Here is a list of 10 neurotic personal finance mistakes I make on a regular basis.  The root of them all is, I am sure, certain foibles or idiosyncrasies that I have.  I hope you find the list amusing. 

1) Being embarrassed to bring a bagged lunch to work.  (When I do–which is often–I try and hide it in a backpack).   

2) Throwing away possessions that might have some value (although not to me personally), prior to moving, rather than bringing them with me and trying to sell them later at a yard sale or online. 

3) Not maintaining a sufficient amount of money in my checking account because I prefer to instantly transfer any extra money into savings or paying down debt.  I keep just enough to pay my bills, but on occassion an unexpected sum of monies has been deducted, leaving me with an overdraft.

4) Being embarrassed at times to provide receipts of legitimate business expenses to my firm and instead eating the cost for parking at court, etc. 

5) Wanting to charge people less than I originally agreed to with my freelance business, even though I feel I did a great job. 

6) Paying more for soda and other items at convenience stores rather than grocery stores because I don’t want to wait in a grocery store line.

7) Going in on “lottery” tickets with co-workers–despite near 100% certainty I am throwing away money–because I am paranoid they will win and everyone I work with will be a millionaire but me.  

8.) Buying endless self-improvement books when the answers are probably within.  (or at the very least available for free online or at the library).

9) When I am with friends and we are about to go out, being embarrassed to make everyone go to my bank’s atm.  (and then paying the ridiculous fees to use another bank’s atm). 

10) Feeling that the only way to “celebrate” is by going out for dinner at a sit-down restaurant.



Chris Thomas, owner of the online freelance writing and web-copy company, FreelancePF. Chris’s interest in personal finance stems from leaving grad school with six figures in student loan debt.