Lifestyle https://www.wisebread.com/taxonomy/term/4806/0 en-US 4 Myths About Economic Behavior We Don't Believe Anymore https://www.wisebread.com/4-myths-about-economic-behavior-we-dont-believe-anymore <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/4-myths-about-economic-behavior-we-dont-believe-anymore" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="https://wisebread-killeracesmedia.netdna-ssl.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/little_girl_with_marshmallow_on_pink_background.jpg" alt="Little girl with marshmallow on pink background" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>I have felt vaguely guilty about a nonexistent marshmallow for several years now.</p> <p>This guilt was triggered by the famous Stanford marshmallow experiment, in which psychologist Walter Mischel gave preschool aged children a marshmallow (or other treat) and told them they could either eat the single marshmallow now, or hold off for 15 minutes and get a second one. Mischel and his researchers revisited the same test subjects as they grew up, and found that those kids who could wait for the second marshmallow became successful adolescents and adults. Mischel concluded that the kids who waited were wired for delayed gratification.</p> <p>So why should this study make me feel vaguely guilty? Because I've met me, and I know there was no way four-year-old Emily would have been able to hold off on eating a delicious marshmallow sitting right in front of her. (Nearly 40-year-old Emily would still struggle with this exercise, and I have the empty Jet-Puffed bags to prove it.)</p> <p>Despite the fact that I have shown the ability to delay gratification when it comes to finances, education, career goals, purchases, vacations, and other important decisions, I believed that there was some aspect of my brain wiring that was suboptimal as compared to those who could wait for a sweet treat.</p> <p>Except Mischel's experiment may not have proved what he thought it did. A recent study was unable to replicate his results &mdash; and Mischel's experiment is not the only one with a replication problem. It turns out, a number of the most famous behavioral science studies out there are based on somewhat shaky research. Many of the replication attempts are finding that the results from the original studies are either inconclusive, lacking important nuance, or just plain wrong. This is why it's likely we'll see more big ideas from behavioral psychologists getting challenged in the coming years.</p> <p>So before you rethink your day-to-day habits, consider how these famous studies have been exposed as more myth than truth.</p> <h2>The marshmallow experiment</h2> <p>Mischel's original experiment from the late 1960s looked at too small a sample of children &mdash; 90 kids total &mdash; and all were from the preschool on Stanford's campus. The new study, by NYU's Tyler Watts and UC Irvine's Greg Duncan and Hoanan Quan, expanded the number of test subjects to 900 and made sure to include children more representative of the general population in terms of race, ethnicity, and parents' education level.</p> <p>What the new researchers found was that children's ability to wait correlated most strongly with social and economic factors. A kid from a poorer family may not be able to count on food being there from one day to the next, so she has learned to take what she can when it's available &mdash; while a kid from a more affluent family may have learned that delaying gratification can be worth it.</p> <p>When the researchers controlled for family income, they found that rich kids who ate the marshmallow right away did no worse in standardized tests as adolescents compared to their waiting counterparts, and poorer kids who waited did no better than those who dug in.</p> <p>But the kids from higher-income families all tended to have better ability to delay gratification as adults &mdash; which means our &quot;willpower&quot; is less wired into our brains and more a function of how we were raised.</p> <h2>Ego depletion</h2> <p>Speaking of willpower, one of the most influential studies about willpower was conducted two decades ago by Roy Baumeister and Dianne Tice. The study set out a plate of freshly-baked chocolate chip cookies and bowl of radishes. As participants filed in, they were instructed to take either a cookie or a radish. The test subjects were then given an impossible puzzle to solve. The participants who were allowed to snack on cookies spent twice as long trying to solve the puzzle before giving up as compared to those who had to eat radishes while smelling and staring at the plate of cookies.</p> <p>Baumeister and Tice described the phenomenon as &quot;ego depletion.&quot; They believed that forcing yourself to not eat the cookies right in front of you tuckered out your willpower, leaving you less mental energy to keep working on a frustrating puzzle. If willpower is a finite resource, you can use it up by making little choices before facing a big one.</p> <p>But other researchers have been unable to replicate the original study, and meta-analysis (that is, analyzing all of the studies about this phenomenon) have also found little evidence of ego depletion.</p> <p>What it comes down to is that our ability to exert willpower can depend heavily on our motivations, beliefs, and mindset. It's not as simple as the original study made it sound &mdash; that willpower is like a muscle and can be exhausted like one.</p> <h2>Power poses</h2> <p>You may have seen the popular TED talk on power poses, presented by researcher Amy Cuddy. Cuddy presents some pretty compelling arguments about the power of body language to affect our feelings of confidence and power. She and her research colleagues found that standing in a Superman pose or other powerful pose for two minutes increased levels of testosterone, decreased cortisol (the stress hormone), and increased levels of risk-taking behavior.</p> <p>This was great news for anyone feeling nervous about a speech, a job interview, or talking to that cute guy in accounting. Just find a private spot to pretend to be Superman for a couple of minutes, and you can enter into your nerve-wracking encounter with increased confidence, thanks to your hormones.</p> <p>Except that a follow-up study which included four times the number of participants as the original has determined that there is no such hormonal effect. Even Cuddy now describes herself as being &quot;agnostic&quot; on the hormonal effects, although she does claim that assuming such poses does help people to feel more powerful.</p> <p>Cuddy may be correct, although not for replicable, scientific reasons. Because of the placebo effect &mdash; the cognitive bias that leads people to believe something will help them because they expect it to &mdash; and the huge popularity of the idea of power poses, many who try them will find they feel more powerful after striking a pose. (See also: <a href="https://www.wisebread.com/5-mental-biases-that-are-keeping-you-poor?ref=seealso" target="_blank">5 Mental Biases That Are Keeping You Poor</a>)</p> <h2>Priming</h2> <p>Nobel Prize-winning economist Daniel Kahneman wrote about priming in his book <em>Thinking, Fast and Slow</em>. Priming is the theory that subtle cues in an environment can affect an individual's behavior.</p> <p>Various studies on priming found that participants would walk more slowly after hearing and using words associated with aging (like Florida and bingo); that people were more honest when there was a representation of eyes nearby when they had a choice to steal or cheat; that holding a warm drink while speaking with someone made people feel more warmly toward the conversational companion; and that seeing money will make people behave more selfishly.</p> <p>However, follow-up studies have not been able to reproduce these results, suggesting that our behaviors are not nearly as impressionable as the original studies made us believe. This is good news, since it makes it clearer that human behavior is not captive to one's environment. We are more in control of our behavior and reactions than these studies suggested.</p> <h2>Don't believe everything that you read</h2> <p>Behavioral science is a fascinating field that is truly helping us to better understand why we make the irrational decisions we do. But it is important to remember that the researchers in this field are human, as are the journalists who report on their studies. There are bound to be imperfect studies, mistakes, and even frauds that are touted as the next great truth about financial and psychological behavior. Don't let those &quot;truths&quot; keep you from following what works for you. Especially if what works for you is eating the marshmallow right away.</p> <h2 style="text-align: center;">Like this article? Pin it!</h2> <div align="center"><a data-pin-do="buttonPin" data-pin-count="above" data-pin-tall="true" href="https://www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2F4-myths-about-economic-behavior-we-dont-believe-anymore&amp;media=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2F4%2520Myths%2520About%2520Economic%2520Behavior%2520We%2520Don%2527t%2520Believe%2520Anymore.jpg&amp;description=4%20Myths%20About%20Economic%20Behavior%20We%20Don't%20Believe%20Anymore"></a></p> <script async defer src="//assets.pinterest.com/js/pinit.js"></script></div> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="https://wisebread-killeracesmedia.netdna-ssl.com/files/fruganomics/u5180/4%20Myths%20About%20Economic%20Behavior%20We%20Don%27t%20Believe%20Anymore.jpg" alt="4 Myths About Economic Behavior We Don't Believe Anymore" width="250" height="374" /></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="https://www.wisebread.com/emily-guy-birken">Emily Guy Birken</a> of <a href="https://www.wisebread.com/4-myths-about-economic-behavior-we-dont-believe-anymore">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="https://www.wisebread.com/4-ways-science-says-money-affects-your-mind">4 Ways Science Says Money Affects Your Mind</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="https://www.wisebread.com/what-happens-when-were-not-logical-with-money">What Happens When We&#039;re Not Logical With Money</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="https://www.wisebread.com/4-reasons-to-cut-yourself-some-slack-following-a-financial-setback">4 Reasons to Cut Yourself Some Slack Following a Financial Setback</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="https://www.wisebread.com/8-self-destructive-habits-that-keep-you-in-debt">8 Self-Destructive Habits That Keep You in Debt</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="https://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 Lifestyle behaviors delayed gratification disproving ego experiments false marshmallow experiment power poses priming psychology studies Tue, 31 Jul 2018 08:00:10 +0000 Emily Guy Birken 2154557 at https://www.wisebread.com 8 Things to Carry That Could Help Someone in an Emergency https://www.wisebread.com/8-things-to-carry-that-could-help-someone-in-an-emergency <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/8-things-to-carry-that-could-help-someone-in-an-emergency" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="https://wisebread-killeracesmedia.netdna-ssl.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/smiling_healthy_traveller_woman_showing_first_aid_kit.jpg" alt="Smiling healthy traveler woman showing first-aid kit" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>When I was 13 years old and attending a friend's Bat Mitzvah, my friends and I were trying to request the song &quot;Jack and Diane&quot; by John Cougar Mellencamp, but the DJ informed us that he would only accept written requests. (I suspect he just didn't want to play the song.) None of us had a pen, so we found ourselves trying to spell out the interminable number of letters in &quot;Mellencamp&quot; with cheese dip on a cocktail napkin. In that moment, I made the lifelong resolution to become the sort of person who always has a pen on me.</p> <p>While hearing a favorite song at a party could hardly be considered an emergency, this frustrating experience began my quest to always have the tool I might need in jam. And like the pen I always carry, the following eight items don't take up a great deal of room, and they just might help someone out in a crisis.</p> <h2>1. Handkerchief</h2> <p>There are few small items that are as useful and versatile as the <a href="https://amzn.to/2tHujQQ" target="_blank">handkerchief</a>. While their primary purpose is for nose-blowing, brow-mopping, and tear-catching, hankies can be used for cleaning, as a makeshift bandage or tourniquet, a potholder, a method of keeping cool when soaked in cold water and applied to the skin, or even for self-defense if you tie a handful of loose change into it. Not even a jumbo-pack of travel tissues can claim such levels of versatility.</p> <h2>2. First aid kit</h2> <p>It's easy to find (or make) a miniature first aid kit to keep in your purse or car. Such a kit should include: bandages, antiseptic, <a href="https://amzn.to/2KmrSKM" target="_blank">antibiotic ointment</a>, and some painkillers. For those who don't carry a purse, it's entirely possible to create a nearly flat first aid kit composed of bandages and <a href="https://amzn.to/2K8Tjvm" target="_blank">travel-size packets of antiseptic wipes</a>, ointment, and pain medication. You never know when someone might need some immediate and minor medical attention. (See also: <a href="https://www.wisebread.com/6-must-haves-for-your-travel-first-aid-kit?ref=seealso" target="_blank">6 Must-Haves for Your Travel First Aid Kit</a>)</p> <h2>3. Multi-tool</h2> <p>Whether you need to slice open a package, remove a splinter, or cut up an apple, having a <a href="https://amzn.to/2N15ic9" target="_blank">Swiss Army knife or multi-tool</a> on hand can really make your day more convenient. However, a pocket knife is also a great tool to have on hand in case of a serious emergency. For instance, seat belts can often get stuck after an accident, potentially trapping a person in a car. Having a knife with you can ensure that you and anyone in your car can escape the vehicle after a wreck.</p> <p>Similarly, the butt end of a pocket knife can be used as a window punch in a vehicular emergency. If your car has electric windows and becomes submerged in water, being able to punch out the windows could be a life-or-death concern.</p> <h2>4. Reusable water bottle</h2> <p>It's smart to always have a source of water with you in case of emergency. The most obvious emergency you might encounter is thirst or heat stroke. However, a water bottle can also offer the ability to clean a wound, sterilize equipment (if you're able to boil the water), or clean off the dirt-encrusted windows in the house you are holed up in during the zombie apocalypse so that you can see what's coming before it arrives.</p> <p>While you can buy disposable bottles of water, investing in a <a href="https://amzn.to/2ItYn7X" target="_blank">reusable water bottle</a> that you always keep with you is a more environmental option. (See also: <a href="https://www.wisebread.com/5-low-cost-travel-items-that-can-save-you-big-on-your-next-trip?ref=seealso" target="_blank">5 Low-Cost Travel Items That Can Save You Big On Your Next Trip</a>)</p> <h2>5. Feminine hygiene products</h2> <p>Aunt Flo is not always predictable, so it's a good idea to keep some pads or tampons on hand in case she decides to visit at the most inconvenient of times.</p> <p>And before men (and others who do not menstruate) think that they are exempt from carrying this particular emergency item, there are two reasons why you should do so:</p> <ul> <li> <p><strong>Wound care:</strong> Tampons (and pads) are made of sterile and absorbent cotton, which means they are ideal for dealing with any kind of puncture wound and can be unraveled to use as a dressing for a burn or graze.</p> </li> <li> <p><strong>Help a lady out:</strong> You know someone who menstruates and who might be caught in an awkward situation. Save her day and offer her a tampon or pad in a pinch.</p> </li> </ul> <h2>6. Safety pins</h2> <p>Having safety pins available means you can keep a shirt closed if you pop a button, rig a closure for a bag with a broken zipper, or even provide a temporary fix for a necklace with a broken clasp.</p> <p>Safety pins have <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/12-smart-uses-for-safety-pins?ref=internal" target="_blank">a number of other important uses</a>, from keeping hotel room curtains fully closed to securing keys in your pocket (if you're about to ride roller coasters or worry about pickpockets), to eliminating static cling. So in the event of pretty much anything out of the ordinary, a safety pin can fix the problem.</p> <h2>7. Flashlight</h2> <p>While nearly everyone is carrying a portable light source in the form of a smartphone these days, it's still a good idea to have a dedicated flashlight available. For one thing, what happens if it's your phone that you need to search for under a car at night?</p> <p>You can find small, lightweight <a href="https://amzn.to/2tG5Co6" target="_blank">LED flashlights</a> that take up very little room but offer a great deal of illumination. Simply keep one in your car or attached to your keys.</p> <h2>8. Lighter</h2> <p>Gone are the days when everyone needed a lighter for cigarettes, and letting the cover band know just how much they are enjoying &quot;Free Bird.&quot; However, a lighter is still a useful tool to carry with you at all times. If you are in an emergency, having a lighter means you can more easily sterilize needles, light candles and torches, and of course, start a fire for warmth and to cook food.</p> <p>In addition, a <a href="https://amzn.to/2IrH9YY" target="_blank">lighter</a> is very helpful for doing things like fixing a frayed shoelace and lighting birthday candles. While neither of those might constitute an emergency, being able to provide the necessary spark will certainly make you a hero that day.</p> <h2>What you carry every day can make a difference</h2> <p>In general, you probably won't need most of the items on this list on a day-to-day basis. But you never know when you'll have to deal with a power outage, a medical emergency, a wardrobe malfunction, or a reluctant DJ &mdash; and when you do, you'll be glad you have the necessary tool to deal with the problem.</p> <h2 style="text-align: center;">Like this article? Pin it!</h2> <div align="center"><a data-pin-do="buttonPin" data-pin-count="above" data-pin-tall="true" href="https://www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2F8-things-to-carry-that-could-help-someone-in-an-emergency&amp;media=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2F8%2520Things%2520to%2520Carry%2520That%2520Could%2520Help%2520Someone%2520in%2520an%2520Emergency.jpg&amp;description=8%20Things%20to%20Carry%20That%20Could%20Help%20Someone%20in%20an%20Emergency"></a></p> <script async defer src="//assets.pinterest.com/js/pinit.js"></script></div> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="https://wisebread-killeracesmedia.netdna-ssl.com/files/fruganomics/u5180/8%20Things%20to%20Carry%20That%20Could%20Help%20Someone%20in%20an%20Emergency.jpg" alt="8 Things to Carry That Could Help Someone in an Emergency" width="250" height="374" /></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="https://www.wisebread.com/emily-guy-birken">Emily Guy Birken</a> of <a href="https://www.wisebread.com/8-things-to-carry-that-could-help-someone-in-an-emergency">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="https://www.wisebread.com/micro-prepping-how-to-prepare-for-small-disasters">Micro-Prepping: How to Prepare for Small Disasters</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="https://www.wisebread.com/47-simple-ways-to-waste-money">47 Simple Ways To Waste Money</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="https://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-luxury-pens">The 5 Best Luxury Pens</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="https://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-resistance-bands">The 5 Best Resistance Bands</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="https://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-exercise-mats">The 5 Best Exercise Mats</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Lifestyle Shopping bandages emergency items first aid kit handkerchief helping hand in a jam random act of kindness safety pins Fri, 29 Jun 2018 08:30:09 +0000 Emily Guy Birken 2153113 at https://www.wisebread.com 6 Fun Summer Camps for Adults https://www.wisebread.com/6-fun-summer-camps-for-adults <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/6-fun-summer-camps-for-adults" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="https://wisebread-killeracesmedia.netdna-ssl.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/friends_during_a_summer_day.jpg" alt="Friends during a summer day" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Craving a swig of that sticky-sweet bug juice? Itching to relive childhood memories hiking, biking, and creating arts and crafts? Whether you're a summer camp veteran from back in the day or making up for lost time as an adult, check out these fun ways to act like a kid again at a grown-up summer camp. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-affordable-kid-free-vacation-ideas?ref=seealso" target="_blank">6 Affordable Kid-Free Vacation Ideas</a>)</p> <h2>1. Club Getaway</h2> <p>I was a camp counselor on and off for 10 years, and I've always been a bit envious of the kids who were able to spend their summers sleeping in cabins, making friends, and receiving care packages from family members. That's something I never got to do as a kid. So when I learned about <a href="https://www.clubgetaway.com/camp-for-adults/dates-rates/club-getaway-labor-day-weekend-2018/" target="_blank">Club Getaway</a>, located in the beautiful Berkshire Mountains of Kent, Connecticut, I had to book a stay. I've been back nearly every year since 2009, because it's <em>that</em> much fun.</p> <p>For adults-only weekends, Friday evening kicks off with a welcome party with drinks and appetizers and a DJ, followed by a full dinner with &mdash; brace yourselves &mdash; unlimited wine included in the package. In fact, every dinner at Club Getaway features unlimited wine. (I'm not saying I go just for that, but I might go just for that.) After dinner on arrival night, there's a party with plenty of dancing and a cash bar, or you can hang around camp doing your own thing.</p> <p>After an amazing buffet breakfast the next morning &mdash; the food at Getaway is legit, folks &mdash; you can spend the whole day participating in traditional camp activities like volleyball, rock climbing, and canoeing. Or you can try a few activities that are new to you, including learning how to fly trapeze, water skiing, or visiting a nearby winery. There's a whole list of other activities available, too. In the afternoons, there are cookouts and games plus open lake time featuring water inflatables, followed by themed dinners, live music, and bonfires.</p> <p>There are plenty of weekends from which to choose if you want a specific experience, like young professionals, sports and adventure, LGBT, Gen X, and holiday weekends, the latter of which are usually three days (sometimes four) instead of regular Friday to Sunday sessions.</p> <p>Cost with taxes run about $500 per regular weekend and about $575-$600 for extended weekends, all of which are all-inclusive except for alcoholic beverages outside of the wine they include with each meal (though the camp does offer an all-inclusive alcohol package add-on). You can save by booking early &mdash; Club Getaway offers early bird discounts in January via email, and you can knock a few bucks off as a returning guest and by referring friends.</p> <p>While I'm not a spokesperson for the camp, I personally don't think there's a better value out there for a weekend away while relaxing, having fun, and making new memories. Plus, if you were to add up meals, two or three nights in a hotel, and fun outdoor activities, you could easily spend more than $500, so you'll likely save some cash by enjoying all that Club Getaway has to offer.</p> <h2>2. Camp No Counselors</h2> <p>Because I've been to Club Getaway so many times, I've often thought about switching up my summer camp routine, and at the top of my list is <a href="https://www.campnocounselors.com" target="_blank">Camp No Counselors</a>, which has locations all over the U.S., including Boston, Chicago, New York, Los Angeles, and a couple in Canada. While CNC offers many of the same activities as Club Getaway, the biggest difference is the open bar that's included with your reservation, starting with mimosas and bloody Marys at breakfast. When you're not stuffing your face with chef-prepared food like baby back ribs, skirt steak, grilled chicken, and fish tacos, you can explore your adventure options, like sailing, wakeboarding, ropes courses, and paddle boarding, among dozens of other offerings.</p> <p>But let's get back to the booze. Beer and wine is available at lunch, and from happy hour through the night, and there's a full-service open bar. With your drink in hand, you can dress up for a costume party, enjoy a live show, and dance into the wee hours with world-class DJs. Dates for camps vary from city to city, as they're not held every weekend in every outpost &mdash; with September offering the most opportunities to attend. Most weekends, which usually run from Thursdays to Sundays, start at $575 and $650. CNC also offers three- and six-month payment plans if you can't pay the full price at the time of booking.</p> <h2>3. Soul Camp</h2> <p>Health and wellness enthusiasts will love <a href="https://soul.camp" target="_blank">Soul Camp</a>, which offers three-day sessions in New York and California, complete with communal or private cabins, wellness education, pool parties, and lake and river activities.</p> <p>At Soul Camp, you can participate in intensive and in-depth yoga training and other healing experiences, including astrology, tarot, life and health coaching, and meditation. You'll also get the change to explore during excursions to Kings Canyon National Park and Pine Flat Lake in California and the Adirondack Mountains in New York. Meal times serve &quot;healthified camp food,&quot; and traditional camp activities like dance parties and bonfires also are included.</p> <p>Prices are a little steeper here &mdash; starting at $899 for the New York location before April 1 &mdash; but they sometimes offer a $200 limited-time discount, and monthly payment plans are available. There's also early-bird pricing that runs continuously throughout the spring and summer, which at its peak, saves up to $1,000 on a weekend.</p> <h2>4. Camp Bonfire</h2> <p>There's only one weekend scheduled for <a href="http://campbonfire.com/" target="_blank">Camp Bonfire</a> &mdash; this year it was held in mid-June at Lake Owego in the Poconos &mdash; but I wanted to include it because it's unlike any other adult camps out there.</p> <p>The regular fee for this camp, which includes all the traditional and nontraditional activities (like Quidditch, terrarium making, and &quot;lemon jousting&quot;), plus six meals from Friday evening to Sunday lunch (including drinks and lots of snacks throughout the weekend), is $475. If you've got a little extra cash to spare, you can choose a Benefactor Registration at $550, which offsets the cost of camp for a would-be camper who can't afford the $475; and for those folks, there's a Campership Registration, which lowers the cost of the weekend to $400. If you're rolling in dough, you can opt for the Super Benefactor Registration at $950, which covers the full cost of camp for another, lower-income camper.</p> <p>Neat concept, I think, and an easy way to commit an act of kindness. Something to consider for next year. Plus, a portion of every sale goes to Philly-based Camp Sojourner, which &quot;helps girls become leaders who take charge of their own lives and act as agents of positive change in their communities.&quot;</p> <h2>5. Zombie Survival Camp</h2> <p>If you're worried about the impending zombie apocalypse (because it's definitely coming!), <a href="http://www.zombiesurvivalcamp.com/" target="_blank">Zombie Survival Camp</a> is right up your alley. Located in the New Jersey Pine Barrens, this day or weekend camp provides intimate, one-on-one expert instruction on how to navigate a zombie invasion, including tactical skills taught on a 60-acre facility that includes a rustic farmhouse, outbuildings, and a shooting range. Ages 15 and older can attend day camps (24 participants total), while full weekends are for folks age 21 and older (15 participants total). You'll learn Zombitsu, a hand-to-hand fighting style developed by ZSC trainers; first-aid techniques; knife throwing and crossbow skills; how to build a bug-out band, and more.</p> <p>Weekends are all-inclusive with lodging, meals, and activities, plus booze, games, and bonfires in the evenings. Day camp is $179 per person while weekends are $450, both payable in two installments. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-affordable-vacations-to-please-every-age-group?ref=seealso" target="_blank">5 Affordable Vacations to Please Every Age Group</a>)</p> <h2>6. Space Camp</h2> <p>Didn't grow up to be an astronaut? Don't sweat it. <a href="https://www.spacecamp.com/space/adult" target="_blank">Adult Space Academy</a>, at the U.S. Space and Rocket Center in Huntsville, Alabama, welcomes people age 18 and older to spend a few days as an astronaut as you train on their Multi-Axis Trainer, build and launch your own rocket, complete team-building exercises on a ropes course, design a protective heat shield, and perform an extended-duration simulated mission. Three-day sessions cost $549 and include meals served in the Space Camp Crew Galley, and lodging is in their Habitat facilities.</p> <h2 style="text-align: center;">Like this article? Pin it!</h2> <div align="center"><a data-pin-do="buttonPin" data-pin-count="above" data-pin-tall="true" href="https://www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2F6-fun-summer-camps-for-adults&amp;media=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2F6%2520Fun%2520Summer%2520Camps%2520for%2520Adults.jpg&amp;description=6%20Fun%20Summer%20Camps%20for%20Adults"></a></p> <script async defer src="//assets.pinterest.com/js/pinit.js"></script></div> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="https://wisebread-killeracesmedia.netdna-ssl.com/files/fruganomics/u5180/6%20Fun%20Summer%20Camps%20for%20Adults.jpg" alt="6 Fun Summer Camps for Adults" width="250" height="374" /></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="https://www.wisebread.com/mikey-rox">Mikey Rox</a> of <a href="https://www.wisebread.com/6-fun-summer-camps-for-adults">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="https://www.wisebread.com/surefire-ways-to-save-on-summer-camp-costs">Surefire Ways to Save on Summer Camp Costs</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="https://www.wisebread.com/8-things-you-can-do-in-denver-that-you-cant-do-anywhere-else">8 Things You Can Do in Denver That You Can&#039;t Do Anywhere Else</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="https://www.wisebread.com/11-simple-rules-of-excellent-houseguest-etiquette">11 Simple Rules of Excellent Houseguest Etiquette</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="https://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="https://www.wisebread.com/4-countries-where-you-can-live-on-1000-a-month">4 Countries Where You Can Live on $1,000 a Month</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Lifestyle Travel affordable fun affordable summer summer activities summer camp summer camp for grown-ups summer fun Fri, 29 Jun 2018 08:00:11 +0000 Mikey Rox 2153117 at https://www.wisebread.com 6 Cheap Date Ideas for Nature Lovers https://www.wisebread.com/6-cheap-date-ideas-for-nature-lovers <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/6-cheap-date-ideas-for-nature-lovers" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="https://wisebread-killeracesmedia.netdna-ssl.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/life_is_beautiful.jpg" alt="Life is beautiful" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>After this year's seemingly interminable winter, nothing would be finer than getting outside to enjoy nature, especially if you can do so with your special someone. But week after week, you may find yourselves falling back into the Saturday night habit of drinks together at the local bar or watching Netflix on the couch.</p> <p>It's not that you want to spend all of your precious date nights indoors, but fun outdoor date activities are expensive! Maybe you and your beloved can't afford to go mountain biking, whale watching, or white water rafting. So you end up watching David Attenborough nature documentaries on Saturday nights instead.</p> <p>It doesn't have to be this way. Instead of settling into your regular booth at the pub or your favorite spot on the couch, consider trying these cheap dates you can enjoy in the great outdoors. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/23-cheap-summer-date-ideas?ref=seealso" target="_blank">23 Cheap Summer Date Ideas</a>)</p> <h2>1. Try stargazing</h2> <p>There's a reason stargazing is a classic romantic activity. Not only is it a free way to take in a breathtaking view, but it's an excellent excuse to snuggle with your sweetheart.</p> <p>All you really need for this activity is a blanket to spread on the ground, a clear night sky, and maybe a thermos of coffee or hot chocolate to share. But it can be more fun to study the night sky if you know what you're looking at, so consider downloading a free astronomy app to help you identify the constellations, planets, satellites, and thousands of stars that are visible to the naked eye. In addition, if you have a pair of <a href="https://amzn.to/2yn4KdF" target="_blank">binoculars</a> or a <a href="https://amzn.to/2M6tvwq" target="_blank">telescope</a>, bringing them along can help you to better see the glories of the night sky. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-natural-wonders-you-can-see-for-free?ref=seealso" target="_blank">5 Natural Wonders You Can See For Free</a>)</p> <h2>2. Go on a nature scavenger hunt</h2> <p>Working together can make for a fun and meaningful date, which is why taking part in a nature scavenger hunt together can create lasting romantic memories.</p> <p>For such a scavenger hunt, all you need is a list of things to find while you are jaunting through your favorite scenic area. Since the rule for nature walks is &quot;take only pictures and leave only footprints,&quot; all you have to do is check off that you saw each of the items on your list &mdash; or snap photos of them.</p> <p>For instance, you might challenge each other to find something that begins with every letter in the alphabet, in order. You could write down what you find (apple wood tree, beehive, coneflower, etc.) as you go. Similarly, you could challenge each other to find something representing every color of the rainbow.</p> <p>Even if you don't have time to come up with a scavenger hunt yourselves, there are a number of free printable scavenger hunts available online that can help you to see nature in a different way. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-outdoor-adventures-that-dont-cost-a-dime?ref=seealso" target="_blank">6 Outdoor Adventures That Don't Cost a Dime</a>)</p> <h2>3. Plant a garden</h2> <p>Plunging your hands into garden soil is a viscerally satisfying experience that you can share with your beloved. Planting, tending, and enjoying the fruits of your garden together can give you a lovely connection to each other and the earth.</p> <p>Even if you don't live in a place that allows for gardening, you can still enjoy the benefits of garden living by <a href="https://communitygarden.org/find-a-garden/" target="_blank">finding a local community garden</a>. This can help you and your sweetheart form stronger bonds in your community while you build something beautiful and nourishing together. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/13-simple-gardening-skills-anybody-can-master?ref=seealso" target="_blank">13 Simple Gardening Skills Anybody Can Master</a>)</p> <h2>4. Watch the sunrise together</h2> <p>If you are early birds (or dedicated night owls), set your alarm for 0:dark-30 and watch the sunrise together. You can do this from the comfort of your own backyard, or make it an event by driving to the closest beach, park, or eastern-facing hill. As the night sky trades its blacks and grays for dawn's bright pinks and oranges, you and your date can cuddle together and enjoy some coffee and the quiet feeling of being the only people awake in the world.</p> <p>Finish your early morning date with breakfast al fresco, and you'll both spend the rest of the day with a smile on your faces.</p> <h2>5. Go bird-watching</h2> <p>Even if neither of you can tell the difference between an eagle and an egret, going on a bird-watching adventure can be a fun date. Start with a quick search on the best birding areas near you. <a href="https://www.audubon.org/birding" target="_blank">Audubon's official website</a> offers a great deal of information and tips for new bird-watchers, and can give you some suggestions for local places to enjoy your bird-watching date.</p> <p>From there, you'll need a field guide &mdash; which you can borrow from the library &mdash; and a pair of binoculars. (If you don't have your own pair, borrow some from a friend.) Even with minimal equipment, you can start searching the skies and listening to bird calls together to see if you can identify various local species.</p> <h2>6. Have a picnic</h2> <p>Eating a delicious meal together will be much more fun if you can do it outside. And you don't have to go far or spend a lot to do it. Whip a meal in your kitchen, grab a blanket, and eat it in your backyard under the night sky with some candles lit around you. Or you could pack your meal in some Tupperware and head to your local beach or park.</p> <p>But even if you're stuck indoors &mdash; because sometimes the weather makes it impossible to get outside &mdash; you can still have a memorable date night together that honors your love for the natural world. Turn off all the lights, stow away and power down all of your electronics, and enjoy an evening of uninterrupted romantic connection. Not only will you be conserving energy, but you'll also get to enjoy the benefits of unplugging together.</p> <h2 style="text-align: center;">Like this article? Pin it!</h2> <div align="center"><a data-pin-do="buttonPin" data-pin-count="above" data-pin-tall="true" href="https://www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2F6-cheap-date-ideas-for-nature-lovers&amp;media=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2F6%2520Cheap%2520Date%2520Ideas%2520for%2520Nature%2520Lovers.jpg&amp;description=6%20Cheap%20Date%20Ideas%20for%20Nature%20Lovers"></a></p> <script async defer src="//assets.pinterest.com/js/pinit.js"></script></div> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="https://wisebread-killeracesmedia.netdna-ssl.com/files/fruganomics/u5180/6%20Cheap%20Date%20Ideas%20for%20Nature%20Lovers.jpg" alt="6 Cheap Date Ideas for Nature Lovers" width="250" height="374" /></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="https://www.wisebread.com/emily-guy-birken">Emily Guy Birken</a> of <a href="https://www.wisebread.com/6-cheap-date-ideas-for-nature-lovers">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="https://www.wisebread.com/50-ways-to-have-free-outdoor-fun">50+ Ways to Have Free Outdoor Fun</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="https://www.wisebread.com/24-ways-to-have-a-blast-this-weekend-while-spending-0">24 Ways to Have a Blast This Weekend While Spending $0</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="https://www.wisebread.com/how-to-get-out-of-social-obligations-that-break-your-budget">How to Get Out of Social Obligations That Break Your Budget</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="https://www.wisebread.com/how-much-should-you-actually-be-spending-on-a-date">How Much Should You Actually Be Spending on a Date?</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="https://www.wisebread.com/8-common-weekend-money-traps-and-how-to-avoid-them">8 Common Weekend Money Traps (And How to Avoid Them)</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Entertainment Lifestyle date ideas date night nature outdoorsy romance saving money weekend plans Tue, 26 Jun 2018 12:40:58 +0000 Emily Guy Birken 2151398 at https://www.wisebread.com How to Protect Yourself From Ticks This Summer https://www.wisebread.com/how-to-protect-yourself-from-ticks-this-summer <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/how-to-protect-yourself-from-ticks-this-summer" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="https://wisebread-killeracesmedia.netdna-ssl.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/mother_applying_tick_repellent_on_daughter.jpg" alt="Mother applying tick repellent on daughter" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Afraid of ticks? You should be.</p> <p>Data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reveals that tick-borne illnesses have doubled in the United States over the past 13 years. Then there's the frightening news that a new-to-America tick species (the East Asian tick) has landed in New Jersey, which makes me never want to leave the house again. (I live in New Jersey.)</p> <p>Of course, I can't barricade myself indoors &mdash; it's summertime, and I live by the beach &mdash; but I can employ preventive measures to protect myself from ticks as much as possible. Here's how you can, too. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-things-to-do-now-to-prepare-your-home-for-summer?ref=seealso" target="_blank">5 Things to Do Now to Prepare Your Home for Summer</a>)</p> <h2>Reduce tick habitats in your yard</h2> <p>One of the best things you can do to control the tick population in your yard is to remove and control their habitats. Cut tall grass, trim foliage, and use a mulch barrier to prevent ticks from traveling into the yard. This won't eliminate ticks altogether, but it will help reduce their presence.</p> <p>It's important, too, to know what types of ticks you're dealing with. TickZapper has published <a href="https://tickzapper.com/blog/tick-identification-guide/)." target="_blank">this handy infographic guide</a> that illustrates the most common ticks, where they're found, what diseases the species transmits, and other characteristics. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-mosquito-repellent-plants-with-a-dual-purpose?ref=seealso" target="_blank">6 Mosquito-Repellent Plants With a Dual Purpose</a>)</p> <h2>Wear protective clothing when you're in the woods</h2> <p>Long pants aren't always comfortable during the summer, but tucking them into high socks when you're in the woods or traveling through high vegetation is a good idea. It reduces ticks' point of entry onto your skin, which, when in tall brush and weeds, is most likely from the waist down. It's also easier to spot ticks on light-colored clothing, like khakis and white tees. And wearing a hat when out in the woods is ideal as well. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-bug-repellents?ref=seealso" target="_blank">The 5 Best Bug Repellents</a>)</p> <h2>Consider deer-proofing your yard</h2> <p>Deer are a common carrier of ticks, and they can deliver them straight to your yard if you live in an area where deer are prevalent. While it may be charming to look out your window and watch deer grazing, it's in your best interest to keep them and other wildlife out if you want to control the tick population. A traditional chain-link fence won't suffice, as deer can jump quite high, so a privacy fence (at least six feet tall) is your best bet. Deer repellent also will help.</p> <p>Matteo Grader, pest control expert at Panther Pest Control, suggests going even further to reduce the presence of all animals.</p> <p>&quot;Remove anything that attracts wildlife to your garden &mdash; bird feeders, bird baths, lodges, or anything where mice and rats can hide,&quot; he says. &quot;Keeping birds, rats, and squirrels away is important because ticks can hitchhike on them and come into your garden.&quot;</p> <h2>Enlist the help of other animals</h2> <p>You may dread the appearance of woodland creatures like raccoons, opossums, squirrels, and groundhogs on your property, but Linda Giampa, executive director of the Bay Area Lyme Foundation in San Francisco, has a genius tip on how these rodents can help in your anti-tick crusade.</p> <p>She suggests leaving around your home toilet paper tubes filled with Permethrin-sprayed cotton balls. The idea is that den- and nest-building critters will take the cotton back to their homes for comfort while inadvertently killing the ticks they're carrying. <a href="https://amzn.to/2JIdtfG" target="_blank">Permethrin</a> also kills mosquitoes, lice, and about 55 other common insects. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/4-cheap-and-easy-homemade-mosquito-repellents?ref=seealso" target="_blank">4 Cheap and Easy Homemade Mosquito Repellents</a>)</p> <h2>Hike in the middle of the path</h2> <p>You're going straight into the belly of the beast when on a woodland hike, so try to stick the middle of the trail when under a canopy of treetops and avoid brushing against shrubbery.</p> <h2>Keep the kids away from woodland edges in the backyard</h2> <p>Move sandboxes, swing sets, and other play items away from any tree lines you may have to reduce the probability of ticks climbing onto your children.</p> <h2>Stick 'em in the dryer</h2> <p>Put the clothing you just wore outside into the dryer for 10 minutes on high to kill any ticks that may be hiding in your shorts and shirts. It's not the heat that kills them, it's the lack of moisture, which is something they need to survive.</p> <p>Inspect your gear, too. Ticks may catch a ride on your camping gear, backpacks, coats, and other outdoor items.</p> <h2>Check your entire body, not just your legs</h2> <p>Common areas ticks like to hide on your body include your armpits, in and around your ears, inside your belly button, behind your knees, your private areas (both sides and underneath), around the waist, and especially your scalp.</p> <p>Then you need to repeat the allover inspection again three days after you've been in the woods.</p> <p>&quot;If you've missed any ticks the first time around, and they've had a chance to feed on you, they will be bigger and easier to spot,&quot; says Giampa.</p> <h2>Check your pets</h2> <p>It's not just wild animals that are bringing ticks to you. Your cats, dogs, and other outdoor pets that you allow back into the house are like public transportation for ticks. Your pets should take tick-prevention medication regularly, but you also should run your fingers through their coats and around their ears, necks, and limbs occasionally to be sure they're clear.</p> <h2>Use a tick repellent on your skin</h2> <p>Spray the aforementioned Permethrin on your clothing for protection against ticks (and other insects), and always apply a <a href="https://amzn.to/2laD4Pu" target="_blank">tick repellent</a> on your skin before heading out to wooden or high-vegetation areas.</p> <p><a href="https://amzn.to/2yfAq4s" target="_blank">Products with DEET</a> sometimes get a bad rap &mdash; DEET is a chemical, after all &mdash; but it's the most effective repellent against ticks there is, though small children and pregnant women should apply with caution. Consult with a doctor before use if you have any other concerns.</p> <h2 style="text-align: center;">Like this article? Pin it!</h2> <div align="center"><a data-pin-do="buttonPin" data-pin-count="above" data-pin-tall="true" href="https://www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Fhow-to-protect-yourself-from-ticks-this-summer&amp;media=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2FHow%2520to%2520Protect%2520Yourself%2520From%2520Ticks%2520This%2520Summer.jpg&amp;description=How%20to%20Protect%20Yourself%20From%20Ticks%20This%20Summer"></a></p> <script async defer src="//assets.pinterest.com/js/pinit.js"></script></div> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="https://wisebread-killeracesmedia.netdna-ssl.com/files/fruganomics/u5180/How%20to%20Protect%20Yourself%20From%20Ticks%20This%20Summer.jpg" alt="How to Protect Yourself From Ticks This Summer" width="250" height="374" /></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="https://www.wisebread.com/mikey-rox">Mikey Rox</a> of <a href="https://www.wisebread.com/how-to-protect-yourself-from-ticks-this-summer">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="https://www.wisebread.com/6-ways-living-alone-affects-your-health">6 Ways Living Alone Affects Your Health</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="https://www.wisebread.com/10-things-you-can-do-today-to-be-happy">10 Things You Can Do Today to Be Happy</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="https://www.wisebread.com/why-going-to-the-gym-is-a-waste-of-money-time-and-resources">Why Going to the Gym Is a Waste of Money, Time, and Resources</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="https://www.wisebread.com/12-preflight-tricks-that-make-long-flights-bearable">12 Preflight Tricks That Make Long Flights Bearable</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="https://www.wisebread.com/9-cheap-ways-to-lower-your-blood-pressure">9 Cheap Ways to Lower Your Blood Pressure</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Health and Beauty Lifestyle bug bites health tips lyme disease mosquito prevention pest control summer tips tick bite tick prevention Thu, 21 Jun 2018 08:31:19 +0000 Mikey Rox 2150578 at https://www.wisebread.com 5 Reasons Getting Rich Quick Is Unlikely and Always Will Be https://www.wisebread.com/5-reasons-getting-rich-quick-is-unlikely-and-always-will-be <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/5-reasons-getting-rich-quick-is-unlikely-and-always-will-be" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="https://wisebread-killeracesmedia.netdna-ssl.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/rain_of_money.jpg" alt="Rain of money" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>We've all dreamed about it: Winning the lottery without even playing. Inheriting millions from a wealthy, great-uncle you never knew existed. Pitching the perfect business idea to the perfect person at just the right time.</p> <p>But chasing quick riches and instant wealth is an exercise in futility. It's like trying to capture a purple unicorn that lives outside of the castle just beyond the end of the rainbow; it's impossible. It doesn't exist. Movies, books, and social media have sold the idea that getting rich quick is possible. But that is a lie.</p> <p>The allure of fast, easy money is a mirage that can lure you down a dark path. You risk emotional and financial devastation, as well as wasted energy and resources. And yet, people can't seem to let go of searching for ways to skip work and go straight to the wealth. It is impossible &mdash; always has been, and always will be. Here's why.</p> <h2>1. The law of equity (what you put in is what you get out)</h2> <p>The human mind, body, and soul is built for efficiency. Think about what happens when you decide to start exercising. At first, your movements are awkward. You lack coordination and you wear yourself out quickly. But a funny thing happens over time &mdash; you adapt. You not only get better at performing the exercises, but your body also adjusts and finds ways to perform the movements more efficiently in order to conserve energy.</p> <p>The same thing is true when it comes to building wealth. It is natural to look for ways to get as far as you can with as little effort as possible, but there will always be a limit. Working out physically allows your body to adapt by building muscle memory, strength, and endurance. Similarly, as you build wealth, you develop patience, mental strength, and the stamina you need to sustain your money over time. And just like with exercise, getting rich is generally an equitable endeavor &mdash; at least initially. You only get out what you put in.</p> <p>The bottom line is obtaining wealth &mdash; or anything of value &mdash; is usually attached to hard work, patience, and growth over time. Wealth without work is similar to using crash diets to lose weight. The results are not sustainable and you haven't learned how to properly maintain the changes. You need to consistently work hard and see your progress increase over time.</p> <h2>2. Easy come easy go</h2> <p>There are countless stories of people who come into a tremendous amount of money only to find themselves back where they started shortly thereafter. According to the National Endowment for Financial Education, 70 percent of people who win the lottery or get a big windfall all at once go broke within a few years.</p> <p>Getting money and keeping it are two entirely different things. When you get something quick &mdash; without having to work and sweat for it &mdash; you don't value it as much. And what you don't value, you won't protect. One of the biggest problems financial advisers deal with when people get a sudden windfall is that they give too much away to family and friends. And they fail to properly keep track of what they get. When you get money quickly but haven't learned how to properly manage the little you had before, you simply repeat the same cycles but on a much larger scale.</p> <p>When you aren't used to having, tracking, and managing large sums of money, it's really easy for you to lose it. There are people out there waiting for an opportunity to separate someone like you from your cash. Just like you want a quick buck, so does everyone else. And while your value system may only allow you to go so far to get it, others are far less scrupulous. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/stop-dont-make-these-6-dumb-mistakes-with-your-financial-windfall?ref=seealso" target="_blank">Stop! Don't Make These 6 Dumb Mistakes With Your Financial Windfall</a>)</p> <h2>3. A fool and their money are easily parted</h2> <p>Get rich quick schemes are never advertised as such. They are shrouded in mystery and secrecy. And who doesn't love a good secret? Especially one that can make you rich and elevate you above the rest of us mere mortals?</p> <p>Most get rich quick schemes play on your desire for lopsided outcomes. Again, looking for a way to maximize impact and to gain ground quickly is completely natural and strategic. It doesn't make you a bad person. But it can make you a target.</p> <p>The best approach to take when it comes to investment pitches and business propositions is to keep it simple. You are not a financial expert nor a business mogul. Don't pretend to be one. If you don't know, you don't know. Not knowing or understanding an investment or proposal is a key indicator that you need to back away from the table.</p> <p>If it seems to good to be true, it is. If it sounds a little off, run. If it skirts the lines of legality, skip it. You have an internal gut feeling that causes you to pause; pay attention to that feeling. Don't let greed and/or arrogance push you into falling for fool's gold. Scam artists do what they do for a living. It's not a game for them. Humbly admitting that you don't understand the venture and gracefully bowing out can save not only money, but time and headaches as well. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/3-ways-millennials-can-avoid-of-financial-fraud?ref=seealso" target="_blank">3 Ways Millennials Can Avoid Financial Fraud</a>)</p> <h2>4. It requires wisdom to build wealth (wisdom takes time)</h2> <p>Luck has very little to do with becoming wealthy. The ability to recognize and capitalize on a good opportunity is not happenstance. It takes wisdom to build and keep wealth. And building wealth slowly and experiencing the highs and lows of money management is what helps you gain wisdom.</p> <p>You have to be diligent in order to truly be rich. You have to read, study, ask questions, and be willing to learn from others who are where you want to be. Being able to sniff out a con and spot a diamond among rocks takes keen senses, experience, and time. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-surprising-ways-the-rich-get-richer?ref=seealso" target="_blank">5 Surprising Ways the Rich Get Richer</a>)</p> <h2>5. Wealth is not a destination</h2> <p>One of the top reasons that getting rich quick isn't possible is because the concept itself is misguided. What is rich? When is enough, <em>enough</em>? And how do you know you are actually rich? Are you &quot;oficially&quot; rich when you reach millionaire status? Are you rich when you can buy whatever your heart desires? There are famous athletes, actors and actresses, singers, doctors, lawyers, scientist, etc. that make hundreds of thousands of dollars &mdash; millions even &mdash; but still are broke.</p> <p>Wealth is a journey, not a destination. It is more than money in the bank and possessing expensive trinkets. You will gain money and you will spend it. You will earn it and lose it. Being rich is when you arrive at a place where you are able to be content with and manage what you have &mdash; no matter how much or how little. Being rich is a state of mind and a place of peace that is not greedy and constantly reaching for more. It's a journey of contentment. And that journey doesn't happen overnight. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-reasons-being-a-millionaire-is-overrated?ref=seealso" target="_blank">5 Reasons Being a Millionaire Is Overrated</a>)</p> <h2 style="text-align: center;">Like this article? Pin it!</h2> <div align="center"><a data-pin-do="buttonPin" data-pin-count="above" data-pin-tall="true" href="https://www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2F5-reasons-getting-rich-quick-is-unlikely-and-always-will-be&amp;media=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2F5%2520Reasons%2520Getting%2520Rich%2520Quick%2520Is%2520Unlikely%2520and%2520Always%2520Will%2520Be.jpg&amp;description=5%20Reasons%20Getting%20Rich%20Quick%20Is%20Unlikely%20and%20Always%20Will%20Be"></a></p> <script async defer src="//assets.pinterest.com/js/pinit.js"></script></div> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="https://wisebread-killeracesmedia.netdna-ssl.com/files/fruganomics/u5180/5%20Reasons%20Getting%20Rich%20Quick%20Is%20Unlikely%20and%20Always%20Will%20Be.jpg" alt="5 Reasons Getting Rich Quick Is Unlikely and Always Will Be" width="250" height="374" /></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="https://www.wisebread.com/denise-hill">Denise Hill</a> of <a href="https://www.wisebread.com/5-reasons-getting-rich-quick-is-unlikely-and-always-will-be">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="https://www.wisebread.com/12-personal-finance-skills-everyone-should-master">12 Personal Finance Skills Everyone Should Master</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="https://www.wisebread.com/4-myths-about-economic-behavior-we-dont-believe-anymore">4 Myths About Economic Behavior We Don&#039;t Believe Anymore</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="https://www.wisebread.com/47-simple-ways-to-waste-money">47 Simple Ways To Waste Money</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="https://www.wisebread.com/3-simple-ways-to-split-bills-with-your-spouse">3 Simple Ways to Split Bills With Your Spouse</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="https://www.wisebread.com/is-social-security-just-a-grand-ponzi-scheme">Is Social Security Just A Grand Ponzi Scheme?</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Personal Finance Lifestyle earning money get rich quick hard work investments scams wealth building windfalls wisdom Wed, 20 Jun 2018 09:00:26 +0000 Denise Hill 2150092 at https://www.wisebread.com 4 Risky Life Decisions That Millionaires Made — But You Shouldn't https://www.wisebread.com/4-risky-life-decisions-that-millionaires-made-but-you-shouldnt <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/4-risky-life-decisions-that-millionaires-made-but-you-shouldnt" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="https://wisebread-killeracesmedia.netdna-ssl.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/elegant_business_woman.jpg" alt="Elegant business woman" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>When you read about self-made millionaires and billionaires, it can often seem as if their success was an inevitable result of their tenacity and savvy decisions. But sometimes those choices are less savvy and more borderline irresponsible &mdash; and it would be foolhardy for most of us to try some of these stunts in our own lives.</p> <p>The stories of people going from rags to riches may be inspiring, but most of us need to remain practical. That's why you should avoid copying these four life decisions successful millionaires have made. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-bedtime-routines-of-famous-financial-gurus?ref=seealso" target="_blank">5 Bedtime Routines of Famous Financial Gurus</a>)</p> <h2>Dropping out of high school</h2> <p>There are a number of hugely successful individuals who did not complete their high school educations, and it did nothing to stop them from reaching the top of their fields. For instance, Wendy's founder Dave Thomas, Tumblr developer David Karp, director Quentin Tarantino, and Virgin Atlantic founder Richard Branson all dropped out of high school and still went on to become multi-millionaires.</p> <p>Yes, these millionaires were able to build wildly successful careers without completing their formal educations, but it's a mistake to assume that most people can emulate their irregular paths.</p> <p>To begin with, a worker without a high school diploma earns an average of $520 per week, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Assuming a year of constant earning (which is not necessarily the case, as many workers without a diploma cannot count on steady employment), this works out to $27,040 annually. Just completing high school means a bigger paycheck, as workers with a diploma earn a median weekly income of $712, or $37,024 per year.</p> <p>In addition, high school dropouts have the highest rate of unemployment in America at 6.5 percent. Workers with at least a high school diploma have an unemployment rate of 4.6 percent, while the national unemployment rate is 3.8 percent overall. Clearly, completing your high school education is one of the surest ways to ensure financial stability.</p> <p>This is why Dave Thomas, the founder of Wendy's, earned his GED in 1993 at the age of 61. He described dropping out of high school as one of the worst mistakes of his life, and he did not want his subsequent success to encourage young people to quit school. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-surprising-ways-a-college-education-will-improve-your-life?ref=seealso" target="_blank">10 Surprising Ways a College Education Will Improve Your Life</a>)</p> <h2>Putting your life savings into your business</h2> <p>From Elon Musk, who funneled the money that he earned from the sale of PayPal into Tesla and SpaceX, to Sara Blakely who put the $5,000 she had managed to save from her sales job into the business venture that became Spanx, there are a number of successful entrepreneurs who gambled their own funds on their business ideas. Between these inspiring stories and the prevalence of such gambits working out in movies, it would be easy to assume that being willing to put your own money into a business venture is the secret to entrepreneurial success.</p> <p>The problem with this assumption is that it ignores the scores of would-be entrepreneurs who don't succeed. Half of all new businesses fail within five years, and only a third are around after 10 years. For every Elon Musk and Sara Blakely out there, there are several business owners who put their own money into a venture that flopped. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/3-ways-to-fund-your-business-without-touching-savings?ref=seealso" target="_blank">3 Ways to Fund Your Business Without Touching Savings</a>)</p> <p>Such business owners may have solid business ideas and just as much drive &mdash; but without a healthy dash of luck or opportunity, they may be stuck declaring bankruptcy after putting all of their own money into the business.</p> <h2>Living on credit cards</h2> <p>Novelist Lisa Scottoline got divorced soon after her daughter was born, and she wanted to be able to stay home with her child. She had previously been a trial lawyer, and the long hours made it a difficult job to continue as a single mother. Instead, she wanted to become a writer of legal thrillers. So Scottoline took a major gamble:</p> <p style="margin-left: 40px;">I supported myself on credit. I had five credit cards with about $10,000 each available. I said to myself, 'You have $50,000 to get published.' I got to $38,500 in debt. I went back to being a law clerk for money and a week later my first novel was sold.</p> <p>Scottoline's decision to live off her credit cards paid off. She is now the successful author of nearly 40 books, many of them of <em>New York Times</em> best-sellers.</p> <p>However, as tempting as it may be for starving artists, musicians, writers, actors, and other creative types to follow Scottoline's example by living on plastic until the artistic career takes off, it would be irresponsible to do so. It's important to remember that Scottoline was a successful attorney before taking her big risk. Had her plan to become an author not panned out, she had a high-income career to fall back on, which meant she was never in serious danger of running up a debt she couldn't pay off. Most budding creatives cannot say the same. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-scary-facts-about-credit-card-debt?ref=seealso" target="_blank">6 Scary Facts About Credit Card Debt</a>)</p> <h2>Gambling in Vegas</h2> <p>Fred Smith, the founder of Federal Express (now known as FedEx), would not currently be bringing in profits of $4.4 billion if it weren't for a remarkably lucky game of blackjack.</p> <p>Smith started the company in 1971 with a $4 million inheritance, as well as $80 million in loans and equity investments. But by 1973, the company was struggling. When the company's funds diminished to a mere $5,000, it meant that there was not enough money to fuel the planes for the coming week. So Smith took that money to Vegas and used it to play blackjack.</p> <p>Miraculously, he won. His lucky blackjack game turned that $5,000 to $27,000, which would cover the coming week's fuel needs. Though it did not solve all of FedEx's cash flow problems, Smith saw his lucky break as motivation to seek more funding.</p> <p>Smith was sanguine about his decision to gamble the last of the company's money. He knew that they would not be able to fly the following week without more money for fuel, so leaving the money in FedEx's coffers would have spelled the end anyway.</p> <p>Needless to say, this is an irresponsible way to run a business. Smith is lucky that his literal gamble succeeded, but he easily could have lost everything. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-ways-greed-is-keeping-you-poor?ref=seealso" target="_blank">6 Ways Greed Is Keeping You Poor</a>)</p> <h2 style="text-align: center;">Like this article? Pin it!</h2> <div align="center"><a data-pin-do="buttonPin" data-pin-count="above" data-pin-tall="true" href="https://www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2F4-risky-life-decisions-that-millionaires-made-but-you-shouldnt&amp;media=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2F4%2520Risky%2520Life%2520Decisions%2520That%2520Millionaires%2520Made%2520%25E2%2580%2594%2520But%2520You%2520Shouldn%2527t.jpg&amp;description=4%20Risky%20Life%20Decisions%20That%20Millionaires%20Made%20%E2%80%94%20But%20You%20Shouldn't"></a></p> <script async defer src="//assets.pinterest.com/js/pinit.js"></script></div> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="https://wisebread-killeracesmedia.netdna-ssl.com/files/fruganomics/u5180/4%20Risky%20Life%20Decisions%20That%20Millionaires%20Made%20%E2%80%94%20But%20You%20Shouldn%27t.jpg" alt="4 Risky Life Decisions That Millionaires Made &mdash; But You Shouldn't" width="250" height="374" /></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="https://www.wisebread.com/emily-guy-birken">Emily Guy Birken</a> of <a href="https://www.wisebread.com/4-risky-life-decisions-that-millionaires-made-but-you-shouldnt">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="https://www.wisebread.com/4-countries-where-you-can-live-on-1000-a-month">4 Countries Where You Can Live on $1,000 a Month</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="https://www.wisebread.com/6-ways-to-feel-better-about-your-financial-situation">6 Ways to Feel Better About Your Financial Situation</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="https://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-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="https://www.wisebread.com/7-ways-grown-ups-can-make-new-friends-without-going-broke">7 Ways Grown-Ups Can Make New Friends Without Going Broke</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="https://www.wisebread.com/how-to-think-like-a-billionaire-when-you-re-broke">How to Think Like a Billionaire When You’re Broke</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Budgeting Lifestyle career tips education tips getting rich millionaires saving money stay in school success stories what not to do Tue, 19 Jun 2018 09:00:25 +0000 Emily Guy Birken 2150090 at https://www.wisebread.com 7 Ways Grown-Ups Can Make New Friends Without Going Broke https://www.wisebread.com/7-ways-grown-ups-can-make-new-friends-without-going-broke <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/7-ways-grown-ups-can-make-new-friends-without-going-broke" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="https://wisebread-killeracesmedia.netdna-ssl.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/enjoying_drinks_after_work.jpg" alt="Enjoying drinks after work" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>When you're a kid, making friends is easy. Walk up to another kid and say &quot;Hey, wanna be my best friend?&quot; and boom &hellip; you're inseparable. But as an adult, it's not as simple. Try that and you seem like a weirdo. You can obviously make friends through work, but what about outside of your employer? Cooking classes, bars, and yoga classes are certainly places to meet people who share your interests, but those activities can burn through your budget in no time. Luckily, there are plenty of ways to make friends as a grown-up that won't drain your bank account.</p> <h2>1. Use a friend-finder app</h2> <p>There are plenty of dating apps out there, but what if you want to meet people for friendship only? Well, there are apps for that, too. <a href="http://thebeehive.bumble.com/bumble-bff/" target="_blank">Bumble</a>, for example, is not just a dating app. You can tweak the settings to specifically be matched with people who only want to find a friend. You can have the app show you whatever gender you want, distance, and other factors, and then swipe like you would when looking for dates. Other apps that can facilitate this include <a href="https://www.peanut-app.io/" target="_blank">Peanut</a> (for moms looking for other moms to connect with), <a href="http://www.skout.com/" target="_blank">Skout</a>, <a href="https://www.meetme.com/" target="_blank">MeetMe</a>, and even <a href="http://meetmydogapp.com/" target="_blank">MeetMyDog</a> (a way to meet fellow dog owners).</p> <h2>2. Find local meetings with people who share your interests</h2> <p>No doubt you have some kind of interests or hobbies outside of work (and if you don't, you're working <em>way</em> too hard). The internet has made it possible to find people who love the same things you love, regardless of how unusual or niche your passions may be. A site like MeetUp.com lists hundreds of different social groups in your area, covering everything from mountain biking and veganism, to brewing your own beers, blogging, and cosplaying. Do a search for your interest, check out the group, and attend with an open mind. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/50-hobbies-you-can-start-for-0?ref=seealso" target="_blank">50 Hobbies You Can Start for $0</a>)</p> <h2>3. Become a volunteer</h2> <p>Volunteering is not just a great way to meet people, it's also an excellent way to improve your self-esteem and give back to those in need. There are all kinds of opportunities, including helping out at animal shelters, feeding the homeless, or building homes for low-income families. Or you could join volunteer organization <a href="https://www.togetherwerise.org/team-building/sweet-cases/" target="_blank">TogetherWise</a>. It's a project that brings people together to bring a smile to foster kids around the country. You can decorate duffel bags and blankets, build bikes and skateboards, and create special birthday boxes. As you work together, you will naturally start talking to people, and maybe make a friend or two. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/18-free-ways-to-be-a-better-person?ref=seealso" target="_blank">18 Free Ways to Be a Better Person</a>)</p> <h2>4. Connect with more people on social media</h2> <p>Are you on Facebook? How about Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, or even YouTube? If you aren't, well, you should definitely consider one of these platforms as a way to make friends. And if you already embrace these sites, go big. Look at friends you already have, and see who they're friends with. Start following people who genuinely interest you on Twitter or Instagram. You could find yourself becoming best friends with someone who lives just around the corner &hellip; or halfway around the world.</p> <h2>5. Become more active in your neighborhood</h2> <p>Long ago, everyone knew everyone in the neighborhood. These days, people tend to keep to themselves, and modern technology certainly hasn't helped that cause. But it doesn't have to stop you from making an effort to meet the people who live around you. You could start by organizing a neighborhood event, like a community garage sale or a scavenger hunt. Maybe block off your cul-de-sac and have a neighborhood potluck. A communication forum like <a href="https://nextdoor.com/" target="_blank">Nextdoor</a> can really help, as it uses your address to connect you with people who also live in your area. You can also get creative with posting flyers on community boards.</p> <h2>6. Drop hints with your co-workers and family</h2> <p>People know people. Your co-workers and family members have friends of their own. Maybe they know people whom you would get along with. All you have to do is drop a few subtle hints. Tell them that you'd love to get out more, but don't know many people. Ask if they know anyone interested in your hobbies. Lay a foundation so that the wheels start turning, and they realize that their friend knows someone who is just as much into kite-flying or indoor soccer as you are. You don't even have to be subtle. Just say, &quot;Anyone know someone great who I'd get along with?&quot; It never hurts to ask.</p> <h2>7. Hang out in bookstores and libraries</h2> <p>The library is obviously the cheaper option here, but bookstores are also a great place to meet people with bookish interests. If you're really into books about crime, strike up a conversation with someone browsing that section. It can be as simple as, &quot;Can you recommend a good crime thriller?&quot; or &quot;What do you think of this author?&quot; Most libraries and bookstores have a coffee and snack section now, so if you do hit it off, you can find a place to sit and chat. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-modern-reasons-to-visit-your-local-library-today?ref=seealso" target="_blank">7 Modern Reasons to Visit Your Local Library Today</a>)</p> <h2 style="text-align: center;">Like this article? Pin it!</h2> <div align="center"><a data-pin-do="buttonPin" data-pin-count="above" data-pin-tall="true" href="https://www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2F7-ways-grown-ups-can-make-new-friends-without-going-broke&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2F7%2520Ways%2520Grown-Ups%2520Can%2520Make%2520New%2520Friends%2520Without%2520Going%2520Broke.jpg&amp;description=7%20Ways%20Grown-Ups%20Can%20Make%20New%20Friends%20Without%20Going%20Broke"></a></p> <script async defer src="//assets.pinterest.com/js/pinit.js"></script></div> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="https://wisebread-killeracesmedia.netdna-ssl.com/files/fruganomics/u5180/7%20Ways%20Grown-Ups%20Can%20Make%20New%20Friends%20Without%20Going%20Broke.jpg" alt="7 Ways Grown-Ups Can Make New Friends Without Going Broke" width="250" height="374" /></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="https://www.wisebread.com/paul-michael">Paul Michael</a> of <a href="https://www.wisebread.com/7-ways-grown-ups-can-make-new-friends-without-going-broke">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="https://www.wisebread.com/4-countries-where-you-can-live-on-1000-a-month">4 Countries Where You Can Live on $1,000 a Month</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="https://www.wisebread.com/how-getting-more-sleep-helps-your-finances">How Getting More Sleep Helps Your Finances</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="https://www.wisebread.com/7-ways-you-can-save-1000-by-christmas-if-you-start-now">7 Ways You Can Save $1,000 by Christmas, If You Start Now</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="https://www.wisebread.com/7-essential-money-moves-for-new-parents">7 Essential Money Moves for New Parents</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="https://www.wisebread.com/4-risky-life-decisions-that-millionaires-made-but-you-shouldnt">4 Risky Life Decisions That Millionaires Made — But You Shouldn&#039;t</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Budgeting Lifestyle adult friends budgeting tips going out introvert making new friends networking saving money seeing friends socializing Thu, 14 Jun 2018 08:00:31 +0000 Paul Michael 2148277 at https://www.wisebread.com How a New Marriage Can Survive Student Loan Debt https://www.wisebread.com/how-a-new-marriage-can-survive-student-loan-debt <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/how-a-new-marriage-can-survive-student-loan-debt" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="https://wisebread-killeracesmedia.netdna-ssl.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/guests_throwing_confetti_on_couple_during_reception.jpg" alt="Guests Throwing Confetti On Couple During Reception" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>It's a very common scenario. Girl meets boy, they fall in love, and decide to get married. They're excited about starting their new life together, but they're also weighed down by student loan debt &mdash; a <em>lot </em>of student loan debt. As they drag that heavy ball and chain into the future, what steps can they take to tilt the odds of marital and financial success in their favor? If that's your situation, read on.</p> <h2>1. Understand the details</h2> <p>Good communication is essential to the success of any relationship, and while money can be a tough topic, you'll get your marriage off to a great start by getting accustomed to talking about your finances. You might as well dive right in and start with your debt.</p> <p>No matter which one of you is bringing debt into the marriage, both of you should know exactly <em>how much </em>debt. You should also be clear about the interest rate, the monthly payment amount, and how long those payments will continue.</p> <p>That will help you to both manage your expectations about when you might be able to buy a house, how much you can spend on vacations, and all the rest. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-7-worst-money-mistakes-married-people-make?ref=seealso" target="_blank">The 7 Worst Money Mistakes Married People Make</a>)</p> <h2>2. Be one in debt</h2> <p>Marriage is about oneness, unity, and teamwork. You're not becoming roommates; you're becoming husband and wife. So, if one of you was wealthy and the other was not before getting married, after you get married, both of you will be wealthy. By the same token, before marriage, if one of you had debt and the other did not, once you're married, both of you will have debt.</p> <p>When my friends Scott and Karen Coy got married, Karen had more than $50,000 of nonmortgage debt. Scott jokingly referred to it as &quot;a reverse dowry.&quot; After getting married, Karen often expressed how bad she felt about &quot;my debt.&quot; But from day one, Scott would correct her, saying it was &quot;our debt.&quot;</p> <p>It took them six-and-a-half years to become debt-free. All that time, they rented even though they would have preferred to buy a house. It took great patience and perseverance.</p> <p>Karen says she will always remember the day they made their last payment. It was as if a huge weight had been lifted from their shoulders. And looking back, she says the way they navigated the journey &mdash; <em>together &mdash; </em>created an inseparable bond in their marriage.</p> <h2>3. Consider being two in taxes</h2> <p>If you were using an income-based repayment plan <em>before</em> getting married, how you file your taxes <em>after</em> you get married will matter greatly. If you file jointly, your payment amount may go up. That's because income-based repayment plans require you to &quot;recertify&quot; each year by submitting your income tax returns to your loan servicer, who will now make decisions based on your joint income. So, you may want to consider filing separately, in which case most student loan plans will use just the borrower's income as the basis for recertification.</p> <p>However, filing separately may make you ineligible for certain tax credits, so proceed with caution. It would be best to consult with an accountant or run some what-if scenarios with tax-planning software.</p> <h2>4. Figure out the implications for your budget</h2> <p>Before deciding where you'll live after you get married, create a post-marriage cash flow plan. What works best is to fill in your financial commitments first. How much of your joint income will you save and invest? How much will you give to charity? And how much will you need to devote to debt repayment?</p> <p>Then you can see how much you can afford for rent or a mortgage. I usually recommend committing no more than 25 percent of monthly gross income to the combination of your mortgage, property taxes, and homeowners' insurance. If you rent, devote no more than 25 percent to your rent and renters' insurance.</p> <p>A student loan payment, however, changes the math. I recommend that the combination of your housing <em>and </em>your student loans together make up no more than 25 percent of your monthly gross income. So, you should figure out what percentage of your monthly gross income your loan payment amounts to and subtract that from 25 percent. The answer is the percentage of gross income you could devote to housing while you have student loans.</p> <p>If your student loans amount to an especially large percentage of your gross income, that may end up being overly restrictive. So, you'll have to adjust other spending categories downward, such as entertainment, clothing, or vacations. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/3-simple-ways-to-split-bills-with-your-spouse?ref=seealso" target="_blank">3 Simple Ways to Split Bills With Your Spouse</a>)</p> <h2>5. Prioritize early payoff</h2> <p>The early years of your marriage present a great opportunity to speed up the process of getting out of debt. If you want to have kids one day, your pre-kid days will be the most financially flexible time you may ever experience. Make the most of it by making extra payments on your loans.</p> <p>Debt can be a roadblock in the pursuit of financial goals such as buying a home, and it can be a hindrance to a happy marriage. So, consider building your lifestyle on just one income and putting most of the other paycheck toward your student loans. By living an especially frugal life in the early years of your marriage, you'll be setting yourselves up for long-term success. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-ways-paying-off-student-loans-early-can-boost-your-finances?ref=seealso" target="_blank">7 Ways Paying Off Student Loans Early Can Boost Your Finances</a>)</p> <h2 style="text-align: center;">Like this article? Pin it!</h2> <div align="center"><a data-pin-do="buttonPin" data-pin-count="above" data-pin-tall="true" href="https://www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Fhow-a-new-marriage-can-survive-student-loan-debt&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2FHow%2520a%2520New%2520Marriage%2520Can%2520Survive%2520Student%2520Loan%2520Debt_0.jpg&amp;description=How%20a%20New%20Marriage%20Can%20Survive%20Student%20Loan%20Debt"></a></p> <script async defer src="//assets.pinterest.com/js/pinit.js"></script></div> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="https://wisebread-killeracesmedia.netdna-ssl.com/files/fruganomics/u5180/How%20a%20New%20Marriage%20Can%20Survive%20Student%20Loan%20Debt_0.jpg" alt="How a New Marriage Can Survive Student Loan Debt" width="250" height="374" /></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="https://www.wisebread.com/matt-bell">Matt Bell</a> of <a href="https://www.wisebread.com/how-a-new-marriage-can-survive-student-loan-debt">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="https://www.wisebread.com/8-things-i-learned-about-money-after-getting-married">8 Things I Learned About Money After Getting Married</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="https://www.wisebread.com/3-reasons-taking-a-loan-for-your-wedding-is-a-bad-idea">3 Reasons Taking a Loan For Your Wedding Is a Bad Idea</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="https://www.wisebread.com/3-simple-ways-to-split-bills-with-your-spouse">3 Simple Ways to Split Bills With Your Spouse</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="https://www.wisebread.com/how-to-manage-your-money-during-a-spousal-separation">How to Manage Your Money During a Spousal Separation</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="https://www.wisebread.com/4-ways-couples-can-tackle-money-goals-together">4 Ways Couples Can Tackle Money Goals Together</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Personal Finance Lifestyle bills budgeting compromise debt marriage sharing expenses spouses student loans taxes Tue, 29 May 2018 08:30:47 +0000 Matt Bell 2143779 at https://www.wisebread.com 5 Money Moves to Make Before Adopting a Dog https://www.wisebread.com/5-money-moves-to-make-before-adopting-a-dog <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/5-money-moves-to-make-before-adopting-a-dog" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="https://wisebread-killeracesmedia.netdna-ssl.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/we_are_having_so_much_fun_away_from_the_city.jpg" alt="We are having so much fun away from the city" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>There's nothing better than coming home to a wiggling dog. Their soft fur, wet noses, and boundless enthusiasm can brighten even the dreariest of days.</p> <p>However, bringing home a furry friend can be expensive. The ASPCA estimates that owning a small dog costs over $1,400 in just the first year, while large dog owners are looking at a figure above $2,000. And those amounts only cover the basics. Extras like emergency vet bills or specialized training can cause your costs to skyrocket.</p> <p>Because of the serious expense of owning a dog, it's important to not bring a pet home impulsively. Preparing for a new pet means you need to spend some time getting ready for his arrival. And that includes some important first steps. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-pet-costs-you-dont-see-coming?ref=seealso" target="_blank">5 Pet Costs You Don't See Coming</a>)</p> <h2>1. Build an emergency fund</h2> <p>Unfortunately, dogs can be prone to accidents and illnesses. If they gobble a sock &mdash; which is oddly common &mdash; or eat something they shouldn't, you could end up with a four-figure vet bill. In fact, PetPlan, a pet insurance company, reported in 2017 that unexpected veterinary care typically costs between $750 and $1,600, though higher bills are also common.</p> <p>If you're not prepared for an unexpected vet bill this high, you might be faced with a tough decision if something bad happens. To prevent that from occurring, start building an emergency fund for your pet's care before you even bring them home. That way, if there is an accident, you'll be able to handle it. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-prep-your-finances-for-an-emergency-vet-visit?ref=seealso" target="_blank">How to Prep Your Finances for an Emergency Vet Visit</a>)</p> <h2>2. Create a budget for the necessities</h2> <p>When you think about what it costs to own a dog, you probably think of basics like food and flea and tick prevention. But there are many other expenses to keep in mind, including:</p> <ul> <li> <p><strong>Spaying or neutering:</strong>&nbsp;Spaying or neutering prevents overpopulation and can even help with your dog's behavior.</p> </li> <li> <p><strong>Dog crate or bed:</strong>&nbsp;When your dog is new to your home, a designated crate or bed can help soothe him and be useful during housebreaking.</p> </li> <li> <p><strong>Leash and collar:</strong>&nbsp;You'll need a strong leash and collar to walk your dog safely.</p> </li> <li> <p><strong>County dog license and tags:</strong> Some areas require you to get a license for your dog. Usually, the dog has to wear the license at all times.</p> </li> <li> <p><strong>Food and water bowls:</strong> Designated bowls make it easier to keep your home clean.</p> </li> <li> <p><strong>Routine shots and exams:</strong>&nbsp;At a minimum, your dog will need rabies, parvovirus, and distemper vaccines.</p> </li> <li> <p><strong>Grooming:</strong> Grooming is more important than just making your dog pretty. It also keeps their skin in good condition, and can help you catch illnesses and problems before they get worse.</p> </li> <li> <p><strong>Treats and toys:</strong> Treats and toys are essential to teach your dog and to help him burn off energy.</p> </li> <li> <p><strong>Training:</strong> If you're not an experienced dog owner, dog training can be invaluable. Ensuring your dog will obey you and develop good manners is an important part of pet ownership.</p> </li> </ul> <p>Some of these items can cost a lot more than you expect, especially if you plan to get a larger dog. For example, spaying or neutering your dog could cost as much as $600. By knowing how much money you'll need ahead of time, you can better manage your paycheck and budget accordingly. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-pet-expenses-you-should-never-skip?ref=seealso" target="_blank">6 Pet Expenses You Should Never Skip</a>)</p> <h2>3. Buy secondhand where possible</h2> <p>When making your budget, you'll likely look at the prices for new items. However, you can save a lot of money by shopping for secondhand stuff. Especially if you're getting a young dog who will outgrow things quickly, buying used items or asking friends and family for their old things can help you save big.</p> <p>For example, a new hard-sided crate can cost over $100 at big-name pet stores. But if you shop on Craigslist or find someone who is getting rid of one, you could spend as little as $10, and they're often as good as new. Just be sure to wash and disinfect any secondhand items thoroughly, and make sure there are no cracks or damage.</p> <h2>4. Research pet insurance</h2> <p>Pet insurance can be a smart investment. If your dog has a serious injury or illness, it can be a literal lifesaver. It's a good idea to shop around while your dog is still young since puppies and young dogs typically qualify for lower premiums than older ones. Premiums can vary, but most pet owners can expect to pay between $30 and $50 per month. If you're not sure where to start, check out the <a href="https://www.caninejournal.com/pet-insurance-comparison/" target="_blank">Canine Journal</a> for reviews of the top pet insurers. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-things-you-need-to-know-about-pet-insurance?ref=seealso" target="_blank">7 Things You Need to Know About Pet Insurance</a>)</p> <h2>5. Identify discount pet supply stores</h2> <p>When it comes to dog food, treats, and toys, you might think your only option is the local pet store. However, you can often get better deals at farm supply stores or online discount retailers. Sites like Chewy even often discounts if you sign up for automatic shipments, helping you save on food and other supplies. Plus, you get the added benefit of not having to lug heavy bags of dog food home from the store. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-unexpected-dog-costs-you-should-prepare-for-now?ref=seealso" target="_blank">5 Unexpected Dog Costs You Should Prepare for Now</a>)</p> <h2 style="text-align: center;">Like this article? Pin it!</h2> <div align="center"><a data-pin-do="buttonPin" data-pin-count="above" data-pin-tall="true" href="https://www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2F5-money-moves-to-make-before-adopting-a-dog&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2F5%2520Money%2520Moves%2520to%2520Make%2520Before%2520Adopting%2520a%2520Dog.jpg&amp;description=5%20Money%20Moves%20to%20Make%20Before%20Adopting%20a%20Dog"></a></p> <script async defer src="//assets.pinterest.com/js/pinit.js"></script></div> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="https://wisebread-killeracesmedia.netdna-ssl.com/files/fruganomics/u5180/5%20Money%20Moves%20to%20Make%20Before%20Adopting%20a%20Dog.jpg" alt="5 Money Moves to Make Before Adopting a Dog" width="250" height="374" /></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="https://www.wisebread.com/kat-tretina">Kat Tretina</a> of <a href="https://www.wisebread.com/5-money-moves-to-make-before-adopting-a-dog">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="https://www.wisebread.com/3-ways-your-dog-is-ruining-your-credit-score">3 Ways Your Dog Is Ruining Your Credit Score</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="https://www.wisebread.com/7-things-you-need-to-know-about-pet-insurance">7 Things You Need to Know About Pet Insurance</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="https://www.wisebread.com/8-ways-to-lower-your-vet-bills">8 Ways to Lower Your Vet Bills</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="https://www.wisebread.com/7-personal-finance-tips-for-animal-lovers">7 Personal Finance Tips for Animal Lovers</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="https://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 Lifestyle budgeting dog adoption dogs emergency funds pet insurance pets vet bills Wed, 23 May 2018 08:00:28 +0000 Kat Tretina 2141992 at https://www.wisebread.com 6 Ways Living Alone Affects Your Health https://www.wisebread.com/6-ways-living-alone-affects-your-health <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/6-ways-living-alone-affects-your-health" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="https://wisebread-killeracesmedia.netdna-ssl.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/happy_woman_starting_a_day_with_coffee.jpg" alt="Happy woman starting a day with coffee" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Some people love living with others. They like having family or roommates, and a home that's occupied by more than one person. Other people prefer their own space, and maybe that's who you are. You like the solitude. You love the freedom. But living this way can be both beneficial and hazardous to your health.</p> <h2>1. You can be yourself</h2> <p>Anyone who has lived with roommates knows it's tough to be completely yourself. Differing opinions on everything from politics and food, to movies and music, means that compromise is a must. In a marriage or other living arrangement, it's much the same. You both have to make compromises to keep the other person from getting peeved.</p> <p>But when you live alone, all bets are off. Want to decorate the living room to look like the set of <em>Star Wars</em>? Go ahead. Want wooden floors throughout? Do it. Want to replace the sofa with a bunch of giant bean bags? Your call.</p> <p>This kind of freedom is incredibly beneficial to your mental health. There's no stress about keeping someone else happy. And less stress leads to better overall health. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/20-free-or-really-cheap-ways-to-relieve-stress?ref=seealso" target="_blank">20 Free (or Really Cheap) Ways to Relieve Stress</a>)</p> <h2>2. It's easier to create healthy habits</h2> <p>With no one else in sharing your space, there are fewer distractions and excuses keeping you from getting into healthier routines. If you decide to eat healthier, it's hard to stick to that regimen when someone in the house is eating doughnuts and cooking bacon. Or if you have a partner who doesn't want to work out with you, it can be tough to find the time to get away for a sweat session on your own. Living alone gives you the freedom to work out on your own schedule, and stock your fridge with nothing but non-processed and fresh foods. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/25-low-cost-foods-packed-with-nutrition?ref=seealso" target="_blank">25 Low-Cost Foods Packed With Nutrition</a>)</p> <h2>3. You sleep better</h2> <p>If you're actually sleeping next to someone in the same bed, your nights will not be as restful as if you were sleeping alone. The other person is going to move around, make noises, and ultimately crowd your space. Even though you may not feel like you're waking up, your body and mind can be constantly getting stimuli that stop you from entering the most important part of the sleep cycle &mdash; deep sleep. This stage (three in a series of four) occurs just before Rapid Eye Movement (REM) sleep, with your brain and body activity dropping to the lowest point, and blood being redirected from the brain to the muscles. If you don't ever make it to this stage due to the constant interruptions, you won't feel as rested when you wake up.</p> <p>Even if you aren't actually sharing a bed with your housemate, you can still be disturbed from your slumber. Loud roommates can rob you of precious sleep, too, which can lead to lower productivity at work, increased stress, and poor eating habits. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-getting-more-sleep-helps-your-finances?ref=seealso" target="_blank">How Getting More Sleep Helps Your Finances</a>)</p> <h2>4. You can feel isolated to the point of depression</h2> <p>At first, the idea of living alone can be glorious. No rules but your own. No noise from anyone else. No messes to clean that other people left behind. It's all you, baby. But then it can hit you like a hammer; it's all you. No one to talk to about your day. No one to watch TV with. No one to cook for, and enjoy a meal with. And for some, this realization can lead to feelings of loneliness.</p> <p>Studies have linked loneliness to low self-esteem, depression, high blood pressure, and the increased risk of dementia in later years. Humans are naturally social creatures, and we need some interaction to feel balanced. Without it, life can start to look bleak.</p> <h2>5. You have to do everything yourself</h2> <p>Need help bringing in the groceries? You're on your own. Need a hand shoveling the driveway? You're on your own. Need someone to steady that ladder? You're on your own. And on it goes. Living alone means you have to rely on yourself for almost everything. Sure, you can ask a friend or a neighbor now and again, but you certainly can't abuse that privilege. You could also hire a TaskRabbit or pay to have someone else run all your errands and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/4-ways-outsourcing-chores-can-save-you-time-and-money?ref=internal" target="_blank">outsource your housework</a>, but few have the money to afford that. That can bring physical stresses and challenges that take their toll on your body. From backbreaking work in the garden, to painting, lifting, moving furniture, and cleaning, your health can take a beating when you do everything yourself.</p> <h2>6. You're not as safe</h2> <p>There are numerous ways that living alone can affect your safety. When you're sick, there's no one there to take care of you or check on your well-being. You may not even have the ability to call someone for help, especially if you fall or have a serious medical problem. And when you're alone, you'll also have to defend yourself alone against intruders. For this reason, it's recommended that anyone living alone should take extra steps to secure their safety. Strong deadbolts, <a href="https://amzn.to/2rcJ4Kp" target="_blank">motion-sensing lights</a>, and an alarm system can help provide a little more peace of mind.</p> <h2 style="text-align: center;">Like this article? Pin it!</h2> <div align="center"><a data-pin-do="buttonPin" data-pin-count="above" data-pin-tall="true" href="https://www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2F6-ways-living-alone-affects-your-health&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2F6%2520Ways%2520Living%2520Alone%2520Affects%2520Your%2520Health.jpg&amp;description=6%20Ways%20Living%20Alone%20Affects%20Your%20Health"></a></p> <script async defer src="//assets.pinterest.com/js/pinit.js"></script></div> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="https://wisebread-killeracesmedia.netdna-ssl.com/files/fruganomics/u5180/6%20Ways%20Living%20Alone%20Affects%20Your%20Health.jpg" alt="6 Ways Living Alone Affects Your Health" width="250" height="374" /></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="https://www.wisebread.com/paul-michael">Paul Michael</a> of <a href="https://www.wisebread.com/6-ways-living-alone-affects-your-health">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="https://www.wisebread.com/5-ways-to-keep-anxiety-from-ruining-your-budget">5 Ways to Keep Anxiety From Ruining Your Budget</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="https://www.wisebread.com/5-terrible-things-science-says-you-do-to-your-mind-everyday">5 Terrible Things Science Says You Do to Your Mind Everyday</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="https://www.wisebread.com/stuck-at-the-airport-relax-with-these-14-easy-self-care-tricks">Stuck at the Airport? Relax With These 14 Easy Self-Care Tricks</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="https://www.wisebread.com/how-to-protect-yourself-from-ticks-this-summer">How to Protect Yourself From Ticks This Summer</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="https://www.wisebread.com/7-ways-to-stay-healthy-on-vacation">7 Ways to Avoid Getting Seriously Sick on Vacation</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Health and Beauty Lifestyle depression health tips healthy eating living alone living on your own roommates stress Wed, 09 May 2018 08:00:25 +0000 Paul Michael 2138205 at https://www.wisebread.com 5 Money Accomplishments You Should Be Proud Of https://www.wisebread.com/5-money-accomplishments-you-should-be-proud-of <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/5-money-accomplishments-you-should-be-proud-of" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="https://wisebread-killeracesmedia.netdna-ssl.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/happy_excited_woman_throwing_money.jpg" alt="Happy excited woman throwing money" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Feeling overwhelmed by how much progress you need to make on your financial goals? It may be time to focus on how far you have come already rather than how far you have left to go.</p> <p>Here are some major financial accomplishments that you should be proud of. And even if you aren't quite hitting those accomplishments just yet, we've got tips to help get you there.</p> <h2>1. Paying off debt</h2> <p>Don't wait until all of your debt is paid off to celebrate. Even paying off one credit card or loan is a huge accomplishment that can motivate you to keep going. You may be encouraged to pay off the rest of your debt faster, or put more money aside in your savings account.</p> <p>If you feel like your debt repayment plan is not going anywhere, you might need to change up your approach to see real results. First off, commit to never making only minimum monthly payments and stop using your credit cards. If you still aren't seeing progress, consider doing a balance transfer to a promotional <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-best-0-balance-transfer-credit-cards?ref=internal" target="_blank">0% APR credit card</a> so that you can tackle the debt more intentionally without drowning in high interest rates. Just make sure to pay off the debt before the promotional 0% APR window closes. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/fastest-way-to-pay-off-10000-in-credit-card-debt?ref=seealso" target="_blank">The Fastest Way to Pay Off $10,000 in Credit Card Debt</a>)</p> <h2>2. Making retirement contributions</h2> <p>If a portion of your income is directed to your retirement account before it hits your bank account, give yourself a huge pat on the back. Not only are you successfully building up your 401(k), but you are also decreasing your tax burden for the year. If your company offers a match on contributions, it's even better to contribute enough to at least secure the company match. You don't want to leave any free money on the table.</p> <p>Not making retirement contributions yet or only contributing a small percentage? The least painful way to up your contribution rate is to have your contribution percentage automatically increased by one to two percent every year. If you make $60,000 a year, contributing 3 percent comes out to around $75 per biweekly paycheck. You probably won't miss that money, especially if you aim to get a small raise or promotion each year.</p> <p>Don't fall into the trap of thinking that your efforts are too small. It might not seem like your contributions are growing at first, but after a decade, you will start seeing the power of compounding take effect. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-easiest-ways-to-catch-up-on-retirement-savings-later-in-life?ref=seealso" target="_blank">7 Easiest Ways to Catch Up on Retirement Savings Later in Life</a>)</p> <h2>3. Getting a raise</h2> <p>Whether you automatically got a pay bump, or you had the gumption to ask for a raise, congratulations; you should be proud! To stay ahead of the game, make sure you don't increase your cost of living along with your bigger paycheck. Instead, live as if you never received the raise at all. If you want to treat yourself, you can put a little bit of money aside each month to reward yourself at the end of the year with something fun &mdash; so long as it doesn't negate your extra earnings.</p> <p>Are you working hard but feel underpaid? There's a good chance you will never receive a raise if you don't ask for one. If your current employer won't increase your salary, start applying for positions that will grant you a higher paycheck. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-negotiate-a-raise-out-of-the-blue?ref=seealso" target="_blank">How to Negotiate a Raise Out of the Blue</a>)</p> <h2>4. Increasing your credit score</h2> <p>Boosting your credit score is a great feat, especially if you've had to bounce back from a low score, bankruptcy, or an account going to collections. It takes time and dedication to increase your credit score and fix negative marks against your report, but once you are in a good credit range, you can change many other areas of your finances. You can refinance to a lower interest rate for an existing mortgage or car loan, or get a better credit card with a higher limit and better rewards. A higher credit score can also lead you to buying the home of your dreams if you've been stuck with only rentals.</p> <p>Still wishing for a better credit score? It doesn't come through sheer hope. Monitoring your credit score health through free resources like <a href="https://www.creditsesame.com/" target="_blank">Credit Sesame</a> can help you identify the areas that are hurting your score the most, such as inconsistent payments or too much debt. One thing to note is that free credit reporting sites often use a different credit scoring metric (the VantageScore) than what lenders use when they approve you for financing. If you want a more accurate look into your credit score, you can order your actual FICO score from <a href="https://shareasale.com/r.cfm?b=1150834&amp;u=255320&amp;m=41089&amp;urllink=&amp;afftrack=" target="_blank">myFICO</a>. Ordering your credit score from one of the three credit bureaus (Experian, Equifax, or TransUnion) will run you about $19. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/is-it-worth-paying-for-your-credit-score?ref=seealso" target="_blank">Is It Worth Paying for Your Credit Score?</a>)</p> <h2>5. Living frugally</h2> <p>Here's a financial accomplishment that anyone can be proud of, no matter the size of their paycheck. Living frugally can cover a wide range of areas, from ditching meat twice a week for beans and rice, to stashing $20 a week in a savings account, to buying a used kitchen table and saving yourself $400. Any time you opt for the less expensive choice or choose to save money rather than spend, be proud of yourself.</p> <p>Being more frugal in your everyday living doesn't have to be complicated. Simply packing your lunch with leftovers or pantry staples instead of purchasing a $7 meal every day of the workweek will save you $35. Similarly, inviting friends over for a game night and snacks can save you $20&ndash;$50 over seeing a movie or hanging out at the bar.</p> <p>The best way to get started with living frugally is to look at your budget and identify where you spend the most money. Then come up with creative ways to decrease these costs and try them out. Take it a step further and devote the money you saved toward debt repayment or a savings account. It will add up. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-only-6-rules-of-frugal-living-you-need-to-know?ref=seealso" target="_blank">The Only 6 Rules of Frugal Living You Need to Know</a>)</p> <p>Stop giving yourself a hard time about not being exactly where you want to be money wise and realize just how far you have come. Do you have more money saved this year than you did last year? Do you have less debt? Are you making more money? Feel proud of the growth you have made, and work on being even more financially fit next year.</p> <h2 style="text-align: center;">Like this article? Pin it!</h2> <div align="center"><a data-pin-do="buttonPin" data-pin-count="above" data-pin-tall="true" href="https://www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2F5-money-accomplishments-you-should-be-proud-of&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2F5%2520Money%2520Accomplishments%2520You%2520Should%2520Be%2520Proud%2520Of.jpg&amp;description=5%20Money%20Accomplishments%20You%20Should%20Be%20Proud%20Of"></a></p> <script async defer src="//assets.pinterest.com/js/pinit.js"></script></div> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="https://wisebread-killeracesmedia.netdna-ssl.com/files/fruganomics/u5180/5%20Money%20Accomplishments%20You%20Should%20Be%20Proud%20Of.jpg" alt="5 Money Accomplishments You Should Be Proud Of" width="250" height="374" /></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="https://www.wisebread.com/ashley-eneriz">Ashley Eneriz</a> of <a href="https://www.wisebread.com/5-money-accomplishments-you-should-be-proud-of">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="https://www.wisebread.com/6-ways-to-celebrate-a-raise-without-spending-it-all">6 Ways to Celebrate a Raise Without Spending It All</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="https://www.wisebread.com/9-smart-moves-to-make-after-getting-a-raise-or-promotion">9 Smart Moves to Make After Getting a Raise or Promotion</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="https://www.wisebread.com/dont-start-a-family-before-reaching-these-5-money-goals">Don&#039;t Start a Family Before Reaching These 5 Money Goals</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="https://www.wisebread.com/are-you-putting-off-these-9-adult-money-moves">Are You Putting Off These 9 Adult Money Moves?</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="https://www.wisebread.com/11-money-habits-that-make-you-look-financially-immature">11 Money Habits That Make You Look Financially Immature</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Personal Finance Lifestyle accomplishments company match credit score debt repayment frugal living money moves promotion raise retirement Mon, 07 May 2018 08:00:18 +0000 Ashley Eneriz 2136123 at https://www.wisebread.com 9 Ways Work-At-Home Seniors Can Master Work-Life Balance https://www.wisebread.com/9-ways-work-at-home-seniors-can-master-work-life-balance <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/9-ways-work-at-home-seniors-can-master-work-life-balance" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="https://wisebread-killeracesmedia.netdna-ssl.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/mature_woman_working_on_computer_0.jpg" alt="Mature woman working on computer" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>You're retired, but maybe you still want to keep a hand in your old business. Or maybe you love consulting, or you want some extra cash, or you don't like having too much idle time on your hands. No matter the reason, working from home can be a great way for retirees to earn an income without being subject to the daily commute and grind of a traditional 9-to-5.</p> <p>Remote work can be highly rewarding and even fun. Here are some ways to keep your work-life balance while working from home in retirement.</p> <h2>1. Look for a flexible schedule</h2> <p>One of the great benefits of retiring is being able to do what you want, when you want. Don't lose that completely by ending up with a rigid work schedule. Sure, you'll need to be there for your new employers or clients some of the time, but make sure you have the flexibility to take time off for the things that matter most to you.</p> <h2>2. Start small</h2> <p>It may be tempting to jump right into a new job. However, working from home is different from going to work at a company. If you've never done it before, it can be overwhelming at first to be self-directed and spend so much time alone.</p> <p>If you think you want to work from home, start by taking on a project or two, or working a few hours a week. If you like it and can still do all of the other things that you want to do with your retirement, you can look for a more permanent gig.</p> <h2>3. Make time for family</h2> <p>Many retirees make the jump into retirement at least in part so they can spend more time with their families. If this is you, ensure that your new job doesn't interrupt this time. Even if you work from home, it's important to put child care obligations or family days on the calendar early, and make sure your new employer knows you won't be available at those times. You can keep your family first even if you're going back to work. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/9-signs-your-work-life-balance-is-off?ref=seealso" target="_blank">9 Signs Your Work-Life Balance Is Off</a>)</p> <h2>4. Unplug yourself</h2> <p>Whether you're old or young, it's easy to get sucked into the internet. You may find yourself surfing Facebook for pictures of your grandchildren, looking up decorating ideas on Pinterest, or getting lost in a sea of YouTube videos.</p> <p>Time spent online is often little more than a distraction. Ultimately, it isn't very satisfying, and it often takes you away from the things you really want or need to be doing. Limit your time online, especially when you're away from work, so you can really engage with the people and the experiences around you. If you're glued to your desk all day, you probably won't be enjoying your retirement to its fullest.</p> <h2>5. Plan vacations ahead of time</h2> <p>Some retirees enter retirement with the intention to travel. You can still do this while working from home. Make sure you get your vacations on the calendar early so your employer knows when you won't be available. This helps ensure that you'll have the free time you need to fully embrace your travel, even if you have to get right back to work when you get home.</p> <h2>6. Exercise</h2> <p>Exercise makes us feel better. It gets the blood flowing and helps boost our mood. Both of these will go far toward helping you feel like your life is in balance. When you make time for exercise, you're making time for yourself. You're also prioritizing your health, as exercise can help you live longer and avoid or minimize many of the physical problems that plague people in retirement. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-smart-ways-to-invest-in-your-health?ref=seealso" target="_blank">7 Smart Ways to Invest in Your Health</a>)</p> <h2>7. Meditate</h2> <p>Make time to meditate. Clear your head. If you don't like meditation, get a journal and spend a few minutes every day writing down your thoughts. Giving yourself this space helps you remember what's important to you, and that your stated priorities are actually prioritized in your real life. It also gives you the mental clarity to fully engage with work when you're working, and with other people and things when you're outside of work. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-meditation-alternatives-for-people-with-busy-minds?ref=seealso" target="_blank">6 Meditation Alternatives for People With Busy Minds</a>)</p> <h2>8. Walk every hour</h2> <p>When you're on the clock, make sure you stay moving. Get up every hour and take a short walk, even if it's just down the hall and back. This not only fights the dangers of a sedentary lifestyle, but it also helps you stay focused.</p> <h2>9. Schedule time to give back</h2> <p>If one of your retirement goals was to give back to the community, rest assured that you can still do that while you're working from home. Make volunteering a priority by scheduling it in your calendar, getting the time off or clearing your client list for the day, and helping out however and wherever you like. Giving back will offer a sense of fulfillment, and it will also remind you of the things that are truly important. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/9-unexpected-benefits-of-volunteering%20?ref=seealso" target="_blank">9 Unexpected Benefits of Volunteering</a>)</p> <h2 style="text-align: center;">Like this article? Pin it!</h2> <div align="center"><a data-pin-do="buttonPin" data-pin-count="above" data-pin-tall="true" href="https://www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2F9-ways-work-at-home-seniors-can-master-work-life-balance&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2F9%2520Ways%2520Work-At-Home%2520Seniors%2520Can%2520Master%2520Work-Life%2520Balance.jpg&amp;description=9%20Ways%20Work-At-Home%20Seniors%20Can%20Master%20Work-Life%20Balance"></a></p> <script async defer src="//assets.pinterest.com/js/pinit.js"></script></div> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="https://wisebread-killeracesmedia.netdna-ssl.com/files/fruganomics/u5180/9%20Ways%20Work-At-Home%20Seniors%20Can%20Master%20Work-Life%20Balance.jpg" alt="9 Ways Work-At-Home Seniors Can Master Work-Life Balance" width="250" height="374" /></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="https://www.wisebread.com/sarah-winfrey">Sarah Winfrey</a> of <a href="https://www.wisebread.com/9-ways-work-at-home-seniors-can-master-work-life-balance">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="https://www.wisebread.com/how-to-find-your-new-identity-after-retirement">How to Find Your New Identity After Retirement</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="https://www.wisebread.com/how-to-live-a-retired-life-before-retirement">How to Live a Retired Life Before Retirement</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="https://www.wisebread.com/5-ways-to-keep-anxiety-from-ruining-your-budget">5 Ways to Keep Anxiety From Ruining Your Budget</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="https://www.wisebread.com/7-retirement-splurges-that-are-worth-every-penny">7 Retirement Splurges That Are Worth Every Penny</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="https://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> Career Building Lifestyle Retirement down time exercise family meditating telecommuting volunteering work-life balance working from home Fri, 04 May 2018 09:00:08 +0000 Sarah Winfrey 2131865 at https://www.wisebread.com 6 Reasons You're Still Struggling to Pay Bills https://www.wisebread.com/6-reasons-youre-still-struggling-to-pay-bills <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/6-reasons-youre-still-struggling-to-pay-bills" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="https://wisebread-killeracesmedia.netdna-ssl.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/man_and_woman_with_financial_problem_1.jpg" alt="Man and woman with financial problem" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>You've worked hard. You've hit your career goals. Your salary has never been higher. Still, at the end of the every month, you break into a cold sweat worrying if there's enough money to go around. Why, at this point in your life, does bill paying still feel like a painful game of financial Twister? It's time to get to the root of the problem. Here are six reasons you're still struggling to pay bills.</p> <h2>1. You don't have a budget</h2> <p>Budgets are how people anticipate their expenses and allocate their spending. Without this essential framework, your financial life will look a lot like the Wild West &mdash; filled with drama and boom and bust cycles (and probably too many saloon scenes). If you're making late payments or missing payments altogether, it's time to <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/build-your-first-budget-in-5-easy-steps?ref=internal" target="_blank">build your first budget</a>, cowboy.</p> <h2>2. You have too much credit card debt</h2> <p>With astronomical interest charges, late fees, and other penalties, credit card debt leaves millions of families strapped for cash year after year. If you're struggling to pay your bills each month, take a hard look at your credit habits. How much of your income is devoted to servicing debt? Are you barely covering the minimum payments or racking up new charges? If so, grab a shovel. It's time to dig yourself out of high-interest credit card debt. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/fastest-way-to-pay-off-10000-in-credit-card-debt?ref=seealso" target="_blank">The Fastest Way to Pay Off $10,000 in Credit Card Debt</a>)</p> <h2>3. You're house poor</h2> <p>If your mortgage consumes more than 25 percent of your income, you may be house poor. For many, that single payment is simply too steep and leaves little money leftover for bills and other budget essentials. Think you may be house poor? Explore refinance options, rent out a spare bedroom, or consider selling and moving into a more affordable home. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-make-ends-meet-when-youre-house-poor?ref=seealso" target="_blank">How to Make Ends Meet When You're House Poor</a>)</p> <h2>4. You can't stop impulse buying</h2> <p>We all fall prey to impulse buys every now and then. But if off-budget spending has become a way of life, you're probably broke by bill-paying day. Examine why impulse buying is so attractive. Is it a way of relieving stress? Is it a reward for working long hours at a job you don't like? How could you rearrange your life and take control of your spending? (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/9-simple-ways-to-stop-impulse-buying?ref=seealso" target="_blank">9 Simple Ways to Stop Impulse Buying</a>)</p> <h2>5. You're too focused on keeping up with the Joneses</h2> <p>Trying to keep up with the Joneses can exhaust you mentally, emotionally, and financially. If you're constantly struggling to pay your bills, ask yourself: &quot;To what degree is my spending influenced by the spending habits of others? Am I trying to project an image I can't afford?&quot; Since paying your monthly bills doesn't give you much &quot;image bang&quot; for your buck, you may simply be prioritizing status over solvency. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/4-money-lessons-you-can-learn-from-the-joneses?ref=seealso" target="_blank">4 Money Lessons You Can Learn From the Joneses</a>)</p> <h2>6. Someone's draining your income</h2> <p>If you're always behind the eight ball with your bills, maybe the problem isn't some<em>thing</em>, but some<em>one</em>. Is your BFF always &quot;a little strapped for cash?&quot; Are you supporting a chronically unmotivated spouse, sibling, or adult child? Practice a little tough love (and self-care); use <em>your </em>cash to cover your own bills, protect your own credit, and keep your lights on. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/4-things-you-should-make-your-adult-child-pay-for?ref=seealso" target="_blank">4 Things You Should Make Your Adult Child Pay For</a>)</p> <h2 style="text-align: center;">Like this article? Pin it!</h2> <div align="center"><a data-pin-do="buttonPin" data-pin-count="above" data-pin-tall="true" href="https://www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2F6-reasons-youre-still-struggling-to-pay-bills&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2F6%2520Reasons%2520You%2527re%2520Still%2520Struggling%2520to%2520Pay%2520Bills.jpg&amp;description=6%20Reasons%20You're%20Still%20Struggling%20to%20Pay%20Bills"></a></p> <script async defer src="//assets.pinterest.com/js/pinit.js"></script></div> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="https://wisebread-killeracesmedia.netdna-ssl.com/files/fruganomics/u5180/6%20Reasons%20You%27re%20Still%20Struggling%20to%20Pay%20Bills.jpg" alt="6 Reasons You're Still Struggling to Pay Bills" width="250" height="374" /></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="https://www.wisebread.com/kentin-waits">Kentin Waits</a> of <a href="https://www.wisebread.com/6-reasons-youre-still-struggling-to-pay-bills">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="https://www.wisebread.com/11-money-habits-that-make-you-look-financially-immature">11 Money Habits That Make You Look Financially Immature</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="https://www.wisebread.com/how-a-new-marriage-can-survive-student-loan-debt">How a New Marriage Can Survive Student Loan Debt</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="https://www.wisebread.com/5-types-of-overspenders-which-one-are-you">5 Types of Overspenders — Which One Are You?</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="https://www.wisebread.com/5-signs-you-arent-ready-for-a-credit-card">5 Signs You Aren&#039;t Ready for a Credit Card</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="https://www.wisebread.com/8-factors-that-could-keep-you-broke-forever">8 Factors That Could Keep You Broke Forever</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Personal Finance Lifestyle bills budgeting credit card debt house poor impulse buys income keeping up with the joneses making ends meet paycheck to paycheck Thu, 03 May 2018 09:00:11 +0000 Kentin Waits 2131787 at https://www.wisebread.com 7 Retirement Splurges That Are Worth Every Penny https://www.wisebread.com/7-retirement-splurges-that-are-worth-every-penny <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/7-retirement-splurges-that-are-worth-every-penny" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="https://wisebread-killeracesmedia.netdna-ssl.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/mature_woman_holding_dog_at_home.jpg" alt="Mature woman holding dog at home" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Your golden years are finally here, and while you don't want to blow through your nest egg too quickly, there is still a little room for splurges here and there, especially if they double as self-care. Here are seven splurges in retirement you definitely won't regret.</p> <h2>1. Adopting a pet</h2> <p>Dogs offer many benefits to retirement-aged individuals. Not only do they give you companionship, but they also give you a reason to get up and exercise more. There are also several studies that show dog ownership can reduce the risk of heart attack and lower stress.</p> <p>Not into dogs? That's okay! Adopting a cat can provide just as many benefits and can be less work to take care of. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-8-best-pets-for-frugal-animal-lovers?ref=seealso" target="_blank">The 8 Best Pets for Frugal Animal Lovers</a>.)</p> <h2>2. Achieving your goals</h2> <p>Whether you sit down and write an official bucket list or have one or two goals you wish to achieve, now is the perfect time to check those boxes. Maybe you want to eat a $100-steak, or spend a week in Europe. Whatever it is, you can make it happen. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-european-destinations-finally-cheap-enough-to-visit?ref=seealso" target="_blank">6 European Destinations Finally Cheap Enough to Visit</a>)</p> <p>Financially, you might not be able to afford accomplishing&nbsp;<em>everything </em>on your list, and you definitely don't want to go into debt in retirement. However, by using savvy saving techniques, you can find discounts on any restaurant, travel destination, or adventure.</p> <h2>3. Spending time with family</h2> <p>If you don't feel like you see your family members enough, invest in seeing them more regularly. Spend a week with them and offer to watch the grandkids. Or plan times for your family to come visit you. Traveling to visit loved ones can add up quickly, so it's important to find free or cheap activities when you're together, and remember that quality time doesn't have to cost a thing. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/47-cheap-fun-things-to-do-this-weekend?ref=seealso" target="_blank">47 Cheap, Fun Things to Do This Weekend</a>)</p> <h2>4. Trying new hobbies</h2> <p>Retirement is a dream come true at first since you finally get to relax. However, it's easy to grow bored of the same routine every day, and you might find yourself missing the fast-paced work day.</p> <p>One way to avoid boredom is to keep yourself busy with new hobbies. What have you always wanted to learn? Find classes or lessons in skills that you want to improve, whether it's a Spanish class, cooking class, or piano class. If you enjoy gardening or sewing, find ways to make it more sociable through local sewing groups. If you consider yourself skilled at one hobby, perhaps photography or auto mechanics, volunteer your time teaching others. When we engage in the activities that we love and then share them with others who enjoy them, we feel more satisfied. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-fun-hobbies-you-can-take-up-for-free?ref=seealso" target="_blank">10 Fun Hobbies You Can Take Up for Free</a>)</p> <h2>5. Healthy foods</h2> <p>Now is not the time to settle for eating processed foods. Investing in healthy, organic foods will always be worth the cost. And if you shop smart &mdash; seek out seasonal produce and use grocery coupon apps while shopping &mdash; it doesn't even have to cost you more. You want to postpone the aches and pains and health issues that come naturally with aging as long as possible, and eating healthier is one way to do so. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/25-low-cost-foods-packed-with-nutrition?ref=seealso" target="_blank">25 Low-Cost Foods Packed With Nutrition</a>)</p> <h2>6. Personal fitness</h2> <p>Don't wait for back pain to flare up before treating yourself to massages, chiropractic care, acupressure, and reflexology. Sign up for yoga classes or join your local walking group to stay active and fit. You've worked your body hard your whole adult life, and now it's time to give it some TLC. You deserve it now.</p> <h2>7. Home upgrades</h2> <p>Now that you aren't running off to work every day, expect to spend a lot more time at home. What would make your home easier to live in now and in the future? Consider splurging on a remodel to make your house more appealing to you, as well as to benefit you in the future. Even small home upgrades can add a lot to your current comfort and your listing later, should you decide to sell your house. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/9-easy-home-improvements-that-add-thousands-to-your-listing?ref=seealso" target="_blank">9 Easy Home Improvements That Add Thousands to Your Listing</a>)</p> <h2 style="text-align: center;">Like this article? Pin it!</h2> <div align="center"><a data-pin-do="buttonPin" data-pin-count="above" data-pin-tall="true" href="https://www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2F7-retirement-splurges-that-are-worth-every-penny&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2F7%2520Retirement%2520Splurges%2520That%2520Are%2520Worth%2520Every%2520Penny.jpg&amp;description=7%20Retirement%20Splurges%20That%20Are%20Worth%20Every%20Penny"></a></p> <script async defer src="//assets.pinterest.com/js/pinit.js"></script></div> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="https://wisebread-killeracesmedia.netdna-ssl.com/files/fruganomics/u5180/7%20Retirement%20Splurges%20That%20Are%20Worth%20Every%20Penny_0.jpg" alt="7 Retirement Splurges That Are Worth Every Penny" width="250" height="374" /></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="https://www.wisebread.com/ashley-eneriz">Ashley Eneriz</a> of <a href="https://www.wisebread.com/7-retirement-splurges-that-are-worth-every-penny">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="https://www.wisebread.com/how-to-find-your-new-identity-after-retirement">How to Find Your New Identity After Retirement</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="https://www.wisebread.com/how-to-get-the-most-out-of-your-overseas-retirement">How to Get the Most Out of Your Overseas Retirement</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="https://www.wisebread.com/5-questions-couples-must-ask-before-retirement">5 Questions Couples Must Ask Before Retirement</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="https://www.wisebread.com/11-ways-to-get-the-most-value-from-your-all-inclusive-vacation">11 Ways to Get the Most Value From Your All-Inclusive Vacation</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="https://www.wisebread.com/5-money-moves-to-make-before-taking-a-mini-retirement">5 Money Moves to Make Before Taking a Mini Retirement</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Lifestyle Retirement family healthy eating hobbies pets retirement tips saving money splurges travel tips Thu, 03 May 2018 08:00:18 +0000 Ashley Eneriz 2136122 at https://www.wisebread.com