Tuesday, August 19, 2014

money talk: little money-saving tricks (like clicking unsubscribe!!)

Good morning! I'm sipping on the green tea I rediscovered during my move as I write this. It was hidden away in the back of my pantry and this morning, it's the perfect mellow caffeine nudge I'm looking for...

Let's talk more money. I want to be a smart dental student who not only rocks her biochemistry exam but is also smart with her dollars. I love reading about money tips & advice online and here's a comprehensive list I found of little tips to save your cents from StyleCaster. Here's some of my favorite money tips:

101. Unsubscribe from flash sale emails and sale alerts. Go directly the retailer’s sites if you want, but you’d be surprised how little you impulse buy without the pressure of limited-time emails being hand-delivered to your inbox all day. 
71. Never go grocery shopping when you’re super-hungry. Everything looks good, so you’ll undoubtedly start throwing in items you normally would never buy. 
42. Another easy money-saving tip: Stash healthy snacks at work so you won’t have to hit the vending machine or Starbucks. 
12. Unsure about buying something? Calculate the cost per wear or use: Total cost of the item divided by the estimated number of times you’ll wear or use it.

Do you have money rules for yourself? I live by #71. I'll come home with three boxes of cereal and ten yogurt cartons and be like oops... I also love the concept of "cost per wear". I have beautiful dresses I've bought impulsively and worn only once. I love having them hang beautifully in my closet but every time I look I think "oh, I should really wear that next time..." It's like I'm paying for them in guilt!

My absolute favorite rule is #101. Unsubscribe, unsubscribe, unsubscribe. Sometimes when there's a shopping email in my inbox, I find myself clicking away and scrolling lustfully. I have absolutely no plan (or need) to buy any of those small pretty things but I pretty soon find myself filling up the online shopping cart! So for August, I unsubscribed myself from every shopping email. Now I'm not so tempted by those pretty shiny things in my inbox.


Here's my question: do you talk money with your friends? With the recent recession, people talk more openly about personal finances. Sheryl Sandberg and the recent spotlight on career women are helping us talk about salary and money as well. My family never discussed money growing up, so specific information with specific numbers (often unprompted) make me uncomfortable.

I do love discussing general ideas and tips, especially with my fellow dental school students. We gush about student discounts on Broadway tickets or good sales for our (future) grown-up wardrobe. But sometimes I wonder, what exactly is "too much" or "cheap enough"? Money talk is hard without bringing in numbers. Do you have tips for easing into money talk?