Reset

How Much Is Your Time Worth? This Free Tool Will Show You

How Much Is Your Time Worth? This Free Tool Will Show You Deciding how you value your time can help you make decisions. But how do you really know what your time is worth?

It’s partly a hypothetical question, because you don’t always get to choose how much money you'll make or how much free time you'll have.

And it’s partly a practical question, because sometimes you do get to choose. Life is all about making choices, some of which are exclusive and limit us from other opportunities.

A free tool guides you to your own answer of "How much is your time worth" in both hypothetical and practical scenarios.

Read More

The Emotional Balance Sheet

CarlRichards-EBS I often enjoy the personal finance columns by Carl Richards. In a recent one, he explains how to create an “emotional balance sheet” to quantify (or at least tally) your non-financial assets.

Carl tells the story of how he and his wife Cori made the choice for her to become a full-time mom, despite the fact that the family would lose more than $1 million in earnings over the next twenty years.

He’s quick to point out that the moral of the story isn’t “all mothers should stay home with their children”—which is good, since presumably many readers would make different choices. The lesson is a) to be clear about your intentions, and b) learn to value non-financial assets.

Read More

You Don’t Have to Be Uncomfortable to Have an Authentic Travel Experience


When I went to Burma several years ago I stayed in a nice guest house for about $35 a night. The rate included free Wifi and a large banana pancake for breakfast. Mmmmmm.

After I came home, I talked with someone who had also been there. "How much did you pay?" he asked.

"Oh... about $30-40 a night," I said. I may also have mentioned the delicious banana pancake. Mmmmmm.

"That’s crazy!" He said. "You got ripped off... there are places you can stay for just $10 or less."

I didn’t know how to respond. Was I “ripped off?” Well, I guess I could have paid less... but I was happy with the experience, so for me the rate was a great value.

Read More

An Honest Conversation About Debt in America

"Debt is publicly enforced and highly stigmatized, but is almost always privately experienced."

After filing for bankruptcy herself, photographer Brittany M. Powell is traveling across America to interview other people struggling with unexpected debt. I love this multifaceted, non-judgmental project (originally on Kickstarter -- now closed after a successful end).

Debt Portrait #28, Detroit, MI 2014 88a282cf5ab0f7c6-DebtRamon-4578 Through the camera, Powell is starting a conversation about debt—something many people experience alone but never talk about because of the shame and stigma that can be attached to it. How does debt effect us and our daily lives? Are people as alone in this struggle as much as they feel?

Read More

What Does It Mean to Be Rich?

5372264510_29fb8916f7_z

When you’re a kid, you don’t have much concept of what true wealth is—so you tend to relate it to experiences, or at least I did. In my case, I understood wealth in the context of fast-food restaurants. I used to eat at my favorite restaurants, McDonald’s and Burger King, as often as I could.

I’m writing from the W Hong Kong, where I just arrived after beginning my latest Round-the-World trip. The W here has one of the best hotel breakfast buffets in all of Asia, which for all practical purposes means all of the world.

My breakfast is comped, thanks to my elite status with Starwood. As best I can tell, it costs approximately 10x what a meal at McDonald’s would. But if it wasn’t comped, I’d gladly pay. It’s so good! And I’m having so much fun waking up early, drinking unlimited macchiatos, and thinking about the world.

The lesson? Well, I’m jet-lagged, so you might have to wade through the muddle. But aside from not eating fast food, I think the lesson is to figure out what makes you feel rich—and it’s best if such a thing is somewhat obtainable.

Read More

Checking Your Bank Accounts Will Not Make More Money

8474532085_6d010ee8d0_z

Seems obvious, right? We wouldn’t expect that driving past the gym will make us any healthier.

But when it comes to money, those of us who are self-employed tend to spend a lot of time on activities that do nothing to help the bottom line, either directly or indirectly.

I don’t just mean “administrative work,” because some administrative work has to be done even if it’s not particularly exciting. You still need to do customer service, update outdated info, and so on.

No, I mean the tendency we have to log-in just to see something. I’ll just check one more time... says the addict.

So here’s an idea: the next time you feel like checking website stats or bank account numbers, hold off a moment. First, do something that matters. Do something that will actually increase or improve whatever metrics you’re tracking. Then, go ahead and check them—because that’s human nature. But make yourself work for it first. Make yourself earn it.

Read More

How Much Does It Cost to Visit Every Country in the World?

I’ve mentioned a few times that going to every country in the world wasn’t as expensive as most people initially think. But how much did it really cost?

The short answer is that I’m not 100% sure of the precise figure. I didn’t tally up every expense associated with ten-and-a-half years of travel, and I didn't save all the receipts. Much of the travel (perhaps one-third) was done in cooperation with other work and commitments. The whole time I was living in West Africa, for example, I was visiting a bunch of new countries, but usually in my capacity as an aid worker for a charity.

Even during the time when I was focused mainly on going to countries for no good reason, it wasn't a business project. It wasn't something I needed to account for or get reimbursed. It was a personal challenge that I would have pursued regardless of the cost.

Read More

How Do You Pay for Your Travel?

Over the course of ten years, I visited every country in the world, many of them several times. When I first started writing about the quest, the most common question I received was, “But how do you pay for that?” Since then I've tried to be very clear on how much it costs to travel—not just for me, but for anyone else. In this post, and in the follow-up on Thursday, I'll outline my general response to travel and money.

Read More

How to Make Money on the Internet

When it comes to working online and making money on the internet, most discussions tend to look at specific tactics. How do you set up a mailing list? How can you get a merchant account? And so on. The answers to these questions may be useful, but you can learn about them elsewhere, and I thought it would be helpful to take a step back and look at something higher-level.

Read More