How to Live What You Value

I know I’m not the only person that struggles to save money. I find it challenging to save for long-term goals when there are so many immediate wants (not needs) that I can have and are right in front of me. If you’re familiar with the Enneagram, my personality falls under category number seven. I’m the busy, fun-loving, spontaneous, versatile, distractible and scattered type. This may shed some light on why saving money isn’t my greatest skill.

Person hiking on a mountain

One thing that I love and value is travel. Whether to far-off lands or a weekend getaway to the mountains, I’ll never have enough travel experiences under my belt. Naturally, to travel, one needs money. I was continually frustrated with myself at being unable to financially prioritize the value of travel, which left me staring longingly at unattainable Groupon getaways.

Earlier this year, I began a trial remedy and decided to get myself an old-fashioned piggy bank. (You don’t actually have to break this one to access the money, so technically it’s not that old fashioned.) The sole purpose was to save for my next big vacation. Anytime I found myself with extra cash in my wallet or change back from grocery shopping, it went straight into the bank. It felt good to finally be engaging in behaviors that were directly in line with my values and goals. Today, I’m slowly, but surely, working toward that Groupon getaway to Iceland.

The true lesson learned here is that if our actions aren’t congruent with our values, we end up feeling less than optimal and more frustrated, stressed, anxious and depressed. If you find there’s an area in your life that you value, but you’re not giving it the attention it deserves, I encourage you to take a new creative and sustainable approach to ensure it’s being reflected in your life. I hope you can find your own piggy bank solution for whatever it is that you treasure!

Sarah Buller, M.A., health coach/behavioral health clinician