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Eight (Free) Time Management Systems to Try in 2020

Y’all want an inspirational quote?

Of course you do—bitches love an inspirational quote. I quote this one all the time and honestly strive to live by it.

“I’m not going to entertain drama, chaos, confusion, and madness.”

Alyssa Edwards

These perfect words, uttered by drag superstar Alyssa Edwards, are a universally applicable mantra for most situations. But I think of them often when I’m sitting down to make my own to-do list.

Drama, chaos, confusion, and madness intrude on my life every single day.

  • Coworker A wants 30 minutes on my calendar to “talk about a project” when what she actually wants is to vent about Coworker B. DRAMA!
  • My foster dog breaks her potty-training streak by squatting down and loosing her bladder all over the kitchen floor. CHAOS!
  • There’s a $35 fee from our bank because I meant to transfer money into an account but accidentally transferred out of it. CONFUSION!
  • Our podcast is late because I spent all of Thursday morning convinced it was Wednesday morning, even though I wrote “Thursday” at the top of my to-do list: MADNESS!

This is why I must be like Alyssa. I cannot entertain these distractions.

The pursuit of productivity for productivity’s sake is a symptom of toxic capitalism, which we do not wish to propagate. You are not obliged to systemize, optimize, or monetize all your precious moments upon this planet.

But our modern lives are full of endless, annoying actions to take and tasks to manage. Procrastination and disorganization invite a lot of unnecessary stress into your life. So today we’re talking about time management techniques. If you struggle with drama, chaos, confusion, and madness, try one out and see if it helps you!

Today’s post was brought to you by our Patreon donors, who voted for this topic in our monthly content poll. If you want to vote on the topics we cover next, head over to Patreon!

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Episode 11: "I feel cornered by a friend who keeps asking to borrow money."

Episode 11: “I Feel Cornered by a Friend Who Keeps Asking to Borrow Money.”



An anonymous reader has given a mouse a cookie—and now the mouse wants a glass of milk.

Except the mouse is a person, the cookie is money, and the milk is yet more money. Keep up, people!

This thorny dilemma comes from our Tumblr, which you should definitely check out! Piggy answers tons of questions for readers there, and posts lots of exclusive stuff you won’t find on the blog.

Today’s question

“How do I handle a friend whom I’ve lessened contact with because I’m afraid they’ll ask me for money?

“I let him borrow some when he moved into his new apartment and his roommate refused to actually pay rent or split utilities while my friend was crawling out of maxed credit cards. He paid me back but since then has asked more than once. I have five figures saved so I feel pressured to help out, but I want him to actually learn some lessons instead of coming to me for a loan.

“And as a followup: how can I know what is financially expected as you get older? I’m self-employed (internet work with hard depression) but all my friends have adult jobs. Yet they also all still have student loans and credit card debt. I paid off my student loans, no credit card debt, have 25k saved and just bought a house thanks to my techie significant other. I still have a broke mentality since my significant other has six figures saved. It’s hard to relate with my friends when there is such a mismatch of finances. We’re all in our mid twenties.”

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Self care should not be synonymous with self-destruction.

Proven Tactics for Avoiding Emotional Impulse Spending

You had a bad day. You’re takin’ one down. You sing a sad song just to turn it around…

… and so you go buy something.

The sweet release of “retail therapy” can feel like an injection of dopamine straight into the pleasure centers of your brain. Some even count it as self-care. For what can be more self-caring than to treat yo’self?

I know people who stress-spend like others I stress-eat cheese. The problem is that the euphoria that comes from buying something new—even if it’s fancy cheese and you really fucking deserve it because work sucked today—is short-lived, but the money you spent is gone forever.

That brief high of retail therapy or impulse spending can waylay your larger financial goals and damage the delicate equilibrium of your savings, generating far more stress than you relieved with the purchase.

Yet being upset about a bad day doesn’t mean you have to throw your financial goals to the wind. And losing that money while trying to make yourself feel momentarily better is going to feel worse in the long run.

I’m sympathetic to the plight of the emotional impulse-spender. Which is why I want to help you find another way of making yourself feel better. One that doesn’t involve your meager paycheck.

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Podcast Episode 10: "I want a pedigreed dog. She wants a rescue mutt. It turned into a fight...and the fight got ugly."

Episode 10: “I Want a Pedigreed Dog. She Wants a Rescue Mutt. It Turned into a Fight… and the Fight Got Ugly.”



He wants a purebred dog. She wants a rescue mutt.

What started as a logistical discussion about getting a dog quickly became a heated, vicious fight about values and ethics.

Don’t you love those questions that seem to be about one thing, but betray a totally different, deeper problem? That’s definitely the case with today’s letter.

We could’ve recommended the obvious compromise: select a breed, then find a rescue organization that specializes in that breed! One quarter of all homeless dogs are purebreds, bro! Depending on the popularity and rarity of the breed, there may be a wait list. But if you’re patient, you can find one that fits both criteria.

… But, yeah, we didn’t even bother with that. Because it’s so incredibly obvious that the purebred dog versus shelter mutt question is the flashpoint for a deeper, more troubling issue. And it’s one we think merits a breakup.

Do you see the same thing we see?

Today’s question

“My girlfriend and I are in our mid twenties, and have been seeing each other for four years now. We moved in together last spring and things have been going well. I love this girl. She’s sweet, funny, interesting, pretty, and a little eccentric. She’s absolutely my dream girl and I can’t picture myself without her but we’ve been fighting for over a month and it’s been hard.

“At the end of May we decided to get a dog together. We’re both dog people, having grown up with them. Since my parents are close to a couple that breeds dogs, we’ve bought all three of our dogs from them. My girlfriend, on the other hand, had only one shelter pup

“When we first started talking about raising a dog together I asked her the standard ‘what kind of dog should we get?’ questions about what breed she preferred. And she scoffed at me and said it didn’t matter, because we would adopt a pet, not buy one. She said it like it was obvious and that I didn’t have a say otherwise. We got into an argument about the pros and cons of adopting or buying. And it just escalated from there.

“I’ll get to the point and say we both started taking it personally and said some things. I said that buying gives you better quality, and that you know what you get. She quite rudely said that if we’re paying for quality how come my family’s dogs have had health issues and died young, while her shelter dog lived to be seventeen. She said she looked down on people who’d rather pay thousands of dollars than save a life. We decided to cool down and give the discussion a rest.

“We both felt unfinished after that but let it go but then we started getting at each other for different lifestyle choices. Like how she wants to get married and have kids one day and how I’m not so sure what I want yet. And how in my family having a degree is important and to her it’s not. Sometimes we teased her about it since she only has a certificate but we never meant it rudely to her since she has a great job as a software engineer.

“She’s always been sort of indifferent to everything and said everyone has different values and the right to have different opinions should be respected. She eats meat, wears fur, buys non-organic, buys fast fashion, is non-religious, she’s fairly liberal but tends to criticize some social movements, which is all fine but my point is she’s never had a firm stance on anything. But it’s like I picked a fight about the one thing she feels strongly about and it’s been rough since then. I’m not sure what to do anymore and I need advice.”

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He has a college degree and is physically and mentally able, but he does not work This is crazy, right?

Ask the Bitches: “My Friend Is Going Broke Dating a Man Who Contributes Nothing. Should I Say Something?”

Today we have a question from a Patreon donor on a subject that’s always hard to answer: what can you do when a friend is doing something really, really financially dumb?

(Have you heard that we answer donor questions directly? It’s true! Find out how at Patreon.com/BitchesGetRiches!)

Donor Alyssa writes…

Here’s the situation. 

Last year, a good, long-term friend of mine (40 year-old woman) had her boyfriend (38 year-old man) move in with her. Before that they were long distance, so only recently have I gotten to know this dude and their relationship.

Despite him having a college degree and being physically and mentally able, he does not work. Not at all. Not one minute and not for one cent. He is also not a trust funder nor does he otherwise have money of his own. He is also not looking for work and he is not in school.

My friend supports him 100%. She provides all housing, food, transportation, vacations (!!!), and everything else. They do not have children or dependents to support, and neither want children in the future. He does do most of the housework and cooking. But they do not have a vast estate that needs tending. From what I glean he spends most of his time playing video games.

My friend tells me that she is declining further and further into debt. She has said, wistfully, that she wishes she could save for the future. She also says that she and her boyfriend are “great communicators,” and she likes that he is always available when she is.

So that’s the situation. Here are my questions: do I do anything/say anything about this? If so, what? It certainly isn’t my relationship, and they are both grown ass adults, but … THIS IS CRAZY, RIGHT? And just in case it’s not clear, I am Team DTMFA.

– Alyssa H.

Alyssa, thanks for this question, and for your support of this blog! I see two layers of questions here. First: is this dude’s behavior acceptable? Second: what (if anything) can you do about it as her friend?

Let’s get into it!

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Podcast Episode 009: "I've Given Up On My Dream Career. Where Do I Go From Here?"

Episode 009: “I’ve Given up on My Dream Career. Where Do I Go From Here?”



Today we answer a letter from Patreon Donor Julia, who feels lost after making a big change of direction in her life.

Today’s question

“I’m twenty-one years old and I was in college majoring in biology, but I was just miserable and had to leave. But all I ever wanted to do was science, and now I’m really struggling with what to do next. I was paying for classes as I went (as much as I could, anyway) so I only have one loan to pay off. But I just really don’t know what I want to do with my life. I’ve worked in retail and foodservice and I hated it. I’ve been applying to daycare centers because I like kids, but I haven’t heard back from any of them. Any advice you could give me on finding a direction would be very much appreciated.”

This question made our hearts heavy. We hate to see a twenty-one-year-old sounding so lost and resigned. Because twenty-one is so young! You’re an adult when you’re twenty-one, but like, it’s the toddler stage of adulthood. The world won’t always feel so intimidating and impenetrable.

Our Boomer parents would certainly tell her to fOlLoW hEr DrEaM, dAmN tHe CoNsEqUeNcEs. But obviously we have to bring a more nuanced answer than that.

Allow us to remind all of our young listeners that…

  • Cs are passing grades. They are enough. Let yourself step down off the hamster wheel of your own demanding expectations.
  • College curricula can be more challenging than the “real world” career you’re preparing you for.
  • Piggy and I graduated from college ten years ago, and in the last decade, the number of employers who have expressed a desire to know our letter grades in college is absolute zero—a thermodynamic state once thought to be merely theoretical! SCIENCE!
  • Some careers are challenging to pursue because they’re vanishingly rare and impossibly glamorous: professional video game player, A-list film actor, high-end vibrator tester, etc. But other careers are challenging to pursue because they require a lot of intelligence, persistence, and education: biologist, surgeon, high-end vibrator engineer. Shake the former, push the latter.
  • STEM fields will remain overwhelmingly male so long as women and nonbinary folks lack mentors and programs to help them through the doubt.
  • Sometimes you wanna quit because you know yourself, and you’ve made a mature and informed decision about what’s best for you. Other times you wanna quit because you’re scared of failure, or scared of success, or unsure how to move forward. You will spend a lot of your young adulthood learning to spot the difference between the two.
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Some people make budgets, fail at them, and enter a cycle of self-loathing and financial stress that harms more than it helps.

Budgets Don’t Work for Everyone—Try This System Instead

On a recent episode of the highly respected, laudable, and deserving-of-awards Bitches Get Riches podcast, Kitty and I came out with a controversial take: You don’t necessarily need a budget.

Next to “You can buy a latte sometimes,” it’s just about the closest we’ve come to outright heresy in the halls of money writers. We expect to be shunned and excommunicated any moment now.

Yet I firmly believe that budgeting doesn’t work for everyone!

Yes, for some people it’s an incredibly useful, indispensable tool. I know people who flailed around with money like a noodly-armed fan man on a used car lot before they made a budget, and afterward approached their finances with the serenity and enlightenment of a monk.

Seen here: Actual post-budgeting bliss. Results not typical.

I also know people who make budgets, fail at them, and enter a cycle of constant self-loathing and financial stress that ultimately harms them more than it helps. Some of us chafe against the rigidity of a budget, others thrive within its strict boundaries.

Seen here: Actual post-budgeting death throes.

So budgeting ain’t for everyone. But that doesn’t mean you’re excused from managing your money altogether. Even without a budget, it’s still useful to have a system for keeping an eye on your money.

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Episode 009: MERRY BITCHMAS! The 2019 Star-Studded Holiday Spectacular

Bonus Episode: Merry Bitchmas! The 2019 Star-Studded Holiday Spectacular



Today’s podcast episode is brought to you by the reason for the season: Bitchmas. Second only to Candlenights in the pantheon of winter holidays, Bitchmas is a time to gather your loved ones, exchange hyperbolic gifts, and rally the troops for economic equality and social justice.

No questions shall be answered in the Bitchmas episode (except perhaps “What will these lunatics think up next?”), but we promise it’ll be worth it. We’ve got shout-outs to our patrons! Odes to the finest bitches in personal finance media! Gifts for all and sundry! And… a very special guest!

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Masterpost 04: Everything You Need to Know about Repairing Our Busted-Ass World

{ MASTERPOST } Everything You Need to Know about Repairing Our Busted-Ass World

You know us, babies. We’re not just finance bloggers, we’re cool finance bloggers.

We try to approach the topic of money and economics with a tiny smidge of compassion for people who aren’t making six figures a year. You know: almost everyone.

This also involves interrogating the reasons why some people make a fuckton of money and others struggle to get by. Which naturally leads to speculation on how we can all make the world a better place for everyone.

As a result, we’ve famously published some opinions on the intersection of SJW-dom and money-dom. We’re financial feminists, and we want you to know all about it! Whether you like it or not!

So here’s a collection of our misandrist, socialist, SJW, race-betraying, gay-agenda-having opinions. If there’s a topic we haven’t covered below, or if we have more to learn on any of these topics (spoiler alert: we definitely do), leave us a comment to let us know!

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Episode 008: "My mother demands information about my one-night stands."

Episode 008: “My Mother Demands Information About My One-Night Stands.”



Today’s lettersnatch’d is a bona fide adult, and is trying to have fun and explore her sexuality. But her mother feels entitled to know more about the people she’s spending the night with.

It’s really hard to get wet when you’re being bombarded with long-distance parental Snoop Rays and Fret Beams. So let’s fix this.

Today’s question

I [22F] have been having some one night stands, and I recently decided it’d be best to keep my mother [56F] uninvolved in my love life. I let her know when I won’t be home, and will vaguely tell her I’m out on a date and staying over, but I won’t tell her who it is, where
he lives, how long I’ve known him, etc.

“She’s very upset that I’m having sex and staying over at guys’ houses. I feel like as an adult I can make my own decisions and she should be respecting that I want to keep my love life private. Apparently she’s been talking to my father about this as well and is super upset that she doesn’t have the details on who I’m with.

“What can I do to ease her mind while also not telling her who I’m with when I go out?”

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