Optimize Your Life

Episode #31: Value Congruence

Show Notes:

Welcome back to another episode and today I really want to talk about something that is very important when you are in your work setting and that is value congruence. So for those of you who aren’t familiar with this term, what we’re talking about is when your personal values are equal to the values of your environment. This can be the values of your organization, of your job, of the group of people that you are working within, or of your manager or supervisor.

Now think about the rule of congruence for two triangles as we talk about in trigonometry. When we talk about it in that context, we say that two triangles are congruent if all three sides and all three angles are equal. So you can flip one around, rotate it, they can be facing different directions, but they remain congruent.

In a similar fashion, in the world a psychology Carl Rogers says that you need to be in a state of congruence in order to achieve self-actualization, something Abraham Maslow spoke about as well. To learn more about where you fit with regards to Maslow’s hierarchy of needs, you can check out my book The 7E Solution to Burnout where I go into more details about each of the layers of needs that we have and how to actually get to that place of self-actualization which is at the very top of the pyramid.

But back to Rogers, your ideal self has to match up with your behavior. If you have an idea of how you would like to be in the world, but you aren’t quite aligned with that image because your behavior is mismatched, you are in a state of incongruence

Rodgers also talked about what incongruous is and that’s when you experience a discrepancy between your experience and the self-image you develop in response to that experience. You might consider yourself someone with integrity but because you are financially insecure, you cheat on your taxes. This and also happened on a subconscious level where you consider yourself a good worker but because you’re burned out, you don’t have the stamina that you used to have so you compensate by working from home working, from your vacation, or never even leaving to take that vacation in the first place.


So one reason congruence is important is because it can lead to self-actualization. But for our day-to-day, it’s also important because it can increase your engagement on the job and lead to more job satisfaction

As a leader, it can make you more influential. When you model how to be open and clear about your values, you get your employees to be more engaged. 

Think about a great leader, someone like Martin Luther King. He wasn’t just a good speaker. He was a leader. He practiced what he preached. It sounds easy and straightforward, so why aren’t we all doing it?

I think there are two main reasons for this:

The first is that we aren’t really clear on what our values are or what our ideal self is so we are looking to others to see what is acceptable that will get us validation or what others are doing so we can be like everyone else and fit in. 

By the way, if that’s you – I have an online course that helps you build up self-awareness so you can gain that much needed clarity to make better decisions. I’ll put the link in the show notes, but you can also find it by going to my online platform, The Academy for High Achievers and look for the course called Work and Live Smarter. It’s easily found at bit.ly/increaseselfawareness

The second reason we become incongruent is because although we know what our ideal self is, we sabotage ourselves. This happens because we lack self-management. We let our emotions dictate our actions. We think about the now and forget about the future. We are programmed to be in auto-pilot mode and don’t have the knowhow to slow down enough and see that we have a choice, that we can do it differently. 

So recently a client of mine had this experience where he was working on priming his mind through a recording and what he found was even though he’s the kind of person who tended to become very stressed out and take out all of his stress on other people, over the course of this program where he was working on himself, he actually was able to slow down enough and recognize that he had a choice in how he related to stress. And as a result of having that realization he then started to be more in control of himself and then also be nicer to the people around him. And in his words, the way he described his experience was that he gets to be the version of himself that he really wants to be, the best version of himself. So this is what is possible when you start really take control back of your mind. 


If this second reason resonates with you more, you can work to reprogram your subconscious mind and for that I have a couple of resources as well:

You can check out my ebook, How to Train Your Brain for Success in 5 Steps, found on Amazon and also found at bit.ly/primingebook

Again, that will be in the show notes. 

What I’m saying here is that by increasing your self-awareness, you’ll know who you are and what you want and you’ll be able to make decisions and set goals that are aligned with you. This includes your needs, your personality, your triggers, your values, and your limiting beliefs. I cover these 5 areas in Work and Live Smarter so check out that course. 

And by being really intentional and priming your mind for success, you can create your world on purpose. This is the area I’m most passionate about right now and hope you’ll consider making this an area you invest in for yourself because I’ve seen what is possible with brain priming and I want to share it with you all. 

So make sure you go to my website for the show notes. It’s drsharongrossman.com/podcast. Look for episode 31 and all the links will be there for you. 

Thank you for checking out the show. I hope it’s given you some food for thought. I’d love for you to join me. In the meantime, I’ll be thinking about how else I can provide you with great value so you can become the best version of yourself. Take good care until next week!

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