Your Vision, Values, and Verdict

Posted on October 12, 2020

Ryan Stewman



I know that you have to have a vision for what it is you’re trying to accomplish. It doesn’t matter whether you have a job or you’re running a business. If you don’t have a vision for your family, your finances, if you don’t have an eye for what your life looks like, just about anything will do.

And the truth of the matter is that if we aspire to live life to its fullest, we have to start having a vision. Although it begins awful small at first, as you fan that flame, your picture gets more significant.

It starts to incorporate your values, and those values end up becoming your core values. And if your business’s core values are everything that you stand by, well, then you got to have a verdict.

One of our kids has started dating somebody recently, and they asked if they could bring this new person that they’re dating home with them to sleep in the same bed? Robyn and I were talking about it, and she said, “You know in my gut just doesn’t quite feel right.”

As I listened, I started thinking about the vision we have as a family.

When I first moved up to New England, Robyn and I didn’t have sleepovers for over 8 years because she had young kids in the home.

It just didn’t happen.

I remember getting on the phone with some of my buddies around the 5 or 6-year mark, and they would say, “dude, you know how much money it costs you that you guys don’t live together?”

“I wouldn’t stay with a girl if, after five years, she still didn’t want to sleep in the same bed as me.”

I was like, “Yeah, we can just make life happen so much easier if we combined our incomes, and we did everything together.”

To help Robyn find a solution to what to say to her son about sleeping with his girlfriend in our home, I began asking questions.

I reminded her that one of our other kids has been dating somebody for about four years, and we haven’t let them sleep together yet. Just because they’re in college now, just because they’re 18, just because they’re doing their own thing, doesn’t mean that our rules change.

In the process of casting that vision, what do you want it to be? This doesn’t just relate to family life; this relates to your business life as well. You know, what are your values?

I was asking Robyn, “what’s the reason that you didn’t want us to sleep together?”
“What’s the reason that you didn’t want to show the children?”

And what is it that we want to show them right now, because even though they’re getting older, they’re still not fully adults yet, and they still need us to carve a path for them. They’re still looking for us to show them what is right and wrong in life.

I found Robyn was concerned if we don’t allow the kid to stay in the same bed with the person they’re dating, that somehow, someway, they might not want to come to spend time with us as much. I found out that it was one reason she might be willing to let her kid sleep in bed with someone else.

But somewhere deep in her gut, it wasn’t really resonating with her because it was going against her values. As we found out what those values were.
I said, “Let’s say that they’re dating that person, it’s a fairly new relationship, which it is, and they sleep in the same bed and the next thing, you know, they break up and then that kid starts dating someone else. The next thing you know, they want to bring them home, and they want to sleep in the bed too. We don’t live in a brothel.”

So, if it were me, I would allow it to happen one time, but it better be with that person that they’re willing to make a commitment to for the rest of their life.

See, it’s not about sleeping in the same bed or not sleeping the same bed. We know that 18 year-olds are going to do what 18 year-olds do.

It’s about what do I condone?

And what does it do to the relationship to take it to that next level? What am I willing to allow in my house for good or bad because it becomes a slippery slope over time. First, you start buying your kids’ drinks. Next thing you know, they’re bringing the drinks to you. The next thing you know, they’re allowing their 15 year-olds to start drinking alcohol regularly or smoking weed or doing whatever, see what you started? It’s hard to close the door on that, right?

What is it that we’re really trying to teach our kids?

What values do we really live by?


I want to tell you that I used to be somebody that didn’t necessarily have those values. It didn’t make much sense to me. I had to honor Robyn’s values to remain together. By living in those values, I focused on what I brought instead of what I received. I started to realize the real commitment that I would need to make in my relationship with her to move our vision forward.

I recognize this with most people who are struggling, trying to find their success, especially in business. See, they get their heart all set on something, it feels right, it feels fun, and it feels exciting. They go after it, and then they realize all the hard work required to make it happen. Since it’s not their purpose, it’s just their passion, they eventually don’t feel like doing it anymore.

I realized something a long time ago that if I have a choice between what my heart tells me to do and what my gut tells me to do, that I’m better served following my stomach every single time.

I want to pass that information along to you because I know that some of you right now are struggling with, “what is my purpose?”

What am I on earth to do?
What are the tough decisions that I need to make?

Is my heart telling me the right thing to do, or do I listen to that little voice that’s inside?

The one saying, “Man, I might have to go against the grain, I might have to do something different, I might have to become something different.”

I bet you many times in our lives, we can look back on where we followed our heart and not our gut. We also ended up having to clean up the mess of that.

Well, I want to help you through that.

Number one, understand something, you need to have a vision. You need to have a dream so big that it actually scares you a little bit. If it doesn’t scare you a little bit. If you don’t know how you’re going to accomplish that vision, I want to challenge you to believe that you might not have a big enough idea yet.

As you’re developing that vision, I want you to start to think about who you are as a person, what values you carry, and what’s most important to you.
These are going to become your core values. Not only for how you live your life, but who you’re willing to interact with. In business, whether it be customers, employees, internal, external doesn’t matter.

Finally, I want to let you know something. You’re going to come into challenges that are very hard to know which decision to make. When you get to those challenges that require you to choose between where your heart is and what your gut’s telling you do, I want to suggest that your gut is rarely wrong.

To conclude our story, Robyn ended up reaching out to our kid and letting him know that she just wasn’t very comfortable with them sleeping in the same bed. He reached back out and said, “Can you tell me why you came to that conclusion?”

She looked over at me, and she was like, “Well, what do I say?” as she started typing out a long message to him. I said, “Listen, all you need to tell them is this is what your decision is, and if they want to know more, you can get on the phone and talk about it.”

They’re still coming this weekend, they’re just sleeping in different bedrooms, and everything’s okay. Because at the end of the day, Robyn would have ended up having to wrestle one way or another was something that she didn’t like. I want to suggest that you might end up having to wrestle with some things that you don’t like, either.

When your vision is strong enough, and your values are strong enough, you can lean into your intuition and trust what it’s telling you.

See ya’ in the trenches!

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