Understanding Your Money Values
A crucial part of "having your shit together" is understanding your money values.
Money values are the meaning you put behind your dollars, including where you think money is well spent, where you think it's wasted, and how you would like to use it to achieve your goals.
For instance, I value food. Like a lot. I'm much more willing to spend on a nice dinner out than shopping for clothes. Why? Simply because I value food and the dining experience more than I value other activities, like spending a day in the mall. I think going out to eat with friends or family is money well spent. That's my money value. It might not be yours.
I also value Netflix and wine. Probably more than I should...but hey, I know what I enjoy and a documentary featuring monkeys sitting in a hot spring while I sip a pinot noir is my idea of a good time.
Your money values are also determined by your financial goals. What you're saving toward is what you value. Maybe quality time with family on a vacation is a value. Maybe being able to buy a nice pair of shoes is your value. Maybe raising pigeons or starting a goat farm is valuable to you.
Or perhaps you'd like use your money for charity donations or giving back to your community.
There is no right or wrong answer when it comes to your money values because it's personal to you. Your values might be different than your friends and family, and that's okay.
So how do you discover your money values? The easiest way to figure it out is to evaluate your spending habits and write down - honestly - what you like spending on and saving toward. Make your list and perhaps do a little prioritizing. You might find that your money values are currently a detriment to your financial picture. By recognizing any problem areas, you can work at developing new positive money values.
Finally, I want you to think about your overall relationship to money. Is it positive? Negative? Or do you use simply use money as a tool? Your attitude and relationship with money can affect your spending and saving habits, as well as your values.
By understanding your money values, you can adjust your financial plan to more effectively help you live what you truly cherish.