yes or no
Many of us don’t like to feel as though we’re missing out on something. In fact, the fear of missing out (FOMO) is likely something that is holding you back financially.

We tend to say “yes” too much, and even spend money, just to make sure we don’t miss out on anything. That’s why one of the ways to spend less is to realize that we might not actually be missing out all that much.

Spending Money to Go Out With Friends

One of the most obvious ways that FOMO costs you money is in the way you spend when you go out with friends. You don’t want to feel as though you’re the only one who missed out on a party or a trip to the restaurant or bar.

In my case, FOMO often manifests as a desire to attend too many conferences. I don’t want to feel as though I’m missing out when my friends get together. However, conferences can get expensive, and that can put a damper on some of my other travel priorities.
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shopping crowds
We are well into November and that means the day we love to hate is right around the corner: Black Friday. While we all look forward to Thanksgiving, spending time with family, and turkey this time of the year, Black Friday might be the most anticipated event of the holiday season. And it’s not for the faint of heart.

Black Friday shopping can notoriously be crazy and overwhelming but that’s because there are some great deals to be found. The only catch is that you have to be willing to brave the crowds. In order to tackle Black Friday and get what you want at the price you want, you have to arrive with a game plan. Here are five steps to surviving Black Friday:
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Obviously, not everyone who gambles has a problem. Many people enjoy gambling as a social activity without it threatening their financial security or family relationships. Nonetheless, gambling can lead to addiction and serious consequences for those who can’t control the impulse. With as many as 3-5 out of every 100 gamblers, and as many as 750,000 young people ages 14-21 having a gambling addition, gambling can be compared to handling fire — it can either be used to your advantage, or seriously hurt you.

How can you tell when someone you love is developing a gambling problem?  At what point does it become an addiction? These are questions you may be afraid to contemplate, but recognizing and admitting are the first steps to helping your spouse overcome a gambling problem and avoid further devastating consequences.
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checklistHow well do you know your own finances? If you want your financial machine to run as efficiently as possible, there are some critical pieces of information you absolutely must know. Without that knowledge you run the risk of overspending, areas of weakness are hidden by lack of information, and your investments can’t possibly be operating at maximum potential.

So, how much do you know about your finances?
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deal on clothes
I love to get most of my family’s clothes from thrift stores and yard sales, but I don’t always buy our clothes there. That’s because I can sometimes get brand new clothes at a lower price than used clothing. Here are a few of my strategies for getting super cheap brand name clothes (for less than thrift store prices).

1. Shop Right After a Holiday
I seem to find the best deals right after a holiday, whether that be Christmas or even Halloween. This year I went to Baby Gap and Gymboree the day after Halloween, and I scored matching shirts for my daughters for $3-4 each, socks for $.49 each, and shoes for less than $4. The prices ended up being about 80% off the sticker price. At the thrift store, I can generally find shirts for $2-3, but if it were to have a tag on it, those nice thrift store employees mark it up a few dollars (insert eye roll here).
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calculating health insurance
November is here and it’s time for health care open enrollment. I just received my own benefit papers and information about my plan, along with my new premium. I’ll see a very modest increase in my monthly premium, thanks to the fact that I enrolled during a special period because of my recent divorce and cross-country move.

I know many people who are concerned about their rising health care costs. My premium isn’t awful yet because I have a high-deductible plan and use it in conjunction with a Health Savings Account. My son will remain on my ex’s health insurance for the time being, so it’s not been an issue for me.

My reliance on a high-deductible plan might be one of the reasons that the new law about health insurance hasn’t been a source of stress for me since its introduction in 2010.

Millennials More Likely to Support the Affordable Care Act

With all the controversy surrounding the Affordable Care Act (ACA), it’s not surprising that Americans are almost evenly split on supporting the ACA or wanting it repealed. Millennials, though, are more likely to support the ACA, and say that their health care situation has improved in the last year.
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