Year in review 2016: My top 10 favorite posts

Photo courtesy of Dinalya Dawes

What a year it’s been.

This site has now been humming along for over four years now. As I continue to post twice per week, that means that there are over a hundred posts on this site over the past year. Some of them, I’m quite pleased with.

For this reason, and to give me a little time off from writing in favor of planning some exciting new developments, below is a roundup of my 10 favorite posts for the year 2016. (I’ve done this for 2015, 2014, and 2013 as well.) Maybe you missed some of these, or maybe you’d like to revisit them. It’s certainly interesting for me to look back.

So here is some new old content, dating from last December to now. Enjoy!

My list

1. Hand cramps, office supplies, and a hotel sweepstakes—This whole project was a fun one. I decided to enter a sweepstakes where one could mail in handwritten index cards to earn hotel points. One could enter 94 times. So I did. (And it worked too.)

2. Socrates, wall-to-wall carpet, and how to deal with unpopular beliefs—When even the carpet installer says that your hardwood floors looks nice, you know you’re dealing with an unpopular viewpoint. But is that a bad thing? I looked to Socrates for advice.

3. How to haggle successfully—I have a history of haggling very unsuccessfully, so it was nice to see that I could change that narrative. There’s a lesson in there for you too, in case you believe that you’re not good at something and that can’t be changed.

4. Do we all need to work?—The belief that everyone has a wage-worthy job to do has not been proven, and I’m concerned that automation and technology are going to render so many jobs unnecessary. What do we do when not everyone is needed in the work force? How do we help those left behind? I look at Universal Basic Income as a possible, if controversial, solution.

5. Financial cage match: Paying off student loans versus investing for retirement—I enjoy the financial cage match series. It allows me to pit competing financial priorities against each other, and determine which one is best to tackle first. In this case, many people have student loans, and everyone needs to save for retirement, so this is relevant to almost everyone.

6. Technology isn’t the answer to our finance problems—I want us all to stop thinking that some new technology will help us feel more in control, spend less, or otherwise solve our finance problems. It’s time to change our behavior, and that doesn’t require anything plugged in. We are the solution, not an app.

7. It’s okay, you were never taught—People I talk to regularly talk about feeling shame about not being in control of their financial life. If this is you, it’s time to forgive yourself.

8. Is retirement possible?—I believe so. But first, we need to define what retirement means to you. Second, we need to determine once and for all how much you’re going to need to save up.

9. How to open a Roth IRA with Vanguard—Most people can open a Roth IRA, and I think everyone who can would be wise to do . Here’s how.

10. How to move forward when you feel like the world is going to end—If I’m being totally honest, this was my response to the U.S. election, a way of picking myself up and continuing on.

Thank you!

As always, thank you so much for reading, and especially for everyone who has contributed and made your voice heard. I appreciate it more than you can say.

If I have any ask, it would be to please spread the word of this site, or any of its individual posts, to your friends and peers. I feel like we’re doing important work here, and the more people know about it, the more people we can help. You can use any of the share links below or on the side, or just make a post or tweet of your own. I appreciate it!

Mike Pumphrey

Mike Pumphrey

I'm the founder and author of Unlikely Radical, a site to help people succeed with money, achieve their goals, and live intentionally.

I offer a free phone consultation to anyone who is interested in changing their financial narrative. Are you ready? Click here for details.
Mike Pumphrey
Posted on December 19, 2016