Category Personal Finance

The science of spending and happiness

I recently read Happy Money: The Science of Smarter Spending by Elizabeth Dunn and Michael Norton. This book found the intersection between how-to books on happiness and personal finance. And even better, all of their recommendations are based on solid research. Some of their suggestions come as no surprise (“buy experiences”) and others provided a […]

Yard Work is Hard Work: a short film about buying a home and other things

Professor Jodie Mack created this collage animation movie using all recycled materials. It’s about relationships, consumerism, and homeownership. So basically, the American “Dream.” I especially enjoyed the scenes with the financial planner (including a cameo appearance by paper cut-out Roger Ebert) and the couple’s peaceful vacation. The whole thing made me wonder about money and […]

Frugality is… having real goals

After college I had a dream of moving to the Northwest U.S. (Seattle/Portland area). To me, it was a magical place full of good music and movie theaters you could eat in. So for a whole year whenever I thought of buying or accepting something offered to me, I’d think: “Would I move across the […]

Change how you track expenses as often as you change your goals

I don’t have a budget. It just didn’t work for me (but that’s not to say they wouldn’t work for others). Instead, I track my expenses without imposing firm limits on myself. Here’s how I got started: In 2007, I started getting serious about personal finance. It was my senior year of college. I had […]

Frugality is… holding onto your dreams loosely

This is the first post in a series called “Frugality is…” There are a lot of frugality tips available on the internet and your local public library (my favorite frugality tool). But choosing which ones to use is the fun part. Personal finance is personal because there’s no standard way of achieving financial goals. And […]

Financial Planning for Millennials

*Note: This is NOT a sponsored post (emphasis on the not). You can read the bolded lines and the five point summary at the end if you want to save time. Last week I read this article in the New York Times about a company called Learnvest. Learnvest used to just post articles about personal finance — […]

Student loan forgiveness through public service

*Note: The loan forgiveness programs I’ll discuss here are available in the U.S. I don’t know what’s happening in other countries — but I would love to learn. I have some international readers, so if you know of loan forgiveness programs available in your country (or know why your country doesn’t have the same student […]