Archive | September, 2012

Frugal Ethics: Where Do You Draw Your Lines?

19 Sep

As someone with a frugal mindset, I’m always on the lookout for freebies or out to save a buck for an expenditure.  So, where does your moral code come into play when it comes to cutting costs?

Here are some examples:

My workplace supplies free coffee, tea, soft drinks, juice, and the occasional lunch.  I’ve seen several of my co-workers (some who have been there for decades) taking drinks home at the end of the day so they don’t have to buy them.  The same goes for office supplies.

When I go to the movies, I usually put a bottle of water in my purse, and sometimes a granola or protein bar in case I get hungry.  I try not to drink soda, and I find that pretty much everything at the concession stands is overpriced and unhealthy.  Perhaps I first learned this from my mother, who would bring popcorn in baggies when she took us to the movies when we were little.  Yes, I will cave and buy the occasional popcorn, but that’s an exception and not the rule.

Photo credit: heavyhand_2007.

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8 Books That Helped Form My Outlook About Money and Things

13 Sep

The problem with growing up without money is that I once I had some, all I wanted to do was spend it.  So began my (still continuing!) adult journey from spending money, just because it was there, to becoming financially savvy and independent.  Here are some books that have helped me work towards the latter.

1.  How to Get Out of Debt, Stay Out of Debt and Live Prosperously:  Based On the Proven Principles and Techniques of Debtors Anonymous by Jerrold Mundis

I have never been a member of Debtors Anonymous, but you certainly don’t need to be a part of DA to gain knowledge from this book.  First published in 1988, there are timeless principles here that you can use.  Mundis tells you that you must keep an ongoing spending record (done more easily now with sites like Mint.com) of all money going out and in, and from that you can glean a spending plan, versus a budget.  He also has a formula of how much to pay each creditor each month while still being able to live on your existing income.  Most importantly, he encourages baby steps: just take one day at a time not to incur new debt, while reminding you that there is hope to lead a financially stable life.

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