The lesson that speaks most clearly to me from the story is this: Your word is a contract.
To remain aligned with our principles, as does the king, we need to subscribe to the belief that our word is a commitment. If we say we’re going to spend less, save more, risk less, earn more, withdraw less, invest more, or any other number of financial commitments, we need to honor our promises accordingly. There might come a time when keeping our word (to others and ourselves) feels like kissing an ugly frog—unpleasant and (if we don’t tell anyone) avoidable. But if we keep our word and have the courage to uphold our end of the bargain, we’re likely to find ourselves ahead in the long run.