is what we’re all about here on Feminist Wellness. However, if embracing our values is so important, why do so many of us find ourselves living out of alignment with them?

Join me this week to hear how embracing your values is the key to building a more equitable, authentic, and compassionate world. You’ll learn why being guided by your values matters, what happens when you begin living by your values, and some of my favorite remedies for identifying and embracing them.


Are you interested in learning more about somatics? Check out my free webinar all about it here!

What You’ll Learn:

What our values represent.

Why living in tune with and being guided by our values matter.

What happens when you embrace and live by your values.

How many of us with emotional outsourcing tendencies lose sight of and override our values.

What keeps us stuck in painful misalignment with ourselves.

The common speed bumps that come with trying to embrace your values.

How to identify and begin living in alignment with your values.

Listen to the Full Episode:

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Harriet Lerner

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Full Episode Transcript:

This is Feminist Wellness, and I’m your host, Nurse Practitioner, Functional Medicine expert, and life coach, Victoria Albina. I’ll show you how to get unstuck, drop the anxiety, perfectionism, and codependency so you can live from your beautiful heart. Welcome, my love, let’s get started.

Hello, hello, my love. I hope this finds you doing so well. It's the beginning of the year, and while we're being inundated with implications to engage with New Year New You campaigns and all that resolutions garbage, I want to pause, back this train up, zoom out like we do, to talk about something that might actually serve you.

So, this week I want to talk about values, especially within the context of emotional outsourcing. Mis amores, my loves, values are the compass points that guide our behavior, decisions, and align us with our true selves. The ones that often get hidden away for smart, self-protective reasons when we're living in emotional outsourcing.

Which if you're new here, welcome. Emotional outsourcing is the term that I coined for codependent, perfectionist, and people-pleasing thought habits and ways of being. Because none of those words individually, on their own, really summed up my lived experience or that of my thousands of clients.

I wanted something that didn't have the old stigma and shame and just yuckiness of codependency, or being a codependent person. I don't like the label. So, I came up with “emotional outsourcing” because that's what we do.

We chronically and habitually source our sense of safety, validation and worth from everyone and everything outside of ourselves. That's how I define emotional outsourcing. There's usually a lot of new people around here in January, so I wanted to make sure that we got that across.

So, values. Right, values. They are the deep-seated gut feelings. Those core sensations and knowings that guide our every action and reaction, reminding us to come back home to ourselves through the values that define us. Like, compassion, integrity, honesty.

When I'm guided by my values, they're a visceral, emotional response. They can manifest as a flutter in my stomach or warmth in my heart. They guide me, and they’re something I do my best to live by on the daily. Our values are our silent guides, shaping our choices and decisions, influencing our emotions, thoughts, and actions. Living in tune with them means living a life that's not just meaningful, but deeply satisfying.

Meanwhile, emotional outsourcing… codependent, perfectionist, and people-pleasing thought habits… are deeply rooted in seeking external validation in lieu of self-trust and authenticity. Often, a result of growing up in homes where emotional outsourcing is the norm; and/or, but usually “and,” right? And in societal systems like the patriarchy or coloniality, that dictate a narrow path of acceptable being.

What you grew up around can shape your values, certainly. I've found that, at the end of the day, our values represent what truly matters to us beyond our societal and familial conditioning. And can be a touchstone that can help us each to come back home to ourselves when our default nervous system reactions and the world around us might take us off our center.

When we live in alignment with our values, we experience congruence, a sense of being true to ourselves. This alignment is crucial for overcoming the thought habits of codependent and perfectionist thinking. It's about shifting from external validation to internal authenticity. A journey from societal imposition to personal liberation, and, of course, right back to interdependent connection with community. Community with whom we share values.

So, why do so many of us find ourselves living out of alignment with our values? The reasons, of course, are multi layered and complex, deeply ingrained in both our personal histories and the larger social fabric, and are often based in survival. As is so often the case with the habits we talk about here.

As small pack animals, we humans seek safety via connection. We understand that survival is based on being accepted, having significance, and being protected by the larger animals. From a young age, our thought habits begin to form in lockstep with those around us, in opposition to them, or some kind of combo, and are deeply influenced by our need for safety, belonging, and love.

Which often manifests as a deep-seated belief that our worth is tied to how well we meet the needs of others, or how well we adhere to societal standards, how well we tow the old company line as it were.

Let's zoom out again to talk about the broader societal context, aka the patriarchy, white settler colonialism, puritanical thinking, and late-stage capitalism. These systems have their sneaky, slippery tentacles of doom in every corner of our lives, and profoundly influence our thinking and behavior.

These systems often value… I mean, not often, they inherently value… productivity over wellbeing, external success over internal peace, shame over humanity, and conformity over individuality. In such a landscape aligning with our true values can feel like swimming against a strong current; one full of mean, little eels with sharp, tiny teeth, ready to take a gal down for trying to be herself in a tide that wants nothing less.

In codependent and people-pleasing thinking we are ‘other’ focused. Their needs and approval, their validation, are the most importantest things. And it makes sense that this external orientation can lead to an overshadowing of our own values. Leading us to make choices that prioritize other’s desires over our own. Goodness knows it did for me for so, so long in my own life.

Over time, and this makes perfect sense, we lose sight of what is genuinely important to us, as our decisions are increasingly guided by the urge to maintain harmony, or avoid conflict in relationships. Again, because we need safety above all, and being liked as a thing that can keep us feeling safer in the world, or actually being safer in the world. Even when it hurts our own tender hearts.

Perfectionist thinking, similarly pulls us away from our values, and often stems from internalized familial or societal expectations; the relentless pursuit of an ideal often dictated by others. When we get all singularly focused on getting that A+, gold star cookie and everything, we can easily neglect values like self-compassion, authenticity, ease, rest, or personal growth, replacing them with an unattainable standard of flawless.

These thought habits create a cycle where our actions increasingly reflect external demands or ideals, rather than our own true values. What matters to them comes to matter more to you than what matters to you. And the harder you work to look good to others, by their standards, the stronger the belief that that is what matters. It's like feeding gremlin pizza after dark; sharp teeth coming out everywhere.

Of course, living in this misalignment with ourselves and what really matters to us can lead us to feel empty, dissatisfied, and even have identity confusion. That last piece is something I hear about an awful lot, and again have totally experienced myself. Chameleoning, shape shifting, these are huge parts of emotional outsourcing. We lose track of who we are.

When we live in a way that's incongruent with our values, it makes a ton of sense that we might experience a pervasive sense of being lost or stuck. Surprised when we don't find fulfilment and achievements that don't resonate from our truest self. Getting that promotion or that degree doesn't feel so good when you're doing it in the subconscious hope that then others will approve of you. Know what I mean?

My client, Lilly, talks a lot about this. How she got married in her mid-20s because she got, and I quote, “All swept up in it,” and lost herself. She didn't pause to ask herself if it's what she truly wanted. Which makes sense, because she comes from a home where tolerating being treated not so great is the norm. Going with the flow was the way she survived.

So, of course, that applied when her partner said, “Hey, we should get married,” in this super casual way, and she just went with. She entered a profession that seemed kind of impressive and also stable, instead of following her value of curiosity. She got to a point where she would look in the mirror and wouldn't really know the woman in front of her.

She was living to people please and people prove from a deep codependent habit, far from her own values in life. And lest you think I'm dissing sweet, wonderful, amazing, Lilly, this all makes sense; like you living outside of your values does.

All the choices we make are towards the goal of survival. That's all our inner children are focused on, my loves. Don't beat yourself up. We're going to talk about compassion more in just a second, you know me. But Lilly was just doing the best she could to continue to get through. Right? Right.

Nerd alert... I love saying that... Biologically, living out of sync with our values can manifest in our bodies as stress, anxiety, and other physical symptoms. It's a reminder that our psychological state, and our bodily wellbeing are deeply interconnected.

That stress comes from, and leads to, dysregulation in our nervous system. Which is when we spent a bunch of our time in sympathetic fight or flight, or dorsal shutdown or freeze, instead of ventral vagal; the safe and social part of our nervous system.

If this is new to you, I have a majillion episodes all about it; There's a search feature. Put in “nervous system” and you'll find the goods.

We spend so much time dysregulated in our nervous system it becomes our steady state, and we almost don't remember how to bring ourselves home to ventral vagal, to rest, digest, chill, and actually be ourselves. When we're dysregulated, we're on autopilot and our behaviors are automatic and survival oriented rather than value driven.

Because, c’mon, when you're being chased by a bear do you have time to ask yourself, “Is running from this bear in my integrity?” C’mon. You're going to bust a move. I mean, I hope. I do hope you bust a move.

What that boils down to is that in a state of chronic stress or distress, the anxiety that's common in people-pleasing, perfectionist, and codependent thinking, our capacity to make choices aligned with our deeper values can be significantly diminished.

Which is an elegant way to say, it's really friggin’ hard to do what you actually think and believe to be right, and aligned with who you actually are, when you're in a survival state, when you're just treading water. It's super hard. And frankly, I think it's rude to even expect yourself to be able to. Know what I mean?

And so, it's important, my sweet, somatic-practice loving buttercups, that we remember that the opposite of dysregulation is not being calm, it's being authentic. That's what living in alignment with your values offers; a roadmap home to yourself and your deepest authenticity, no matter what is going on around you.

So, what keeps us stuck in this painful misalignment with self? I thought you'd never ask. It's often a cycle of reinforcement. When we act against our values, we often receive short term rewards like being at a casino, but it's your life and your heart and your sense of self. So yeah, the tiny jackpots are approval, success, a sense of belonging, someone's saying ‘way to be kiddo.’

Which can be incredibly reinforcing. I mean, c’mon, who doesn't like a little biochemical emotional treat? However, stepping out of line with what matters most to you, for a quick dopamine-oxytocin kapow, often comes at the cost of long-term fulfillment and authenticity. The more we engage in these patterns, the more entrenched they become, making it increasingly challenging to reconnect with our true selves.

But not impossible, fear not. Lilly and I talked a lot about values in our coaching. She had never really paused, like most of us, to name her values. What she could see clearly, when she did stop and do the exercises, to name them, is that so many of the things she was doing, the way she was being, they were so not in line with her real, true value system.

I mean, she wasn't clubbing baby seals or nothing, but she was with a partner she wasn't happy with. She was staying with him, frankly, out of entropy. Her partner drank most nights, and she would have a couple too just to keep them company; though presence was way more of a value to her than drinking most nights.

She didn't love where she was working, and she always said yes to more tasks, not wanting to disappoint her boss; and always disappointing herself. She was living far from her values of honesty, ease, curiosity, integrity, fun, meaningful work, self-respect, on and on.

What Lily needed, and what most of us need, is a boatload of compassion for the moment when it dawns on us that we aren't living life by our own value code. As always, I'm here to remind you that your nervous system will only let you do the things it deems less, or preferably non-lethal.

Living by your values, especially if they run contrary to your family, society, or community's values, well, frankly, that was a dumb thing to do when you were smaller. And may still be, today. I don't know how you're living, where you're living, right?

And so, I want to invite you to pause and to connect with love and care for your inner children. The you of the past, and the you of the present, has just been doing their darn-level best to make it through. Okay? Okay.

Before we get to remedy time, it's important to remember, we're likely to encounter speed bumps on the road Valuesville, so let's discuss some common ones and how to navigate them. Let's start by remembering that change, even really great, positive change can be intimidating, and can be a stretch for our nervous system.

It challenges our sense of self, and can disrupt our relationships or career paths. So, if you're a longtime listener, you know the way forward here; it's kitten steps. I actually just wrote the piece about kitten steps for my book on emotional outsourcing, which comes out in spring of 2025. Isn't that so fun? I cannot wait to share my book with you, March of 2025. Whoo, it's going to be a blast. Anyway, I digress.

So, yeah, kitten steps is the only way I know. And if you're new here, we talk about how baby steps are very, very large. I mean, think of it. Picture a baby's foot, it's like the size of your palm; it’s too much. When we take way too big a step and we say, for example… I'm going to digress, but I'm going to come back, like I do.

“Okay, New Year New You, I'm going to exercise every day of my life, for like 20 hours.” Right? Huge step. What are you going to do? You're going to fall on your face. Let's make it less ridiculous. “I'm going to exercise for an hour a day, every day, even though I exercise zero minutes a day now.” You're not going to do that.

But if you start with a kitten step, which is, “I'm going to take one walk around my apartment,” or my apartment building, or my block or my house. “I'm going to walk for five minutes,” or 10 minutes. “I'm going to do four push-ups.” You see where we're kitten stepping? So, we do that. We go small, kitten-paw small.

We take manageable steps towards change, because each teensy step towards your values is a step back towards your true self and greater regulation, and that's a beautiful thing. Kitten steps for life. One of the most powerful gifts of somatic work is that it supports us to acknowledge our fears, instead of pushing them away.

Fears are likely to come up when we start to do this work. So, as much as you're able and feels safer for you, I want to invite you to consider letting yourself begin to be with the fears. To honor them, and even thank them, because remember, your body doesn't do things that waste calories and waste energy. If your body is flooding you with fear, it's because it thinks it needs to protect you. So, your fear is a sign of self-love. Capish?

All right. I feel like that one blows people's minds. They’re like, “Wait, What? But it feels so terrible.” I know. I know. But it's just self-love, I promise.

Another speed bump is one we've talked about many a time, you and I, and it's what Harriet Lerner… She's so amazing... It's what she calls the “change back” demand. Which is just what it sounds like. When you stop living by other people's values, for their benefit, they're not likely to love it. And they're likely to demand that you “change back” to being the person they can walk all over.

That's challenging to think about, I get it. This is where all that people pleasing comes in. I'll remind you of several things; that you're not going to lose anyone who actually cares about you living in your truth, right?

If you’re living by your values, yeah, that's not going to scare away anyone who actually wants you to be. Losing people in relationships because you're choosing to be kinder to you and to live by your own values, there's no two ways around it, it's sucks.

And so, there's two parts to working with that. One is, acknowledge the suckiness; it sucks, it's painful. Lo siento. And two, is the antidote of community. When you begin to live by your values, especially those that defy societal norms, you're likely to face resistance from those upholding the status quo.

So, surround yourself with people who respect and support your journey, and perhaps are living it alongside you. For me, building that collective of aligned folks, that beloved community, is a huge point of doing all this healing work that we're up to.

Finally, sometimes our values conflict with each other or practical aspects of our lives, and that's totally normal. You may have a job that puts food on the table, but it's not aligned with your values of creativity, play, fun. Sometimes you’ve just got to keep on keepin’ on until you can make change.

Like my dear friend, Evie, always says, “There's no conscious consumption under capitalism.” And so, we're all just out here doing our best every day, right?

My loves, it's remedy time. I want to invite you to stand, should you feel so moved. Give your body a little shake out. Maybe invite your body to make a little noise, a little sigh or whatever. Let it out. We've been talking a lot about what's not working, and it's important, we’ve got to know what the “what” is. But you know how it is around here, your girl’s a nurse at the end of the day.

Let's talk about how to shift things here. All right. So, we're going to be doing some exercises, and as always, only follow along if it feels safe for you to do so. My darling, adult, grown-up ravioli, who makes good decisions for themself, I trust you to take good care of you.

So, we're going to go through the 10 steps to living in more alignment with your values. Anytime I say ‘there's a number of steps,’ I feel like I'm on a game show and it makes me laugh. I am easily amusable, which I actually find to be a really pleasant part of being me. I like being easily amused. It makes life a lot of fun.

Okay, one, identify your values. We always talk about awareness first. We’ve got to know what the “what” is before we can start making changes to make the what “the what.” You know what I mean? So, let's go through two processes towards identifying your values.

First, I'll invite you to find a quiet space to take a comfortable seat, lie down, go fetal if you want to. Or if you want to do the whole straight back meditation thing, do it-do it-do it. I'll invite you to either close your beautiful eyes or simply lower your gaze.

Now, we'll take a deep breath together; breathing in – long, slow out. And another in – long, slow out. Let your body settle, your breath settle, your mind settle. Picture yourself like a snow globe, and let all the snow start to settle down to the bottom.

I want to invite you to imagine a day in your life; it can be one you've already lived or make it up. Imagine a day where everything feels right, fulfilling, perfect. It's like your exactly, most completely, perfectest day. It's a super great day; the most best day.

Notice the things that you're up to, the activities you're doing, the humans and sweet animal and plant friends around you, how you interact with the environment and the living creatures. What elements are present in this vision? Is it freedom, creativity, connection, honesty? Perhaps something else? These are clues to your values.

Let's add a somatic practice moment by feeling into your body, if that's safe for you to do, and see if any sensations arise as you bring this perfect, useful, peaceful day into your awareness. Sensations in your body are things like tingling, warmth, cool, heaviness, lightness. Perhaps there's a color, a texture, a temperature. Or maybe it's just images. Or maybe nothing is present. That's fine.

If you do feel sensations, take another moment to breathe into it and to connect to that part of your body. You can tap back into the energy there to help you connect with your values as you deepen this exercise. And in moments where it might feel momentarily easier to go with the flow, for example, rather than to follow your values, you can come back to your body. Back to your body. Back to your body.

Taking a final breath, to close this practice for now, breathing in, and long, slow out. Gently flutter open your beautiful eyes, and jot down any notes about the sensations or the elements or values that arose. These elements and sensations over seeds of your values.

I invite you to reflect on them. Which of these resonate with the core of yourself? Allow yourself to free-write about each of the things that came up, the folks you were with, the things you saw, the experiences you had as you sat with yourself on at ease-filled day. See what words come up next.

Our next practice is about assessing your current life. So, I want to invite you to take a close look at your daily life and your actions. We're going to ask some potentially challenging questions; you may not like the answers, and that's fine, right?

My love, are your behaviors and choices in line with your values? I want to invite you to identify areas where you feel a disconnect between what you believe in and how you're actually living. This is where it gets practical, so you know that's my favesies.

We're going to start to see if your values align with how you're living in the areas of home and family, romantic relationships, career, health and wellness, friendships, and social interaction.

I like to write the ‘area’ word at the top of a piece of paper, and then I ask myself: In each of these areas, does how I am living in this area of my life…

For example, does how I am living in my career, does that reflect my values? How I'm relating to my health and wellness, does that reflect my values? Am I overexercising, which doesn't show my body respect. Am I under exercising, which doesn't show my body respect. Just for an example, right?

Write down each of your core values, and then go one by each. For instance, if your value is authenticity, do you feel safe to be your true self in these spaces? Is it that the environment actually is not safe? Are people being racist or homophobic? Are people being sexist or rude?

Or are you projecting your childhood fears, your survival skills, into that moment? And so, you don't feel safe being your true self because maybe that's something that feels challenging everywhere, right? So, this exercise can not only really be elucidating around values, it can really start to help us to see where we're projecting, and where all sorts of different things are showing up in the ways we're living.

Go through each of these sections, write out your values, and just start to see what's adding up and what's not. At the end of this session, I really want to encourage you to take a break. Take a walk, move your body breathe, let yourself rest, put it away for a hot minute. Please, don't push it, my sweet, perfect kitten.

When you're ready, you can bring in a somatic perspective to this work. For this practice, I will invite you to do a body scan, to identify where in your body you feel alignment or misalignment with your values.

Next, when you're ready, we'll look at the same practice again, of looking at each area of your life and your values, seeing what Venn diagram is there, and what's lying outside of it, by bringing in somatics. So, for this practice, I'll invite you first to do a body scan. That's to both settle the body, connect in with your body, and to see where in your body you feel alignment or misalignment with your values.

So, as you're doing the body scan, I'll invite you to simply ask your body: Body, allow me to see where you're holding tension around my values. Where there's ease around values. It can feel really weird and woo, and like, wait, what, to just start randomly asking your body questions. But if you think about it, we're constantly…

Even if we're not saying, “Hey, body, do you have to pee? Are you hungry?” We are. We're in conversation with our bodies. And so, I want to invite us to take it beyond those biological impulses, like peeing and eating and sleeping, and to really start asking our body questions that can guide us to make decisions that feel really good. That offer a way to deepen the connection between our physical and emotional selves.

So, yeah, so we can get guidance from our bodies for decision making, for choicefulness, for greater empathy and compassion and love in our lives. So, scan your body and ask it to show you places of tension and ease, tightness and gentleness, around your values.

And then, you can start to ask your body: Okay, there's a lot of tensing in my shoulders when I ask you, body, about values. What do you need me to know? That's a question that I find really supportive: What do you need me to know?

Then, having checked in with your body, you can go back, to that areas work, and look at career and your core values. Ask your body to show you where there's connection and disconnection. I'm realizing, as I talk it out, I guide people through this in Anchored, so it's a little different, right? Because I'm there to be, “Now do this, now do that.” But give it a try.

I have found it really, really, really supportive in my own life and my own work, to move towards interdependence and away from codependence. So, give it a try. And of course, I made you a recording. Head to; that's the episode number; to download a short, guided body scan meditation to help you connect with your values through your body.

The meditation is a body scan, and then you add the values piece in. Which is super powerful, because you get to use your own language, right? Okay, so you did that.

If you're feeling like poo, because your values and your life aren't lining up, I want to remind you again, dissonance is very normal. Our society and families of origin often pressure us into roles that don't align with our intrinsic values. This discomfort, and often ick dissonance, is where growth begins. It's an opportunity to question, to realign, and to make conscious choices that resonate more closely with our true selves.

Those changes don't have to be monumental. It can start small, like setting a boundary in a relationship, or tweaking an aspect of your job to better reflect your values. The key is to start somewhere, and to do it with compassion and patience.

Back to our list; three, regulation, safety, safety, safety. You asked, “What are my values?” You felt into them, you named them, you connected with them. And then, you need to remember that we cannot make change from a dysregulated nervous system. So, pause to orient yourself as much as you need.

“But how do I do that,” you ask? Well, lucky for you, I happened to include my orienting exercise in the free gifts for this week at You're welcome.

Four, prioritize your values. Not all values can be equally prioritized at all times. Decide which values are most important to you right now in each area of your life. This doesn't mean you're neglecting the others, but rather you're acknowledging that certain values might take precedent in specific circumstances, and given where you are in life, etc.

I recommend prioritizing in each area. For example, when I was a primary care provider, being my most authentic self while swabbing someone for strep throat or refilling their insulin, that wasn't a high-priority value in that setting versus being really diligent. Writing prescriptions for insulin is very scary; I'm just going to say that out loud. If you mess up a decimal point, you kill someone. So, the priority wasn't being myself, it was being focused and diligent and on it.

Meanwhile, being my authentic self, that's a nonnegotiable in friendship. See the difference there? So, what's your priority in each area?

Five, set clear goals. Based on your prioritized values, set clear and specific goals. These goals should reflect how you want to incorporate your values into your life. For example, if family is a priority across all goals, a goal could be spending more quality time with loved ones. Delegating more at work, going back to school so you can change careers, moving, whatever.

Six, create an action plan. Break down your goals into actionable steps. What can you do daily, weekly, monthly to move closer to living in alignment with your values in each area? Make these actions specific, measurable, and achievable. Remember to be gentle and give yourself grace.

Seven, stay accountable. You know I love accounta-buddies. Share your goals and action plan with a trusted friend, or a coach like moi, who can support you. Regular check-ins or discussions about your progress can help you stay on track.

This is why I shifted my work from all one-on-one coaching, to now doing community-based programs, like Anchored and The Somatic Studio. Community support is where it's at when it comes to growth and change, and the social science studies back me up. You know I love an evidence base, c’mon now.

Eight, practice mindfulness. Like we've been talking about since the first moments of this show, cultivating mindfulness and self-awareness, being your own watcher, and learning how to non-judgmentally pay attention to your thoughts, emotions, and behaviors, is a powerful gift to give yourself. It allows you to ask: Is all of this in harmony with my values? Mindfulness can help you make conscious choices aligned with your principles.

Nine, learn to say no. Understand that saying no and having boundaries, which are super different things… But saying no to commitments or requests that don't align with your values is not selfish in a bad way. It's an act of self-care and integrity; and that's selfish, in a great way, to me. Politely decline when necessary. Remember that boundaries are indeed resentment prevention.

Ten… Wait a second, did I misnumber these or did I misread? I don't know. But I do know that there's 10. So, I'm going to call this “nine.” I may have called the last one nine, it doesn't matter. My values did not include “math incorrectly.” Let me be clear.

So, maybe, nine, embrace flexibility. Life is full of unexpected changes and challenges, such as, maybe reading the numbers wrong. Be flexible and adapt your goals and actions as needed, while staying true to your core value. That's actually a great point.

My core value is living in imperfection. It's not a core value… An important value is living in imperfection. Not being a strident perfectionist like I once was. It's being kind to myself and having self-respect, which means not beating me up. I maybe read a list wrong, who cares?

Okay, so back to prioritization, if I was currently prescribing insulin… Oh, I care… I would stop, I would recheck, I would get someone else to double check, right? I would care a lot. But I'm reading a list, so it doesn't matter. So, I'm going to be kind to me and kind to you, and just move on. Right?

Because then, let's also zoom out. Integrity, honesty, kindness, love community, these are some of my most important values. And so, if I was sitting here being mean to me about maybe reading a list wrong, would I be kind to my partner? Would I have the same bandwidth in my nervous system, the same window of capacity, to be my most loving, kindest self with her when I leave this little room?

Probably not, because I would have spent a bunch of energy being mean to me. I would be frustrated. I'd be annoyed. I'd have all these— the knock-on emotional effects and community impacts of being mean to ourselves. It is not insignificant, my loves. So, living in our values is an act of community care. I cannot say it strongly enough. Though, I believe I maybe just did.

Ten, reflect and adjust. Regularly assess your progress and make adjustments as necessary. It’s okay to change your goals and values over time, as you evolve and grow as an individual. Totally cool.

Finally, always remember to celebrate your achievements. Acknowledge and celebrate your successes along the way. And celebrate falling flat on your face, because it means you tried, right? Recognize and appreciate the attempts and changes you've made in your life to live in alignment with your values.

Remember, living by your values is an ongoing process; a pro-cess, for our Canadian friends. It's perfectly normal to experience moments of struggle or deviation. The key is to stay committed to your journey, and continuously strive to align your actions and choices with your individual, most deeply held beliefs and principles.

Before we conclude, I'd like to leave you with a reflective exercise. It's been a minute since you got Feminist Wellness homework. I've actually gotten some DMs, and a very sternly written email from a listener who was like, “Pardon me, I miss the homework. You used to give homework. What gives?” I don't know. I forgot. I was super into it, my brain moved on. But I'm back with the homework.

Over the next week, I encourage you to journal about moments when you felt most authentic and true to yourself. What were you doing? Who are you with? How did it feel in your body? What were the stories you heard in your mind? These reflections can be really, really helpful. So, pause, write them down, sit with them, meditate with them, take them for a walk, be with them.

Thank you for joining me here today, my love. Reflect on your values. Embrace the journey. Be the change you wish to see. By aligning with our true values, we contribute to building a more authentic, equitable and compassionate world. Remember, your journey towards value alignment is not just personal, it's a radical act of transformation in the face of systemic challenges.

Until next time, keep nurturing your inner self and let your values be your guide. Let’s do what we do. A gentle hand on your heart, should you feel so moved. And remember, you are safe. You are held. You are loved. And, when one of us heals, we help heal the world. Be well, my beauty. I’ll talk to you soon.

Thank you for listening to this episode of Feminist Wellness. If you want to learn more all about somatics, what the heck that word means, and why it matters for your life, head on over to for a free webinar all about it. Have a beautiful day my darling, and I'll see you next week. Ciao.

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