Thursday, July 29, 2010

Does your spending reflect your values?

Does your spending reflect your values? As a life coach, I have noticed that how we deal with money mimics the way we deal with life. People who are very cautious with their money are usually very cautious with how they live their lives. People that spend money freely tend to be people who take chances. It isn’t just about putting your money where your mouth is, it is about following the action patterns in your life. Make sure you are being INTENTIONAL about where your money goes and how much of it goes there. I am not talking about the standard budget with exact dollars and cents for each category. I’m talking about setting money priorities. What are your family values? If charity is high on your list of values, but due to the economy, you’ve cut back- make sure you are giving SOMETHING. It doesn’t really matter how much, but the act of giving needs to be prioritized. If more family time is a family value, spend money on activities that enrich your relationships with one another. Look at where your money is going, and ask yourself if it represents your values so that you are living financially the way that you intend to live emotionally. If one of your family values is health and wellness, but all of your family activities involve being sedentary with a bucket of grease laden popcorn, you are living contrary to your values. Write a short paragraph about what sort of values and lifestyle you want your family to uphold. Be descriptive (i.e. I want to have game night once a month, walk together every weekend, and work in some sort of charitable capacity once a quarter). Put it on the refrigerator and revisit your priorities when faced with a spending decision you need to make. This is a great tool to teach kids how to spend wisely, and make sure it reflects what it really important to them. If you practice being intentional in all things that you do, you will have more of what you want, and less of what you don’t. Keisha Gallegos (Starlit Path Life Coaching)

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