Smart Money Podcast: Overcoming Financial Fears, and Appliance Repair Tips

Liz Weston, CFP®
Sean Pyles
By Sean Pyles and  Liz Weston, CFP® 
Edited by Sheri Gordon

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Welcome to NerdWallet’s Smart Money podcast, where we answer your real-world money questions. In this episode:

Learn why a broken appliance doesn’t have to drain your savings, and how to fight financial fears to enjoy your money.

This Week in Your Money: Should you repair your appliance instead of replacing it? Hosts Sean Pyles and Liz Weston delve into the latest data from Consumer Reports and share handy tips that could end up saving you money and reducing electronic waste. They also discuss the “right to repair” movement and what it could mean for appliance owners in the future.

Today’s Money Question: Sean talks with Jenna, a 29-year-old listener in St. Louis, about how to overcome her financial fears and start enjoying her money more. They discuss how her upbringing may have led to her feeling the need to exert more control over her spending than she needs to at this stage in her life, and they share ideas for how to let go of some of that control in order to enjoy life more fully. They also delve into different methods of budgeting for hobbies, “lifestyle creep,” and saving for long-term goals like a down payment on a house.

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Have a money question? Text or call us at 901-730-6373. Or you can email us at [email protected]. To hear previous episodes, go to the podcast homepage.

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Episode transcript

Liz Weston: Sean, what would you guess makes up the majority of e-waste?

Sean Pyles: Electronic waste, you mean? I'm guessing computers, iPhones.

Liz Weston: Not a bad guess, but those actually make up less than 10% of electronic waste. The majority comes from appliances, and most appliances end up rotting in landfills where they release various poisons into our environment and contribute to climate change.

Sean Pyles: Oh, well, that's depressing.

Liz Weston: This episode we're going to give our listeners tips to extend the lives of their appliances to keep that from happening.

Sean Pyles: Welcome to NerdWallet's Smart Money podcast, where you send us your money questions and we answer them with the help of our genius Nerds. I'm Sean Pyles.

Liz Weston: And I'm Liz Weston.

Sean Pyles: Listener, you've got money questions, and we've got a boatload of genius Nerds to answer them. So send us your money questions.

Liz Weston: You can leave us a voicemail or text us on the Nerd hotline at 901-730-6373, that's 901-730-NERD. You can also email us at [email protected].

Sean Pyles: This episode, I chat with a listener about how they can overcome their financial fears and start enjoying their money more. But first, Liz and I are talking about how you can save money and cut down on electronic waste by being good stewards of the machines that come into your life. So, Liz, you just wrote a column about how to decide whether to repair or replace an appliance, and apparently Consumer Reports has changed their advice on this matter. What's the latest?

Liz Weston: OK. Well, the old-school advice was to think about replacing an appliance if the repair cost would be 50% of a new unit. But then Consumer Reports took a closer look at all the data they collect from members, and those members bought over 500,000 appliances between 2012 and 2022. Once they crunched the numbers, they came up with interactive tools that you can use that take into account the cost of the appliance, how long you've owned it, its remaining useful life and the cost of the repair.

Sean Pyles: That's pretty cool. So before you and I got on this recording, we were talking about how you have a 17-year-old refrigerator and that let you put this tool to the test. Do you want to tell us about that?

Liz Weston: Well, yeah. It was 17 years old when it started making this funny noise and I thought, oh, yay. I get to replace it. I get to have a nice French door version. It's going to look great. But I called in a repairman just to try to be semi-responsible, and he wound up replacing the compressor, repairing it for less than $200. That was eight years ago, so now that refrigerator is 25 years old and it's still plugging along.

Sean Pyles: Wow. OK. So you used this tool. Did it approve of your decision to repair this very old fridge?

Liz Weston: It did not, but sometimes I think stuff is worth repairing, even if it doesn't make strict financial sense, just to keep things out of a landfill.

Sean Pyles: Totally.

Liz Weston: As we mentioned at the top, big appliances like dishwashers and refrigerators and smaller appliances like coffee makers and blenders make up a big chunk of e-waste. And in fact, the number of small appliances that we Americans toss in the trash quadrupled between 1990 and 2018, according to the Environmental Protection Agency. Less than 6% is recycled.

Sean Pyles: Yikes. This makes me think about how, like many financial decisions, there's so much more than the dollars and cents to consider when you're trying to figure out what to do with an appliance. I'm a big advocate of repairing your belongings if you can, even things like clothes and shoes. There's also a right to repair movement that's trying to encourage manufacturers to make it easier for us to fix our own products.

Liz Weston: Yes. I just had this whole saga trying to get a vacuum cleaner repaired that convinced me first, I'm never going to buy this brand again because they make their units incredibly hard to fix. And second, I should always talk to a repair person about what brand to buy next because the repair folks at the vacuum shop know what's well-made and what's not and which products the manufacturers make impossible to repair. So asking them what they recommend and what they have in their own homes really will help guide me for my next purchase. And by the way, some repair shops will take your old appliances and rehabilitate them for sale or at least use the parts to fix other units. So that's another option when you're replacing an old appliance.

Sean Pyles: Oh, good to know. OK, so I want to talk about another type of machine — one that just about every person has, whether they're a homeowner or not — an electronic that many of us, myself included, seem helplessly addicted to, and I'm of course talking about our phones and tablets and computers for that matter. For so many years, many of us have been duped into the annual or biannual upgrade of these devices, and this is wild to me considering the price tag. Like if you replaced your washing machine every year because a new model came out that had shinier buttons or something, people would look at you like you had a screw loose. And yes, that is an appliance pun.

Liz Weston: Good one. OK. Well, Sean, what do you suggest people do?

Sean Pyles: Well, my motto for my phone at least is if it ain't broke, don't replace it. And if it is broke, try to fix it first. Here's how I approach that in practice. First I get AppleCare for my phone, because I am an Apple fanboy unfortunately, and that lasts two years. Something usually happens to my phone around the two-year mark, so I do try to get it replaced with a new one before my AppleCare is up. I did that last year and I was able to get a new phone for no additional charge beyond what I had already paid for my AppleCare.

Liz Weston: Oh, nice.

Sean Pyles: Yeah, it worked out pretty well for me. But now that I'm living in the wild and dangerous world of not having a warranty, I have a solid case on my phone and I may be less reckless with my phone than I was when I had a warranty, which means I'm no longer texting in the shower.

Liz Weston: OK. But what about when something does go wrong with your phone, are you going to try to swap it out or try to repair it?

Sean Pyles: It depends on the issue. If it's something like a battery going kaput, I can get that replaced for under $100 by Apple, and that is a heck of a lot less expensive than a new phone. But if something more catastrophic happens, like it falls out of my pocket and is run over by a bus, I will probably replace it.

Liz Weston: Just as an aside here, so it used to be you couldn't replace the battery, so you can now?

Sean Pyles: You can have your phone serviced by Apple and they will swap it out for you. Although that actually brings up a good point. There is a new program from Apple that allows you to do self-service, but it’s in its early stages right now, and also repairing your own phone isn't very easy, I'll say, from experience. Years ago I had an old iPhone 4 that had a very shattered screen, and I tried to replace that screen myself. I ended up doing it, but when everything was assembled again, I found myself with about five extra screws that I had no idea where they went to. So yeah, next time my phone breaks, I will bring it into professionals.

Liz Weston: That's a good idea.

Sean Pyles: Well, I'm always curious to hear how others approach this, whether to repair or replace devices from phones to dishwashers. Listener, if you have any strong feelings about this, let me know. Text me or leave a voicemail on the Nerd hotline at 901-730-6373 or email me at [email protected]. And that wraps up our This Week in Your Money segment. Today's money question is up next, stay with us.

This episode, I'm talking with a listener, Jenna, who's 29 and lives in St. Louis, Missouri. She has some questions about her financial anxieties and how to shake them. Jenna, welcome to Smart Money.

Jenna: Hi, Sean. So nice to be here.

Sean Pyles: It's great to have you on. To start, I'd love if you could describe your financial situation in general right now.

Jenna: Sure. My husband and I recently moved to St. Louis last year. Before that and during the pandemic he was in law school, and so we were on one income going through law school during an uncertain time. And so he graduated. We moved, and now we have two incomes, no children, renting in St. Louis and trying to figure out what our financial lives look like with both of us working. We obviously have some financial goals to fulfill over the next couple of years, but the markets are a little bit uncertain right now, so we're trying to navigate a balance of spending and enjoying being in a city and being young, but also saving for those larger ticket items down the road.

Sean Pyles: Got it. How long have you now had two incomes in your household?

Jenna: Oh, since August of 2022, so less than a year.

Sean Pyles: And how do you feel like that changed the way you're managing your household finances on a monthly or even daily basis?

Jenna: For me, I think I had this idea that we would live on one income and completely save the other one, and my husband looked at me like I was crazy. And so I think for me, it's been an exercise in releasing the control that I held on to so tightly for so many years and trying to maybe look at a larger apartment or go to a concert that maybe we wouldn't have previously, and just try to enjoy some of the entertainment aspects that we've been cutting back so much on over the past couple of years. We want to enjoy our 20s and our 30s and being in a fun city, we can do that now. And so he's been really good about being the other side of the coin, where I am the aggressive saver and calculate all of the things about retirement and down payments for a house, and he's more of let's try to enjoy it. Money is not only something to control, but it's something to use as a tool, and so I'm trying to get more into that mindset.

Sean Pyles: Yeah. Well, one thing I'm hearing is that it seems like you and your partner have a really well-balanced dynamic and that you have an ongoing dialogue about your money, and I do love to hear that. I feel like you kind of need a little bit of both in a relationship. Like in my relationship with my partner Garrett, I would say I'm maybe a little more of the spender, willing to buy some new clothes, willing to go on a maybe more expensive vacation. And Garrett is saying, "Hey, we really need to save for this specific goal. Maybe we don't need to eat out tonight." And I'm like, "OK, that's a fair point." But I think it's nice to have that back and forth. But I want to go back to a word you've mentioned a couple times now, which is "control." In your original question to us, you mentioned that you have some financial anxiety that is tied to the way you control your finances. Can you talk about that a little bit?

Jenna: Sure. I think also something that I'm learning is how people grow up affects how they handle money maybe when they're older. Growing up, I am from a rural town in Missouri, part of a blue-collar single-parent household and money was something that was not abundant, so to speak, and we were very conscious about how we spent it. And so growing up, I was rewarded for being able to be frugal and think through financial decisions strategically and have a level head about it. And it was always something that I thought I was being very, I guess, logical about, and I wasn't using emotions at all. Turns out I was absolutely using my emotions. They were just emotions of control and anxiety of what happens if something out of my control happens and I don't have the resources to do it.

So now whenever we have funds to do something with, I always want to control it to try to see what I can do with it, see what's the most I can stretch it, and how I can utilize it to the best of my ability and be very resourceful. So it's been something that I've been trying to work on because it's not something that I want to continue by any means. But I think also you look at the news, is a recession happening, is it not happening? The housing market is a little bit crazy. And so in my mind, what I always seem to default to is if I can control something, then things are going to be OK, but that's not always necessarily the case.

Sean Pyles: It's great that it sounds like you're giving every dollar of yours a job. That's something we talk about a lot on Smart Money, and that can be a really empowering way to manage your finances. But you at the same time maybe don't want your sense of control coming from a place of fear and maybe a fear stemming from a financial context in which you no longer live. When you were younger and money was tight, even going back to a year ago when you were living off of a single income, maybe that mindset was a right one. Things were tight, you wanted to save more money, you didn't have a lot coming in. The world is precarious and scary. So I think you aren't unjustified in a lot of those feelings because the idea of control is in some sense an illusion. We can do everything right, but no one really knows what the future holds.

So for me, the way I try to find a balance between those things, because I have similar fears sometimes, is that I like to focus on improving the conditions that I can control, like saving aggressively and limiting my spending. And I think that might be a way where you can try to exert an appropriate amount of control, but still find ways to enjoy what you have earned because you are working hard for the money, you're spending your life earning this money, you need to then turn around and find ways to have it enrich your life, right?

Jenna: Exactly. And that's something that my partner talks about constantly as well, is yeah, money is a tool, like I mentioned, and I don't want to squirrel away money for retirement, as an example, and get to my 60s and not be able to do the fun things that I could have done in my 20s if I had just loosened up a little bit. So it is a balance, and it's just been 20 years of this mindset, and so it's definitely going to take a couple of years or so to try to find a middle ground. I don't think it would be healthy for me to swing all the way on the other side of the pendulum and be a big spender, but also there is a balance to strike with this for sure.

Sean Pyles: Yeah, of course, to your point, you're not going to totally change and rewrite the script of 20 years of viewing and interacting with money overnight. But it is important to think about how you can adjust your habits and financial outlook to get to a point where you feel better about the way you're viewing money and interacting with it. And one of the best ways to adjust your money mindset is just to get super clear about those patterns and behaviors that you do want to change. So you can think about what those are for you and write them down, and then try to be really intentional in your day-to-day life and be aware of when you are feeling those feelings that you don't like and doing those things that you want to change. And that can be difficult to do in the beginning, but it's a really useful skill to break entrenched habits that you've established over 20 years.

And so when you do find yourself acting or thinking in a way that you don't want, grasp that moment and think about that feeling in a full-body way. Think about the sensations that you have when you're feeling anxious about money or you are putting something back on the shelf because you're feeling hesitant about buying it. What is that for you? Being able to diagnose those feelings can be a good step toward recognizing them coming on and then changing the script in that moment. And maybe you are buying whatever it might be or you're going to that concert and you're able to enjoy the money that you're earning a little bit more.

Jenna: That's so funny that you say putting something back on the shelf that I initially grabbed. That happened over the weekend and my husband made me get the thing that I —

Sean Pyles: Oh, yeah.

Jenna: Yeah, I have curly hair, it was this very fancy, special curly mousse, and it was three times the amount that I would normally spend, and my husband made me get it. He's like, "You're getting this. I know you want it. It's happening." And it was great. So I think having people around you that can check you, and I'm obviously in a committed relationship, we share accounts, but sometimes friends don't want to talk about money, but I think having someone be a little bit accountable to you to help you figure it out and guide you along that path is really helpful because it's almost subconscious.

Sean Pyles: That's so interesting. It seems like you have a really supporting partner that just knows you so well. So I love that for you. And this also is bringing to mind for me, ideas around lifestyle creep, and sometimes it's framed as a really negative thing. Like, oh, you're spending beyond your means because you have a higher salary. In this case, it seems like you could maybe afford to have a little bit more lifestyle creep. When I first got a pretty sizable raise earlier on in my career and I realized, "Hey, I'm tired of buying these $20 T-shirts at these fast fashion stores that disintegrate in a year or two." I would rather invest in something that is higher quality and will last me longer, and that I really appreciate, even if it was twice the amount of what I typically felt comfortable spending money on.

Jenna: Yeah, I'm glad you brought that up as well, because I was listening to a financial podcast over the summer and they talked about lifestyle creep, and the host mentioned something about, I don't want to live like I lived in college. I don't want to live in a one-bedroom apartment —

Sean Pyles: You're an adult.

Jenna: — next to the train tracks. Yes, I'm an adult, I make adult money, I have adult benefits. I should be able to discern what is the most important and where my priorities are and adjust accordingly at different stages of life. And so I think for people who may have control or anxiety, it just may take longer to balance that out and adjust that out over time. Whereas my husband was not concerned at all about lifestyle creep. If anything, he thought of it as a good thing and I'm still adjusting to it. So yeah, I agree, I think lifestyle creep has a bad rap, but in some ways it is necessary for mental health, for stability. So you know that you worked hard for a raise or you worked hard to change jobs, and we worked hard to get him through school and this is the final destination or the reward of all that hard work.

Sean Pyles: And it's a day-to-day way where you can embody the idea of living for today while planning for tomorrow. Yes, you are putting away money for retirement. Yes, you have a savings account that you're contributing to, but what are those things that you're going to appreciate over the weekend? Are you going to go out to that nice brunch? Are you going to have a good date with your partner? What are those few things that you are just going to say, "This is for me, I'm enriching my life with the money that I earn." And one thing that you and I talked a little bit about before was that you're interested in getting a hobby that you could spend some money on. Can you talk about what that might be and how you are maybe working that into your budget?

Jenna: I think growing up, I didn't really have many hobbies, and if I did have hobbies, they were pretty low cost, like something I could get at the library or something my friend was doing that I tagged along with. So I didn't really have my own hobbies, which sounds crazy, and I want my own and I want to be able to formulate those. And so yeah, this summer I've gotten really into gardening. So I bought the nicest tomato cages I've ever seen in my life, which —

Sean Pyles: Some of them can be very beautiful.

Jenna: Yes.

Sean Pyles: I am a gardener, as you maybe know, listening to the podcast. So I also know there's a lot of money that can be spent on gardening gear.

Jenna: Yes, the nice pots, the extra nice soil to make sure my tomatoes grow well because they’re a little needy and all those things. And I went to a local garden shop, paid for tomatoes that were a little bit more than what they would've been at maybe a larger box store. So I felt good about giving back to my local community. And so that's something as well, whatever hobbies that I end up doing, I want to be sure that they're rooted in supporting local businesses. I want to make sure I know where my money is going and supporting the families in my community. So that's been something that's been interesting and it's paid off. My garden is doing really well, and so I think I found my new thing.

And so I typically try to have a summer hobby and a winter hobby, and I think my winter hobby, I might get into baking, and that can really go down a rabbit hole with what you can spend on baking, I've already learned. So it's really good, it's really healthy, and I've noticed it impacts other areas of my life. I mean, I can maybe have a stressful day at work, go out and garden for 30 minutes, so it's worth it. And it's taken me a while to understand why and how it's worth it, but ultimately I think I needed to prove to myself that it's worth it, otherwise I would've just kept doing, I don't know what I was doing before, not hobbies. I guess I was reading and maybe watching TV.

Sean Pyles: Hearing you say that it's worth it really makes me feel good, because it's so true. When you find something that you really care about, you want to spend your time doing, whether it's learning a skill like gardening or baking, and you begin to see yourself bear the literal fruits of it, in the case of gardening. You realize how much bigger it can make your life, that you have these different interests that are allowing you to connect with your community, to create things that you can share with your loved ones, in the case of gardening.

So that's just fantastic to hear, but both of those hobbies can get really expensive. And I'm wondering if you've thought about how you are pacing purchases like this because with some things like gardening, yes, you want those tomato cages, yes, you want to get the really good soil, but there are some things that you can maybe actually get for cheaper at a used hardware store, like hoses, for example. Those things get dirty immediately and it's pretty easy to find a cheap one elsewhere. So how have you thought about being frugal when it comes to approaching your hobbies?

Jenna: So I bought this very, very nice soil at the gardening store, and turns out my local parks and rec department has a compost pile right next to my local gym that I had no idea about. And so going forward, I'll definitely be utilizing that. It's free to the public, which is a wonderful service. And so utilizing that going forward, but also I think I might try to harvest the seeds from my tomato plants and reuse them next year, instead of buying plants that are already started and maybe try to do seedlings, starting in maybe, I don't know, March or February. That's a whole different ballgame. I didn't feel confident enough in my gardening skills this year to try that, but maybe this year it could work.

Sean Pyles: That's great. Well, I want to zoom out a little bit and talk about some of your longer-term financial goals and how you can maybe take steps now to work toward them, even if that means maybe allocating more money from your paycheck to a savings bucket than you would maybe previously have felt comfortable doing. So you've mentioned that you are interested in buying a house. Are you and your partner currently saving for a down payment right now?

Jenna: Yes. Yeah, very aggressively as well. But the housing market is still very active and doesn't seem to be slowing down, so we are probably going to be saving longer than what we anticipated. We're trying to buy a house right now; it's not going very well, if I'm being candid with you.

Sean Pyles: It's hard.

Jenna: Yeah, we're looking at maybe trying next year or even the year after. There are worse things in the world than renting for a few more years than what you anticipated. So with that, maybe we were saving very aggressively for that and we will still continue to save, but I've thought about to maybe allocate towards a nice vacation or a place we've never been before, and just try to enjoy life in the meantime because the time will pass anyway, so I want to make memories while we still can. A year ago, I would have thought that's crazy, we need to save as much as possible for it. But I think our experience with the current housing market is like, well, sometimes it's very much outside of your control, and that's OK. Instead, we've looked at a couple of places to go next spring or so and try to utilize some of those funds instead of just for the house.

Sean Pyles: Yeah, I think that's great. Have you looked into any sort of first-time home buyer programs in your state? Because each state has their own programs.

Jenna: We have, and we don't qualify. In Missouri, they're very income-based and we are very fortunate in some ways we don't qualify for them, which is totally understandable. Those should go to people who need them the most.

Sean Pyles: So, Jenna, can you also talk with me about your current savings and debt situation right now?

Jenna: Yeah, so my husband was very fortunate to graduate without any student loan debt. So we don't have any debt to speak of, either consumer wise or education wise. And so we're able to save pretty aggressively for the things that we kind of pushed off while he was in school. So that could be anything from a new car to his retirement accounts, a house down payment and all those things. So we understand that we are in a very fortunate position to be able to do those things at our age. A lot of our friends aren't in that position, so we don't take that for granted. And with that, I mean, we are a little behind, I guess, technically, because he was in school for so many years, and so in some ways we are trying to play catch up, but that is easier to do without any debt.

Sean Pyles: Yeah, I would say being behind or ahead is an illusion in some ways.

Jenna: Fair enough.

Sean Pyles: You're just where you are and that's fine.

Jenna: Yes.

Sean Pyles: Everyone has their own pace; that's how I think about these things. But I have another question for you around your savings, since you mentioned that you are able to save. How do you approach savings accounts? Do you have a high-yield savings account? Do you have savings buckets like we talk about a lot on the podcast? What do you and your husband do there?

Jenna: Yeah, it depends on the term of the savings that we're trying to reach, I guess. So for shorter term, like a car, for instance — we're trying to buy a new car for him — we have a shorter-term savings account that's just at our bank, and so we're hoping to buy a car in the next two months here. But for longer-term things like a house down payment, we are in a high-yield savings account. So it depends on the item, and also we want to possibly take a trip to Europe in the next five years, so that's a longer-term thing, obviously, and that's also in a high-yield savings account.

Sean Pyles: OK, great. We stress these accounts a lot because especially right now, the yields are so fantastic that if you have money in them, it's really working for you in a way that if it's sitting in a more traditional non-high-yield savings account, it just wouldn't be doing as much for you.

Jenna: A quick question on that. So are high-yield savings accounts recommended regardless of the time frame that you have to save or does it matter?

Sean Pyles: It's a personal preference, but I use high-yield savings accounts for everything, even regular pots of money that I have to pay my credit card balance monthly. And with student loan payments resuming, I recently opened up a new high-yield savings account, so I have my money for my monthly amount that I'm paying for my student loans dedicated into that fund. So for me, it helps me break out the way I have different pots of money allocated, those savings buckets that we discuss a lot. So you can do it for a short-term goal, it is earning you more on a regular basis than a traditional savings account would. I don't see much of a downside of having any savings at all in a high-yield savings account because it can be pretty accessible in a pinch.

Jenna: OK. That's good to know. I think I had just assumed that that was for kind of a longer-term savings goal, but it seems advantageous regardless of what the savings goal is, short term or long term.

Sean Pyles: Yeah, I mean otherwise you could just be leaving money on the table, and I always advise people against that.

Jenna: Yeah, exactly.

Sean Pyles: OK, great. Well, Jenna, now that we've talked about a few ways that you're thinking about changing your money habits and your mindset, and will be working toward your longer-term and even shorter-term financial goals, do you have any thoughts around how you might work to lessen some of the financial anxiety that you feel and really enjoy your financial success?

Jenna: Oh, that's a great question. I think continuing to invest in things that matter to me, whether that is gardening or maybe giving to organizations that I feel passionately about or know what I'm working towards when I'm working towards a goal at work. Great that I'm getting possibly a raise, but is that raise just going to maybe invite me to be more stringent with my money, or is that going to be a raise that I can utilize to do something for myself or for my community? So I think changing the mindset that I have about money, again, into it being more of a tool or something that I can utilize to make my life maybe a little bit easier, more enjoyable, and enjoy the people around me, versus something that I feel like is scarce, that I'm fearful about it.

I think it might help for me to maybe not check the news so much. I can't control the federal interest rates or what the Fed does at all really, and no one really knows what's going to happen in the future. And so I try to be informed about what's happening in the world, but sometimes you can be a little bit too informed to where that causes you to overthink and have anxiety about things that you cannot control or maybe don't even impact you.

Sean Pyles: Yeah, you have to know when you need to step away and maybe go tend to your garden and touch some grass, as the kids say.

Jenna: Right, exactly. So it's twofold, I think changing my mindset into where money is a tool more than something to control, and maybe not look at the news so much. So we'll see where that goes; I might delete some apps off my phone.

Sean Pyles: I think that's a good piece of advice for everyone, regardless of your financial situation. But I’d love to hear about how intentional you're being around your mindset and your habits, whether it's for news consumption or for managing your finances, because those two things are so interlinked. When you are trying to establish a new habit, whether it's being able to enjoy your money more or saving more money, you need to think about the way that you're going to get there psychologically. What is it going to take you to overcome any sort of hurdles that you have? And then what are the actual physical day-to-day tasks that will allow you to bring that goal to life? And then once you start building on that, whether it's saving more or enjoying your money more, it just becomes easier to do overall. And you'll be surprised how far you can come just by regularly working on these things. Well, Jenna, thank you so much for talking with me.

Jenna: Yeah, thank you, Sean. I listen to the podcast regularly and I always find something to take away from it, so I'm just happy to be a part of it.

Sean Pyles: Well, that makes me really happy to hear, and please keep us posted on how things go for you and your husband.

Jenna: I will, yeah. Thank you so much.

Sean Pyles: And that's all we have for this episode. If you have a money question of your own, turn to the Nerds and call or text us your questions at 901-730-6373, that's 901-730-NERD. You can also email us at [email protected]. Visit for more info on this episode. And remember to follow, rate and review us wherever you're getting this podcast.

This episode was produced by Liz Weston and myself, with help from Tess Vigeland. Kevin Tidmarsh and Kaely Monahan mixed our audio. And a big thank you to the folks on the NerdWallet copy desk for all their help.

Here's our brief disclaimer. We are not financial or investment advisors. This nerdy info is provided for general educational and entertainment purposes and may not apply to your specific circumstances. And with that said, until next time, turn to the Nerds.