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How advertising molds and manipulates you.

Today is Thursday, money nerds, and it’s not the end of the world.

While my girlfriend and I self-isolate (with three cats and a dog), we’re watching the news way too much. When she gets up in the morning, she pours coffee, sits down at her laptop, and asks, “Has the world ended yet?”

It hasn’t. And here’s proof. Here are some great money stories I’ve been reading lately.

How advertising molds and manipulates our identities. [/r/technology on Reddit] — “I think that we should really consider to what extent advertising has an effect on one’s identity and identity-shaping process. As someone who wrote their thesis on the subject of how advertising affects a persons autonomy, let me leave you a few breadcrumbs on this.” This reddit comment is a terrific look at how advertising molds and manipulates us.

The hidden value of gratitude and your money. [Wallet Hacks] — “As I write this, it’s mid-March 2020, and we are in the early stages of dealing with the coronavirus. Our kids are home from school for the foreseeable future, we are thankfully still in good health, but we’ve chosen to isolate ourselves. There are a lot of things to complain about but there’s also a lot to celebrate and be grateful for.”

Be the friend who talks about money. [NerdWallet] — “I know my friends’ joys and anxieties and Hogwarts houses. I can even identify their shoes from under a bathroom stall. (“Is that you, Lindsay?”) They know my family members and preferred pizza toppings. But we know squat about one another’s finances. That’s pretty wild, given the enormous role money plays in our lives.”

There is not perfect personal-finance plan. [My Own Advisor] — “There is no getting out of this healthcare and economic crisis unscathed – everyone is impacted to a degree. I suspect how much you’re impacted depends upon how much you’ve planned over the years for events (that could be…) like this. Even then, nobody knows how this might play out – for you, for your family, for your loved ones and friends. That thought can be downright scary. This means there is no perfect personal finance plan to combat something like this.”

To wrap things up, here’s something that has nothing whatsoever to do with money. It’s simply a cute golden raccoon snacking on cherries.

I’m not sure I’ve ever seen anything as adorable as that. Such a happy little critter!

Well, that’s all folks. I’ll be back tomorrow with one last roundup for the week. Until then, stay healthy and grow wealthy.