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My source of personal-finance inspiration

December 28th, 2010 at 10:45 am

I was thinking about ThriftoRama's post, about what personal finance books inspire her, and trying to remember if I have any.

You know, I don't think I've ever read a finance book. My impression of them might have been tainted years ago, when I dated a guy who loved "Rich Dad, Poor Dad" but whose own financial situation was a disaster. He was in his late 30s and had just gotten nowhere, despite that book sitting next to his toilet. In fact, I'm pretty sure he broke it off with me because he'd borrowed some money and was embarrassed that he couldn't pay it back!

I did subscribe to some personal finance blogs outside of SA, but the bloggers that are doing it for money get real repetitive after a while, so I don't read any of them anymore. I do get Kiplinger and Smart Money magazines and usually read them (although the investing articles are still mumbo jumbo to me).

The best ideas I get are just from reading SA blogs. Through all the day-to-day chatter runs a thread of really original ideas that just come out organically and are all the more useful for coming from people's everyday experiences. The immediacy of this kind of blogging, rather than spending time distilling and analyzing information until it's like a magazine article, is really valuable for getting insight into other people's personal finance philosophies and cherry-picking ideas and practices to try in your own life. (Plus, it's just really neat to get that glimpse of a part of people's lives that you don't usually in real life.)

I can tell a lot of people feel the same as me, because my blog recently topped 500,000 views! Kind of amazing for just three and a half years of blogging. Thanks for reading, everyone; and, to those of you who blog here as well, thanks for letting me read about your lives! Smile

4 Responses to “My source of personal-finance inspiration”

  1. MonkeyMama Says:


    I don't really care for any personal finance books (have read some). I've just never glimpsed much new or useful from a personal finance book.

    Before SA, the best financial advice/inspiration came from my family. I am lucky to have them. The SA blogs have expanded my horizons quite a bit and given me many new ideas.

  2. Swimgirl Says:

    I like to read a financial book now and then, but only as "inspiration," as Thriftorama said. I rarely get any great new ideas. But I am reminded of why we do things certain ways, and also of the fact that not everyone knows this basic information.

    I think those books can be inspiring, yes. Life-changing, no.

  3. Apprentice Bliss Hunter Says:

    Emm ... Good topic...

    Well.. I think these books can be a great help/inspiration to those in a financial mess who are coming to Personal Finance for the first time. They can give hope and structure which is very helpful when you are struggling.

    I've never read one right through. I'm probably aware of a lot of the best-selling titles, just never bothered getting them... especially since my local library doesn't have them.

    For me recently, I've learnt that I am not my Personal Finance situation, I am not my love-life, I am not my career (or lack there-of). I'm life itself temporarily expressing itself as a human being.

    When you are look at things that way, the flash new car is non-appealing, the big mortgage is a toy that life doesn't want to play with. The most important thing for me now is to remain debt-free and squirrel away a reasonable amount every month.

    Coz I want to be free to move with life as it pleases. If in 2 years time, I get a calling to buy an one-way ticket to Peru, I want to be able to get on the plane with no financial worries caused by owing people money back home.

    Money is just an after-dinner mint compared to the blessing of youth and good-health. While it would be nice to be a millionaire, I'm perfectly fine with just having "enough".

    It is important to remove money as a limiting factor in your life if you can, it is not important to have a million dollar house and a Mercedes.

    To that end, I think becoming aware of philosophers like:

    Eckhart Tolle
    Alan Watts

    can enrich your whole life including the financial aspect.

    p.s. Ceejay - I love your blog - it's one of my favourites :-)

  4. Looking Forward Says:

    I have read a few of Suze Orman's books. They have been helpful for explaining thing like a ROTH vs 401k and trusts vs wills etc..etc.

    I enjoy "seeing" inside other peoples lives too. So Thanks for writing your blog! Big Grin

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