Sunburn, Curling Irons & Financial Justification

Hey everyone, Mondays are usually guest post Mondays; but I haven’t had the time to reach out to awesome bloggers in our community in a little while. So, while I figure out how to find time to work on that…if you’re interested in contributing a guest post to CNA Finance, please let me know about your interest by sending me an email. Here’s the address [email protected] We can discuss the details later. Anyway, since there’s no guest post this week, I figured I’d share something that Ana and I were talking about yesterday.

Great Times On A Boat (Blow up raft…whatever!)

Nick (My business partner), Ana, and I have all been talking seriously about getting a boat. After all, I’ve wanted one since I was growing up; and if the business can do it, why not? Well, we’ve come to the conclusion that a big nice boat was way out of the question. So, being phroogies (An awesome term by the way that Jason at Phroogal came up with), we went to Wal-Mart and got 2, 4 person, $40 blow up rafts and a few oars. Just as good, much less expensive.

Yesterday, we took our boats to the island to go fishing, and had a blast. We caught a fish that was this big…not! We actually didn’t catch anything more than sunburn; but we had an awesome time. We also got one heck of a workout…I forgot how intensive rowing can really be. Who needs a gym?

Then The Curling Iron Came In

To end our Saturday night, we decided to go out and play pool. Of course Ana loves to look great when we go out, so she broke out the curling iron and got to work on her hair. I sat in the bathroom and chatted with her as she was doing her hair. Out of nowhere, she did that thing Peter from Family Guy does when he hits his knee. If you don’t know what I’m talking about, click play on the video above. Unfortunately, Ana had just burnt her sunburn with the curling iron.

The first thing that came to mind was “That’s gotta really bite!” She just burnt her sunburn. I’m not sure how the conversation turned, but when Ana and I get to talking, we can find amusement in just about anything. Anyway, I posed this question…

If you burn a sunburn, does it really hurt worse than burning yourself in the first place? Honestly, does the sunburn make the affect of the burn any different?

In my opinion, the answer is no! Here’s why I say that….If you somehow had a hole put in your arm, it would hurt…BAD! But if you cut that arm completely off, do you think having a hole in the beginning would make cutting it off any worse?

Then the conversation lead to our thoughts on general human psychology. We always think that bad things come in multiples. Why? Because that’s the perspective we look at it from. When we’re in a bad mood, or something bad happens to us, we try to justify our mistakes by making the consequences seem far worse that what they actually are. Obviously, we don’t think about it, it just happens. Ana knew touching her skin was a mistake, but she’d done that in the past. And when she really thought about it, it wasn’t any worse than any of the other times she’s done it. However, for some reason, she felt like the backlash from this mistake was far worse than it should have been in the beginning. I hope I didn’t lose anyone there…but that’s how the conversation went.

Tying The Idea To Finance

I don’t know why I do this, but any time I have an “Ah Ha!” moment, I always try to tie the idea to money. I started to think of a scenario that I’ve seen quite a bit among friends, family, and even written subliminally about in blogs! Here’s the scenario…

Someone forgot that they had this or that bill. It came time to pay that bill, and unfortunately they didn’t have enough money to cover. The end always changes; they got a loan from friends, the family helped, they did a quick side hustle, who knows? It’s always different, but the idea is the same. Somewhere in the story, the financial justification starts to happen.

For example, I’ve read that someone had a hard time paying an auto loan that was just over $250 per month. While they were telling the story, they mentioned that they shouldn’t have purchased that extra cup of coffee 3 days this month. Using $9 worth of coffee as a justified excuse as to why they couldn’t pay a $250 bill….really? Or is it more like the $9 hurt, but it had very little to do with why they couldn’t come up with $250? Shouldn’t they be doing something about their spending and saving habits beyond considering $9 worth of coffee as an issue if they can’t come up with $250 to pay their bills? Is the cup of coffee the sunburn?

Seriously, that was a question to you…I’d love to read your answer below!

Great Posts From Around The Blogosphere

What My Relationship Taught Me About Money – If you’re not a Dear Debt reader, you should definitely consider heading over there and checking Melanie’s blog out! In this post, she shares what her 6 year relationship has taught her about money.

What Has Charles Been Up To? – Have you been missing Charles at Three Thrifty Guys? Well, it this posts, he shares why he’s been spotty with posting and a little about himself. It was great to get to know him more.

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16 thoughts on “Sunburn, Curling Irons & Financial Justification”

  1. So, this summer I have been sunburned 3 times already! If I have children, I am never going to be the one in charge of putting sunscreen on them because apparently I am very bad at it! Total amateur hour haha. And in an unrelated note, I can say that financial justifications are so dangerous (yet so easy to do)! I think really putting in the time to properly manage your money helps limit this because you do know what’s going on and take responsibility for your personal finances. It’s tough for some people but the reward is worth it! Who doesn’t want financial freedom?!

    • 3 sunburns already, you’re in for one heck of a summer! And, I agree whole heartedly. Financial justification is definitely dangerous!

  2. I think that most people don’t realize just how much psychology and emotion play into our financial decisions and it’s similar to the sunburn. The sunburn is the physical manifestation of something bad, so it is easy to see and feel the compounding factors. The car payment was the financial manifestation of something bad and the coffee was just the compounding factor. The reality, though, with finances is that typically it takes TOUGH choices to get to the type of savings people need and they don’t want to mentally weigh the tough choices, they would rather point out easy ones like coffee. Oh and never buy a boat, next to an airplane it is one of the worst financial choices you can ever make. Just find friends with boats instead. 🙂

    • Hey Shannon, thanks for swinging by and leaving such an insightful comment. Money and is definitely psychological. I still want a boat. Maybe years down the road…but I’m getting a boat. I know it’s a bad financial decision, but it’s going to happen. Afterall, I do a ridiculous amount of work, and if I can’t balance ridiculous work with ridiculous pleasures once every 2 or 3 decades…I’m not sure working would be so fun. You can definitely be my friend and ride on my boat.

  3. I think the cup of coffee is like blaming the sunblock for not working when you apply it in the morning and then go swimming for hours, dry yourself (wiping the sunblock off), and stay in the sun for the rest of the day. Sunblock doesn’t work all day.

    Applying sunblock in the morning and hoping to work the whole day is like not spending $9 on coffee and hoping for the other $241 to magically appear.

  4. Ummm…. huh?? Just kidding. 🙂 To me, the $9 on the coffee just makes it all the more difficult to dig out of the hole, you know? I would think that, maybe not so much financially, but more psychologically, that $9 could really hurt.

    • I absolutely agree that the psychological pain is bitter. But that’s the point, is psychological pain masking other…more pressing issues? Thanks for swinging by!

  5. There’s definitely a bigger underlying issue if you cannot pay your basic monthly bills and don’t even realize it until it’s time to pay the bill. Sounds to me that there is a lack of tracking spending and staying within budget. I like to indulge once in a while but I left room in my budget for that.

    By the way, I burnt most of my left hand last summer with a curling iron. I picked it up on the wrong side by not looking. Painful mistake. Still I wouldn’t want someone to cut my hand off. That would cause even more pain plus I need my hand. 😉

  6. This is a tough one. There’s something to be said about “not sweating the small stuff” but it also adds up over time. If you are stressed out over paying a $250 car bill, you probably will wan to do everything in your power to get rid of it. Including forgoing the $3 cups of coffee in favor of a coffee maker and store-bought coffee beans.

  7. I just spent six months in the tropics (Bali and other parts of Indonesia) and did not get one sun burn. That is called being careful. Of course $9 worth of coffee has no bearing on a $250 car payment. That person really needs to get their financial act together and do some careful planning so they don’t get a sunburn.

  8. Our relationship with money is something we need to be fully aware of and most people aren’t. We make a lot of excuses and rationalize others when we realize we make irrational decisions. I had someone tell me they haven’t had a vacation in years. I asked why and he said he has so many bills he just can’t afford it. I pointed to his car outside. I see you didn’t have enough bills so you had to buy the new car 2 months ago. His response included I deserve to have a nice car. I said that you do so I guess you don’t deserve a nice vacation.

  9. Ha! Burn or no burn, curling irons hurt! And as far as not being able to pay the $250 loan, I say don’t get a loan in the first place! Ha, but that’s really not the point.

    Perspective has a lot to do with money. How you perceive your financial situation dictates your behavior and whether or not you make smart financial decisions.


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