Your “Valuing Quotient” (or “VQ”) is an indicator of how you value things and the way you use money. In order to determine your VQ, all you have to do is read the following statements, write “Me” next to those that accurately reflect how you think or act, and write “Not Me” next to those that don’t.
- I like to think that I’m a smart shopper.
- I’m careful about how I spend my money even on very small items.
- I can explain my reasons for spending money on each item I buy.
- Just because one member of a family earns more than another doesn’t mean that person should control all the significant decisions.
- I rarely buy things just because my friends have them.
- Even without a price tag I can tell an item’s quality and proper price.
- I don’t believe that money defines who I am or what I’m worth.
- You can’t tell how successful someone is by how he or she dresses.
- Even people who do not have money can have power.
- I usually find a way to negotiate with my family or friends rather than fight with them about money.
Now give yourself ten points for each “Me” answer. If your “Me” answers add up to between 80 and 100 points, bravo! You have a high VQ. If you scored either 60 or 70 points you may be a little unsure of how you link values and money. And if you have 50 points or less, this section should help you to look at your money and values differently.”
“Tell me how you spend your money and I’ll tell you who you are.” I say this because you spend money on what fits your value system.
Look at this brief interchange “The sporting life” from Wealthy Choices….
Whose side are you on? Do you see this as a clash of values or something else? Let me know.
The Sporting Life
Mary blew up, “Jim, how could you spend $130 on tickets for a baseball game? What a waste of money.”
“I earned the money,” Jim answered. “I can do whatever I want with it.”
This interchange occurs between friends, couples, parents and children, and even between “me, myself, and I.” The dollar amount and the reason for the expenditure change, but the basic pattern remains the same—one voice saying “How could you…” and the second claiming “It’s my money….” One person criticizes the spending and the other defends it.
If you find yourself on the defending side of this kind of argument, it might be a good idea for you to consider this: while it may be true that you’ve earned the money and should be able to do whatever you want with it, spending it on that particular item may not actually be what’s best for you. Unless you’re a billionaire, you’re likely to have more uses for your money than you have money, so a better way to think about what you are spending is to ask the following three questions.
(1) What are the benefits of my making this purchase?
(2) How important is making this purchase?
(3) Is this the best use of my money?
Want to see how Mary and Jim might resolve this? Read more in Wealthy Choices: The Seven Competencies of Financial Success. It is available at Amazon.com. Click here to purchase your copy.