This morning my mother apparently looked at one of those tips for saving money things. "How to save $10,000 a year," or some such. Tip number 1, "Bring your own lunch rather than buying one." Which my mother always does.
It occurs to me, as it always has, that these things are made for people who don't actually need to save money.
For example, the one that I see most often is, "Don't buy a latte every day," to which I respond, "If I were rich enough to buy a latte every day I wouldn't be in money trouble, now would I?" I mean, seriously, if people were rich enough to be doing all of the things the people who write tips for saving money assume they are doing, then they wouldn't need to be looking for ways to cut corners, they'd be free to set money on fire without worrying about the loss.
I suppose the reason that the things are written that way is that it's much easier to help someone who already is financially set and doesn't realize it because they're spending too much than it is to help someone who has real financial problems. But the result is always the same, the people who actually need advice on how to save a penny here or there look at the list of things and say to the ones they are told to stop doing, "I'm not doing those things, I wish I had the money to do those things, not that I'd use it on those things if I had it," and look at the ones they're told to start doing and say, "I'm already doing those things, I've been doing them for years/as long as I can remember," and in the end are left with a sense that there is nothing they can do because everything they might do they're already doing.
And thus those tips for saving money are not intended for people who actually need to find a way to stretch their money, but for people too stupid to realize that they've already got much more than they need. To the stupid people they may be of some help, but to those who actually need help they're cause to sink further into despair.