Splurging http://www.wisebread.com/taxonomy/term/13067/all en-US Balancing Living in the Now With Planning for the Future http://www.wisebread.com/balancing-living-in-the-now-with-planning-for-the-future <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/balancing-living-in-the-now-with-planning-for-the-future" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/bridge future.jpg" alt="bridge" title="bridge" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="161" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>The latest buzz in retirement news is that most of us won't have enough money to retire. The recent market crisis has everyone feeling very pessimistic about pretty much everything:</p> <ul> <li>&quot;Stocks aren't what they used to be.&quot;<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>&quot;You can't rely on the market growing over time like you used to.&quot;<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>&quot;Computer trading has ruined long-term investing.&quot;</li> </ul> <p>These sound like new ideas, but they happen every time after the market tanks (which has happened many times before, regardless of how alarmist the news is).</p> <p>The current state of retirement is a perfect way to analyze how and why we do the things we do when we try to balance the present and the future. (See also:&nbsp;<a href="http://www.wisebread.com/why-saving-money-is-a-gift-to-your-future-self">Why&nbsp;Saving Money Is a Gift to Your Future Self</a>)</p> <p>With all the panic and hoopla, everyday people like you and me who invest so that we can retire one day have decided to do one of two things:</p> <ol> <li>Give up investing altogether. If the experts are right and stocks aren't going to help us retire because the whole system is &quot;broken,&quot; then we might as well put our money under a mattress where we know it'll be safe. Others are even more pessimistic and just say the hell with it &mdash; I'm spending it all and will worry about retirement when I'm old.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>Save even more. Stressing out about being old and not having money will do wonders for some people's motivation. Many investors have decided they're going to max out their 401(k)s, max out their Roth IRAs, and then try to invest some money in hand-picked stocks so they can have a shot at a decent retirement.</li> </ol> <p>Both strategies, of course, are a little extreme. You need balance when you're saving for retirement, and the sweet spot is somewhere in the middle.</p> <h2>Live in the Now</h2> <p>We all have to remember that life happens in the present. Money comes and goes, but youth and time is something you can never get back. As poetic and mushy-gushy as that sounds, it's true.</p> <p>If you save up the money to go on a trip to Greece when you're 30, it's going to be a very different trip than if you decide to wait and go when you're 65. You won't be bungee jumping or skydiving; I can guarantee you that much.</p> <h2>Finding the Right Balance</h2> <p>The right answer is to be so prepared for the future that you can enjoy the present without feeling guilty about the things you want to do or panicked about retirement.</p> <p>That means following some basic rules:</p> <ul> <li>Contribute at least up to the match for your 401(k).<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>Bump up your 401(k) contribution every time you get a raise.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>Put a percentage of your bonus into your <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-surprising-facts-about-roth-iras">Roth IRA</a> and try to max it out every year.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>Invest for the long-term in your retirement accounts, ignoring the ups and downs.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>Don't take money out your retirement account early.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>Run the numbers once a year and adjusting as necessary to ensure you're on the right track.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-monthly-bills-you-can-slash">Minimize your expenses</a> so you have more money to work with.</li> </ul> <p>And if you want to enjoy spending your money today without feeling guilty, here are some tips:</p> <ul> <li>Targeted savings &mdash; if you save ahead of time for a trip or a $200 pair of jeans, it'll be easier to spend the money because you &quot;earned it.&quot;<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>Enjoy the present, so you'll have no regrets in the future.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>If you get a bonus, take a percentage to treat yourself to something you really want.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/21-frugal-ways-to-reward-yourself-right-now">Reward yourself</a> for hitting your goals (like making budget every month or contributing to your Roth IRA).<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>Create a bucket list to remind you of all the things you want to do in your life.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>Don't forget you could die tomorrow and all your plans for the future would be for naught.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>Write. Keeping a journal or writing letters to others is a great way to keep us grounded in the present and reminds us the things that are really important.</li> </ul> <p>The secret to living a balanced life is to be organized and strict about how you prepare for the future, so you can cut loose and enjoy the present without feeling guilty about it.</p> <p><em>How do you prepare for the future without becoming miserable in the present?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/carlos-portocarrero">Carlos Portocarrero</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/balancing-living-in-the-now-with-planning-for-the-future">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-audacity-to-waste-money-for-better-finances">The Audacity to Waste Money for Better Finances</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/what-is-keeping-you-from-a-life-of-financial-independence">What is keeping you from a life of financial independence?</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-investing-lessons-you-must-teach-your-kids">10 Investing Lessons You Must Teach Your Kids</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/4-reasons-why-a-roth-ira-may-be-better-than-your-401k">4 Reasons Why a Roth IRA May be Better Than Your 401(k)</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-false-allure-of-compound-interest">The False Allure of Compound Interest</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Investment Lifestyle Retirement budget planning building a financial future economic crisis Splurging Wed, 30 May 2012 10:36:08 +0000 Carlos Portocarrero 931181 at http://www.wisebread.com Ask the Readers: What Do You Splurge On? http://www.wisebread.com/node/486232 <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/node/486232" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/splurge-1.jpg" alt="Splurging" title="What do you splurge on?" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p><em>Editor's Note: Congratulations to <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/node/486232#comment-484529">Matt</a>, <a href="http://twitter.com/#!/1bets1">1bets1</a>, and <a href="http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100000446646078">Lisa Van Hierden</a> for winning this week's contest!</em></p> <p>Last week we wanted to know all about your <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/ask-the-readers-whats-the-biggest-item-in-your-budget">biggest budget items</a>. While many of us have budgets we try to follow precisely, we all have our guilty pleasures that may cause us to splurge.</p> <p><strong>What do you splurge on?</strong> Do you spend more than you should on eating out, shoes, or the latest tech gadgets? What can you do to reduce the amount of money you spend on your guilty pleasures?</p> <p>Share your splurging confessions with us and we'll enter you in a drawing to win a $20 Amazon Gift Card!</p> <h2>Win 1 of 3 $20 Amazon Gift Cards</h2> <p>We're doing three giveaways &mdash; one for random comments, one for random Facebook &quot;Likes&quot;, and another one for random tweets.</p> <h3>Enter 1 of 3 Ways:</h3> <ul> <li>Post your answer in the comments below, or</li> <li>Go to our <a href="http://www.facebook.com/pages/Wise-Bread/26830741467?ref=ts">Facebook page</a>, &quot;Like&quot; us, then &quot;Like&quot; the update mentioning this giveaway (you can comment, as well &mdash; but you don't have to for entry), or</li> <li><a href="http://www.twitter.com/">Tweet</a> your answer. You have to be a follower of our <a href="http://twitter.com/wisebread">@wisebread account</a>. Include both &quot;@wisebread&quot; and &quot;#WBAsk&quot; in your tweet so we'll see it and count it.</li> </ul> <p><strong>If you're inspired to write a whole blog post OR you have a photo on flickr to share, please link to it in the comments or tweet it.</strong></p> <h4>Giveaway Rules:</h4> <ul> <li>Contest ends Monday, February 7th at 11:59 pm PST. Winners will be announced after February 7th on the original post and via Twitter. Winners will also be contacted via email, Facebook, and Twitter Direct Message.</li> <li>You can enter all three drawings &mdash; once by leaving a comment, once by liking our Facebook update, and once by tweeting.</li> <li>You must be 18 and US resident to enter. Void where prohibited.</li> </ul> <p><strong>Good Luck!</strong></p> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-blog-teaser"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Tell us what you spurge on for a chance to win 1 of 3 $20 Amazon gift certificates! </div> </div> </div> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/ashley-jacobs">Ashley Jacobs</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/node/486232">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-2"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/ask-the-readers-should-kids-get-paid-for-doing-chores">Ask The Readers: Should Kids Get Paid For Doing Chores?</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/ask-the-readers-how-did-you-spend-your-first-paycheck">Ask the Readers: How Did You Spend Your First Paycheck?</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/ask-the-readers-do-gift-cards-make-a-good-gift">Ask the Readers: Do Gift Cards Make a Good Gift?</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/ask-the-readers-share-your-favorite-frugal-holiday-tradition">Ask the Readers: Share Your Favorite Frugal Holiday Tradition</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/ask-the-readers-camp-much-chance-to-win-20">Ask the Readers: Camp Much? (Chance to win $20!)</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Giveaways Ask the Readers Guilty Pleasures Spending Money Splurging Tue, 01 Feb 2011 14:36:29 +0000 Ashley Jacobs 486232 at http://www.wisebread.com