Archive | Debt-Free Living

Being Grateful: The Real-Life Low-Down

Most of the time when we think “Grateful,” we think about duty: We “should” be grateful; we “should” be happy for what we have. And that never really works to inspire the emotion. What does work is much simpler: It’s a thing I call Real Life Gratefulness. It means this: I look around and think […]

Enough is Enough

So when, in our ever-evolving achievement-oriented society, is enough is enough? One of the reasons we keep getting into debt is because we’ve bought—hook, line and sinker—our culture’s selling proposition that bigger is better and more is necessary. But what if we just stopped and took that thought apart for a moment? What if having […]

New Turn; Can’t Wait

So this year I have resolved two things:  more joy and more faith.  The more joy part is easy.  Maybe not easy to apply, but easy to navigate towards.  I am turning my ship a little more each year towards the things I love to do, the things that are meaningful to me. And the […]

A Debt-Free Love Story

There was this fight over money between us. It wasn’t an overt fight—we weren’t screamers and we didn’t like to argue—but it was there, permeating the room all the time like a poisonous gas, sightless and scentless but lethal just the same. It infected everything. It was a silent-treatment standoff of a fight over who […]

America’s Greed & Debt Downfall

A number of years ago I was working for a small, family-owned, Bay Area newspaper. One day I was talking to one of the men in the print room—a huge-machinery shop that inked the newspaper each day. It was labor, but skilled labor. The guy was in his late 50’s, and thinking about retirement, but […]

Job Loss, Debt, and Lower Salaries: Doing Whatever It Takes

Just recently I read a couple of disturbing articles in the New York Times about debt. Helaine Olen’s January 2nd opinion column suggests that the reason we’re in debt and can’t save is because of unaddressed social policy issues—things like flat-lined salaries and higher health care costs. ( Then on January 14, Benedict Carey paints […]

Three Birds to Change a Paradigm

So you’ve admitted that they two of you have a problem. You’ve got high-level debt or even low-ticket-but-annoying debt balances that are ruining your ability to relax, to have a good time, to enjoy each other. There may have been hardships in your partnership, like a job loss or an upside-down home loan that you’re […]

Living Large Without Debt

I was thinking the other day, how, when I was in deep debt, I was overspending all the time, but I had no fun in my life. It’s a conundrum: thinking that spending freely would bring my happiness, when it only brought me stress. Now, some years later–and after getting the hang of living completely […]