Substitute the Word Money with the Word Freedom: Phrases to Try

"A big part of financial freedom is having your heart and mind free from worry about the what-ifs of life."

I recently came across an article written by Whitney Cummings on the last page of Money Magazine. She talks about her personal money management, but more importantly how she started substituting the word money for the word freedom. So I thought I would compile a list of phrases with this substitution. It's important to note that sometimes changing our language changes our mindset in a whole new way even if we haven't fully internalized it yet. Try these on for size. Speak them out loud. How does saying one versus the other make you feel?

Are We Spoiled Because Our Luxury Baseline Has Changed?

"Our luxury baseline has changed."

This is one of those small quotes that stood out to me from The Opposite of Spoiled: Raising Kids Who Are Grounded, Generous, and Smart About Money. The quote was in context to the fact that today's and tomorrow's kids have a different baseline for luxury. Their expectations of the world are completely different from ours. Most kids growing up today have everything at their fingertips. While we should be grateful for the new luxuries available today, we should continue to instill good values that allow ourselves and our kids to appreciate the simpler ways of doing things. This is the same for us adults too.

Why Take Advantage of a 401K: It's Part of Your Compensation

Without vision you don't see, and without practicality the bills don't get paid.

If your employer told you you would get a $5000 bonus each year, would you take it? Of course we all would, but we would ask the question, what do we have to do to get the bonus? How much to we have to meet in sales? How many projects do we have to complete? What performance metrics would be tracked and what do we have to do to meet it?

Guess what? That $5000 bonus is actually easier to get than you might think. All you have to do is to save money. Easy right? The reality is that many people don't do this because they don't understand what a 401K is or why they should take advantage of it. Today, we are going to breakdown why you should be taking advantage of your 401K to build your nest egg, to build your retirement accounts and get you to financial independence faster.

Financially Successful Woman: How to be Financially Empowered

“A woman’s best protection is a little money of her own.”

The gender gap is everywhere. Women are usually paid less in spite of their male counterpart doing the same job. Finance and women are also considered to be poles apart.

According to a survey conducted by Forbes, around 58% of men were of the view that their financial understanding was up to the mark, whereas only 47% of women said so.

But, the situation is changing day by day. Women are now gradually climbing the ladder and gaining financial success.

The College Series: What I Did With My First Paycheck

"No matter who is watching or paying the paycheck, we are ultimately each our own boss."

A few weeks into my summer internship, my bank account was graced with a direct deposit. As a student still living at home with my parents, my expenses were minimal when it came to things like extraneous bills and insurance.  It was pretty tempting, and fairly easy, to have just spent it all on new clothes, food, and drinks, (especially working in New York City) but with some thoughtful consideration, I realized I probably shouldn’t blow my first paycheck, or all of them for that matter. Here’s how I prioritized where all my money went and things I needed to consider as a student and emerging young professional.

When Geoarbitrage Means Going Back to Your Home Country

It has always been my parents intention to retire in the Philippines. I have never known them to say otherwise. This year, they will return to our home country and setup a new life there. It’s been an eye-opening experience to watch my parents plan and finally make this goal a reality. I am happy and sad at the same time. Happy that all of their hard work will allow them to do this. Sad that we will be many time zones apart.

Doing so will allow them to take advantage of a concept called geoarbitrage.

10 Decisions I Might Change to Get Me to FI Faster

Hindsight is always 20/20.

My sister and I (who are in our 30s) recently sat down with our 22 year old sister to talk about finances and lessons learned. This got me thinking about some of the things I would change if I could to get me to financial independence faster. Of course, these are nice to think about and perhaps if I really did come across a time machine, I may change one or two decisions, but I do have to also say that the decisions we make get us to a certain point in our lives and we just need to learn and let live.

We Almost Fell Into The Trap of Buying a Larger Home

"If I were asked to name the chief benefit of the house, I should say: the house shelters daydreaming, the house protects the dreamer, the house allows one to dream in peace.”

My husband and I just closed on a condo a few weeks ago. After a few calculations and looking at the prices in the market and towns we wanted to be in, we came with a number that we were comfortable with. When we first started the process, we met with a mortgage loan officer and provided our financials. His first statement to us was “you know you could afford more,” but we stuck to our guns and kept our original budget in place.

New Financial App: Zeta and the Need for Couples to Financially Plan Together

"Select a partner carefully. Your spouse should have the same characteristics that are compatible with success."

A few months ago, I came across the Zeta Platform. I wish this tool was around when my then boyfriend, now husband first got together. I'm probably the one that pushed a lot of this personal finance stuff on my husband, but I don't regret any of it one bit because by the time we got married, we were significantly better of had we not talked about it. Because I'm a fan of having that financial conversation early on and I'm a fan of helpful technology, I found Zeta to fit the bill so I wanted to share it with you all today.

The College Series: Setting Yourself Up For Internship Success

The expert in anything was once an unpaid intern.

It’s the beginning of the spring semester and you realize that you’re going to have to face the realities of the real world in five months or so. It’s prime internship-searching season. You’ve googled “interview questions” dozens of times and are already anxious for your school’s career fair. This isn’t an article asking you to evaluate your strengths and weaknesses, nor is it a guide on what to look for in a company, but rather things to consider to ensure a more successful job searching experience. Whether you’re applying for summer internships or an internship over the school year, it’s important to think ahead and cover your bases when it comes to the internship applying process.

Book Summary: Your Money Or Your Life

"Waste lies in not in the number of possessions, but in the failure to enjoy them."

I had the chance to pick up Your Money or Your Life by Vicki Robin and Joe Dominguez. They are thought to be the ones that coined the term "FIRE" A writer from a FI group in NYC brought the book and passed it around. It didn't click to me that this was the book. I had it on my reading list and bumped it up so that I could review it earlier. I'm so surprised I hadn't come across it earlier in all of my reading, but here we are and it seems like everything about the FI concept is falling into place for me.

Gifting Stock Instead of Toys: Do's and Dont's

"No one has ever become poor by giving."

A few months ago, my husband and I were invited to a birthday party for friend's 4-year-old. Given my foray into minimalism and sustainability and personal finance, I didn't personally want to give another plastic gift. I also didn't want to give another item that they would have to maintain or would end up in the landfill a few days later. So after much research, I decided to give the gift of stock.

Like Jon Snow, I Know Nothing: Why Learning is a Lifelong Journey

"Ah, but a man's reach should exceed his grasp, Or what's a heaven for?"

This past week I went to Washington D.C. to attend a real estate software conference. This was my 3rd time going and every time I leave I think my head is going to explode with all the knowledge I’ve just added. This smack in the head is my annual reminder that like Jon Snow, I know nothing. Well, not completely nothing, but probably 1% of what this software is capable of. It’s eye-opening and very humbling.

How I Will Raise Money-Smart Kids (Not Spoiled Kids)

"How can we be the future if you're not going to teach us about money, which is our future?"

I don't have kids, so this will sort of be my manifesto for when I do. It will also serve as a snapshot of my thoughts at this point in my life. I know perspectives often change especially when there is an actual human being in the picture so I hope this helps me navigate how I want to raise kids that understand what money can do so that I may set them on a good financial path. These are my thoughts today. It could be different tomorrow as the world changes and I change. My husband's perspective and plans will be different. At some point, we will have to compromise as our goal, in the end, is to provide a good financial background for our future kids.

You Can Travel Hack and Still Have an Excellent Credit Score

It's better to see something once, than to hear about a thousand times.

One of the biggest eye openers for me in the past few years has been the idea of travel hacking. I had my first credit card when I was a senior in college. It had a $500 credit limit. A few months later, I was already maxing out that limit. I had no concept of credit (despite majoring in Econ), let alone how to use it wisely. Fast forward a few more years, I got into more credit card debt. Thankfully, I was able to put a stop into my credit card debt and started getting wise about its use.

What Barriers Do Young Australian Women Face in Reaching Financial Independence?

Australia is popularly known as “the lucky country.” It holds the OECD record for economic growth at 26 years and counting. While there are some definite advantages of living in Australia over the United States in terms of reaching financial independence (like free universal health care) there are still many reasons why Australian women need to think about financial independence differently than their male compatriots.