Words and Money: High Fiving Dollars with Sarah Li Cain

sarah li cain words and money interview

W+M 013: An Interview with Sarah Li Cain

This week on Words and Money I’m talking to Sarah Li Cain, a teacher currently located in China, turned freelance writer and personal finance blogger. Sarah writes over at highfivingdollars.com and shares her stories about personal finance, but dives deeper into the psychology and meaning behind why we spend our money, how we can feel good about our money decisions, and love our money like we mean it.

In this episode, Sarah and I talk about the choices we make around spending money, and she gives us her tips on how to celebrate our money choices. We talk about the social pressures we face early in our 20s and how to set boundaries and say “no” to all the things that require us to spend energy and money. Stay tuned until the end to learn what Sarah misses about the U.S. and what she enjoys most about living in China.

Listen to the show:

What We Talk About:

  • Sarah's "Money Story"

  • Dealing with resentment and shame when paying off debt she racked up with an ex-boyfriend

  • Why Sarah treats her money like her best friend

  • Sarah introduces HighFivingDollars.com and shares what she's observed with other's money spending decisions.

  • Sarah helps us learn how to celebrate our money choices:

    • Announce it to the world!

    • Fist-pump yourself.

    • Create a "Yay-Me!" Fund - Separate account where you can do whatever you want with it to celebrate your good money choices.

  • The importance of setting professional and personal boundaries

  • Sarah answers my Quick and Dirty Q&A: The best? Why Sarah's dream as a child was to buy a car in cash.

Learn how to be friends with your money, treat it right, and shift your mindset around how you feel about your money matters.
“Debt is not something outside of yourself and neither is money.”
“Whatever you do, good or bad, it’s a choice. Don’t ever think that you’re not in control.”
“Some people are perfectly happy being ignorant with their money.”
“People save or stop spending based on fear.”
“Valuing your time, energy and boundaries is the biggest thing that we can do.”
“When you don’t respect yourself, it manifests in your spending habits.”
“Don’t spend money to impress people. Don’t spend it because of what you think other people will think of you.”
“Money is not about the numbers, it is about the value you receive from spending it.”