The Six-Word Memoir Blog

Six Words: Your Money, Your Life

Wednesday, March 28th, 2012

By Larry Smith

One of our most recent six-word prompts was also one the SMITH community responded to most passionately: Six Words About Work. Your smart, sensible and surprising Six-Word Memoirs on why you do what you do, lessons learned and bosses who helped you survive and thrive led to our most recent book Six Words About Work, with our partner in this project, Mercer consulting.

With work and money on the mind, I was excited to receive a copy of the new book by The Today Show’s Jean Chatzky, Money Rules. Chatzky’s one of the smartest, most sensible and accessible money advisors out there, and her latest book breaks down the complicated puzzle of personal finance into accessible, bite-sized bits (something we here at SMITH can get behind). Better still, some of her rules are in … six words.

Date your stocks; don’t marry them.
Spend less: carry Benjamins, not Jacksons.
Can’t explain it? Then don’t invest.
”More money” doesn’t mean “more happy.”


That got me thinking: from spending to saving to investing to planning for retirement, what are your six-word money rules? Leave your Six Words on Your Money Life in the comments section of this blog and Jean Chatzky herself will select six of her favorites and send you a signed copy of Money Rules. We’ll also add SMITH Magazine’s new Six-Word Memoir game as a bonus prize for one of the six winners, selected at random. You can enter up to ten times (each entry should be a separate comment below) and the contest closes on April 9. We’ll announce the winners on tax day.

174 responses

  1. lisa says:

    Marry for love not for money

  2. lisa says:

    Can’t pay cash? can’t afford it!

  3. lisa says:

    Make three piles: Save, spend, give

  4. George Kaplan says:

    Harder to make than to spend.

  5. Patrick says:

    Am I going to use it?

  6. Kathleen says:

    Save by living beneath your means.

  7. Jon VandenBroek says:

    Is it really NECESSARY to have?

  8. MANHATTANBEEFMAN says:

    Weigh the cost against the need.

  9. The Frugallery says:

    Fewer things, fewer worries, more money.

  10. JackieO says:

    Stop! Think responsibly before spending money.

  11. Maggi Frankel says:

    Don’t pay anyone for common sense.

  12. L2l3 says:

    Marriage is the longest term investment.

  13. L2L3 says:

    Marry someone with money…for love.

  14. L2L3 says:

    You’ll always need more…much later.

  15. L2L3 says:

    Piggy banks root our security blankets.

  16. Gretchen Dell says:

    Think through all “personal” purchasing options.

  17. Gretchen Dell says:

    Pack lunch to be less tempted!

  18. Gretchen Dell says:

    Save the shiny change for later.

  19. Gretchen Dell says:

    Treat credit card like debit card.

    You still can earn rewards but write purchases done in check register like you used your debit card.

  20. L2L3 says:

    Over-spending shortens quality of life span.

  21. Contemplative says:

    Taxed. Spent. Nickeled and dimed daily.

  22. Contemplative says:

    Break even analysis. Wishbone’s longer side.

  23. Contemplative says:

    Beware: “$1 store items often more.”

  24. Contemplative says:

    Pay off debt and bounty hunter.

  25. Contemplative says:

    Bankruptcy. 7 years. How very ironic.

  26. mary jane says:

    Never put money where mouth is.

  27. mary jane says:

    Don’t put your 2 cents in.

  28. mary jane says:

    Marry and Divorce a Republican Congressman.

  29. mary jane says:

    Never spend penny for someone’s thoughts.

  30. mary jane says:

    Always buy on sale. Use coupons.

  31. mary jane says:

    Money doesn’t buy happiness? Switch Malls!

  32. mary jane says:

    Have an affair with a CEO.

  33. George Kaplan says:

    Root of evil? I’ll risk it.

  34. Undermom says:

    Little house, little bills. Big life.

  35. Kellie Freedom says:

    After my divorce, money problems disappeared!

  36. Kellie Freedom says:

    Money does buy happiness- our vacations!

  37. Kellie Freedom says:

    Don’t pay for other people’s mistakes.

  38. Kellie Freedom says:

    Never share bank accounts with lover.

  39. Loon says:

    House upsidedown? Make basement your attic.

  40. Loon says:

    Have quintuplets. Nike factory in basement.

  41. Loon says:

    Electric car. Long cords. Thanks, neighbor.

  42. Loon says:

    Take shooting lessons from Jed Campett.

  43. Loon says:

    Cut mouse trap cheese in half.

  44. Loon says:

    Recycle euthanized pets. Hello, chop suey.

  45. Loon says:

    Borrow money from really old people.

  46. Loon says:

    Our daughters’ future: maids in China

  47. dean6805 says:

    Quit spending when the money’s gone.

  48. dean6805 says:

    No, you don’t really need that.

  49. dean6805 says:

    Internet shopping? ALWAYS check coupon codes.

  50. dean6805 says:

    Buy the best, cry once. Hopefully.

  51. SusieM says:

    Pay yourself, bills,not the piper

  52. Roberta says:

    Romance without finance has no chance.

  53. Michelle Corbo says:

    Love hate relationship, dollars and I

  54. lisa says:

    Rainy days will surely come: save!

  55. Jill says:

    He who mentions money first, loses.

  56. Patti H says:

    Always searching the couch for change…

  57. ilovejools says:

    My name says it all! Ha!

  58. Patti H says:

    Nothing is free. Always strings attached.

  59. Patti H says:

    Kids in college. Parents in debt.

  60. mary jane says:

    Stop paying penny for someone’s thoughts.

  61. mary jane says:

    Work available overtime. Put in Bank.

  62. bevvie says:

    don’t break the piggy bank prematurely.

  63. bevvie says:

    Loose change in jars adds up!

  64. bevvie says:

    Always save the kid’s birthday money.

  65. Believe says:

    Deep pockets quickly becoming empty pockets.

  66. Believe says:

    Remember when gas was in cents.

  67. Loon says:

    Model your ski-mask for a teller.

  68. Loon says:

    Take shooting lessons from Jed Clampett.

  69. Believe says:

    You can’t take it with you.

  70. mary jane says:

    First abolish poverty by abolishing IRS.

  71. Thunderchief says:

    Money has no bearing on me.

  72. mister29 says:

    Make do. Re do. Buy new.

  73. mister29 says:

    Listen Listen Listen to your wife

  74. mister29 says:

    If it ain’t broke, keep it.

  75. bevvie says:

    Money kept in bras earns zero.

  76. Jean Chatzky says:

    I love, love, love, these RULES!

  77. George Kaplan says:

    Money doesn’t matter. Pigs might fly.

  78. Coleen Goodson says:

    Nickel picking. Dollar tripping. Clock’s ticking.

    Life’s too short to trip over dollars while picking up nickels.

  79. BA_Miracle says:

    Lost it all and then some.

  80. BA_Miracle says:

    I do better when well off ;-)

  81. trust2020 says:

    Invest wisely, divest slowly, inhale deeply.

  82. trust2020 says:

    Good fences make good investment bankers.

  83. trust2020 says:

    If I had money, I’d manage.

  84. trust2020 says:

    Money often levels fields and friendships.

  85. trust2020 says:

    Respect money (just don’t worship it).

  86. trust2020 says:

    Money? I gave at the office.

  87. amydwa says:

    Dad’s advice: don’t charge your liquor

  88. Heather says:

    Don’t spend more than you make.

  89. Heather says:

    Is this debt worth the stress?

  90. Heather says:

    Target: the one hundred dollar store

  91. Anonymous says:

    Keep some cash under your mattress.

  92. trust2020 says:

    Money is the mother-in-law of necessity.

  93. jl333 says:

    Monopoly taught me everything I know.

  94. TawnyPort says:

    Recovering lost credit isn’t for wimps.

  95. Raised_by_wolves says:

    Money can’t get purchase on me

  96. favepeep says:

    Nest egg has flown the coop.

  97. Martha McDonough says:

    Piggy bank, savings bonds, financial beginnings.

  98. Roxee says:

    health family friends over money always

  99. LisaH says:

    Live within your means; pay cash!

  100. LisaH says:

    Save all you can tax free!

  101. LisaH says:

    No debt, income changes, no problem!

  102. LisaH says:

    Cut up credit cards…sleep better!

  103. LisaH says:

    Shopping not a form of entertainment!

  104. LisaH says:

    Save annual raise…don’t spend it.

  105. LisaH says:

    Don’t keep up with the Joneses!

  106. Karen R. says:

    Match your money to your GOALS!

  107. LisaH says:

    Win Mega Millions = different money problems?!?

  108. LisaH says:

    Prioritize retirement over kids’ college funds.

  109. LisaH says:

    It will be on sale soon.

  110. favepeep says:

    Inflation: penny for thoughts, now $1.

  111. favepeep says:

    Generosity of spirit makes great gift.

  112. HaroldW CFO says:

    Finance…It’s a Personal Thing!

  113. HaroldW CFO says:

    Finance…It is a Personal Thing!

  114. bevvie says:

    The two-dollar bills are still good.

  115. Annie says:

    Can’t afford it? Don’t need it!

  116. slackergirl says:

    Money isnt happiness. Happiness is money!

  117. jl333 says:

    Recyling paid off–bought used motorcycle.

  118. jl333 says:

    Found a dollar…invested it wisely.

  119. jl333 says:

    They lied. Money doesn’t buy happiness.

  120. jl333 says:

    Went bankrupt in game of LIFE.

  121. jl333 says:

    My rainy day consists of Franklin’s.

  122. bevvie says:

    Make friends with the stock dividends.

  123. favepeep says:

    Forgo products labeled “Made in China.”

  124. mzejay says:

    Spare changes adds up, keep saving.

  125. mzejay says:

    Stay afloat despite underwater living conditions.

  126. George Kaplan says:

    Sorry folks, but money DOES matter.

  127. jl333 says:

    COLD hard cash is super HOT

  128. jl333 says:

    SMALL change makes a BIG difference.

  129. jl333 says:

    Found a penny, picked it up.

  130. K822 says:

    Using pre-tax accounts saves all year.

  131. K822 says:

    Tax refund makes great vacation money!

  132. K822 says:

    Model spending habits so children learn.

  133. K822 says:

    More money? Nice, sure. But necessary?

  134. K822 says:

    Lots of free things bring happiness.

  135. K822 says:

    Impulse spending? You can’t afford it.

  136. K822 says:

    Stimulate economy by expending creative energy!

  137. K822 says:

    Bills stacking up? Decide what’s essential.

  138. bevvie says:

    Write a check. Balance the checkbook.

  139. marymc says:

    Do what costs you the least.

  140. marymc says:

    Choose quality over quantity every time.

  141. marymc says:

    Wants vs. needs. Know the difference.

  142. marymc says:

    On deathbed, more “stuff” doesn’t matter.

  143. marymc says:

    Start IRA with your first job.

  144. mzejay says:

    Invest with eyes and heart open.

  145. mzejay says:

    Avoid late fees and parking tickets.

  146. mzejay says:

    Elbow grease often most economical method.

  147. trust2020 says:

    Money is a state of mind-your-business.

  148. trust2020 says:

    Money makes the world go global.

  149. trust2020 says:

    Money rules, talks and never sleeps.

  150. Steelpony says:

    Chasing of money pollinates the flowers

  151. DynamicDbytheC says:

    Found passion. All work IS play.
    Childhood poverty drove my adult success.

  152. favepeep says:

    Mister CEO, can you spare $1,000,000?

  153. favepeep says:

    Avoid ATM, overdraft, annual, late, fees.

  154. favepeep says:

    Never ever ever ever pay retail.

  155. George Kaplan says:

    Savings? Gone. Slouching toward Social Security.

  156. George Kaplan says:

    Financial Meltdown, Slouching Towards Social Security.

  157. George Kaplan says:

    I’m about to outlive my money.

  158. George Kaplan says:

    Outlived my teeth and my money.

  159. George Kaplan says:

    Old is bad. Poor is worse.

  160. Vincent Aurelius says:

    Remember, experts make money for themselves.

  161. favepeep says:

    Eschew extravagance, live simply, share w/others.

  162. L2L3 says:

    Generic means you’re smart, not cheap.

  163. L2L3 says:

    Adult children’s inheritance was their childhood.

  164. L2L3 says:

    Sink money in now, float later.

  165. L2L3 says:

    Eat in. Work out. Save money.

  166. L2L3 says:

    Favorite Six about money? Six figures.

    No, I actually could not stop myself from posting this.

  167. George Kaplan says:

    Never learned how to make money.

  168. L2L3 says:

    Don’t over-haggle. Time isn’t worth it.

  169. L2L3 says:

    Poor people scoff at using coupons.

  170. favepeep says:

    Remember to save your memory “cache.”

  171. favepeep says:

    Squirreling away; not just for squirrels.

  172. L2L3 says:

    Squirreling away means you’re not nuts.

  173. DRS59 says:

    Self deprivation is your self preservation

  174. L2L3 says:

    Tax day has come and gone. Where have you hidden the winning memoirs?

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