I don’t think I really needed a manifesto for my blog but I wanted to put some ideas out there that I think are important. As I go along and I learn more about running a personal finance blog, I became more and more keen on communicating to my readers that it’s okay to screw-up, make mistakes, ask questions, and celebrate successes without fear of being judged or criticized unkindly.
I’m a big supporter of feedback and constructive criticism but I think that can easily cross over a line into something else. I never want to get so confident in my own “financial wisdom” that I start using words like “ridiculous” or “stupid” or “foolish” to describe people that maybe don’t make the wisest financial decisions. Or maybe even make different decisions than me.
Real life example from a recent blog post I read: Someone was making a case for investing instead of paying off your mortgage – stating that anyone who did otherwise was “silly”.
*People who pay off their mortgages early are not “silly” for not putting large amounts of money into investments instead – regardless of your rate of return. Paying off your mortgage is a good decision for numerous reasons – future fluctuations in mortgage interest rates being one. While this is a fairly innocent example (silly is not a super scary word), it’s still kind of judgy.
So here goes:
Don’t be an A$$hole.
– I started my personal finance blog to document my own financial journey and empower others to take control of their money. If I’m doing anything else outside of empowering others and documenting my journey, I’ve fallen off course.
– I am interested in writing positively and encouraging others to learn – I’m not talking about “dance in the rain” quotes, I just want to avoid being a jerk.
– My blog is for readers – not just other personal finance bloggers. While I appreciate and welcome comments from one and all, if my comment section is limited only to other bloggers agreeing with everything I say, then it’s not a conversation and I’m not doing my job.
– While I am opinionated, I will not make my point by ridiculing others. If I can’t state my case without making other people feel crappy about themselves, then I need therapy – not a blog.
– I like differences and welcome other people’s opinions. If you, dear reader, are struggling with your finances or are celebrating a money success – I hope you feel comfortable enough to write in and tell me. I’d love to hear from you.
– If you are convinced that you’ve never made a financial mistake in your life, this is not the place for you. While I enjoy being right at times, I don’t need to devote a website to it.
– I expect that readers commenting will show the same respect and consideration for people’s personal differences that I wish to practice, I will edit comments accordingly. I’m not talking about being politically correct – ‘cause I’m really not – just reasonable and respectful.
I might not make some friends with this article but I’m not really out to win any popularity contests.
So readers, what are your thoughts?