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Spending with your True North in Mind

When I started this blog post I was trying to write a little blog for couples planning their wedding in the next 18 months.  Why?  Well – we’re coming into the Spring/Summer wedding season and I thought that I might have some relevant information for them.  Really, it all stemmed from me reading a hilarious article about “The Cost of Love in Canada in 2017.”

The article claims that from the time couples start dating to the time they tie the knot, it is going to cost them $66,700!  What the heck!  They are also stating that on average Canadians spend about $20,000 on their weddings.  I got curious about this and checked out a number of other articles that indicate Canadians are spending about $30,000 on their weddings (including the ring and the honeymoon).  $30,000.  Wow.

So that lead me down a rabbit hole – of thinking, commenting, judging, calculating.  But, who am I to comment on how much anyone spent on their wedding?  I mean really – it’s THEIR day – not mine.  So what is the question I REALLY wanted to ask?  Why has this whole “$66,700 for Love in Canada” got me so worked up?

After some reflection, I’ve landed on it.

Are you spending money on the things that are truly aligned with your values?  Are you spending your money to get MORE time doing the things you love?  Are you spending your money to allow you MORE opportunities to squeeze the people you care most about?  And the harder question to answer – am I?  (Yikes – those ones always hit a nerve…)

Some of us feel SOOO good driving a fancy vehicle.  Some of us feel AMAZING spending money on endless education.  Some of us can’t get enough of group exercise classes, recipe books, ski hills, jewelry, photography.  It’s all individual choice.

Here is the point I think you need to remember when you’re looking at any major investment, your home, your wedding, your vehicle, any of it.

Major investments should be aligned with your “True North,”  your purpose, that value/mission/goal that just sets you on fire when you think about it.

My husband and I don’t agree on everything, but we have one True North.  We want to spend more time outside, moving our bodies, with the people we love.  Period.  Full stop.

Our wedding cost us a lot of money.  It did.  I’m not going to BS you.  But we were married, outside, in the mountains, surround by a small group of friends and family.  The day of the wedding many people canoed in the lake and enjoyed mountain air and sunshine.  We had no decorations, because to us, seeing the mountains was decoration enough, it’s what we paid for.  The money spent that day was completely in alignment with what we love most.

When I think about the vehicle we drive, it’s a truck, usually filled with skis or bikes and it comfortably fits our family of 5.

The home we own has less high end finishing than the homes of our neighbours, but it has the biggest yard, because (true north), we want to be outside with our kids.

I encourage you, as you move through your wedding, your home purchase or any other major decision, to ask yourself, “whats my True North?  and is this decision taking me closer to that point or further away?”