What is your answer to the question, “What is something really expensive, a lot more than your usual gastos, that you spent your hard-earned money on that made you feel on top of the world?”
Do I hear travel, fine dining, menu dégustation, signature bags, shoes, clothes, jewelry, wine, cars, house(s), yacht?
Whatever it is, can you still feel the thrill you felt when you spent for it? Did you feel you were on top of the world? How many IG posts and stories did you create to share that moment? Or did you just keep it to yourself because you wanted to savor all of it and didn’t feel the need to share it? Or did you want to share it but you felt a bit embarrassed or guilty about it?
Before we proceed with the discussion of your luxury that made you feel you were on top of the world, let me just ask you, “What was the price of that luxury? Was it no more than one-tenth of your assets?” If your answer is yes, then we can proceed for I know that you observed the third basic law of money – Make an army of golden slaves before you buy luxury. And add to that, the FQ Mom Guideline: Buy luxury only if you can afford to buy 10 pieces of it.
The thrill of the luxury is a clue.
Now that we’re done with making sure you did not overspend on luxury, let’s examine why that spend made feel on top of the world. How was it? Did you share that feeling with someone? Or were you reluctant to share with others because it might seem too extravagant? Did you feel uncomfortable because a lot of people have lost their jobs due to the pandemic and here you were spending on a luxury? Now, let’s try to remove the guilt, judgment, discomfort, and just focus on what thrill it gave you.
If it was an expensive trip once the quarantine restrictions were eased a bit, maybe it was because you value the family fun of travel you have been missing for almost two years now. If it was an expensive jewelry to mark your milestone birthday, maybe you value physical appearance or aesthetics. If it was a menu dégustation that cost an arm and a leg for the tiny servings, maybe because you value creativity. It could be anything. But do think about it and understand what gave you the thrill. It should be something that brought you joy, not something that you had to spend hard-earned money on, just to please someone or just to feel you belong, but left you feeling miserable deep down inside.
Understanding how a luxury made you feel on top of the world is a clue to what things you really value in life. In Gallup, we use the following values.
You could use the above as guide in finding out what values were fulfilled when you purchased that luxury. If you ended up feeling bad after buying that luxury, maybe there was a core value that was violated.
That is why it is always important for us to understand what are core values are. You can start now, by choosing your top five among the 28 above. Then make sure that what you do with and for money align with your top core values.
You might already know that family is on top of my list of core values. But do you know that I also just realized quite belatedly that aesthetics also ranks high among my values? Yes, it does. And that is why I always appreciate people who come well-groomed and properly-dressed to meetings and other occasions. It is why I’m so happy when I’m in beautiful and clean surroundings. It is why I appreciate moms who try to look their best, and why I love watching Jane Fonda, the 83-year-old actress who seems to have kept her workout queen figure back in the ‘80s (she was already in her midlife then but was dominating the field). It is why I love beautiful things in general.
At first, I was figuring out whether that was just vanity, something normally perceived as shallow. But I have come to terms with this value of mine and let me share a cute conversation with my son Enrique when he was younger, which he never forgot:
Enrique: Ma, why do you always want to look good when you’re goiong out?
Me: Because I don’t want to be a visual pollution to anyone!
Enrique: Wow! That’s cool. Hahaha!
Come to think of it, this is one of the things I also miss during this pandemic. When we do our zoom, we can get away with being “mananggal-pretty or handsome” – i.e. just from waist up, hahaha! Maybe I’m also a believer of what Helena Rubinstein said, “There are no ugly women, only lazy ones.” And you know what? According to our top psychologist and National Scientist Dr. Honey Carandang, one of our basic human psychological needs is the Need for Beauty! When we surround ourselves with beautiful things, we allow ourselves to benefit from the healing power of beauty. I rest my case. (To read more on our needs, read The Eight Psychological Needs We Should Address or watch our conversation Basic Psychological Needs with Dr. Honey Carandang
Now that you know why some luxuries bring you joy and some don’t, I hope you will always use your top core values as compass when making big purchases. Ask yourself the question, “Is this huge expense fulfilling any of my values?” If the answer is yes, then go ahead as long as you observe the third basic law of money.
Remember, money is a tool. I always say, “The true purpose of money is to fulfill your core values.” So, be bold about wanting to earn more money. Demand what you think you’re worth when giving your services, and use some of that money in treating yourself at the right time.
Cheers to high FQ and enjoy your values-based luxuries!
1. If you want to have a free exploratory consultation on our Financial Architecture service, please click this link https://tinyurl.com/IFEFinancialArchitecture.
2. Most of the time, what we lack is not motivation but career clarity. Join this workshop on November 13, 2021 Click https://tinyurl.com/CareerClarityRegistration to register and reserve your slot.
3. I’ll be giving a talk on the Psychology of Money on November 12, 2021.
4. I’ll be part of the 2021 BSP Stakeholders Summit on November 25, 2021
5. Share your business ideas. I will be one of the judges of Condura Negosyo Plus on November 20, 2021 to join register to this link. https://bit.ly/NegosyoPlus
6. Join us on Kumu on Thursday, November 11, 2021 at 11am with our guest Bea Lorenzo.
7. To learn more about your money behavior, get your copy of FQ Books and for your loved ones too. The principles you will learn from here are not only applicable in your financial life but all the other important aspects of your life. https://fqmom.com/bookstore/
To know more about FQ Book 2, watch this short video.
8. How good are you with money? Do you want to know your FQ Score? Take the FQ Test and get hold of your finances now. Scan the QR code or click the link https://fqmom.com/dev-fqtest/app/#/questionnaire
This article is also published in Philstar.