In response to my last few blogs about personal finance, I received an email asking for my thoughts about author and radio host Dave Ramsey. For those of you who don’t know (I didn’t), Ramsey hosts The Ramsey Show and has authored best-selling books such as The Total Money Makeover. Politico calls him “the pro bono financial advisor to millions of Americans who otherwise could never afford one.” His self-syndicated show has a staggering 14 million listeners (Wikipedia), putting him just behind conservative talk show hosts Rush Limbaugh and Sean Hannity in popularity.
Forty percent of adults are unable to pay for an unexpected expense of $400 or more without selling something or borrowing money (Federal Reserve Board). Given this, it’s fair to say much of the financial advice you read about doesn’t apply to everyone. Telling someone who is working two minimum wage jobs while supporting a family with medical bills that he should accelerate mortgage payments or save 15 percent for retirement is likely to result in more than an eye roll.
Influenced by YouTube commercials featuring folks with big houses and expensive cars, my ten-year-old son recently asked me, “How do people become wealthy?” I responded with a discussion about the difference between consumption and wealth and as I did so, couldn’t help but reflect upon some of the lessons I learned from my parents.
How do you keep your health on track when work, travel, and family obligations derail even your best efforts to eat a healthy diet? If you’re like a reader from last week’s article on the five health defense systems that protect us from disease, you might be wondering the same. I’ve certainly had my own share of struggles staying on track but I’d argue a great place to start is to train yourself to not get hungry.
Many doctors get their information from the pharmaceutical companies that profit directly from the very treatments they are proposing. Where can one turn to find unbiased healthcare advice?
I wondered last week, as I was writing How I Alleviate Back Pain and Avoid Surgery, if back problems are more prevalent today than they used to be. And, if so, why?
A reader asked me if yoga, as I wrote about last week, ultimately fixed my lower back problems. Unfortunately, the short answer is no. While it’s true I’ve come up with ways to alleviate discomfort, retain mobility, and avoid surgery, I’ve been unable to permanently resolve the problem.
On Saturday mornings, I typically head to a bakery to pick up freshly baked bread for the week. Last year, I noticed a yoga studio across the street from the bakery and thought about giving it a try to help alleviate my ever present back issues.
Now for the record, at the encouragement of my mom (who has been teaching yoga for 30+ years), I’ve tried yoga a few times before but just couldn’t get into it. Regardless of how good yoga may have been for my body, the slow pace of the classes made me too restless to enjoy myself. Further, given the overall state of my inflexibility, it was hard to imagine my woeful approximations to the poses I was instructed to do were offering any benefit.
In an article I wrote four years ago, Losing Too Much to Win, I mentioned how during a five-mile run I sustained a back injury that put me out of commission for a while. I recall seeing my doctor the day it happened and telling him that I would give up running if it guaranteed I wouldn’t be in such pain again. The fine doctor responded, “They all say that!” I hobbled home that day in excruciating pain, the memory etched in my psyche. Despite all that, I only recently actually gave up running.
f improving your diet or developing a regular exercise routine aren’t in the cards right now, consider focusing on something else.