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Pinching All Your Pennies? Time to Learn to Let It Go

Pinching All Your Pennies? Time to Learn to Let It Go

Angela Colley

Via Youtube

Via Youtube

Whether you call it penny-pinching, frugality, or just plain ol’ being cheap, if you do it, you know it also comes with a hefty dose of worrying. You worry you didn’t get the best deal. You agonize over a missed promo code when shopping online. You debate the smallest of purchases. While some frugality can be a good thing, too much can drive anyone crazy.

It’s easier said than done, but sometimes it’s better just to let it go. Recently, Michelle Singletary, author of the nationally syndicated personal finance column, “The Color of Money,” talked about her own attempts to leave worry behind and enjoy life.

It started with a trip:

“To celebrate my 25th wedding anniversary, my husband and I took a trip to Italy. Leading up to it, I worried myself sick, checking and double-checking prices for everything. I keep researching prices even after I’ve booked a flight or reserved a room to see if rates have dropped. The upside is that I’ve saved money on some occasions.
The downside: I get upset when I can’t take advantage of the lower price. I blame myself, reasoning that I booked too soon. Or that I booked too late.”

And it didn’t get easier once she got there. “At one point during a walking tour to see the Basilica of St. Francis in Assisi,” Singletary writes, “I had to use the bathroom, but there was a 60-cent charge. I actually paused to weigh my options.”

The problem is, penny-pinching often comes from past influences, the way we were raised or our beyond-broke college years, but that doesn’t mean things can’t change. You can—as the song says—let it go. 

“But my economic angst comes from a deep place. There’s still that child in me who grew up low-income and who had to go without a lot of times. She’s scared. She’s fearful of not having enough. But I’m not that little Michelle anymore. And neither are you.”

Want to hear about the rest of Singletary’s hilarious (and educational) trip? Check out “Penny-Pinchers Unite: Let the Angst Go” at The Washington Post.

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