man looking in the distance

Instant Gratification Versus Lasting Fulfillment

If you ever want to feel like you’re completely wrecking your own finances, try this little tactic on for size. At the end of the

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shovel in the dirt

How to Get a Ton of Value Out of an Entry-Level Job

During the summer of 1998, I worked a night shift for a research lab in which I shoveled and sifted dirt for eight hours at

golden duck and rubber ducks

10 Money Rules Not Everyone Follows (But Should)

America’s love affair with debt and consumption has left far too many of us financially hamstrung and struggling to get ahead. After all, the average

up and down road

Why Long-Term Financial Plans Usually Don’t Work Out – and Why That Doesn’t Matter If You Plan Smartly

Let’s roll back the clock 20 years… Twenty years ago, I was enjoying the summer between high school and college. During that summer, I would go

warehouse store

Opportunity Cost, or Why Costco and Sam’s Club Aren’t Always a Bargain

Over the weekend, Sarah and I dug through our overstuffed food pantry in order to take stock of the items we had on hand as

Memories Frugal

Personal Finance and the Greater Purpose

Recently, I was at the library and I found myself flipping through the charming book The Cheapskate Next Door by Jeff Yeager. In that book,

happy woman smiling

‘Wealth Is Doing What You Love to Find Joy and Fulfillment.’

That quote comes from page 58 of Killing Sacred Cows: Overcoming the Financial Myths That Are Destroying Your Prosperity, a great little personal finance book

shopping at a thrift store

12 Smart Financial Strategies for People Struggling to Get Started

One of the most powerful methods I use to come up with ideas for articles for The Simple Dollar is to just browse endless personal

walking alone on path in woods

Doing Your Own Thing

Back when I was in college, there was a great gymnasium about a quarter of a mile from my dormitory. I would walk over there

woman looking at reflection

You Can’t Buy What You Want To Be

Almost everyone has an idealized picture of who they’d like to be. It’s a picture that they measure up to in some ways and fall

chess board

12 Things That Changed My Life (and Cost Less Than $50)

Most of the time, when people post memes and images on Facebook, they’re pretty dull and forgettable. Every once in a while, though, I’ll see

gadget graveyard of old cell phones

Appreciation Versus Depreciation: A Powerful Insight for Your Spending Choices

No matter how careful we are about spending and saving our money, the truth is that all of us spend some significant portion of our

avocado sliced in half

The Power of Cutting a Goal in Half

One of the big problems with setting a big, life-altering goal for yourself is the sheer size of it. Often, the distance between yourself and

Money proxy for independence and freedom

Does Money Truly Bring Independence and Security?

It’s been no secret that over the past few years Sarah and I have adopted a goal of financial independence. Our goal is to reach

man writing a letter

A Letter to Anyone Who Wants More Than They Have Right Now

Dear friend, Several years ago, I was incredibly dissatisfied with my life. I was in a great deal of debt. I lived in a tiny

slipping off balance beam

Our Nine Biggest Missteps on the Road to Financial Independence – and How We Are Fixing Them

Over the past 10 years, my wife and I have paid off literally hundreds of thousands of dollars in debt on salaries that, except for one

man eating subway sandwich

The $15 Retirement Plan

Some days – in fact, many days – I spend $15 in a way that isn’t the smartest. I’ll go out to eat for lunch,

laughing friends

25 Free Things to Do to Make Today Feel Awesome

Here’s a key truth I’ve come to realize about my spending habits. When I’m unhappy with myself or my life, I am much, much more

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