What Did You Learn Today?

:05 read “Live as if you were to die tomorrow. Learn as if you were to live forever.” ~ Mahatma Gandhi

What have you been up to? I’ve been trolling around rabbit holes all week. The curiosity kind of rabbit holes, which somehow sounds more adventurous and a little less nerdy than researching. I stumbled across a bullet point on a blog this week that really grabbed me. The blogger asked, “what have you learned today?” And if we answer, “nothing”, he suggested we should write today’s date on a blank piece of paper and set it on fire. Why? Because we just burned up a day that might have been valuable, a day that could have brought us a step closer to becoming our best. He went on to say we only get about 29,000 days before we die and we shouldn’t go around wasting any of them. (I’m holding out for 31,000 because I’m a slow learner.)

“Anyone who stops learning is old, whether at twenty or eighty. Anyone who keeps learning stays young.” ~ Henry Ford

In my obsession to find out who’s at work building and teaching character, I’ve found many. Interestingly enough, each curriculum contains its own hierarchy and terms. Many sites focus on discovering and revealing our character strengths from the inside out. I think it’s a great way to do it. In our system, Worthy Values First, we suggest it’s important to spend whatever amount of time is necessary for self-reflection to narrow our focus and decide on what matters most. It is, after all, the work of a lifetime. However, I’ve found it’s too overwhelming a task for some people, so many assessments can provide a sort of “shopping list” of words to start with.

Where can I learn more about character?

The Gallup Association created Strengthfinders 2.0 in 2001. It’s an assessment widely used in business and education. It begins with an “inside-out” Q & A process that helps a person to identify their core character strengths. When studied and embraced, it can provide insight into using those strengths. Strengthsfinders begins with a list of 34 traits. Gallup calls them “themes” and the survey narrows them down to our top 5, our “constellation” of  traits. There is a fee of $15 to get a code to take the survey or buy the book, Strengthsfinders 2.0 and your code will be inside.  About 7 million people have taken Strengthsfinders since its inception.

One of my favorites is the Values in Action survey you can take for free at www.viacharacter.org.  Christopher Peterson and Martin Seligman, well-known researchers in the field of positive psychology, developed in it in 2001. Character strengths are assessed in a free online test you can take in about 10 to 15 minutes. It measures 24 character strengths and our capacities for thinking, feeling, and behaving. Once again, a top 5 result will be produced. There is a free report and if you want to drill deeper, other reports are available to purchase. Over 4 million people have taken the VIA survey.

There are lots of other assessments that measure for personality type, thinking styles and learning capacity. Why am I telling you about all this? Because I want you to know you’re not alone in your thirst to learn more about how you can become the best possible version of the person you were designed to be! Let’s be clear, it is possible so please stick around!

What is Worthy Values First? What do we mean by a system?

Some terms seem interchangeable. Character, talents, strengths, values are just a few. One site I visited had a lengthy list of 49 positive traits listed as character strengths!  Worthy Values First begins with self-understanding and then takes it to a higher, uniquely personal level.

Assessments are a good place to gather knowledge but we always suggest some good old thinking, contemplating the things you decide are most important to you. (It seems to work even better with a pen and paper nearby as you noodle because you’ll want to jot down insights as they bubble up.) We maintain knowledge of ourself is critical and it helps us to align our life with what matters most.

Using Worthy Values First, we identify the things that matter most to us and then we can use our descriptive character traits to define a personal value. For example, my top 5 in Strengthsfinders 2.0 are Activator, Learner, Connectedness, Strategy and WOO. One of my values is I want to use my “learner” strength to pull my research into one resource where I can distil the information I’ve gathered for the benefit of others. Let’s face it. I’ll never stop reading and studying about what makes us tick so I want to use my “connectedness” strength to share it. See how that works?

How can I learn more?

When you subscribe to this website, you receive a link to the overview of our system in the form of a short ebook in pdf format. If you are a subscriber and don’t know where to locate the link, please hop over to the “contact” tab and leave us a note. We’ll get back to you pronto!

In the overview, we explain how to identify the things that mean the most to you, your worthy values. Then, we help you to set up commitments and goals that are aligned with those values. The overview is written in friendly and easy-to-understand terms (and it’s got gorgeous photos!) so you come away with a solid understanding of using our method to become the very best version of the person you were designed to be! We’ll also explain how you can begin creating your unique legacy of greatness, beginning right now!

In the days ahead, I’ll continue exploring character, what it is, how it can be cultivated and why it’s critical to success! Stay teachable my friend! Have a great week!




  • Grant Newbold

    Dear Blog Reader. It has been only a couple of years since the life paths of Betty and I crossed. In that time we have put a lot of effort, time, and energy, both individually and together, into defining our Worthy Values First system. That effort has taught me great respect for Betty and the effort she puts into learning and the places she searches for more and more connectedness and information. Her blogs attest to her efforts and all of us who seek them can benefit. As she said in this blog please consider becoming a subscriber and access our overview to help you continue on the journey that you have started by reading these blog posts. Thanks again for joining us. Talk to you again soon. Doc Newbold.

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