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Freelance writer & indie author sharing thoughts on life, society, creativity, and productivity. https://karenbanes.com

And they’re not all on minimum wage.

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According to Reality Check: The Paycheck To Paycheck Report, 54% of Americans define themselves as living paycheck to paycheck. This may not be that surprising, given the low federal minimum wage and the fact that a large section of American society is classified as low-income, but not all those who are struggling are on low incomes. It’s becoming surprisingly common to live paycheck to paycheck in spite of a relatively high household income. Let’s look at some of the data the report uncovered.

Those Living Paycheck To Paycheck Aren’t All Poor

The majority (53%) of those who earn between $50,000 and $100,000 annually still live paycheck to paycheck…


Saver, spender, gambler, worrier? It helps to know what’s driving you.

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You may or may not know if you’re a ISFJ or a ESTP, but those are not the personality types we’re looking at here.

According to Ken Honda, author of Happy Money: The Japanese Art of Making Peace With Your Money, your money personality type can help you understand your relationship with money and see where you’re going wrong. It’s easy to assume that being a compulsive saver is good, and a compulsive money maker even better, right? But every money personality has it’s pros and cons. Which one are you, and what can you do about it?

The Compulsive Saver

You may…


I can’t compete with married men unless I also have their most valuable asset.

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The first time I heard a heterosexual woman say she needed a wife was around ten years ago. She and I were both moms who worked part-time and had also chosen to go back to school full-time. We were juggling assignment deadlines, work schedules, volunteering at our kids’ schools, raising those kids, and running a home.

She had some extra errands to run that day and just needed someone to delegate them to. Someone who would do them correctly and efficiently, without complaining, without asking to be paid, or praised, or even thanked. She really did need a wife. …


They don’t care about those babies once they’re born. Or the people who birthed them.

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Texas passed a new law this week. Abortions will no longer be legal if carried out after a heartbeat can be detected. Usually at around 6 weeks and sometimes before a woman is even aware she’s pregnant. The law makes no exceptions for rape, statutory rape, or incest, which are all situations that might mean a woman or girl is unaware of (or in denial about) the fact she is pregnant. …


Starting out right can make a real difference.

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The year after you graduate college is as good a time as any to get your personal finances on the right track. Here are a few things to keep in mind as you do.

It doesn’t hurt to keep living like a student

The idea that graduating is the start of your adult life doesn’t mean you have to start living like you’re middle-aged. Far too many people think that having a roommate (or a few) is a sign you’re not an actual grown-up, but there’s nothing wrong with living with roommates in your 20s (or even beyond if it works for you).

One of the biggest problems in…


Even in the midst of Covid chaos.

Image by Pexels from Pixabay

It’s been a tough 18 months, and it’s not getting a whole lot better. Sometimes it feels like it’s getting worse. Covid is still here. Vaccinations aren’t the magic bullet we hoped for. Misinformation based on personal preferences abounds. And the world is still falling apart in all kinds of ways unrelated to the global pandemic.

If you have the chance to focus on what you can control, no-one is going to blame you for that. It’s OK to do the things that give you energy in these most uncertain of times. Here’s what works for me.

Movement

Often, when I…


And Covid has punched us all in the mouth.

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It was reportedly Mike Tyson who originally said that everybody has a plan until they get punched in the mouth. So I’m assuming he was talking literally. But most of us have experienced being punched metaphorically, by Covid, in the last year and a half, so it’s OK if things aren’t going to plan right now.

Some of us are rolling with the punches. Some of us are reeling. Some of us are staying down and playing dead. Some of us finally got up only to get knocked down again. A few of us are doing better than ever. But…


At least not when it comes to sexual assault.

Photo by Brian Wertheim on Unsplash

Recently I started reading a political Facebook thread. No, I don’t know why either. They are simultaneously depressing enough to make me wail out loud and annoying enough to keep me up all night.

This one involved a Republican and a Democrat fighting over who is the sexual assailant, Donald Trump, or Bill Clinton. I’m sure it won’t surprise you to know that the Democrat was convinced that Trump was a sexual assailant, and the Republican knew for a fact that Clinton was. The thread grew to several Democrats and Republicans fighting in teams, but the argument itself remained unchanged…


Women’s work just keeps expanding.

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When I was studying sociology back in the 1980’s my teacher put a lot of emphasis on what sociologists were then referring to as the double shift. This was a phenomenon whereby women who worked full-time still did the majority of the housework and childcare, effectively resulting in around eight hours of paid work, followed by eight hours of unpaid work.

Women had fought hard at this point to normalise working full-time as a woman, even after you had children. They had focused on seemingly important things like the right to earn the same as men, and make discrimination at…


You can’t do anything you put your mind to.

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I write about personal growth. At least that’s how I like to refer to it. Growing as a person. Learning new things. Reading new books. Meeting new people. Seeing new places. Slowly developing into a happier, healthier, more evolved person. Learning the lessons that will give you more peace and clarity and options, and make your life better and easier and slightly less stressful than average.

Unfortunately, that also puts me in the ‘self-help’ space as a writer, at least as far as many of my readers are concerned, and I’m not thrilled about that. …

Karen Banes

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