Psychology

The Value of Personal Appearance

One of the greatest challenges of living a lifestyle of financial freedom is determining the exact value of personal appearance. How does one balance a desire for less expensive clothing and personal care items with the expectations of the culture that enables their income and personal lives? On the one hand, many people who overspend …

100 Questions To Ask Yourself About Your Financial Mindset

Recently, an old friend of mine came to me quite upset. She was drowning in debt, much like I was, and she told me she didn’t know where to even start. I told her that I would be glad to counsel her, but that I didn’t want to actually look at her financial numbers because …

Categories: Psychology

Is There Something Wrong With Me If Suze Orman Appears In My Dreams?

Last night, I was reading through a personal finance book (one of the upcoming ones in the 52 Weeks… series) when I dozed off to sleep. In my dream, I was playing catch with Suze Orman in the outfield at Wrigley Field, and she kept shouting at me in that distinctive tone of hers that …

Categories: Psychology, Suze Orman

Dreams and Wishes – and Reality

As an exercise, I made a list of every single material thing I would like to have if money was no object at all. My list was pretty basic: a nice five bedroom home (because I would like to have three children and a guest bedroom), a very reliable automobile, a computer that wasn’t literally …

Categories: Family, Psychology

Applying the Peak-End Rule to Personal Finance

The peak-end rule is a psychological phenomenon that indicates which parts of a past experience we recall and use to define that experience. From Wikipedia: According to the peak-end rule, we judge our past experiences almost entirely on how they were at their peak (pleasant or unpleasant) and how they ended. Virtually all other information …

Building a Financial (and Personal) Idea Diary

Although I (really) like to bloviate about all sorts of personal finance topics, I keep many more thoughts on my own finances to myself. I’ve found that keeping a handwritten diary of my non-numerical financial thoughts has been invaluable (for the numbers, I use a computerized ledger). I personally use a Moleskine daily planner for …

The Road to Financial Armageddon #10: What I Learned

Yesterday, I indicated some of the specific mechanics that I adopted to turn my financial situation around, and I’m happy to say that my finances have never been better. The solution to the problem, though, is much greater than mere financial tools. Even though I was able to discover and apply tools to solve my …

Remembering A Painful Childhood Experience – And Trying To Apply What It Means

I was recently working on a self-evaluation exercise in which I was asked to consider memories from my childhood that had to do with money. These memories would then be used as a reflection on which to see my own personal finance biases today – and thus the connection would enable me to strengthen my …

Categories: Family, Psychology

Turning Off The Financially Irresponsible Mindset

Since turning my financial life around, I’ve discovered that frivolous spending really is a psychologically addictive habit. That little rush of buying something enjoyable for yourself or someone else becomes a part of your life, and when you begin to turn things around, it is a very hard habit to break. Over time, though, I’ve …