Month: May 2014

Your Money or Your Life: The Power of Working for a Finite Period of Time

This is the twenty-fourth part of The Simple Dollar Book Club reading of Your Money or Your Life. Want to know more? So, what exactly does that crossover point represent? It’s basically the point of total freedom – the point where you no longer have any association between the requirement to make money and how …

The Pump and Dump Stocks Email Scam Explained

A reader wrote to me recently asking about the proliferation of spam emails concerning individual stocks: I often get two or three spam emails a day touting a specific stock. I’m smart enough to realize that this is some kind of scam, but how exactly does it work? This type of scam is called a …

Why I Focus on Debt Freedom over Investing

Over the last few weeks, my wife and I have taken some serious looks at our overall financial state, our happiness with our current lifestyle, and whether or not one of us wants to become a stay-at-home parent. Although we’ve not reached a consensus on all of these issues, we have agreed on one fundamental …

Your Money or Your Life: The Crossover Point

This is the twenty-third part of The Simple Dollar Book Club reading of Your Money or Your Life. Want to know more? This concept fascinated me so much that I had to write a post specifically about it when I first read Your Money or Your Life. In a nutshell, the “crossover point” is the …

Handling A Child’s Material Wants and Impulses

My son is starting to reach the stage where he’s strongly attracted to the toy section when we’re shopping. This has already created a few interesting situations, because he’s getting bright enough that the older distraction techniques no longer work. It’s time to start treating him like a child and not like an infant. We’ve …

Categories: Family

Twelve Tactics For Defeating the Starbucks Habit

Shannon writes in with the following lament: Is there any advice you can give for giving up the Starbucks addiction? I’ve slowly been gaining control of my financial life, but Starbucks seems to be the bain of my financial existence–the only thing I cannot give up. Starbucks is a particularly pesky thing to give up …

Categories: Getting Started, Meals

Your Money or Your Life: Valuing Your Life Energy – Maximizing Income

This is the twenty-second part of The Simple Dollar Book Club reading of Your Money or Your Life. Want to know more? Here, the book takes what I at first thought was a very odd jump based on what came before. Instead of implying that a lower-paying, lower-responsibility job is better (because you can reserve …

What The First Issue of Money Magazine Taught Me

Since Money Magazine recently celebrated their 35th anniversary, I thought it might be useful to go back and look at the inaugural issue of Money Magazine. Cover-dated October 1972, the first issue is in many ways surprisingly similar to Money in its current incarnation – very direct and specific personal finance advice. Here are seven …

Categories: Money

Developing a Financially Frugal Personal Health Plan

After partially implementing Volumetrics and seeing some success with it, I’ve made a realization that for my health to really kick into high gear, I need to look at making some bigger changes. I’m not obese, I’m just somewhat heavier than I was, say, when I first started dating my wife, and I’d like to …

Categories: Meals

Review: Think and Grow Rich

Each Sunday, The Simple Dollar reviews a personal productivity or personal development book. With the exception of Rich Dad, Poor Dad, no single book has been asked about in reader emails more than Think and Grow Rich. It was arguably the most widely circulated book of the 20th century on the topic of personal success. …

Your Money or Your Life: The Stunning Implications of Redefining Work

This is the twenty-first part of The Simple Dollar Book Club reading of Your Money or Your Life. Want to know more? This section is filled up with a series of nine implications for disconnecting work from wages. I thought it would be worthwhile to move slowly and examine each of the nine. 1. Redefining …

My Five Greatest Financial Fears

Almost a year ago, I wrote five entries on my five biggest financial fears at the time. Here they are, one more time: My Biggest Financial Fears- One Year Ago #1. Buying a home We lived in an apartment at the time, and the idea of purchasing a home scared me to death. I didn’t …

Categories: Getting Started, Money

Your Money or Your Life: For Love or Money

This is the twentieth part of The Simple Dollar Book Club reading of Your Money or Your Life. Want to know more? This chapter of Your Money or Your Life starts off by attempting to define what exactly work is, which isn’t an easy thing to do. I thought their various quoted definitions were quite …

Organic Foods and Frugality

A few of my friends are big believers in buying organic produce. They basically won’t buy anything at all that’s not certified USDA Organic, and they claim loudly and repeatedly that this is really the only way to go if you care about your health. To me, it’s more a matter of personal preference than …

Categories: Meals, Shopping

Your Money or Your Life: Additional Thoughts On Cutting Spending

This is the nineteenth part of The Simple Dollar Book Club reading of Your Money or Your Life. Want to know more? Prosperity and the Planet Much of this section focuses on the idea that frugality is good for the environment, too. Most frugal ideas boil down to buying less and reducing your costs, and …

When Everyday Life Gets in the Way of Your Dreams

A reader wrote in with the following complaint: You write all the time about starting a side business and about chasing your dreams but it’s all kind of a waste of time. Chasing your dreams is childish. Adults have things that they need to do. After all, 1 Corinthians 13:11 says “When I was a …

Review: The Little Book That Makes You Rich

The Little Book That Makes You Rich is the fourth in a series of investment books that each strive to explain in layman’s terms a specific investment strategy. I reviewed the first three, each of which I liked: The Little Book That Beats The Market by Joel Greenblatt focuses on “magic formula” investing, where a …

Your Money or Your Life: 101 Sure Ways To Save Money (Part Two)

This is the eighteenth part of The Simple Dollar Book Club reading of Your Money or Your Life. Want to know more? Today, let’s look at the rest of those 101 sure ways to save money, this time focusing on the groupings of tips starting at #50. Shopping I find that the one thing that …

Increasing Your 401(k) Contributions: Benefits and Drawbacks

Lately, I’ve had a lot of fun playing with this 401(k) contribution calculator. Ever wondered what sort of impact changing your 401(k) contribution would have? This calculator tells you based on your own information. What’s interesting is that for most people, the benefits far outweigh the drawbacks. To play with the tool, I created a …

Categories: Investing, Retirement