friends http://www.wisebread.com/taxonomy/term/2954/all en-US 11 Ways Freelancers and Telecommuters Can Make Friends and Network http://www.wisebread.com/11-ways-freelancers-and-telecommuters-can-make-friends-and-network <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/11-ways-freelancers-and-telecommuters-can-make-friends-and-network" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/iStock-528577668.jpg" alt="Freelancers learning how to make friends and telecommute" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="142" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Working from home can be a great thing. It allows you to work where you want, when you want, and has a number of other perks. However, it can be a bit lonely. Luckily, with the power of the Internet (and some motivation to get out and socialize), even those without an office water cooler to mill around can network and make new friends.</p> <h2>Networking Resources</h2> <p>Working off-site can take a toll on your professional network. To build your reputation, find mentors and collaborators, and connect with people in your industry, take advantage of some of the following networking resources. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/15-simple-networking-tricks?ref=seealso" target="_blank">15 Simple Networking Tricks</a>)</p> <h3>1. LinkedIn</h3> <p>LinkedIn is one of those most common, popular ways to build and maintain professional relationships. It makes it so easy to network online with other professionals in your field. You can also use LinkedIn to find networking events and opportunities in your area, or connect you with organizations you are interested in.</p> <h3>2. Shapr</h3> <p><a href="http://www.shapr.co/" target="_blank">Shapr</a> is an app that can connect you with like-minded people, allowing you to swipe left (pass) or right (interested) on your connections. You can set your favorite ways to meet, your passions and interests, and what you're looking for (collaborators, job opportunities, inspiration, potential investments, or new friends).</p> <h3>3. Work Your Existing Connections<strong> </strong></h3> <p>Ask friends, past and current co-workers, or even your employer for recommendations on local networking events or seminars. Most cities have their own organizations that specialize in these types of events for working professionals of all kinds. If you can't find any from asking around, try a Google search, LinkedIn, or social media.</p> <h3>4. Take Classes</h3> <p>Consider taking a night class. In addition to growing your skills or teaching you something brand-new, you might befriend some fellow classmates along the way. Even online classes can connect you with new people with similar interests or background in your field.</p> <h3>5. Volunteer</h3> <p>Research some local organizations that could use a hand, and offer your time. Not only will you be contributing to a worthy cause, but you'll also be gaining experience (which looks great on a resume), expanding on your skill set, and of course, meeting new people. Volunteering allows you to become part of a community, which is a great way to expand your network.</p> <h2>Friendship Resources</h2> <p>If you don't get out much, maybe you should start! In the meantime, your smartphone or computer can also be the perfect friendly matchmaker.</p> <h3>6. Bumble BFF</h3> <p><a href="https://bumble.com/en-us/about" target="_blank">Bumble</a> was originally a dating app, but has expanded to include a &quot;Bumble BFF&quot; feature. Instead of swiping left or right on potential dates, you'll do the same for potential friends. Once you're paired with a new friend, you have only 24 hours to start a chat, so procrastinators and fair-weather friends aren't welcome.</p> <h3>7. Atleto</h3> <p>If you're looking for a workout buddy, then <a href="http://www.atletosports.com/#what" target="_blank">Atleto</a> can help you find local sports activities and fellow fitness enthusiasts. The app can connect you with friends from your existing social media accounts, or you can find new friends in your area. This is a fun way to find an accountability buddy to help you reach your fitness goal.</p> <h3>8. Friender</h3> <p><a href="https://frienderapp.com/" target="_blank">Friender</a> allows you to swipe left or right on potential connections. You'll create a profile based on personal interests and activities you enjoy, and Friender will recommend a few folks with mutual interests. This app is only for making friends, however, so you won't have to waste time with people who are looking for more.</p> <h3>9. Meetup</h3> <p><a href="https://www.meetup.com/" target="_blank">Meetup</a> is an online organization with nearly 30 million members that hosts endless gatherings and social functions. You can meet people based on your occupation, personal interests (like hiking or cooking), location, and other factors that are important to you. Join a local club, take up a brand-new hobby, or explore somewhere new, all while making new like-minded friends along the way.</p> <h3>10. Social Media<strong> </strong></h3> <p>There can be more to interacting with your Facebook friends than a simple &quot;like&quot; or the occasional comment. Reach out to those friends and old co-workers through Facebook, Twitter, and/or Instagram. Invite them out for lunch or drinks, and simply catch up. It'll feel great to get out and sit with people face to face.</p> <h3>11. Get Out More</h3> <p>Once you are no longer in school or working from an office, it can be challenging to meet new people in person. The best thing to do is visit places where connections naturally occur. Maybe find a book club through your local library, or sign up for that fitness class or 5K you've been aspiring to run. Try a local arts or cooking class, or even take your kids on a playdate where you can mingle with fellow parents. There are countless ways to meet new people if you just get out there!</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/andrea-cannon">Andrea Cannon</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/11-ways-freelancers-and-telecommuters-can-make-friends-and-network">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/8-life-skills-every-freelancer-needs">8 Life Skills Every Freelancer Needs</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/22-websites-that-will-pay-you-to-write-for-them">22 Websites That Will Pay You to Write for Them</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/why-you-should-think-twice-before-bidding-on-freelance-gigs">Why You Should Think Twice Before Bidding on Freelance Gigs (Book Giveaway)</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/9-skills-that-will-be-obsolete-soon">9 Skills That Will Be Obsolete Soon</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/6-gadgets-every-work-at-home-professional-needs">6 Gadgets Every Work at Home Professional Needs</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Career Building Lifestyle apps events freelance friends networking relationships social media telecommute work from home Wed, 22 Feb 2017 10:30:36 +0000 Andrea Cannon 1896807 at http://www.wisebread.com How to Keep Peer Pressure From Destroying Your Finances http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-keep-peer-pressure-from-destroying-your-finances <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/how-to-keep-peer-pressure-from-destroying-your-finances" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/woman_stressed_out_000079795535.jpg" alt="Woman learning to not let peer pressure ruin her finances" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>No matter your confidence level, you probably don't want to be known as the poor one in your group of friends. When they're going out to dinner and planning vacations together, it can be hard to turn down invitations or resist pressure to join in on the fun.</p> <p>Financial peer pressure is a real problem that can affect people of all ages. According to a study conducted by the American Institute of CPAs, about &quot;78% of young adults look at the <a href="http://www.aicpa.org/press/pressreleases/2013/pages/millennials-rely-on-friends-financial-habits-to-determine-their-own.aspx">financial habits of their friends</a> to determine their own habits.&quot; Another 66% admitted that they strived to keep up with their peers in terms of living conditions, and two-thirds of consumers feel some level of financial peer pressure.</p> <p>If you don't think friends influence your spending habits, consider this: Have you ever charged something you couldn't afford to a credit card to keep up appearances? Have you ever spent outside your budget so you wouldn't feel left out? Most of us have been in these types of situations. Luckily, we also grow and learn how to make better choices with our money, and one of the best decisions you can make is learning how not to give in to financial peer pressure.</p> <h2>1. Shop Alone</h2> <p>To resist financial peer pressure, you have to know what you can handle. You can't control what your friends do or buy, but you can control who you shop with. If hitting the mall with friends results in you burning through more cash than you have, you need to shop alone.</p> <p>Your friends may not have ill intentions, but if they see you drooling over an item, they could unknowingly put pressure on you to purchase something you can't afford. You have to remember one important fact: You're the one who has to deal with the repercussions of a purchase. Your friends aren't getting the credit card statement in the mail; you are. Likewise, they're not the ones who'll worry about making ends meet if you spend outside your budget. Learn how to become your own shopping buddy.</p> <p>Personally, I only shop alone, and I love it. I'm not tryin' to wait for you to try on six different outfits just to pick the first one you had on. No, thank you. I'll meet you back in the food court in an hour.</p> <h2>2. Don't Be Ashamed of Your Limitations</h2> <p>The fact that you have some financial limitations doesn't make you a loser or mean you're inferior to anyone. Maybe you have more expenses or responsibilities than your friends. Some of your friends might be single with no kids, have roommates, or live with their folks, whereas you're the breadwinner of your household. Everyone has unique circumstances. So if you have to pass on a costly night out or a fancy excursion, it's okay.</p> <h2>3. Don't Be Fooled by Social Media</h2> <p>Even if your friends seem to have it together financially, it could very well all be an act. With that said, stop coveting the lifestyles you see on Facebook or Tumblr. Remember, most people don't use social media to broadcast their problems. What they will do, however, is showcase the good in their lives, such as vacations, new cars, new homes, and other achievements. There isn't anything wrong with people sharing good or exciting news &mdash; just realize that what you see online isn't always the truth, and it definitely shouldn't be the standard you live by. Some of the people you envy are up to their eyeballs in debt &mdash; all because they're trying to portray a certain lifestyle. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-things-to-stop-doing-on-social-media-by-30?ref=seealso">10 Things to Stop Doing on Social Media by 30</a>)</p> <h2>4. Don't Forget Your Goals</h2> <p>Adopting a frugal mindset is one of the best ways to reach your goals, such as saving up to buy a house or finally taking a European vacation. This involves pinching your pennies and making sacrifices for the betterment of your personal money. But you won't reach these goals if you're giving into financial peer pressure. The next time a friend ups the pressure or tries to make you feel bad for not spending money, think about your goals and decide whether saving face is worth derailing your plans.</p> <h2>5. Don't Let Braggarts Get in Your Head</h2> <p>Some people will brag about anything, and you might feel tempted to outshine them &mdash; but you shouldn't do this at the expense of your finances. The braggart is the one with the problem, not you. This person wants to stir competition and outdo his friends, family, coworkers, neighbors, etc. You have a choice. You can either ignore this person (at which point he'll take his annoying self elsewhere), or you can fall for the bait and get trapped in a game of one-up. Just know that in this game, there are no winners. You might come out on top, but it'll cost you.</p> <p><em>Have you let financial peer pressure get the best of you? How have you dealt with it? Let's discuss in the comments below.</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/mikey-rox">Mikey Rox</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-keep-peer-pressure-from-destroying-your-finances">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/heres-how-a-spending-ban-can-help-and-hurt-you">Here&#039;s How a Spending Ban Can Help (and Hurt) You</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/this-is-how-americans-spent-their-money-in-the-1950s">This Is How Americans Spent Their Money in the 1950s</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/4-ways-millennials-are-changing-marriage">4 Ways Millennials Are Changing Marriage</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/11-ways-cycling-can-save-you-money">11 Ways Cycling Can Save You Money</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/a-step-by-step-guide-for-when-friends-ask-for-help-being-frugal">A Step-by-Step Guide for When Friends Ask for Help Being Frugal</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Budgeting Lifestyle friends jealousy keeping up with the joneses peer pressure saving money shopping Thu, 28 Jan 2016 16:01:04 +0000 Mikey Rox 1645271 at http://www.wisebread.com 6 Summer Party Ideas That Won't Break the Bank http://www.wisebread.com/6-summer-party-ideas-that-wont-break-the-bank <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/6-summer-party-ideas-that-wont-break-the-bank" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/friends_summer_party_000045595674.jpg" alt="Friends at a summer party that won&#039;t break the bank" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Summer is the ideal time for get-togethers. On top of holidays like Memorial Day, 4th of July, or Labor Day, we also enjoy regular weekend grill-outs, birthdays, and pool parties. It's a whole lot of fun, and throwing your own shindig can be very rewarding. The only problem is the cost &mdash; feeding, watering, and entertaining a group of people can be expensive. If you're thinking about having a <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-things-you-must-do-to-throw-a-frugal-fun-backyard-party">summer party</a> (or three), check out our ideas for wallet-friendly summer festivities. They're fun for the whole family, and you can enjoy yourself without worrying about the budget.</p> <h2>1. Hot Dog Buffet</h2> <p>It's hard to beat a grill-out in the summertime, but grilling lots of meat can get pricey. Thankfully, one of the cheapest options is hot dogs, a food young and old alike love. If you don't own the necessary equipment, head to a public park with free-to-use grills and bring along cleaning tools, charcoal, and a bag to throw out your waste. Grill up a pile of hot dogs (including some veggie dogs if you have vegetarian guests) and set-up a fun buffet of toppings. Provide the usual ketchup, mustard, and relish, and set out other options like sauerkraut, crushed potato chips, chili, cheese, guacamole, onions, and salsa. Have everyone bring a side, drink, or topping to share, and you'll be able to provide an impressive and fun spread without breaking the bank.</p> <h2>2. Ice Cream Social</h2> <p>Nothing tastes better than an ice cream cone on a summer afternoon. Gather your friends and family for an ice cream social, and you're sure to have a sweet time. If any of your friends own an ice cream maker, encourage them to make their own flavor and bring a pint. Everyone can sample all of the ice creams, and no one is stuck with too much of one flavor. For those of us that don't own a maker, host a potluck-style sundae party. Ask everyone to bring a tub of ice cream and you can provide all of the toppings, or reverse it &mdash; provide all of the ice cream, while the guests bring toppings. Include fun details like sugar cones, chocolate syrup, sprinkles, whipped cream, and caramel. Kids will love making their own sundaes with all the fixings.</p> <h2>3. Afternoon of Games</h2> <p>Enjoy the warm summer weather by inviting your friends over for an afternoon of games. Having an afternoon party alleviates the need to provide a whole meal, saving a lot of cash. Set-up gaming areas in your backyard, or invite everyone to a public park. Bring blankets and folding chairs for hanging out, and have your guests supply their favorite outdoor games. Many games require little more than a ball or frisbee, but are loads of fun with big or small groups. Provide light snacks and lemonade, and enjoy playing horseshoes, bocce, foursquare, and more.</p> <h2>4. Movie Night</h2> <p>Summer blockbusters can be really fun, but going to the movie with a group adds up. Instead of making a trip to the theater, invite friends over to watch a movie for a fun nighttime party. If you or a friend owns a projector, hang a white sheet outside and have a special outdoor screening. Guests can bring their own blanket and get comfortable on the lawn. If you're showing your movie inside, make it special with lots of pillows to sit on and snuggle with, dim lighting, and popcorn and drinks. Play some movie trivia to keep the party social, or have themed nights based on the movie you're playing.</p> <h2>5. Pool Party</h2> <p>If you own a pool, then let's just stop right here. Just invite everyone over to your pool and poof! You have a party. If you live in an apartment complex with a pool, invite a small group to join you one afternoon for lounging and splashing around. Provide plastic cups and a cold drink, and maybe a pool game or two. Just be sure to abide by any pool rules for your apartment building. If you don't have access to a pool at all, then find a great public pool nearby and set a time to meet there. Have fun hanging out in the water and poolside, and go for ice cream or happy hour afterwards. Some fancy hotels offer <a href="http://laist.com/2013/09/06/where_to_get_wet_pools_water_parks.php">access to their pools</a> for free or with a purchase, and can be a fun treat for a hot day.</p> <h2>6. BYOM Cookout</h2> <p>If you'd still like to go the cookout route but want to serve more than hot dogs, have a BYOM party. Ask your guests to bring their own meat to throw on the grill, and you'll shrink your cost while making sure everyone gets the main dish they really want. Have sides and fixings ready, like coleslaw, potato salad, chips, fruit, condiments, and cold drinks. People can share their offerings and mix and match to their heart's desire, and there's sure to be some extra meat left for the host.</p> <p><em>What's your favorite frugal summer party idea?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/laurel-randolph">Laurel Randolph</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-summer-party-ideas-that-wont-break-the-bank">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-11"> <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/7-surefire-ways-to-save-on-grilling">7 Surefire Ways to Save on Grilling</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/9-dumb-ways-youre-going-to-waste-money-this-summer">9 Dumb Ways You&#039;re Going to Waste Money This Summer</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/20-freebies-for-college-students">20+ Freebies for College Students</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/7-surprising-ways-summer-will-cost-you">7 Surprising Ways Summer Will Cost You</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/10-healthy-ways-to-have-ice-cream-for-breakfast">10 Healthy Ways to Have Ice Cream for Breakfast</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Frugal Living barbecue budget cheap friends party summer Fri, 03 Jul 2015 13:00:17 +0000 Laurel Randolph 1470989 at http://www.wisebread.com 11 Signs You Need to Dump Your Friend http://www.wisebread.com/11-signs-you-need-to-dump-your-friend <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/11-signs-you-need-to-dump-your-friend" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/woman_arguing_friend_000056429574.jpg" alt="Woman realizing it&#039;s time to dump her friend" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Having good friends is an important piece of the lifestyle puzzle. For some of us, <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-types-of-friends-who-are-costing-you-money">our friends</a> are closer to us than our family members, and we share much of our life's up and downs with them.</p> <p>Not all &quot;friends&quot; are the same, however. Every once in a while you come across an individual who seems benign in the beginning, but eventually reveals himself to be a devil in disguise. (Or just, you know, isn't a great fit for you.) Here are some of the signs that you're keeping bunk company.</p> <h2>1. They're Talking Smack Behind Your Back</h2> <p>Gutter-dwelling gossip was par for the course in high school, but now that you're a real-life adult it shouldn't have any place in your life. &quot;Frenemies&quot; might sound fun in theory &mdash; the people on TV are having a great time stabbing each other in the back between air kisses, after all &mdash; but it's an immature status to put on your relationships. If you suspect that a friend is tarnishing your good name, confront them. Maybe it's a misunderstanding you both can get past. If it's not a case of miscommunication but rather one of Mean Girl/Boy-itis, accept the situation for what it is and kick Regina George to the curb.</p> <h2>2. They Don't Invite You to Do Anything</h2> <p>I'm speaking from experience on this one, and it became such a chronic situation with several people when I'd invite them to parties, events, and on dates with no reciprocation that I had to do major friend housekeeping (and a bit of soul-searching) a few years ago to remedy it.</p> <p>My &quot;Aha!&quot; moment stemmed from an annual holiday party I used to host at my home in Manhattan. I'd invite everyone &mdash; friends, colleagues, acquaintances &mdash; and we'd have a blast drinking, eating, and laughing all night long. While I didn't mind not hearing much from colleagues and acquaintances frequently (we weren't &quot;friends,&quot; so I couldn't expect much), I did expect some level of return friendship from those who I thought were, well, my friends.</p> <p>Outside of the holiday party, I'd invite them over for game and movie nights, we'd go out to brunch or a movie, and I'd lend a hand when needed. Yet, I was rarely-to-never invited to the things they were doing that they proudly posted all over social media. Of course my feelings were hurt, and the pain evolved into anger. They didn't mind drinking my booze and eating my food and using my free movie coupons, but I wasn't good enough to think about otherwise. Thus, I had to make a conscious decision to cut those people out of my life if only to stop feeling sorry for myself. Yeah, it sucked, but I'm much more content with the quality of people I have in my life now opposed to the quantity I had back then.</p> <h2>3. They're Not There for You When You Need Them</h2> <p>Friends not inviting you to do things is a red flag for sure, but friends not being there for you when you need them most is a three-alarm fire that needs to be extinguished immediately.</p> <p>&quot;Having close friends is not just about having fun together but also supporting each other when times are tough,&quot; says John Boese, founder of friend-making social media site&nbsp;<a href="http://www.gofindfriends.com">GoFindFriends</a>. &quot;Great relationships involve both friends supporting each other in times of need. If the relationship feels one-sided, look for someone who wants to build a real relationship that will last through good times and bad.&quot;</p> <p>The rough times are the ones where you'll find out who your true friends are, as they say. If you wanted a particular presence and that person purposefully wasn't around, bury that broken friendship with whatever tragedy you just went through. Time to move on.</p> <h2>4. They Don't Respect Agreements or Boundaries</h2> <p>It may seem like an innocent oversight when a friend borrows something of yours and &quot;forgets&quot; to return it, but if it's a consistent problem, the issue should be addressed. Same goes for crossed boundaries. Did your friend push too far without so much as an apology? Nip that problem in the bud, too.</p> <p>&quot;During any kind of relationship, boundaries become established by both parties communicating what is acceptable and unacceptable behavior,&quot; says Ilianna Luna, licensed marriage and family therapist. &quot;A friend will know your likes and dislikes, and if he or she hurts you by doing something you don't like &mdash; and does nothing to make amends &mdash; it's time to speak up and let him or her know you don't want that kind of friendship.&quot;</p> <h2>5. They're Emotionally Draining</h2> <p>Ever had a friend that you started to avoid because every time you're with that person the conversation is so emotionally draining that you wish God would invent a whiskey swimming pool?</p> <p>Rest assured, we all have one of those. Dr. Ben Michaelis, clinical psychologist and author of the book&nbsp;<a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/1440540764/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=390957&amp;creativeASIN=1440540764&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=wisbre03-20&amp;linkId=T7ELL6G5QBWHFWMT">Your Next Big Thing: 10 Small Steps to Get Moving and Get Happy</a>, offers advice.</p> <p>&quot;None of us wants to see friends and family as having a negative influence on our lives, but if they are holding us back from being truly happy and fulfilled, we need to take a hard look at the role they play,&quot; he says. &quot;Be honest with yourself and take a look at the relationships that may not be right for you, or which you may have outgrown. You can't force or expect your friends and family to change, but you can make choices about who you choose to let into your life.&quot;</p> <h2>6. They're Overly Critical of You</h2> <p>There's an old saying that implies that we're our own worst critics (I know I am) &mdash; so why the heck would we want somebody else judging us? Nerp. Turn that harsh bus around, anti-friend.</p> <p>&quot;An occasional constructive comment is fine, but friends who constantly make you feel bad about yourself are not worth your time,&quot; Boese says. &quot;If they often criticize you for how you act, look, or how you choose to live your life, then it's probably best to find someone who is more supportive.&quot;</p> <h2>7. They're Jealous of Your Life</h2> <p>You think you've made a great new friend, but before you know it she's living in your house, breastfeeding your newborn baby, putting the moves on your husband, framing your handyman, and plotting the murder of your bestie in the greenhouse. Okay, so that's the plot of <a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/6305213305/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=390957&amp;creativeASIN=6305213305&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=wisbre03-20&amp;linkId=JR7P37AY7GBBZMSF">The Hand That Rocks the Cradle</a>, but if you're not careful the same scenario could totally happen to you.</p> <p>If you suspect that there's an unhealthy jealousy between you and a friend, it's time to back away from that friendship. There's very little you can do to make that person not jealous (notwithstanding the fact that it's totally creeper to be jealous of a friend in the first place, of course), and it could get ugly down the line. You don't want to have to push the weirdo off the roof, do you? Back away from the friendship slowly and say so long.</p> <h2>8. They Have a &quot;Me-Me-Me&quot; Attitude</h2> <p>&quot;Some people seem to make everything about themselves,&quot; Boese says. &quot;Your conversations always end up focusing on them and you may even struggle to get a word in while they're speaking. This can lead to an unequal relationship where you're getting out of it much less than you're putting in. It's best to find someone who understands the give-and-take of building a strong, lasting relationship.&quot;</p> <p>Alas, Luna offers a more congenial way of handling people with SPD or Selfish Personality Disorder (not a realdisorder, but it is).</p> <p>&quot;When one friend constantly takes from the relationship but gives nothing back, it becomes a breeding ground for resentment and back-stabbing,&quot; she says. &quot;In all fairness, you should let the person know they have hijacked the friendship and give them a chance to change. They may not know they are doing it. If you bring it up in a non-threatening way and the friend continues disregarding your thoughts and feelings, it's time to end it.&quot;</p> <h2>9. They Court the Kind of Drama Fit for Primetime TV</h2> <p>I'm gonna be honest and tell you that I sort of wish I lived in a world where <a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00T6KIK4S/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=390957&amp;creativeASIN=B00T6KIK4S&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=wisbre03-20&amp;linkId=75YTM3LBVBEBY7JO">Empire</a> and <a href="http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=as_li_ss_tl?_encoding=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=390957&amp;fst=as%3Aoff&amp;keywords=Dallas&amp;linkCode=ur2&amp;qid=1433516884&amp;rh=n%3A2625373011%2Cp_n_format_browse-bin%3A2650304011%2Ck%3ADallas&amp;rnid=2941120011&amp;tag=wisbre03-20&amp;linkId=BKQE3I3BYOQ4M75E">Dallas</a> were real and all the boys wanted to date me. But unless you're bringing the kind of hotness to the table that makes platinum records spin and/or oil derricks explode all over Texas, save the drama for your mama. Personally, I've never had any patience for premature Emmy Award winners with no TV credits whose hashtags are always &quot;epic&quot; because they're having the WORST. DAY. EVER. Do yourself a favor and exit stage left if you've got a Monday morning thespian bringing you down.</p> <h2>10. They're a Liar, Liar, Pants on Fire</h2> <p>One the best things about being a self-sufficient adult in my 30s is that I don't have to lie to any of my friends (or anyone else, for that matter). I'm not responsible for anyone, I'm not accountable to anyone, and I generally live my life as a grown-up dude who doesn't care what anybody thinks about what I say or do &mdash; because I alone pay my bills. In summary, I won't blow smoke up your bum, because it's absolutely unnecessary.</p> <p>It's also unnecessary for you to accept lies from your friends. It's a juvenile practice common among kids (hopefully that will put things into perspective), or those who have something to hide. While I don't expect that you're hanging out with nine-year-olds, if you happen to have somebody in your life who's lying to you, I suggest getting to the root of the problem right away. Perhaps there's a good reason (embarrassment is an acceptable reason for someone to lie in my book; I can at least understand that point of view) for which you can forgive them. Just don't let your guard down completely and forgive willy-nilly.</p> <h2>11. They Use You for What You Can Give Them</h2> <p>There are two reasons I've identified that compel people to hang out with me other than just being friends. The first is that I work in media, so I'm often invited to cool events and receive neat products to try; people like that. I also have a house on the Jersey Shore, very close to the beach, and people like that, too. I don't mind sharing these perks of my life with them &mdash; I like seeing my friends smile &mdash; but I also don't let either of those reasons define our friendship.</p> <p>If I get even an inkling that I'm being used, that person is shown the door, sometimes quite literally.</p> <p><em>Are there other signs that we need to a dump a friend that you'd like to add? Let me know in the comments below.</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/mikey-rox">Mikey Rox</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/11-signs-you-need-to-dump-your-friend">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/12-things-you-need-to-stop-doing-today-to-be-a-better-friend">12 Things You Need to Stop Doing Today to Be a Better Friend</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/6-ways-to-be-a-better-friend-without-any-effort">6 Ways to Be a Better Friend Without Any Effort</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/friends-and-goals-dont-let-a-blue-falcon-bring-you-down">Friends and Goals: Don&#039;t Let a Blue Falcon Bring You Down</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/11-ways-freelancers-and-telecommuters-can-make-friends-and-network">11 Ways Freelancers and Telecommuters Can Make Friends and Network</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/fixing-mistakes-7-steps-for-any-situation">Fixing Mistakes: 7 Steps for Any Situation</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Personal Development friends lifestyle maturity moving on relationships Thu, 25 Jun 2015 11:00:16 +0000 Mikey Rox 1462285 at http://www.wisebread.com 10 Types of Friends Who Are Costing You Money http://www.wisebread.com/10-types-of-friends-who-are-costing-you-money <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/10-types-of-friends-who-are-costing-you-money" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/girls-friends-shopping-Dollarphotoclub_68908168.jpg" alt="girls friends shopping" title="girls friends shopping" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Our friends are some of the most important people in our lives. But have you ever considered the impact they have on your finances?</p> <p>Some friends can suck money from your wallet, even if they don't intend to. And because they're your friends, you may not even notice. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-types-of-neighbors-that-are-costing-you-money?ref=seealso">10 Types of Neighbors Who Are Costing You Money</a>)</p> <p>Consider whether yours fall into any of these categories of friends that cost you money.</p> <h2>1. The Leech</h2> <p>He's more than just cheap. He's a moocher. He's always asking to borrow money. He raids your fridge, and if you go out to eat, he always insists on paying just half the check &mdash; even if he ordered more. He wants you to spot him his share of the monthly rent and promises to pay you back &mdash; but you know he won't. He'll even &quot;borrow&quot; books and DVDs that you'll never see again. You need to draw a hard line on what you'll do for this friend. Otherwise, you'll both end up suffering financially.</p> <h2>2. The Big Spender</h2> <p>If you go to a baseball game together, they insist on getting tickets behind home plate instead of in the bleachers. When you suggest a weekend of camping, they push for a week of skiing in Aspen. Perhaps this friend is wealthy and has a good chunk of disposable income. Or, perhaps they just love to spend and hate to save. Either way, keeping up with their lifestyle is making you go broke. You like this friend because you enjoy his or her company, but you must politely find a way to spend time with them on more frugal terms.</p> <h2>3. The Bad Association</h2> <p>He's always getting in trouble, and you're often dragged in his wake. He's the guy who shows up with weed at parties, or gets into fights at clubs. You can try your best to be on the straight and narrow, but just being around him can put you at risk for legal trouble. And even if your criminal record stays clean, your social media profile might not. Think you're due for a raise at work? You better hope the boss doesn't see the drunken Instagram pic your friend tagged you in.</p> <h2>4. The Awful Entrepreneur</h2> <p>She always has a new idea for something that will change the world, and all she needs is some money to get it off the ground. Maybe it's a new mobile app to help you brush your teeth, or a new restaurant specializing in gourmet scrambled eggs. You admire her entrepreneurial spirit, but the truth is that she has neither the business sense nor the dedication to get rich from any of these schemes. It may be tempting to lend money to friends for their business ventures, but don't let your friendship skew your assessment of whether the investment makes good financial sense.</p> <h2>5. The Philanthropist</h2> <p>This month, he's running in a marathon to raise money for cancer research. Next month, he's seeking donations for a local homeless shelter. He's a generous soul &mdash; and that's great! But it's important that you don't feel pressured to donate every time he comes around. You must find a way to gently tell your friend that you can't pony up cash every time he's supporting something. Keep in mind that it's possible to support his cause without giving money. For instance, consider volunteering your time to the charity in question, instead.</p> <h2>6. The Celebrator</h2> <p>I had an old friend from college who would plan parties and outings for the most innocuous of reasons. While most of us grew older and let our birthdays pass with little fanfare, he was still planning annual trips to Las Vegas well into his 30s. His over-celebrating was often excessive, but the truth is that this is something many of us fall prey to. We celebrate the new job, the promotion, the graduation from pre-school. We reward ourselves with a dinner out just because &quot;we've had a tough week.&quot; Resist the urge to celebrate every single life event, and politely beg out of those outings to which you've been invited.</p> <h2>7. The Extravagant Gift Giver</h2> <p>It's Christmas Day and you bought gifts for all of the people on your list. But then a friend arrives with expensive items for you and your entire family. Now you're on the hook to reciprocate, even if you feel like you're not close enough with this person to be exchanging gifts every year. This is a tricky situation, as it hardly seems civil to complain about a friend's generosity. But there are polite ways to nudge the person away from giving gifts. If they still insist on giving, reciprocate by inviting them to dinner or finding a tasteful but inexpensive item.</p> <h2>8. The Spending Enabler</h2> <p>So you're on the fence about whether to buy the 45-inch flat screen TV or the 70-inch monster. On one shoulder is the little Frugal Angel, telling you to buy the smaller one, or even pass on buying altogether. One the other is your friend, telling you how much you deserve the behemoth. She may mean well, but she's always pushing you to spend more. &quot;Go for it,&quot; she'll say. &quot;You work hard. Don't be afraid to spoil yourself.&quot; Never listen to the Enabling Devil.</p> <h2>9. The Early Adopter</h2> <p>This is the guy who stands in line at the Apple Store every time a new phone is released. He's the first to get every new gadget or technology out there. Hanging out with this friend can make you feel pressured to keep up. But keep in mind that Early Adopters rarely get the best deals. Don't let your friend's love of the shiny new thing influence your own buying decisions.</p> <h2>10. The Gambler</h2> <p>With this friend, a casual game of poker always seems to turn into a scene from Rounders. His &quot;friendly&quot; fantasy football league just offers another chance for big chunks of money to change hands. He's always betting on something, and all too often you find yourself opening up your wallet to join the fun. Resist the urge to bet big bucks on things every time you hang out with this friend. You'll be better off financially (and your blood pressure may improve as well).</p> <p><em>Do you have any &quot;friends&quot; like these? How do you deal with friends that are costing you money?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/tim-lemke">Tim Lemke</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-types-of-friends-who-are-costing-you-money">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-3"> <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/when-should-you-say-no-to-those-who-want-to-borrow-money-from-you">When Should You Say No to Those Who Want to Borrow Money from You?</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/10-money-saving-new-years-goals-that-you-can-actually-keep">10 Money-Saving New Year&#039;s Goals That You Can Actually Keep</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/5-ways-to-dodge-peer-pressure-to-spend">5 Ways to Dodge Peer Pressure to Spend</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/financial-tricks-to-master-for-a-happier-life">Financial Tricks to Master for a Happier Life</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/7-nice-ways-to-tell-your-spendy-friends-youre-staying-on-budget">7 Nice Ways to Tell Your Spendy Friends You&#039;re Staying on Budget</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Personal Finance Lifestyle Personal Development borrowing friends gambling saving spending Wed, 14 Jan 2015 18:00:09 +0000 Tim Lemke 1278625 at http://www.wisebread.com 6 Ways to Be a Better Friend Without Any Effort http://www.wisebread.com/6-ways-to-be-a-better-friend-without-any-effort <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/6-ways-to-be-a-better-friend-without-any-effort" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/friends-talking-453277273-small.jpg" alt="friends talking" title="friends talking" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Friendship is one of the best and purest pleasures of life. There's nothing quite like having a good friend who walks beside you through the thick and thin, who knows you inside and out, and who helps make your life richer and more meaningful.</p> <p>But&hellip; that takes a lot of work. When you're run down, exhausted, sick, or otherwise unable to put the energy and effort into your friendships in the ways you want to or the ways you've done before, it's easy to start to wonder if your friends will all run away. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/50-fun-free-ways-to-have-a-great-time-with-friends?ref=seealso">50 Fun, Free Ways to Have a Great Time With Friends</a>)</p> <p>While a true friend won't leave you when you're in distress, even if you have absolutely nothing to give to them or the relationship, it can ease your anxiety to know that there are some easy, effortless things you can do that make you a better friend. These can make both you and your friend feel better about your relationship, even when things are hard.</p> <h2>1. Be Yourself</h2> <p>It's easy to feel like your friends want you to be a certain person or act a certain way. However, real friends just want you to be you. And, honestly, what could be easier? To be a good friend, stop worrying. Stop worrying about how you're coming across, about what they might be thinking, and about whether they might rather be with someone else.</p> <p>Instead, give them the gift of you. Stop making the whole thing harder than it is. Offer yourself, and you may find that your friends are freed to do the same, which makes any relationship stronger.</p> <h2>2. Ask Them How They Feel</h2> <p>We have all heard about how empathy is important and how it makes relationships stronger, and most of us have experienced it with some friend, at some time. However, empathy often takes so much energy! Fortunately, <a href="http://www.oprah.com/relationships/How-to-Improve-Your-Relationships-and-Be-a-Better-Friend">it's easy to show empathy</a> even when you're not feeling it or you don't know how to start.</p> <p>When a friend is sharing something that they're struggling with, ask them how they feel about it. After they've shared how they're feeling, tell them, &quot;That sounds like a rough place to be,&quot; or, &quot;It sounds like this is difficult for you.&quot; This helps them feel heard, with little effort on your part.</p> <p>While you shouldn't fake empathy when you really don't value it, these phrases can help you seem empathic even when you're tired, stressed, or otherwise too drained. It takes almost no effort to say these phrases, and you can decide later if you really have the energy to listen well, or if your friend just needs permission to vent.</p> <h2>3. Stop Giving Advice</h2> <p>We want to help our friends, and we feel like we should. However, we will help more by simply listening, which frees us from the burden of figuring out all of their problems.</p> <p>Giving advice can feel good in a friendship, but it takes quite a bit of energy to think up solutions for their problems that might actually work. And, in fact, this is not your job. Most people are perfectly capable of managing their own lives, when they're given the chance to do so. When you stop giving advice, you won't expend as much energy owning their problems, and they will find that they have the power and ability to solve things on their own.</p> <p>Quitting advice can also save your friendships from becoming unbalanced. If you give all the advice and they always receive it, it's hard to have a real friendship. You become a counselor, and they may feel like they don't have much to offer you. When you quit giving advice, you not only save your energy but you might salvage a relationship, too.</p> <h2>4. Tell Them You Enjoy Their Presence</h2> <p>When you're tired, it's easy to act and feel down in general, and your friends may not know that this has nothing to do with them. Reassure them by telling them that you enjoy them, that your life is better because they are there, or that their friendship makes a hard time better.</p> <p>Doing this will make you a better friend even when you're not tired, and it never takes much effort. Friendship can be confusing and difficult to navigate even in the best of times, and it's always better to tell people exactly where they stand, especially when doing so will help them relax in your presence.</p> <h2>5. Smile</h2> <p><a href="http://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/cutting-edge-leadership/201206/there-s-magic-in-your-smile">Smiling is contagious</a>. When you see someone smile, your brain wants to do the same in return. So you smile. And when you smile, all sorts of good things happen in your body and your brain. You release endorphins, which make you feel better, and you look more attractive to others.</p> <p>Guess what? When your friends smile, they experience the same effects. Thus, offering your friend a smile (which their body almost forces them to return), does them a huge favor and probably makes them feel better about their relationship with you, even if they aren't sure why.</p> <h2>6. Say &quot;Please&quot; And &quot;Thank You&quot;</h2> <p>It's perfectly acceptable to ask your friends for help. In fact, it might even be <a href="http://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/think-confident-be-confident/200909/dont-be-afraid-ask-help">good for you</a>. When you do ask for help, though, be sure to use &quot;please&quot; and &quot;thank you.&quot;</p> <p>These words are more than just polite niceties. When used with a genuine tone of voice, they <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/science-shows-that-saying-thanks-can-improve-your-health-and-happiness">show your friends that they are important to you</a>. &quot;Please&quot; shows that you value your friend and his or her resources &mdash; time, energy, money, etc. &mdash; that you are asking for, and that you understand they will have to give of themselves to meet your request.</p> <p>&quot;Thank you&quot; indicates similar things. Saying these words means that you accept the gift your friend has just given you, whatever it is, and that you appreciate it and are grateful, both for the gift and for them.</p> <p><em>How do you show your friends you care when you're worn out? Have you ever had a friend do something that was effortless for them but meant a lot to you?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/sarah-winfrey">Sarah Winfrey</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-ways-to-be-a-better-friend-without-any-effort">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-4"> <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/12-things-you-need-to-stop-doing-today-to-be-a-better-friend">12 Things You Need to Stop Doing Today to Be a Better Friend</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/11-signs-you-need-to-dump-your-friend">11 Signs You Need to Dump Your Friend</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-ways-to-repair-a-burned-bridge">10 Ways to Repair a Burned Bridge</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/6-easy-tricks-to-become-instantly-more-likeable">6 Easy Tricks to Become Instantly More Likeable</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/friends-and-goals-dont-let-a-blue-falcon-bring-you-down">Friends and Goals: Don&#039;t Let a Blue Falcon Bring You Down</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> General Tips Personal Development friends friendship relationships Wed, 17 Sep 2014 15:00:08 +0000 Sarah Winfrey 1211248 at http://www.wisebread.com 12 Things You Need to Stop Doing Today to Be a Better Friend http://www.wisebread.com/12-things-you-need-to-stop-doing-today-to-be-a-better-friend <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/12-things-you-need-to-stop-doing-today-to-be-a-better-friend" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/best-friends-cafe-178720038-small.jpg" alt="best friends cafe" title="best friends cafe" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Sometimes true friendships seem to be born out of a mysterious, intangible energy that pulls two people together. Keeping friendships strong and thriving is a far less mysterious affair, though. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-time-tested-ways-to-make-a-relationship-work?ref=seealso">6 Time-Tested Ways to Make a Relationship Work</a>)</p> <p>Part art, part science, and part common sense, being a better friend takes a lot of effort, and maybe the kicking of a bad habit or two. Or a dozen. So here are 12 things you need to stop doing now in order to be a better friend.</p> <h2>1. Shopping for Better Social Offers</h2> <p>Psst&hellip; you're not fooling anyone when you're consistently non-committal about plans. Your friends probably know you're holding out for a better offer. We get it &mdash; your time is a rare and valuable commodity. But as tempting as &quot;social shopping&quot; might be from time-to-time, consider the long-term effects it can have on the relationships your hold most dear. <em>Commit</em>, participate, and stop wondering what's behind curtain number three.</p> <h2>2. Going AWOL When You're Dating</h2> <p>Are you the type of friend that disappears the moment a romantic relationship gets serious? Or worse, do you reconnect with old friends once it's time to pick up the pieces after a breakup? If so, it may be time to reevaluate how you balance the relationships in your life. Solid friendships are built on consistency and mutual respect; don't go MIA the moment you fall head over heels.</p> <h2>3. Texting, Tweeting, Calling, Clicking, Snapping, and Chatting</h2> <p>It's difficult to listen when we're surrounded by mobile devices that are never silenced or sidelined. Make face time (and by <em>face time</em>, I mean face-to-face time, not the Apple product), electronics-free. You'll <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-little-ways-to-become-more-present-and-love-your-life-more">become more fully present</a>, your friends will thank you for it, and you'll begin to appreciate the unplugged moments of life.</p> <h2>4. Being Late</h2> <p>Sometimes it's unavoidable. But if you're terminally tardy, you're implying that your friends' time isn't as valuable as yours. Honor the people you care about by <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-always-be-on-time">learning how to be punctual.</a></p> <h2>5. Listening Just to Respond</h2> <p>The art of conversation is built on active listening, but many people cut their listening time short in order to formulate a reply. Instead of worrying about how you're going to respond (if a response is even necessary), listen to learn. What is your friend really saying? And just as importantly, what's <em>not</em> being said?</p> <h2>6. Avoiding the Truth</h2> <p>John Lennon said it best: &quot;Being honest may not get you a lot of friends, but it'll always get you the right ones.&quot; Good friends are kind to each other, but rigorously honest about the things that matter. Work to make your closest friendships &quot;no BS zones&quot; where you can be open about the ups and downs of life, love, career, and money. It'll help create a refuge where each of you can give and receive honest feedback.</p> <h2>7. Forgetting Important Dates</h2> <p>Birthdays, anniversaries, significant events at work &mdash; remembering these details shows that you're listening and that you're tuned into another person's world. Acknowledging the major and minor moments of our friends' lives promotes trust, connection, and appreciation.</p> <h2>8. Imposing Time Limits</h2> <p>Aren't we all on the clock too much as it is? I don't know about you, but the last thing I need is a friend who can't put down his mental stopwatch. Sure, sometimes it's just fine to sneak a quick cup of coffee in between meetings, but a chronic I've-got-to-run attitude is doesn't allow room for friendships to meander, grow, and deepen.</p> <h2>9. Over-Planning Everything</h2> <p>Doesn't it seem like the best moments in life are the unplanned ones? As much as a good plan can benefit a Friday night or a weekend getaway, it's important to know when to scrap the schedule and just wing it.</p> <h2>10. Being Predictable</h2> <p>Sometimes small gestures of kindness, surprising moments, and a spontaneous spirit can breathe new life into a friendship between two people who know each other frontward and backward. Keep your friendships fresh by showing appreciation and nurturing a bit of the unexpected. Running low on inspiration, explore new and inexpensive <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/50-fun-free-ways-to-have-a-great-time-with-friends">ways to have fun with friends</a>.</p> <h2>11. Holding Grudges</h2> <p>Every relationship has its highs and lows. But friendships are investments that two people make in each other; don't let hurt feelings or an argument wipe out what you've built.</p> <h2>12. Dodging the Truly Terrible Times</h2> <p>It's inevitable &mdash; when two people are friends for a long enough period of time, they'll witness life-altering events in each other's lives. The death of a parent, a messy divorce, or loss of a job are just a few examples of moments when good friendships are forged by fire and become something far more profound. Don't dodge the down times because you don't know the right thing to do or say. Realize the comfort your shared history can provide and rise to the occasion.</p> <p>In the end, friendships are formed by common interests and complementary senses of humor, but they're maintained and deepened by the shared events &mdash; the comedies and tragedies that shift and shape our lives. Friendships should help us achieve more, worry less, laugh louder, and handle the challenges of life with a little more support. With that in mind, learning to be a better is nearly a sacred pursuit. Put your whole heart into it.</p> <p><em>Do you have a best friend? How did he or she earn that coveted title in your life?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/kentin-waits">Kentin Waits</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/12-things-you-need-to-stop-doing-today-to-be-a-better-friend">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-5"> <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/6-ways-to-be-a-better-friend-without-any-effort">6 Ways to Be a Better Friend Without Any Effort</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/11-signs-you-need-to-dump-your-friend">11 Signs You Need to Dump Your Friend</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-ways-to-repair-a-burned-bridge">10 Ways to Repair a Burned Bridge</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/happily-ever-after-how-to-stay-married-for-29-years-and-counting">Happily Ever After: How to Stay Married for 29 Years (and Counting)</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/friends-and-goals-dont-let-a-blue-falcon-bring-you-down">Friends and Goals: Don&#039;t Let a Blue Falcon Bring You Down</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Family Personal Development friends friendship loyalty relationships Thu, 04 Sep 2014 11:00:03 +0000 Kentin Waits 1203541 at http://www.wisebread.com 7 Nice Ways to Tell Your Spendy Friends You're Staying on Budget http://www.wisebread.com/7-nice-ways-to-tell-your-spendy-friends-youre-staying-on-budget <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/7-nice-ways-to-tell-your-spendy-friends-youre-staying-on-budget" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/friends-disagreement-78155615-small.jpg" alt="friends disagreement" title="friends disagreement" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Unless you're invited to hang out at a friend's house, social invitations typically require spending money &mdash; going to the movies, grabbing a bite to eat, hitting an amusement park.</p> <p>Ignoring an invite or saying that you're busy can get you off the hook, but friends might get suspicious if you pull the same excuse over and over. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/is-peer-pressure-keeping-you-poor?ref=seealso">Is Peer Pressure Keeping You Poor?</a>)</p> <p>You don't have to justify your reasons for not spending. But if you don't want friends or relatives to get the wrong idea or think that you're avoiding them, a simple explanation goes a long way. Whether you're on a financial fast or have other plans for your money, there are friendly ways to tell someone you don't want to spend money.</p> <h2>1. I'm Saving Up for the Holidays</h2> <p>It doesn't matter if you're buying gifts for family or taking a vacation, planning for the holiday season is a good reason (and good excuse) to scale back on spending. And since many people feel the pinch during the holidays, those in your social circle will likely understand your reasoning, and won't give you a hard time for turning down pricey invitations.</p> <h2>2. I'm Trying to Stick to My Budget</h2> <p>Saying, &quot;I'm on a budget&quot; is one way to say you're broke without actually uttering the word. But even when you have extra money, budgeting can prevent overspending.</p> <p>If you receive an invitation to join friends at a restaurant, or if you're invited to a network marketing sales party, be honest and let the host know that extra spending isn't in the budget right now. This doesn't necessarily suggest that you don't have money, but that you're careful with how you spend your pennies. Your willpower might rub off on others.</p> <h2>3. I Have New Responsibilities</h2> <p>Social invitations can go beyond dinner and a movie, and your friends might plan a vacation together or suggest a shopping trip in the city. A responsible adult counts the cost before any large purchase. And if you have new responsibilities or financial obligations (such as you've started a family or recently purchased a home), now may not be the best time to spend money on an expensive adventure. If you're the first one in your group to have children or buy a house, you might need to kindly remind your friends how these changes impact personal finances. And remember: specifics count here. So if you feel comfortable, feel free to go into detail about said new responsibilities.</p> <h2>4. I've Had Some Unexpected Expenses Arise</h2> <p>Maybe you haven't taken on new responsibilities, yet unexpected costs have zapped your disposable income. You may have some extra money, yet realize it's wiser to put this cash towards getting your finances back on track &mdash; and right now, frivolous spending is out of the question.</p> <h2>5. I'm Planning for My Future</h2> <p>Friends don't need to know the nitty-gritty details about your plan. Whether you're growing your retirement fund, saving up for a house, or planning to buy a vacation property, you'll never reach long-term saving goals unless you're disciplined and willing to turn down a few invitations.</p> <h2>6. Can I Suggest Another Activity?</h2> <p>The fact that you don't want to spend money doesn't mean that you don't want to spend time with friends. Another friendly approach is suggesting an alternate activity &mdash; one that doesn't cost a dime, or an activity that costs very little.</p> <p>For example, if a friend suggests a getaway, but you don't want to spend money on airfare, hotels, and meals in an expensive city, suggest a cheaper option and look for a destination within a one or two-hour drive of your house. Spend the day enjoying the local sights, and drive back the same day. Pack a lunch and snacks and only spend money on gas.</p> <h2>7. Blame a Scapegoat &mdash; if Necessary</h2> <p>Explaining that you're on a budget or saying that you're planning for the future are friendly ways to tell someone that you don't want to spend money. But sometimes, these reasons don't put an end to spending peer pressure, and you might need to use a scapegoat.</p> <p>This suggestion comes from a friend who felt pressured by co-workers to dine out for lunch. Her colleagues ate out just about everyday of the week, spending upwards of $30 to $40 a week on lunch. Although joining the group wouldn't create a hardship, she couldn't justify spending so much on lunch. The pressure didn't stop until she nicely used her husband as a scapegoat, saying he didn't like the idea of her spending $100 a month on lunch. Fair? Maybe. Effective? Yes.</p> <p><em>Can you suggest some other friendly ways to tell someone you don't want to spend money? What excuses have you used in the past? Let me know in the comments below.</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/mikey-rox">Mikey Rox</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-nice-ways-to-tell-your-spendy-friends-youre-staying-on-budget">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-6"> <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/10-types-of-friends-who-are-costing-you-money">10 Types of Friends Who Are Costing You Money</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/change-jars-and-8-other-clever-ways-to-build-an-emergency-fund">Change Jars and 8 Other Clever Ways to Build an Emergency Fund</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/73-easy-ways-to-save-money-today">73 Easy Ways to Save Money Today</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/16-easy-ways-to-save-100-this-month">16 Easy Ways to Save $100 This Month</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/47-simple-ways-to-waste-money">47 Simple Ways To Waste Money</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Personal Finance Budgeting friends saving spending Fri, 29 Aug 2014 13:00:07 +0000 Mikey Rox 1197955 at http://www.wisebread.com The 5 Worst Pieces of Financial Advice Your Friends Give You http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-worst-pieces-of-financial-advice-your-friends-give-you <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/the-5-worst-pieces-of-financial-advice-your-friends-give-you" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/friends-86527481_0.jpg" alt="friends" title="friends" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="141" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>We all love our friends. That's why we keep them around. It's always good to have other voices and perspectives in our lives, letting us know when we're doing well, walking a fine line, or just plain wrong.</p> <p>Sometimes, our friends are a valuable source of wisdom in our life. But let's be honest. Sometimes our friends give bad advice. And I mean really bad advice &mdash; like horrendous, usher-in-the-apocalypse type stuff.</p> <p>If your friends are the opinionated type, you can even expect a never-ending barrage of article quotes and obscure, unverifiable facts backing up their awful counsel. In fact, baseless articles, regurgitated through your friends, are probably the source of the worst financial advice you've ever received. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/11-ways-your-friends-can-save-you-money?ref=seealso">11 Ways Your Friends Can Save You Money</a>)</p> <p>Let's take a look at this poor guidance &mdash; the worst pieces of financial advice your friends give you.</p> <h2>1. You Can Afford It</h2> <p>At some point in our lives, each of us is tempted to keep up with the Joneses. Much of our society operates on a mentality that says, &quot;If I can buy it, I can afford it.&quot;</p> <p>The trouble with this mentality is that it's a poverty mentality. It's like a farmer eating all of his wheat instead of planting enough for next year's crop. Just because you can afford that new car your neighbor bought doesn't mean you should buy it. In 20 years, you won't care about what model vehicle you drove this year. You will care about whether that $20k turned into $0 or $75k.</p> <h2>2. You Need to Take a Long Vacation</h2> <p>Somehow, we've fallen into this mentality where a two-week family vacations are a mandatory part of a every year. Just considering a departure from this trend will illicit correction from our friends and coworkers. &quot;No vacation!?&quot; &quot;Inconceivable!&quot; &quot;You should really put your family first.&quot;</p> <p>Life-work balance is important, but no system works perfectly for everyone. For your family, a week-long vacation might the most stressful week of the year. Why waste all your disposable income to meet a quota? If a few weekend getaways with the spouse and a monthly day-trip with the family make more sense, go with that. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/make-your-escape-with-these-14-affordable-weekend-getaways?ref=seealso">14 Affordable Weekend Getaways</a>)</p> <h2>3. School Is Worth the Debt</h2> <p>Education is definitely important, and numerous studies have confirmed that degree-holders make more money in the long run. That being said, there are plenty of low-cost options for acquiring a college degree.</p> <p>Unless you have some sort of highly lucrative job opportunity secured pending graduation from a specific university, taking out $50k+ in student loans makes little sense. There are hundreds of affordable college options. No degree is worth spending the entirety of your twenties in financial shackles.</p> <h2>4. You Need to Save More Money</h2> <p>As Wise Bread readers know, aggressive saving is important to long-term financial wellbeing. Saving tips are a staple on any website dealing with personal finance, and virtually everyone these days has their own personal collection of wallet-sparing tricks.</p> <p>The problem, however, is that saving money doesn't increase wealth. Investment increases wealth, and a simple &quot;You should save more money!&quot; approach will sink your chances at living the life you desire.</p> <p>If you have cut frivolous expenses from your spending habits, the next step is not to find more joys to cut out, but rather, to find positive investments to place that income in. If a tight budget isn't enough to get by, you should be looking at alternative income sources, not attempting to squash all remaining pleasures out of your life. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/30-great-side-jobs?ref=seealso">30 Great Side Jobs</a>)</p> <h2>5. Invest in &quot;Can't Miss Super Opportunity, Inc&quot;</h2> <p>As noted above, investment is the key to financial success. If your friends are all millionaires, this article doesn't apply to you, and you're pretty much set for life anyway.</p> <p>For everyone else, just realize your friends would be making ridiculous amounts of money if their investment ideas were worth the time they wasted telling you. Three out of four venture capital backed <a href="http://online.wsj.com/news/articles/SB10000872396390443720204578004980476429190">startups fail within the first four years</a>. And it's even worse for bootstrapping startups that don't secure venture capital. Investing in Can't Miss Super Opportunity, Inc based on a random friend's suggestion is essentially gambling... with the additional risk that a loss could cost you a friendship, too.</p> <p><em>What's the worst financial advice you've ever heard from one of your friends? Please share in comments!</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/jacob-mcmillen">Jacob McMillen</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-worst-pieces-of-financial-advice-your-friends-give-you">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-7"> <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/not-the-sort-of-person-who">Not the sort of person who ...</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/friends-dont-let-friends">Friends Don&#039;t Let Friends...</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/5-voices-to-tune-out-when-managing-your-finances">5 Voices to Tune Out When Managing Your Finances</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/ow-do-you-deal-with-family-members-who-are-bad-at-managing-money">How Do You Deal With Family Members Who Are Bad At Managing Money?</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/10-of-the-coolest-sayings-about-saving">10 of the Coolest Sayings About Saving</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Personal Finance advice financial advice friends friends and money Tue, 13 May 2014 08:12:24 +0000 Jacob McMillen 1139070 at http://www.wisebread.com 5 People You Should Have in Your "Personal Emergency Kit" http://www.wisebread.com/5-people-you-should-have-in-your-personal-emergency-kit <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/5-people-you-should-have-in-your-personal-emergency-kit" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/emergency-152973680.jpg" alt="emergency call" title="emergency call" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="167" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>They say it takes a village to raise a kid, but the truth is, it takes a village to get through life in general whether you have kids or not. And to exist in a relatively peaceful village, you have to ensure that you're surrounding yourself with the right people &mdash; especially for emergency situations.</p> <p>I'm sure you can think of plenty of folks in your own life who lend a helping hand when you need it. That's great; keep them around. If you don't have these people, however, it's time you let your guard down and let some new folks in; you never know when you're gonna need them, but when you do, you'll be glad you found each other.</p> <p>To help you evaluate who's missing from your &quot;personal emergency kit,&quot; here are five types of people who can make your life easier in times of crises &mdash; plus a bonus guy who may be the most important of them all. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-emergency-situations-you-must-prepare-for-and-5-you-can-ignore?ref=seealso">Emergencies to Prepare For</a>)</p> <h2>1. A Neighbor Who Will Alert You When There's Trouble at Your House</h2> <p>&quot;Roseanne&quot; is one of my favorite shows, and I love the episode when Roseanne thinks her uppity neighbor, Kathy Bowman, is giving all her high-end furniture and housewares to charity while Kathy and her family are on vacation. A truck, presumably from a Salvation Army-type establishment, pulls up to Kathy's house and empties it while Roseanne looks on in disbelief at her neighbor's frivolous &quot;goodwill.&quot; Roseanne &mdash; spotting something in transit from house to truck that she deems too good for &quot;charity&quot; &mdash; goes over to the moving guys and pays them $20 for a tacky ceramic dog. Long story short, Kathy returns and tells Roseanne that she's been robbed blind, much to Roseanne's surprise. Excellent episode; that lady still cracks me up 20+ years later.</p> <p>The moral of that anecdote is that good neighbors are hard to come by these days, so when you find one, hang on to them tight. This neighbor will help you rest easier while you're on vacation because you know they're looking over your home well, but they'll also keep a watchful eye even when you're away for just a few hours. This neighbor can collect your mail for you if you're taking an extended vacation, and call the cops if they spot strangers lurking about.</p> <p>If you don't have a neighbor like this, get in one's good graces soon. You don't want to regret it later.</p> <h2>2. Someone Who Can Watch Over Your Kids at Moment's Notice</h2> <p>Those of you with kids know that there are times when you might need to put your kids in the care of someone responsible at a moment's notice to deal with any number of issues. Maybe you need to rush your spouse to the hospital in the middle of the night; maybe you just want to go to the supermarket in peace. Whatever the case, it's not a bad idea to create a relationship &mdash; preferably with another parent so you can trade off and establish an equitable rapport &mdash; who can serve as your go-to lifesaver when you need to pawn off your kids in an instant.</p> <h2>3. A Local Handyperson Friend Who Will Give Your Issue Priority</h2> <p>Picture it: Sicily, 1922.</p> <p>Just kidding. That's the famous catchphrase of the &quot;Golden Girls'&quot; Sophia Petrillo &ndash; I watch <em>a lot</em> of TV Land, you guys.</p> <p>Picture this instead: It's 4 a.m. and your toilet is overflowing, so much that water and other toilet-esque things are seeping into your carpet and hardwood floors, and you need this stopped <em>now</em>. Who ya' gonna call?</p> <p>Hopefully your friendly neighborhood handyperson, whom you've treated very well over the years and sufficiently compensated for his or her time and expertise, will be on the case in a flash. Hopefully.</p> <p>If this person isn't currently in your life, make him or her part of it immediately and be the best friend you can be. Unless, of course, you like the idea of trying to stop the rush of gushing you-know-what with your bare hands in the middle of the night. Diff'rent strokes, I suppose. (See what I did there? Too much TV Land!)</p> <h2>4. That Friend Who Will Drop Everything to Help You Out</h2> <p>You know how when you're moving and you need help carrying those heavy boxes of books up four flights of stairs and everyone on your contact list is suddenly busy? You can still consider those folks friends, I guess (albeit very loosely), but if they can't help you schlep your junk around town just for the heck of it, don't be surprised when they let you down many other times.</p> <p>Instead, keep close that one friend who's there for you no matter what, no matter when you need them. This is the guy or girl who's spending an otherwise lonely Friday night with you; the person whose shoulder you can cry on; the one who will never judge you; who will pick you up on the side of the road when your car breaks down at 2 a.m.; the bestie who will bring you soup when you're sick; the amigo who will, in the same day, trash talk your lousy significant other with you then embrace him with open arms when you inevitably take him back for the fifth time; and above all, this is the confidant who will keep your darkest, dirtiest secrets safe and sound forever and ever &mdash; no matter how much somebody is willing to pay for them.</p> <p>As you know, these kind of friends are hard to find and even harder to keep. You're extremely lucky to have this person in your life &mdash; and don't you soon forget it.</p> <h2>5. A Co-Worker Who Will Cover for You When You Can't Get to the Office</h2> <p>Late for work because you overslept? Can't make it in until noon because your kid accidentally tried to burn down the house this morning? Life happens, and these situations will go over much smoother &mdash; perhaps even under the radar altogether &mdash; if you've made a pact with an influential co-worker to cover each other when one of you can't make it to work on time or at all on a particular day. This person can bring your important documents to you from the office or help you finish up a few things while you're handling your emergency.</p> <h2>Bonus: That Dude Down the Block Who's Building His Apocalyptic Hideaway</h2> <p>You've seen him bringing in large buckets of rice and gallons upon gallons of water, lots of ammunition and firearms, tactical gear, and enough wood and concrete to build a bunker (which he is definitely doing); and you probably think he's crazy. That will all change when the zombie apocalypse comes, <a href="http://www.independent.co.uk/news/science/nasafunded-study-warns-of-collapse-of-civilisation-in-coming-decades-9195668.html">which just got kind of real</a> by the way, and he's basically your last hope for survival. When that day arrives, he'll probably forget your name and leave you to fend for yourself, but it's not a bad idea to invite this dude over for dinner tonight, get to know him, befriend him, and eventually ask him to legally adopt you so you can have at least a little peace of mind when the ish hits the fan. This impending end-of-the-world scenario is hypothetical of course, but so was space travel at one point. Ponder that.</p> <p><em>Do you have other people that we should have in our &quot;personal emergency kits?&quot; Let me know in the comments below.</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/mikey-rox">Mikey Rox</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-people-you-should-have-in-your-personal-emergency-kit">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-8"> <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/25-easy-ways-to-make-someone-happy-today">25 Easy Ways to Make Someone Happy Today</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/how-to-be-charming">How to be charming</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/the-second-best-way-to-make-your-household-more-secure">The Second-Best Way to Make your Household More Secure</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/take-amazing-party-pictures">Take amazing party pictures</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/giving-is-better-than-blogging-or-is-it">Giving is Better Than Blogging... or IS it?</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Life Hacks emergencies friends Help neighbors Thu, 01 May 2014 09:00:26 +0000 Mikey Rox 1137580 at http://www.wisebread.com 15 Ways to Stay on Budget — Even With Your Spendy Friends http://www.wisebread.com/15-ways-to-stay-on-budget-even-with-your-spendy-friends <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/15-ways-to-stay-on-budget-even-with-your-spendy-friends" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/friends-80375663.jpg" alt="friends" title="friends" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="167" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>We all love spending time with our friends. But if you find yourself dipping deeper into your pockets than you'd like for get togethers, you might wonder how to cope. I, too, am on tight entertainment funds. In fact, now that I'm a full-fledged adult, I thought it would be prudent to put myself back on an allowance to stay in check. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/build-your-first-budget-in-5-easy-steps?ref=seealso">Build Your First Budget in 5 Steps</a>)</p> <p>Thing is, it can feel awkward or even embarrassing when I'm asked to take part in an activity I can't afford or don't want to find room for in my budget. If you find yourself in a similar boat, consider these tips for how to diffuse the situation.</p> <h2>1. Try Honesty</h2> <p>First are foremost, I find it's best to be upfront to avoid uncomfortable situations in the future. If you are close enough with your buddies, they should understand why you want to scrimp and save. Often, you may even discover that they &mdash; too &mdash; would rather find less expensive things to do.</p> <h2>2. Suggest Alternatives</h2> <p>If you don't feel honesty is the best policy, you could also take control by offering up some suggestions within your price range. Some ideas:</p> <ul> <li><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/15-fun-nights-out-for-5-or-less">15 Fun Nights Out for $5 Or Less</a><br /> &nbsp;</li> <li><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/47-cheap-fun-things-to-do-this-weekend">47 Cheap, Fun Things To Do This Weekend</a><br /> &nbsp;</li> <li><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/free-and-cheap-fun-things-to-do-in-your-city">The Ultimate $5 Fun List</a></li> </ul> <p>You truly can have fun on a dime (or for no money at all).</p> <h2>3. Make Yourself Responsible</h2> <p>There's little reason to decline invitations to go shopping or out to other activities that don't involve a cover or ticket charge. Instead, make yourself the responsible party for keeping your dollars in your pocket. Don't bring your credit card, &quot;forget&quot; cash, or just try old fashioned restraint. You can still enjoy the time together without all the swag.</p> <h2>4. Open Your Home</h2> <p>One of the best ways my husband and I have found to save money going out is to invite people into our own home. Instead of going out for a pricey dinner, we ask friends to all bring a dish to share and enjoy a cheap potluck with bonus game night. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/a-dinner-party-for-6-feed-em-for-under-20?ref=seealso">Host a Dinner Party for Under $20</a>)</p> <h2>5. Crunch the Numbers</h2> <p>Many people don't realize how the little things add up to something big. In this case, even going out to lunch three days a week could add up to $30 and a staggering $1,500 over the course of a year. Explain you'd rather pack your brown bag now and take that fun vacation later.</p> <h2>6. Blame Your Budget</h2> <p>Along with being honest comes telling friends you are indeed on a budget (shouldn't we all be?). If an invitation catches you at the wrong time socially or financially, you could always just explain that you've maxed out your entertainment funds for the week or month. By doing so, perhaps you'll start a productive conversation on personal finances and inspire your friend to try your saving ways! (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/should-you-talk-to-friends-about-money?ref=seealso">Should You Talk to Friends About Money?</a>)</p> <h2>7. Share Positivity</h2> <p>You can even go a step beyond bringing up budget to sharing a recent success with paying off credit card bills or other debt through being frugal. Say something like &quot;You know, I can't go this weekend because I've been paying off X bill, and it feels so good to see my balance getting closer to $0!&quot; You might inspire a friend to do the same.</p> <h2>8. Make a Healthy Excuse</h2> <p>Rather than outright lie about another commitment as your excuse to not do something, come up with a healthy reason to skip out. Lies won't work in the long run anyway, and it's easy to get caught in your own game. Consider saying something like &quot;Well, I would love to &mdash; but I just have to get my run in that day. Would you join me?&quot; Or &quot;I've been too sedentary this week, would you like to take a walk instead?&quot;</p> <h2>9. Sell Quality Time</h2> <p>You can also be quite convincing by sharing the benefits of time spent doing nothing at all. Often, going to movies, concerts, loud restaurants, and other costly events mean there's little time to actually connect. Instead, suggest meeting over a warm cup of tea or glass of wine and having a nice, long chat to catch up.</p> <h2>10. Plan Ahead</h2> <p>If you know your pal likes to go to expensive concerts or games, why not get on some forward thinking? Ask your friend if he or she would like to attend one of these events with a date in the future. That way, you could save up your pennies slowly, but avoid that awkward spur-of-the-moment conversation entirely.</p> <h2>11. Set Schedules</h2> <p>For everyday invitations to lunches out, for example, take control by setting a specific day of the week or month to indulge. Remember, you can still treat yourself on occasion and still stay on point for your financial goals. If you have a friend who is routinely asking you to go out and splurge, go back to honesty.</p> <h2>12. Just Say &quot;No&quot;</h2> <p>You don't necessarily have to give an excuse or reason for why you can't do something. A simple, but polite &quot;no&quot; should do well to decline an invitation. If you're pressed for details, you can always just say you're busy (saving money!). (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-ways-to-say-no-to-friends-and-family?ref=seealso">5 Ways to Say &quot;No&quot;</a>)</p> <h2>13. Play the Busy Card</h2> <p>However, if your &quot;busy&quot; ploy is falling flat, write up a to-do list and make it legitimate. The next time you're asked to do something out of your budget, say you're busy. Then go item by item on your list and get productive with your time. Can't go to that five star restaurant? Finish painting your bedroom. That weekend away too extravagant right now? Clean your house from top to bottom.</p> <h2>14. Reevaluate</h2> <p>If you're continually feeling the pressure to keep up with the Joneses, you might alleviate your stress by taking a step back. True friends should truly understand the value of your friendship versus flashy purchases or a fine restaurant bucket list.</p> <h2>15. Reciprocate</h2> <p>On the flip side, if you're in good standing with your budget and find yourself to be the one making all the invitations, be understanding. We all cycle through different periods in our lives and with our money and goals. Before you ask your buddies to do something extravagant, consider if there's a thrifty alternative that isn't going to exclude anyone in your circle.</p> <p><em>How do you tell friends you can't (or won't) spend money?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/ashley-marcin">Ashley Marcin</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/15-ways-to-stay-on-budget-even-with-your-spendy-friends">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-9"> <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/whats-the-right-way-to-save">What&#039;s the Right Way to Save?</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/raise-your-standard-of-living-by-focusing-your-spending">Raise your standard of living by focusing your spending</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/emergency-belt-tightening">Emergency belt-tightening</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-brilliant-tips-from-smart-mom-rich-mom">4 Brilliant Tips From &quot;Smart Mom, Rich Mom&quot;</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/9-dumb-ways-youre-going-to-waste-money-this-summer">9 Dumb Ways You&#039;re Going to Waste Money This Summer</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Frugal Living budgeting friends friends and money frugality Wed, 23 Apr 2014 09:24:48 +0000 Ashley Marcin 1136585 at http://www.wisebread.com 25 Easy Ways to Make Someone Happy Today http://www.wisebread.com/25-easy-ways-to-make-someone-happy-today <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/25-easy-ways-to-make-someone-happy-today" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/family-178637343.jpg" alt="family" title="family" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="141" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>We live in an &quot;all about me&quot; world these days, and it's easy to get caught up in ourselves without any regard for those around us. Let's change that. Do something for somebody else today that makes them happy &mdash; even for a moment. Here are 25 ideas to get you started. In the comments below, add your own ideas on how to bring someone happiness &mdash; however big or small. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/29-scientifically-proven-ways-to-be-happier-this-year?ref=seealso">Scientifically Proven Ways to Be Happier</a>)</p> <h2>1. Send a Thank-You Card</h2> <p>When somebody does something nice for you, it's important to say thanks. Whether it's a passing gesture of politeness or a special gift for a special occasion, let your appreciation be known. Most of us say thank you in the moment, but it matters more when you do it again later, too. Sit down, write a quick note of gratitude, and pop it in the mail. The recipient will know that you're sincere in your thanks and that their gesture or gift was truly appreciated; and they'll inevitably hold you in higher esteem because you went out of your way to let them know how much they mean to you.</p> <h2>2. Bake Your Neighbor Something Sweet</h2> <p>Who doesn't like a big plate of freshly baked cookies or brownies? If you have a neighbor you're particularly fond of &mdash; or even better, one with whom you haven't necessarily gotten along with in the past &mdash; hit the kitchen and whip up a delicious treat. Package them nicely on a plate or in a pastry box and deliver with a kind note and a smile. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/15-unique-holiday-gifts-you-can-bake?ref=seealso">Delicious Gifts You Can Bake</a>)</p> <p><img alt="" src="http://static1.killeraces.com/files/fruganomics/u784/makehap-466981845-ggnaods.jpg" style="width: 605px; height: 303px;" /></p> <h2>3. Make Your Partner Breakfast in Bed</h2> <p>What a surprise it is to have breakfast served in bed &mdash; especially when it's just an ordinary day. The next time you're up before your partner and you have time to crack a few eggs and butter some toast, surprise him or her with a meal that they don't have to move an inch to enjoy.</p> <h2>4. Send Your Mom Flowers</h2> <p>Moms are special people who don't always get the recognition they deserve &mdash; aside from that one day of the year, of course. Outside of Mother's Day, send your mom a small bouquet of flowers that tell her how much you love her and appreciate all the things she's done for you throughout your life. As flowers can be expensive, I try to wait until I receive a deal via e-mail from popular flower-delivery services and pair that with an additional coupon or free shipping code that I've found online.</p> <h2>5. Take the Neighbor's Dog for a Walk</h2> <p>Taking care of a small errand like walking the dog can really help out, and it shows that you care about both your neighbor and the dog. After all, dogs appreciate nice gestures, too. Bring a bowl and a water bottle so they don't get dehydrated, and be sure to pack their favorite ball for playing fetch. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/25-reasons-why-its-good-to-know-your-neighbors?ref=seealso">Why It's Good to Know Your Neighbors</a>)</p> <h2>6. Take Your Assistant to Lunch</h2> <p>Let's be honest &mdash; your assistant does all the work you don't want to do. Mine does, at least. Which is why I take him to lunch once a month to let him know that I appreciate all his hard work. If you have an assistant, allot time in your schedule to take him or her out to eat or order in lunch every now and then. You'll not only be able to express your gratitude for what they do for you, but it'll give you one-on-one time to get to know each other better, resulting in an improved professional and even personal relationship.</p> <h2>7. Call Your Grandmother Just to Say Hi</h2> <p>Before the grandmother to whom I was closest passed away, I would often call her out of the blue &mdash; and she loved it. I genuinely enjoyed talking to my grandmother, too. To make your grandmother smile today, pick up the phone just to say hello. She'll appreciate it, and you will too since all of our time on this planet is limited. By the way, this works for grandfathers as well; let's not forget them.</p> <p><img alt="" src="http://static1.killeraces.com/files/fruganomics/u784/makehap-467086265-ggnoads.jpg" style="width: 605px; height: 303px;" /></p> <h2>8. Invite Your Bestie Over for Pizza and a Movie</h2> <p>You two are best friends for a reason &mdash; you get each other when nobody else does. Let your main man or sister from another mister know they're your number one by planning a movie marathon pizza party where you can kick back, relax, and remember why you're so close in the first place. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-ways-to-have-a-cheaper-evening-hanging-out-with-friends?ref=seealso">10 Ways to Have a Cheaper Evening With Friends</a>)</p> <h2>9. Send Your Boss an Appreciative E-mail</h2> <p>Not all bosses are created equal &mdash; I've had my fair share of jerks in charge of my employment &mdash; but there are bosses out there who genuinely care for their employees. If you're one of the lucky ones to have a boss like this, let them know that you're happy with their performance and guidance by sending a short and professional email saying so.</p> <h2>10. Post Something Uplifting and Funny to Facebook</h2> <p>I love posting funny, sweet, or heartfelt videos to Facebook because it always, without fail, makes somebody on my friends list happy. How do I know? Every single time I post something like that, they respond with how much it made their day. Mission accomplished. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-ways-to-make-facebook-productive?ref=seealso">10 Ways to Make Facebook Productive</a>)</p> <h2>11. Pay for the Toll Fare for the Car Behind You</h2> <p>When I was kid, my dad used to pay the toll for the car behind us on occasion on our way to the beach. This was the 1980s and 1990s, of course, when tolls were much cheaper, but there are still small fare tolls around that you can handle financially on someone else's behalf. Thus, take your cue from my dad and pay for the toll behind you. Who knows &mdash; you might just start a trend like <a href="http://abcnews.go.com/blogs/headlines/2013/12/starbucks-customers-break-1000-in-pay-it-forward-record/">one customer did at a Connecticut Starbucks recently</a>; more than 1,000 continued to pay for the person behind them. Now that's a beautiful day in America. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/25-frugal-ways-to-pay-it-forward?ref=seealso">Frugal Ways to Pay It Forward</a>)</p> <h2>12. Clean the House &mdash; or at Least One Room</h2> <p>Are you the one who makes the most mess around the house while your partner or roommate is always cleaning it up? Muster up the courtesy &mdash; and courage &mdash; to tackle the house (or at least a room) so your default and unpaid &quot;maid&quot; doesn't have to.</p> <h2>13. Shovel Your Neighbor's Snow</h2> <p>Just a few weeks ago my neighbor shoveled snow off the sidewalk at my house. My husband and I recently moved in, and we neglected to buy shovels. I really appreciated his kindness, especially because it meant that we didn't have to brave the elements to pick up shovels of our own. We have, of course, bought shovels since then so we're prepared for next time, and our neighbor received a nice, freshly baked treat as thanks.</p> <h2>14. Listen &mdash; Just Listen</h2> <p>Listening is harder than it sounds (no pun intended). Often we think we're listening, but we're not. Next time somebody wants to be heard, really listen, engage in the conversation, and let the speaker know that you care about what they're saying. Trust me when I tell you that it will make a world of difference, especially if the situation is an argument.</p> <h2>15. Give a Stranger a Compliment</h2> <p>If you like what somebody's wearing or how they've done their hair today, let them know. They obviously took some time and care putting themselves together, and it feels nice to be recognized for it. Remember, too, that they might not get that compliment even from the people to whom they're the closest, which makes a stranger's compliment all the more meaningful.</p> <h2>16. Tip Your Server a Little Extra for Exceptional Service</h2> <p>Did your server do a great job bringing you everything you needed to have an excellent meal out? Show your appreciation by tipping a little extra and add a little note that points out what he or she did right to make your outing a success.</p> <h2>17. Play With Your Niece or Nephew</h2> <p>When your niece or nephew wants to play, play. They won't be young forever &mdash; which means that you'll regret it later if you don't play with them &mdash; and you need to keep your status as favorite auntie or uncle, anyway. Plus, it never hurt anybody to act like a kid again for a bit. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/15-free-ways-to-entertain-kids-for-an-afternoon?ref=seealso">Free Ways to Entertain Kids</a>)</p> <p><img alt="" src="http://static1.killeraces.com/files/fruganomics/u784/makehap-kid-4878289-small-ggnoads.jpg" style="width: 605px; height: 303px;" /></p> <h2>18. Give Somebody Important to You a Hug</h2> <p>One little hug can go a long way. You have no idea what others are going through, and this simple gesture can make all the difference in the world. Hug somebody &mdash; for you and for them.</p> <h2>19. Cuddle Your Partner When They Least Expect It</h2> <p>There are very few things that make me happier than when my husband cuddles up to me without provocation. It's even more appreciated when I wake up in the middle of the night only to realize that he's already cuddling me. Like I mentioned earlier, our time on this planet is limited, so we should make the best of it &mdash; and as far as I'm concerned, cuddling is the best of it.</p> <h2>20. Donate Clothing or Non-Perishable Food to a Shelter</h2> <p>Granted, you won't get to experience the happiness you'll bring to someone by donating food or clothing to a shelter, but rest assured that the recipients will appreciate it. If you don't need it, let someone else have it; it'll make their day. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-local-charities-that-could-use-your-stuff">Local Shelters That Need Your Stuff</a>)</p> <h2>21. Sign Up for a Volunteer Organization</h2> <p>There are many organizations at which you can volunteer, but I personally recommend giving your time to Big Brothers Big Sisters. If you're accepted into the program, you'll bring happiness to your &quot;little&quot; on a regular basis by spending time with them, listening to them, and letting them know that someone &mdash; even someone they least expected &mdash; truly cares about them. If we all did this, the world would be a brilliant place.</p> <h2>22. Help Someone Reach a Goal</h2> <p>Whether it's donating a few bucks to a friend's 5K fundraising campaign or being your buddy's gym partner as he tries to lose weight, helping someone reach a goal will make them happy &mdash; and even happier that it was you that helped them.</p> <h2>23. Tell Your Child That You're Proud of Them</h2> <p>I don't have kids, so I can't get too righteous here. But I do hear a lot of reprimanding and yelling and chastising of children by their parents whenever I'm out. Most of it's probably necessary, but you can't be negative all day long. Step back for a minute and recognize the good things your kid has done and verbally express how proud you are of them. Then follow it with a hug. A hug helps. See above.</p> <h2>24. Acknowledge Your Mail Carrier</h2> <p>Most of us don't see our mail carriers that often, but when we do we should acknowledge them and show our appreciation for the hard work they do. I remember my mom offering our mail carrier a cold glass of water when he or she was delivering the mail in extreme heat during the summer months. That gesture has stayed with me my whole life, and it's something I continue myself to this day. You don't have to do what we do, but rather show you mail carrier your gratitude however you feel is appropriate.</p> <h2>25. Say You're Sorry</h2> <p>Real talk: A simple &quot;I'm sorry&quot; will make many problems go away in an instant. But those words must be accompanied by a genuine attitude of regret &mdash; and a promise of change. If those two things are in place, you'll both walk away happy. For today, at least, but that's all that matters when you're living in the now.</p> <p><em>Do you have other ways to make people happy today? Let me know in the comments below.</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/mikey-rox">Mikey Rox</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/25-easy-ways-to-make-someone-happy-today">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-10"> <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/100-small-things-that-can-bring-you-joy">100 Small Things That Can Bring You Joy</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/11-things-scientists-say-will-boost-your-happiness-today">11 Things Scientists Say Will Boost Your Happiness Today</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/the-things-that-money-just-cant-buy">The things that money just can&#039;t buy</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/flashback-friday-51-easy-ways-to-live-a-happier-life">Flashback Friday: 51 Easy Ways to Live a Happier Life</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/how-to-be-charming">How to be charming</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Life Hacks friendliness friends happiness joy smiles Tue, 11 Feb 2014 10:48:38 +0000 Mikey Rox 1124321 at http://www.wisebread.com 10 Ways to Have a Cheaper Evening Hanging Out With Friends http://www.wisebread.com/10-ways-to-have-a-cheaper-evening-hanging-out-with-friends <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/10-ways-to-have-a-cheaper-evening-hanging-out-with-friends" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/friends-5336095-small.jpg" alt="friends cooking" title="friends cooking" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="141" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>The fact that you don&rsquo;t have a lot of money doesn&rsquo;t mean spending your evenings at home, alone. For some, hanging out with friends is an excuse to blow all their extra cash on drinks and food. But having fun isn&rsquo;t about how much you can spend &mdash; it&rsquo;s about the quality time you share with those close to you. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/20-free-ways-to-show-you-care">Free Ways to Show You Care</a>)</p> <p>If you&rsquo;re looking for cheap fun on the weekends or after work, here are 10 ways to hang out without going broke.</p> <h2>1. Go to a Cheap Movie</h2> <p>If you want to see a movie, but don&rsquo;t want to pay $10 to $15 for a single movie ticket, head to a second-run theater. These ticket prices are far cheaper than normal theaters, averaging $1.50 to $5. You can save more by skipping popcorn and soda. But even if you decide to purchase snacks, what you spend on the entire night may still be cheaper than a single regular ticket.</p> <h2>2. Hit the Bowling Alley</h2> <p>Maybe the movie theater is too quiet, and you need a bit more excitement. Bowling is another fun, cheap way to spend your evening. You&rsquo;ll pay about $2 or $2.50 for the shoe rental and around $4.50 per game. Play two games, eat before you arrive, and purchase no more than two drinks; and you can enjoy the entire night for under $20.</p> <h2>3. Sing Karaoke</h2> <p>It doesn&rsquo;t matter how bad you sing, a night of karaoke creates memories. Go to a local restaurant or other nightspot, split an appetizer with your friends, and prepare to have the time of your life. And if one of your friends has a karaoke machine at his or her house &mdash; even better. For a cheap night, bring your own drink and share the cost of pizza and wings.</p> <h2>4. Lounge at a Sports Bar</h2> <p>Whether it&rsquo;s football, basketball, or any other sporting season, get off the couch and take the fun to a local sports bar. You can watch the game while catching up with friends. To keep costs to a minimum, choose sports bars with evening deals like half off appetizers or alcohol.</p> <h2>5. Watch Seasons of a Television Show</h2> <p>Do you have a subscription to Netflix or HuluPlus? If so, get with some friends, pick a television show that none of you have seen, and watch the entire series beginning with season one. Take turns at each other&rsquo;s houses watching three or four episodes at a time over popcorn, pizza, and drinks. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-alternatives-to-cable-tv-that-will-keep-you-entertained">8 Alternatives to Cable TV</a>)</p> <h2>6. Free Wine Tasting</h2> <p>Search online or check the newspaper for free wine tasting events in your area. This is an entertaining and inexpensive way to sample a variety of wines, and there&rsquo;s usually no obligation to make a wine purchase. Events are normally held at restaurants, wine stores, and wineries. The perfect choice if you&rsquo;re looking for a change of pace &mdash; just make sure there&rsquo;s a designated driver.</p> <h2>7. Trivia Night</h2> <p>Most big cities have a handful of bars and restaurants that host weekly trivia nights. Grab four or five friends, and test your knowledge at some of the most wacky, random questions. The fun typically starts around 8 or 9 p.m., and prizes can range from free appetizers to cash. And since many establishments have food and drink specials on trivia nights, you don&rsquo;t have to worry about breaking your budget on eats.</p> <h2>8. Cook Together</h2> <p>Maybe you&rsquo;re in the mood for a gourmet meal, but you don&rsquo;t have a gourmet bank account. A cheaper evening with friends doesn&rsquo;t always mean pizza and wings. You may not be able to afford a night on the town, but who says you can&rsquo;t prepare a fabulous meal at home? Get with your friends, plan a nice menu, and split the cost of ingredients. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/cooking-for-beginners-10-recipes-for-kitchen-newbies">10 Recipes for Kitchen Newbies</a>)</p> <h2>9. Go for Dessert</h2> <p>Some of the best evenings can be spent simply talking with friends. But don&rsquo;t sit around your living room. If you&rsquo;ve already eaten and want to hit the town for a couple hours, call up your friends and go to a nearby frozen yogurt bar. Pile your bowl with the tastiest toppings, grab an outdoor table, and enjoy a few laughs. If frozen yogurt isn&rsquo;t your thing, split a dessert at a restaurant.</p> <h2>10. Take a Class</h2> <p>Are you ready to try your hand at something new? Spice it up and take a one-time class with friends. Check with your local community center or lifestyle center for upcoming classes. You may stumble upon a variety of pay-as-you-go classes costing as little as $10 per session. Dancing, cooking, fitness, pottery &mdash; take your pick and have fun! (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-classes-that-can-pay-for-themselves">10 Classes That Pay for Themselves</a>)</p> <p><em>How do you hang out with your friends without spending much?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/mikey-rox">Mikey Rox</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-ways-to-have-a-cheaper-evening-hanging-out-with-friends">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-11"> <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/15-fun-nights-out-for-5-or-less">15 Fun Nights Out for $5 or Less</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/18-frugal-and-romantic-dates-at-home">18 Frugal and Romantic Dates at Home</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/how-to-watch-movies-in-the-theater-for-free">How to Watch Movies in the Theater for Free</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/how-to-throw-a-fabulous-and-frugal-dinner-party">How to Throw a Fabulous (and Frugal!) Dinner Party</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/53-fun-nights-out-for-10-or-less">53 Fun Nights Out for $10 or Less</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Entertainment cheap dates entertaining friends Tue, 22 Oct 2013 10:24:04 +0000 Mikey Rox 1041946 at http://www.wisebread.com Being Frugal Without Giving Up Your Social Life http://www.wisebread.com/being-frugal-without-giving-up-your-social-life <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/being-frugal-without-giving-up-your-social-life" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/197975745_a52b045825_z.jpg" alt="outside dinner" title="outside dinner" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="188" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Whenever I write a frugality post, I get comments asking some version of, &quot;That's fine if you're happy being a hermit in your cheap apartment, but what about people who have friends?&quot; (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/not-driving-your-less-frugal-friends-crazy" target="_blank">Not Driving Your Less Frugal Friends Crazy</a>)</p> <p>I think there are three general strategies for dealing with the issues around having a social life while still being frugal.</p> <h3>1. Consider That Extreme Frugality Doesn't Have to Be Total Frugality</h3> <p>Part of the answer is just to go ahead and budget some money for socializing with friends who do stuff that costs money.</p> <p>You won't want to eat out every meal, but you could join them occasionally &mdash; when it fits into your budget. Similarly, you can go to an occasional movie or an occasional concert or an occasional night out drinking. In fact, you could take a once-in-a-lifetime cruise, if it's what you want to do, and if spending your money that way is aligned with your values.</p> <p>The whole point, after all, is to align your spending with your values. Doing things with your friends almost certainly aligns with your values &mdash; at some level of spending. That level of spending may be much lower than what they spend, but it's probably above zero.</p> <h3>2. Consider That Even Friends Who Usually Spend Money Appreciate Variation</h3> <p>Another part is to gradually and subtly educate your friends on the attractions of frugal entertainments.</p> <p>If your friends always meet at a coffee shop, invite them over for coffee instead. If you keep coffee on hand anyway, you can probably make coffee for six or eight friends for no more than you'd spend on just your own drink at a coffee shop. The upshot is that you spend less and all your friends spend zero. (A pleasant zero-cost hour over great coffee is just the sort of thing that can open a friend's eyes about the advantages of choosing frugal alternatives.)</p> <p>Having them over for coffee only makes sense if you're a coffee drinker, of course. If you drink tea, have them over for tea &mdash; again, for the cost of one mug of tea at a tea house you can make tea for a whole crowd of friends. You can even, if your friends socialize by going out drinking, invite them over for cocktails &mdash; more expensive than coffee, but still cheaper than drinks at a bar.</p> <p>There are cheap alternatives for all sorts of otherwise expensive outings &mdash; watch a DVD at home (popcorn is cheap), play board games, go to a free event at the library or the park. (Wise Bread has a big collection of posts of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/free-and-cheap-fun-things-to-do-in-your-city" target="_blank">free and cheap things to do</a> in cities and towns all over the U.S. and here and there in a few other countries as well.)</p> <p>Don't present any of these as &quot;cheap&quot; alternatives that you'd rather do to save money. Instead, present them as &quot;more interesting&quot; alternatives.</p> <p>Better yet, present them as &quot;superior&quot; alternatives. If you're a serious coffee drinker who buys locally roasted coffee and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/french-press-coffee">brews it in a French press</a>, there's every reason to expect that your coffee is <em>better</em> than they'd get at the coffee shop. Ditto for tea. If you keep up with the local music scene, you can identify the bands that are national quality just before they get too famous to do free concerts in the park. A documentary shown at the library with the filmmaker in attendance to lead a discussion after may be better than the third remake of some action-adventure blockbuster.</p> <h3>3. Consider That It's Also Good to Make New Friends</h3> <p>Finally, remember that your stock of friends isn't fixed.</p> <p>You don't have to drop your old friends &mdash; you may have <em>great</em> friends whose <em>only flaw</em> is that they don't know how to have fun without spending money. Just make some new ones who appreciate getting together for the company more than for spending money.</p> <p>As you make new friends, consider introducing them to your old friends. The ones who fit in and hit it off with your old friends will be in a great position to suggest new activities for the new, expanded group &mdash; activities suggested because they'll be fun, that just happen to be frugal. It turns strategy #3 into a variation on strategy #2.</p> <p>Being frugal is not about being a hermit, just like having friends is not about spending money.</p> <p><em>How are you socializing frugally?</em>&nbsp;</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/philip-brewer">Philip Brewer</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/being-frugal-without-giving-up-your-social-life">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-12"> <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/10-ways-to-have-a-cheaper-evening-hanging-out-with-friends">10 Ways to Have a Cheaper Evening Hanging Out With Friends</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/15-ways-to-stay-on-budget-even-with-your-spendy-friends">15 Ways to Stay on Budget — Even With Your Spendy Friends</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/find-love-with-these-fun-and-cheap-first-date-ideas">Find Love With These Fun and Cheap First Date Ideas</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/6-summer-party-ideas-that-wont-break-the-bank">6 Summer Party Ideas That Won&#039;t Break the Bank</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/11-ways-freelancers-and-telecommuters-can-make-friends-and-network">11 Ways Freelancers and Telecommuters Can Make Friends and Network</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Frugal Living affordable entertaining cheap dates friends Mon, 11 Mar 2013 11:36:31 +0000 Philip Brewer 968270 at http://www.wisebread.com A Step-by-Step Guide for When Friends Ask for Help Being Frugal http://www.wisebread.com/a-step-by-step-guide-for-when-friends-ask-for-help-being-frugal <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/a-step-by-step-guide-for-when-friends-ask-for-help-being-frugal" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/4636580267_78577a84bd_z_0.jpg" alt="friends talking" title="friends talking" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>I don&rsquo;t consider myself a personal-finance expert, but as a writer for a variety of personal finance blogs, my friends think I&rsquo;m a guru of all things money.</p> <p>Because I&rsquo;ve made a mini-career out of doling out money-saving advice, I field lots of queries on how people can cut back on this thing or that. I can offer solutions, sure, but the one concept that many people in need of help don&rsquo;t understand is that being frugal is a lifestyle &mdash; and one that takes a considerable amount of dedication if you want to reap the positive results.</p> <p>So when someone asks my help for being frugal, I start at the beginning &mdash; with their budget &mdash; and work my way through the aspects of their life that are costing them the most. From how much they&rsquo;re spending on eating out to shopping smarter to replacing disposable products with reusable ones, here are my basic rules for being frugal. Take note. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/should-you-lend-to-friends-and-family">Should You Lend to Friends and Family?</a>)</p> <h3>1. Compare Your Income Against Your Expenses</h3> <p>The first step you need to take to make changes to your spending habits is identifying how much you make, how much you spend, which parts of your life cost the most, and how you can cut back. I can almost guarantee that rent and food &mdash; two necessities &mdash; consume a major portion of your paycheck. So many people think there&rsquo;s nothing they can do about that, but they&rsquo;re wrong (and perhaps lazy). If you&rsquo;re struggling to afford rent, you have a few choices, which include <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-benefits-of-having-a-roommate-besides-saving-on-rent"> bringing in a roommate</a> to offset the cost if you have the extra room or moving to a more affordable home.</p> <p>Then there&rsquo;s food. It always baffles me that the people who complain the most about never having any money are always the ones eating out and ordering in. If you want to save more money, go to the grocery store (with a list; I&rsquo;ll get to that important piece of the frugal pie in a minute) and buy fresh foods that you can make at home. You&rsquo;ll save much more money per meal that you will when you&rsquo;re eating food that you didn&rsquo;t make &mdash; especially because you don&rsquo;t have to tip yourself.</p> <h3>2. Shop With Lists</h3> <p>Whether you&rsquo;re going to the supermarket to buy groceries or to Target to pick up cleaning supplies, arm yourself with a list, and stick to it. Whenever I&rsquo;ve entered any store without a list, I go overboard &mdash; never fails. What was meant to be a $20 trip to Target turns into a $100 trip to Target because I don&rsquo;t have that piece of paper to help keep me in line. It may seem like a silly idea to consider that a Post-it note helps me save money, but not if you believe that willpower is the shaky foundation on which bankruptcy is built. I have no willpower when I go into stores, which is why I&rsquo;ve stopped shopping inside supermarkets all together. I started shopping online &mdash; with my list &mdash; so I&rsquo;m not tempted in the slightest to get sucked in to any of my favorite brands&rsquo; shiny, tasty marketing strategies.</p> <h3>3. Cut Out All Unnecessary Expenses Immediately</h3> <p>Not using that pricey gym membership as much as you&rsquo;d like? Get rid of it. I was paying nearly $90 a month for a gym membership that I used maybe once a month until I finally cut the cord. Now I buy monthly deals to local gyms that I find on daily deal sites like Groupon and Living Social for less than $40 a month, and many of them include extras like a free personal-training session or premium fitness class. Go through the rest of your subscriptions and membership and figure out which ones you can live without. If you don&rsquo;t watch <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-alternatives-to-cable-tv-that-will-keep-you-entertained">cable TV</a> on the actual TV anymore, kill it. If you can use free Wi-Fi somewhere nearby and can live without constant access inside your home, get rid of that, too. These are major changes, for sure, but you&rsquo;ll see major savings right away.</p> <h3>4. Replace Your Disposable Items With Reusable Items</h3> <p>I know a lot of people on tight budgets who buy disposable products like they&rsquo;re going out of style. Several guys in my circle, for instance, choose to buy paper plates and plastic utensils to avoid washing dishes. That laziness costs a lot of money month to month (and, not to mention, ruins the environment). Granted, many of us are not dining that way, but very few of us can actually claim that we don&rsquo;t use paper towels on a regular basis. HUGE waste of money there too; you&rsquo;re literally throwing it away. Instead, buy reusable, washable dishtowels to clean up spills and messes. When you&rsquo;re done, toss them in the washer with the rest of the soiled linens and prepare them for round two.</p> <h3>5. Change Your Entertainment Habits</h3> <p>If you worried about not having enough money, then you shouldn&rsquo;t be spending it with abandon. Unfortunately, sacrifices must be made. You&rsquo;ll need to spend less time at the corner bar, <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-watch-movies-in-the-theater-for-free">local movie theater</a>, nearby arcade, golf course, shooting range, pottery class &mdash; the list goes on and on. Whatever you&rsquo;re into must be scaled back. That&rsquo;s not to say that you can&rsquo;t have any fun at all, but it&rsquo;s reasonable expectation that you can&rsquo;t live like royalty if you don&rsquo;t have a royal&rsquo;s bank account. With all that free time on your hands, consider filling those voids with a side gig (that could actually be fun, by the way) to help you earn more money instead of spending it.</p> <p>No one wants to admit they&rsquo;re lazy, but in my experience it&rsquo;s the main reason why the people I know who want to save money but somehow can&rsquo;t, don&rsquo;t. Change is never easy &mdash; and saving money is harder than that &mdash; but if you&rsquo;re serious about turning your financial situation from a negative to a positive, you&rsquo;ll have to spend more time thinking about how to save money and implementing those strategies instead of taking the easy way out, handing over the cash, and inevitably complaining about it later.</p> <p><em>Penny for your thoughts </em><em>&mdash; I&rsquo;d love to hear what you think about this advice on how to help someone be frugal. Let &rsquo;er rip in the comments below. </em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/mikey-rox">Mikey Rox</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/a-step-by-step-guide-for-when-friends-ask-for-help-being-frugal">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-13"> <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/how-to-keep-peer-pressure-from-destroying-your-finances">How to Keep Peer Pressure From Destroying Your 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/10-hidden-costs-that-hurt-your-wallet">10 Hidden Costs That Hurt Your Wallet</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/11-ways-freelancers-and-telecommuters-can-make-friends-and-network">11 Ways Freelancers and Telecommuters Can Make Friends and Network</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/how-to-travel-full-time-for-17000-a-year-or-less">How to Travel Full-Time for $17,000 a Year (or Less!)</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/11-simple-rules-of-excellent-houseguest-etiquette">11 Simple Rules of Excellent Houseguest Etiquette</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Budgeting Lifestyle beginning frugality friends talking money with friends Wed, 12 Sep 2012 10:24:41 +0000 Mikey Rox 954441 at http://www.wisebread.com