Give me a break! We’re not shopping enough?

Remember how both Bushes – Sr and Jr – exhorted us  to defend freedom by consuming? Now with the economy gasping, those who’d have you go into debt to salve the nation’s economic woes (say what?) have a new tactic. The psychological peril of “over-saving” – as reported in the NY Times. Over-savers, suffer from “hyperopia, the medical term for Continue reading


Getting value and saving money on batteries

Before you shift your attention to something more interesting (like those dust bunnies under your desk), I hope you’ll choose to read a bit on this subject because these tips will save you money and help reduce your environmental impact. As you probably know, most batteries contain mercury which is environmentally toxic. Some stores, like Ikea, now sell alkaline batteries that contain no mercury or cadmium at all. Best of all, they cost only $1.99 for a ten-pack which is the cheapest I’ve ever seen. Although Ikea earns points for accepting all types of batteries for recycling, it’s still important to minimize the number of overall batteries we use. On that score (and in terms of long-term cost savings), rechargeables win over alkaline batteries every time. I have been using rechargeable batteries for years but recently learned that the technology has vastly improved. My favorite blogger, Continue reading

Getting value and saving money on car insurance

I was recently invited by the kind folks at the Oxbow Eco-Center in Florida to give a talk on Your Money or Your Life on April 4. My husband and I decided it would be a great opportunity for a family vacation with our two daughters, Elli (6) and Bella (3). Flights were too expensive, so we resolved to drive our 2001 Mazda 626. The only problem is that our car now has 93,000 miles on it which made me think that we needed a back-up plan in case the car died mid-trip. I decided to call my insurance agent to confirm the details of our road assistance policy and wanted to share two aspects of the conversation: Continue reading

Coming to NYC, Boston, FL, CA, VA and WA

Vicki Robin and Monique Tilford will be in NYC this week. We’re hosting a very informal meeting on Thursday night, March 26 from 7-9pm in Manhattan. To get the exact details of where we’re gathering, please RSVP to Our NYC Regional Coordinator Teri Niadna will also be attending. We hope you’ll be able to join us — we’d love to meet you.

Vicki and Monique will also be hosting a weekend workshop at the famed Rowe Conference Center in western Massachusetts June 12-14. All are invited — from newcomers to those who have been doing the steps for some time to those who want to teach the nine-step program. For full details, visit

Within the next month, Vicki, Monique and Mark Zaifman will also be speaking in California, Washington, Florida, and Virginia. Visit Continue reading

Ideas from other FIers

Sometimes FIers send us great stories and ideas. Here are three. Tell us yours.

Long-time FIers Mike and Linda Lenich wrote: We just finished our Monthly Tabulation for February 2009.  We were very surprised to discover this is Monthly Tab #200.  200!?!??  Wow… 200 Monthly Tabulations already.  And this and the previous 199 Tabs continue to inform and help align our focus.  Each month, there is a new insight, be it one more dot on the Wall Chart that illuminates a new pattern, or a realization we’re still managing to spend less then we take in (even with our move from Chicago to Ludington, MI). Continue reading

Want to serve as a YMoYL regional coordinator?

Although some people are able to reach financial independence all by themselves after reading Your Money or Your Life, most of the people I know prefer to work the program together with other like-minded individuals. In fact, we get at least one email a day from someone in the U.S. or Canada who wants us to help them find other YMoYL advocates. Would you like to help others successfully implement the Your Money or Your Life program? If so, I hope you’ll Continue reading

You heard it here way back in the 20th century

When Tom Friedman – famous tout-er of globalization – uses his columns to challenge the growth paradigm, you know the world is changing. He quotes here two long time prophets (back a few years ago they called them Cassandras) of coming climate change, Joe Romm and Paul Gilding) and asserts that 2008 will be seen at the beginning of the “Great Disruption” when “Mother Nature and Father Greed have hit the wall at once”.  When digging in to the update of YOUR MONEY OR YOUR LIFE a year ago, I was amazed at how much we already were “on the money” about the links between eonomic growth and ecological decline.  Reporters now ask me Continue reading

“Don’t buy stuff if you don’t have the money” by SNL?

Once again, Saturday Night Live nailed it. Watch this clip about “Don’t buy stuff if you don’t have the money”.  Of course, that’s obvious to you. And me. But don’t be surprised if you try to teach others about this approach to money and run into this kind of confusion…

If you have been an FI educator, how have people responded to you? Anything like Steve Martin?

Q&A with Vicki in the news

Two great website authors have interviewed me via email recently – the Simple Dollar and US News and World Report – and the articles are now on the web. They are quick to read, and interesting imho.  Kimberly Palmer is a senior editor for U.S. News & World Report, writing about how to save money, avoid scams, manage debt, and be a savvy shopper. Her review is here.  Trent Hamm is the host and author of The Simple Dollar, a fantastic website “for those of us who need both cents and sense: people fighting debt and bad spending habits while building a financially secure future and still affording a latte or two.” His interview is here.  Hope you enjoy the read – and do write us here with your questions about YOUR MONEY OR YOUR LIFE.