Why is 'living authentically' important for your money journey? Rina's story.

Why is 'living authentically' important for your money journey? Rina's story.

Are you one of those people that believes that money will buy you happiness? Or do you believe that you don’t need money to be happy?

It’s really an age-old debate but it’s an important one.

 

One thing I believe the debate gets wrong is that money and happiness are not equivalent. They are not the same thing. Happiness is a state of mind whereas money is a tool.

 

If one person’s happiness is valued in expensive cars, big houses and designer clothes, then they will manoeuvre their money (albeit lots of it) to ensure they achieve their idea of happiness. If another person’s happiness is valued in intimate time with family, then they too will manoeuvre their money to ensure they achieve their idea of happiness.

 

Aligning your values helps inform two things:

 

1. How you will plan, grow and use your money

2. How you’ll make financial decisions to support a life that’s happy and fulfilled 

 

Rina Hicks, an investment professional, financial advisor & coach shares her story. Let’s use this to see how establishing her values informed how she made financial decisions to support her overall happiness.

 

Rina had just had her baby and was excited to enjoy all the perks new motherhood had to offer; bonding with her new child, intimate time with her family and the joy of raising someone. However, as the baby turned four months old, maternity leave ended and Rina had to go back to work. 


This is where things started to change.

 

Rina lived quite far from her office. It took almost an hour to get to work every day. She would often leave the house at 7am and come back at 6pm for 6.30pm. After some time of this rigorous routine, Rina found that the distance from work was hindering how much time she could spend with her newborn daughter.

 

“My daughter slept from 7pm to 7am, which means that I spent just 1, maybe 1 1/2 hours with her every day.”

 

At the time Rina didn’t have her values figured out, but she knew that she wanted more family time and especially time with her newborn. 

 

She struggled for a while. “Do I quit my job, switch jobs? Should we move?” 

 

After multiple discussions with her husband, Rina and her family decided to move from a house they had just bought into a smaller house which they would rent but was much closer to her office. She was able to spend time with her family without giving up her career (which is also important to her). Thankfully, they found tenants for their old house, so they gained some rental income as well. In this case, the maths worked out fine as well, but she likely would have stuck to this decision even if it cost them a little more every month.

 

“I continue to live where I live because it’s important to me to spend time with my children while pursuing my professional career.” Rina said.

 

So how does this all tie into personal finance?

 

Some people will listen to Rina’s story and think that she’s crazy for leaving a house she owned to downsize AND go back to renting. 


But they aren’t Rina. 


Rina’s happiness is driven by her time with family and being able to continue working, not where she lives. She established her values, family & career, and that informed how she made her financial decisions to achieve her happiness. 

 

Money is a tool that helps you achieve your mission. It’s not your mission. In this story, Rina established her values and made financial decisions that support her mission.

 

Values and money may seem tedious, maybe even mocking. However, establishing your values early on in your money journey is critical. Shooting into the air aimlessly will leave you directionless, confused and unfulfilled.

 

Sitting down with yourself and firming up your core values is the first step to figuring out your mission. From there, this will shape how you will make financial decisions to achieve this mission and ultimately live your most ideal and authentic life.

 

Rina Hicks is the course instructor for Investable, an online course on investing that’s focused on empowering you to make value-based investment plans that work for you!  


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