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Dr. Karin Anderson Abrell shares her story of choosing to let her core values lead her life, even when others don’t understand. She was unwed until her 40’s because she would not settle for a marriage that did not align with her values. Because of this experience, much of her work has been about helping others thrive as a single person.

Our decisions and feelings are based on values. We need to understand our core values before we can begin the work of changing our thoughts and our mindset because values are the foundation for our thoughts. We also need to understand what is most important to us before we enter into commitments such as marriage. In most situations, partners need to agree on religion, because it permeates so much of our lives. if one’s partner thinks your beliefs don’t make sense, it will be hard to connect with them or make decisions together.

How do we determine what our core values are? One good indicator of a value is that one get into fights with people about it. Maybe it’s punctuality, finances, politics, religion, expectations, or your definition of success. Pay attention to what makes you angry, and then ask why. What is the reason behind your strong emotion? Is it respect? Safety?

Exploration of the values handed down to you by your family of origin is an important part of the process of individuation. If you want to know what your values are, you must find out if you really agree with what you were taught as a child. Your parents might not approve,, but if the rules you live by do not sit well in your soul, you will might not find the happiness you seek. You might even have a meltdown and end up questioning everything anyway, so you might as well do the work now, before you fall apart.

Therapy is a great place to find out who you are and how to grow to live without compromising your values. Finding the right therapist can be a challenge, especially if you are not aware of what your values are. If your therapist does not believe that your values are important, it will be hard for you to make progress. Don’t despair – keep looking until you find someone who aligns with what is important to you.

At the end of this episode, Dr. Karin and I discuss the power of positive mindset practices. We have both personally improved our lives so drastically by making simple changes like taking time for gratefulness and choosing to smile. We have committed to staying mentally healthy, and to do that, we need a positive outlook. You can find a lot of information on this topic in other episodes of Hope to Recharge.


Connect with Dr. Anderson Abrell:

Ask a Question:
Instagram: @dr.karin
Book: Single is the New Black; Don’t Wear White till it’s Right



  • “Does this person fit in the movie of my life?” @SarahBlakley @MatanaJacobs #HopetoRecharge
  • “Take charge of your thoughts; take charge of your life.” @KarinAndersonAbrell  @MatanaJacobs #HopetoRecharge
  • “It’s okay to be okay. It’s not a sin, even though people are struggling.” @MatanaJacobs #HopetoRecharge
  • “It’s not fake positivity. It’s noticing where the positive is and elevating it.” @MatanaJacobs #HopetoRecharge
  • “Figure out what drives you, what you want to achieve and you can achieve it.” @MatanaJacobs #HopetoRecharge


Topics Discussed

  • Finding your core values
  • Finding a life partner who aligns with your values
  • Practicing positivity and mindfulness


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