When I was younger, my mom once asked me a question that really helps you understand yourself a bit better, and what your values are.
Although it may not seem so blatant and in-your-face, money is the currency of the experiences and material goods that we assign value to.
She asked me if I had a million dollars (yeah yeah, a cool million isn't that much nowadays—can't even buy a detached house in Vancouver for that, really), what would I spend it on? Let's play ‘pretend' for a bit.
If you had a million dollars and could only concentrate it on ONE area below, what would you spend it on? (the other areas in your life would be lacklustre to say the least)
The options are:
- Clothes/ Fashion
For the House option, you would live comfortably in a nice house, in a nice area, with a beautifully designed interior, with or without a nice view. But you would not be able to eat out, you would drive a car that is reliable and 10 years old, and not flashy, no designer clothing, and no travel.
For the Clothing option, you can buy all the name brands, and $250 jeans (like Rock and Republic, True Religion) are a staple in your closet. Girls, you have a collection of the Louis Vuitton and Chanel bags (and no, they're not replicas bought off the street, either!), you also have a nice collection of Christian Louboutins, Jimmy Choos, and other designer shoes that cost $1000+. Guys, you own Hugo Boss suits and coats. People envy your fashion sense and designer style. Heck, even Sex and the City Carrie will envy your closet.
For the Travel option, you are able to afford to travel the world. One of your goals is to travel to every continent of the world. You will not have to live in hostels either and share your accommodation with cockroaches and bedbugs when you're traveling South East Asia (unless you want to, ofcourse). You will be able to afford to take a year off and travel. You will be able to see the seven wonders of the world and travel to far away and exotic places like Bhutan (and not just have to stay for 4 days or less because it costs $200 a day to stay there!) and see Antarctica. Going to Dubai is nothing for you, and you don't bat an eye (or have a heart attack) when the hotel bill comes for your stay at the Burj Al Arab where it costs $2000 a night to stay there.
For the Car option, you will be able to drive a nice car, Mercedes, BMW's, Bentley, or Ferrari and Lamborghini if you wish. The car will have all the bells and whistles, but you will be living in a very modest part of town (and risk having your car stolen or broken into), and no traveling, no eating out, and plain non-designer wear.
For the Food option, you will be able to afford beautiful food, you can dine at steakhouses (Morton's etc.) every week if you like. You and your partner are able to go to beautiful restaurants overlooking the ocean, delicious flavours tease and tantalize your taste buds, and the variety of dinners and lunches available to you are endless. (and just to put a cherry on top of the cake in this imaginary scenario, you will not gain weight and your cholesterol levels stay normal, lol!)
So? What will it be for you? Please share what you picked and why. =)
For me, I think I value traveling as well as a nice house.. I think they're equal for me, though traveling right now is slightly crawling ahead of housing for me. I learn so much about other cultures, make new friends from around the world, I have memories and experiences that will last a lifetime, and I have awesome photos to remember everything by. I also have this goal to see all the tallest peaks on our beautiful planet earth (see, not climb!) so am hoping to climb Mt. Kilimanjaro in a few years time (while my knees are still good!) and see Mt. Everest.
Anyways, enough imagination! In the meantime, I'll be working hard to try and get that million in the near future.