The Power of Being FI

When I first read Your Money or Your Life in 1992, the concept of transforming your relationship with money and achieving financial independence seemed like a worthy goal. I remember thinking and hoping I could skip the transformation work and move quickly to the financial independence part. As usual, I wanted my dessert first. As I learned soon enough, no shortcuts allowed. Now, 17 years later, and living through the worst financial crisis in a generation, I’m glad I didn’t skip dinner. Continue reading


Advice from Joe’s old boss

Joe Dominguez worked for Loeb Rhodes and Co, an investment banking firm, for five years as a technical analyst and author of a weekly market letter. His  boss was John Loeb, an  imperious banker formed in the 1930’s through 1960’s. Interestingly, Loeb’s sage advice popped up this week in FORTUNE on – first in a series of articles on the financial crisis.  Reading it I hear Joe, too – astute, distanced from daily ups and downs, wise. Here are Loeb’s bullet points:

  • Once in every seven to ten years, there is a period of excessive general speculation culminating in a severe panic or depression when the man who is borrowing money is at great disadvantage and he who has ready cash stands like a tower, four-square to the ill winds that blow. Continue reading

Everything (almost) you ever wanted to know about Comparison Shopping

Take my last two cars, for example. I saved up enough cash for the purchase. I did my research and picked the precise car for me. I called all the dealers within 100 miles and said, “I have cash to make a purchase today. What’s your best price for this car?” In both cases (my Toyota Tercel 4WD in 1984 and my Honda Insight in 2002) there was a 30% difference between the top and bottom price – and – duh uh – I picked the bottom one. But that was before the online product research and comparison shopping sites of today. Most often I go to ebay or craigslist but there’s more to the story. I just read a great article on how to be an online comparison shopper of the highest order. Continue reading

Help! My spouse doesn’t support the program

We recently received an email from a reader who has been married for many years. He said he loves his wife very much but that he is getting frustrated because her spending is not in alignment with his and is threatening his overall success in practicing the Your Money or Your Life program. What should he do?

The truth is that many people have struggled with this issue and have found a variety of creative ways to overcome it. I’ll offer three initial suggestions here. First of all, Continue reading

7 good money (habits) after bad

Who is responsible for your money life? Of course, the FI program says, “You are” and offers tools and perspectives for steering your money life back into alignment with your goals, dreams and values. The social sciences of neuroeconomics and behavioral economics can help explain why your brain goes to sleep or gets distracted by baubles – and a recent article from describes seven money traps and how to get out of them. Here’s a summary Continue reading

FIer Jane Dwinell’s Ten Great Investments

FIer Jane Dwinell blogs with her daughter, Dana Dwinell-Yardley. If you want to read about her FI way of life, complete with a slide show to make your mouth water, go here. If you want more of her practical wisdom from her blog, read on. She has real investment advice – and it’s not about where to make a killing now… Continue reading

How does she do it? #1

Years ago a filmmaker asked if she could interview me about my own lifestyle – like what i eat for breakfast and are there any clothes I buy new. I can’t tell you how much I didn’t want to do that. The whole point of FI Thinking is to think for yourself, observe your own life, make your own inspired discoveries, feel smart about how you have a great life on less money than you ever thought possible. What difference does it make to you to find out what I eat for breakfast? Continue reading