Hi and welcome to The Give and Get! I’m Lisa, a 30-something lawyer in the DC area, helping you to find meaning through money.
Why I Write about Finding Meaning Through Money
I love reading personal finance blogs but I started getting concerned with some of the tips I was reading. For instance, I read a blog article once that advocated eating food from the trash. A quick three things wrong about this tactic: 1) your reputation and your health are more important than money (even if you don’t believe this philosophically, they are both very costly to repair); 2) food is inexpensive, so this is an inefficient way to save money; and 3) I love food and wouldn’t wish this strategy on my worst enemy. I want to write about saving money but also living a life of integrity and wonderful pleasures – like cooking, eating and sharing great food, not skulking around eating someone’s gross cold leftovers behind their back.
On the other hand, I read another article about someone working one year and then quitting to travel the world. I enjoy travel and I’ve been to 15 countries. But I think a life where you’re just a dilettante, where you’re just traveling to other countries, watching other people live their lives, is boring. It’s too me-focused. I want my life, and my money, to be about more than fleeting pleasure; I want to develop as a person, help other people, learn, build, create, connect; I don’t want my life just to be spectating. The first reason I write is I want to show a different perspective on personal finance besides miserly frugality and empty hedonism.
Finally, I’ve read a lot of blogs that straight up give terrible advice. Get married to save money. Create a blog to make money. Lecturing low-income individuals on how to save money by presenting a budget that conveniently ignores most expenses that normal people have. I don’t really feel that I’m in a position to give advice but I can tell you what I’ve done and why. And I can make snarky comments about the bad advice.
The second reason I write is that, in my real life I know so many women kicking butt in their careers, but I don’t necessarily see that in the personal finance blogosphere. I could see my mind being warped into thinking that women were bad with money because well-paid women seem to be left out of the conversation. There’s nothing wrong with women who are struggling with their finances blogging about it, but I think it’d be great to have examples of women who are killing it, to balance it out. Everyone needs great mentors.
Here are some of my favorite articles:
Why the Poor have Nicer iPhones than You
The Weird and Easy Hack I use to Make Failing Fun
On Minimalism and Remembering What Really Matters
On Treating Yo’self
Why “Frugal” is my Least Favorite F-Word
Here are some more articles that you might like:
How I Paid off $112,000 in debt in 18 months
How I Saved $65k in Four Years for Graduate School
How I Saved Tens of Thousands in Law School
A Controversial Way to Save Money on Groceries
Other articles I’ve written:
3 Things that Allowed me to Save 50% of my Income Without a Budget
4 Handy Tips that Helped me Lose 10 Pounds, Read 70 Books & More Last Year
5 Small Ways to Improve Your Finances Right Now
On the Path to FIRE, How Much Suffering is Too Much (Or Not Enough)?
Your vocation in life is where your greatest joy meets the world’s greatest need.