Posts Tagged ‘money’

Wedded Bliss

January 21st, 2010

Been together for a long time?Yep,so longĀ  you’ve given up trying to change your other half.Well,that’s not good for marital bliss.

Whatever we can do as the years roll by,we shouldn’t ever give up on our partners.Even after all this time,your husband will still be easy to change – no,not for a new one!

Okay,there are some things that five years into your marriage you think:”Well.those things will never change now.”And fifteen years in,you’re thinking:”My fault – I shouldn’t have accepted that in the first place.”Think again because that’s notso.A great marriage needs regular reinvention to keep it freshcand keeping on sorting out these kinds of issues does exactly that.Regular influencing is a great way to a healthy marriage.

The thing you’ve got to get out of your mind is that because it has been like this for a long time (and that’s a relative term,of course:t doesn’t really matter whether we are talking five,ten or fifteen years,or even longer),it’s therefore fixed;it’s stuck and you’re doomed to put with it.’Long time’ does not equal ‘can’t change’.Individuals change all the time.It’s certain you’ve changed a lot over the past ten years,so why can’t two people agree to make combined changes after all this time?They can.

Firstly,give a bit of thought to the change we really want: what do we really need to influence?Is it actually that he reads the newspaper ar the breakfast table or that you never seem to talk any more?Is it actually thatshe’s always out at various committee meetings or that it seems impossible to go out to a film or the theatre like you used to?So trace back the symptoms to the cause.Remember that many areas that require influencing revolve around money or sex (or both) but they are usually the symptom not the cause.

Here’s the big idea:keep talking.Once you have identified the real issue (e.g. not planning for retirement) and not been distracted by symptoms (e.g. money arguments),then you need to talk it through and agree a plan.That can only happen if you have time to talk.Whatever happens:keep talking.Never ever lose ‘the thing’ hat keeps you talking .And don’t just talk about the shopping or kids school reports:talk about you – fundamental stuff – in a non-rushed environment.We can’ t tell you how or when but we are betting you are intelligent enough to do that.So make it happen.

It;s all about maintaining the emotional bank account.We all have one,just like our financial bank account.We have them with each other.The question is,are we making loads of deposits into the account (by being polite,being responsive,being helpful,being loyal) or are we making undue numbers of withdrawals (by being judgemental,rude,talking behind their backs)?

If we are making plenty of deposits,the relationship can take the occasional with withdrawals.But if it’s been all withdrawals,the occasional deposit has little impact.Makes sense,doesn’t it?

You better shop around

July 15th, 2009

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The image of an angel and a devil sitting on a person’s shoulders is not a bad metaphor for shopping.

Using brain scans, researchers have shown that the nucleus accumbens, an area associated with pleasure and reward, lightens up as people consider a purchase, while the insula, a structure that plays an important role in pain, is activated when they think about the cost.

Two brain areas compete with each other to determine whether you will buy something. Your typical tightwad feels the pain of paying for things more acutely. Spendthrifts may not register it enough.

Buying a lot in one store can decrease your sensitivity to the pain of cost. You hit the what-the-heck-effect. For example, you’ve spent $200; what’s another $20 for a T-shirt? Perhaps, the best way is going to various stores for different purchases.

Money page: A raw take on healthcare and insurance choices

May 15th, 2009

You don’t need a financial guru to tell you to cut back on unnecessary or ancilliary expenses deemed ‘extra’ or ‘nice to have’ during such belt-tightening times, which many are predicting may be a long recession.

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How do you know if your health care should be classified as a necessity or luxury? Like everything else in life, there’s no one-size-fits-all solution. So don’t believe anyone (especially sales people who come in many guises, shapes and forms) who tries to tell you otherwise. Here are some simple evaluation techniques to help you assess what your health care needs are, now and in the future.

FOR GENERATION Y

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When you’re young, single and carefree with no dependants or obligations, start by studying your medical expenses over the past year. Most will find that the expenses spent on health care doesn’t add up to a large amount. Many employers also provide basic health care coverage for employees. This mainly covers clinical visits, medical consultancy and medication. If you’re operating on a shoestring budget, thanks to those pesky car loans and credit card payments, contributing hundreds of dollars every month towards an external insurance health care scheme may be too oncerous at this stage of your life. It may be more prudent to depend on your company’s health benefits.

FOR GENERATION X

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When you start your family, with the added obligation of taking care of aged parents, money matters get trickier. Depending on your joint earnings potential, lifestyle, expenditure and dependants in your household, you may be better off combining everyone’s needs via a tailor-made family package. Most of the big name insurance companies have family health care packages with imbedded discounts and flexibilities according to your total needs. This ranges from basic coverage to all-in surgery and full hospitalization coverage. As with all insurance plans, the earlier you start the less it’ll cost. Examples include mother-and-children packages where annual health care life insurance premiums for early mothers and their babies can be surprisngly affordable.

FOR BABY-BOOMERS

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You definitely can’t dismiss health care as a luxury in your golden years as this is when you’ll need it the most. Kudos to the government for providing decent, affordable health care at our public hospitals with subsidised medical consultancy and medication costs. At this critical juncture, based on your medical condition and state of your general health, insurance providers do offer basic to more comprehensive health care packages.