Thursday, Nov. 9, 2006 | Lately, I’ve been spending my time savoring the secrets of regular people’s diaries. I’ve just been reading personal finance blogs.
As part of the ongoing evolution in how the Internet is changing our lives, people are now unveiling their bank accounts (details not account numbers), assets and habits for the world to read. Go to www.bloggers.com, type in personal finance and you’ll see what I mean.
The personal-finances blogosphere is a very well-established community and it seems that the primary bloggers all read each others posts and may even be friends. This week several of the personal finance bloggers – led by Jim at Blueprint for Financial Prosperity – are one-upping each other with tales of their worst financial moves ever.
The best blogs are not by personal finance experts and advisers, but by regular people sufficiently obsessed with their own bottom line so as to share the details with the rest of us. They’ve made plenty of mistakes along the way, including accumulating debt and poor credit. Some of them have pretty good ideas. The blogosphere includes single professionals, married people with children and married people without children. They’re almost all anonymous and most seem to exclude salary information or any other details that might reveal who they are.
What they have in common is a desire to save money, track spending and reduce consumption all while balancing the demands of living in an object-driven, wealth-obsessed society.
Where do you draw the line between the things you want and the things you need? And when you determine that something you want is just that and nothing more, what calculus do you use in determining whether it’s worth the cost to your diminished savings?