What’s something worth? That depends — on you
Watch even a few minutes of Antiques Roadshow and you’ll see items you can’t imagine anyone would want being valued at thousands of dollars. Watch a little longer, and you’ll see other things you assume to be highly valuable are actually worth next to nothing.
There is financial value…
Something becomes financially valuable only when other people want it. If lots of people want something, its value increases. If few people are interested, the value declines. That’s basic supply and demand. What you paid for something doesn’t really matter.
Marie Kondo, author of The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up suggests that we only keep things that bring us joy. Things that bring us joy may or may not have financial value, but they certainly have very high emotional value.
You may expect that your grandmother’s wedding ring is very valuable, and be disappointed to find out that it’s not. But if you treasure it, it’s worth a lot to you. Those are the kinds of things you should keep.
And psychological value
If you’re holding on to something only because you paid a lot for it, or it meant a lot to someone else, let it go. It’s unlikely to increase in value to you. And you’re investing emotional energy into something that is giving you nothing in return.
When downsizing the personal value of an item should take precedence over its financial value
Don’t expect others that others will value the things you love. Remember: just because they’re valuable to you doesn’t mean others feel the same way.
It’s not about what it costs, but what it means to you
Your TV may be old and not worth much, but you know how to work it. The microwave doesn’t have the latest features, but is dependable, and you like it just fine. If you’re moving to a new home, people may suggest letting go of old familiar things so you can replace them with new ones which will be “better”.
Those are “value” judgements. You may decide that you’re perfectly happy with the things you have. And knowing how to use them is worth a lot to you!
Ask yourself: “What is this worth to me?”
When you put your “values” in the right place, you hold on to things you love because you love them — and let go of the things you don’t. You won’t need anyone to tell you what things are worth, because they will all be of great value to you!