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Category: Lifestyle

How did I manage not to buy anything on Black Friday?

I don’t remember if I’ve ever bought anything on Black Friday. Except in 2014, when I’ve bought my own apartment and we were going to move in in December. Back then we ordered the necessary home appliances (fridge, washing machine, stove) on Black Friday. I don’t know how much money we saved on those, as I didn’t track the prices for months prior the big day, we just ordered them because we would have bought them anyway a week or two later. But except for that one year I didn’t buy anything… Want to know how I did it?

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How I make my commutes more productive

Because I’ve chosen to buy an apartment outside of the city, I spend at least one hour commuting per day, even more if I decide to sleep a little more and have to make my trip to my workplace during the rush hour. In those cases the time I spend commuting multiplies. When you think about how much time you spend to get to your workplace and back home, you’ll find out that you may “waste” even 7-8 hours per week. I say that time is wasted, because I’m sitting in my car doing nothing. If I were going on foot or by bike, I’d say it’s useful, because I am also doing some exercise, but this way, I’m just wasting precious time every day.

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Your car is not an investment!

I’ve pretty much learned my lesson about depreciation with my first car. I’ve bought it new and after 6 years I donated it to my father, mostly because it lacked AC and engine power. Because it was an affordable cheap car, I gave it everything to keep it in tip-top condition, but didn’t “invest” in improvements. I didn’t track every penny spent on that car, but the values returned by the Car Running Costs Calculator alone hurt. A lot.

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Thoughts on success

I remember having a discussion during some course a while ago about success. We were presented pictures of actors, singers, some fancy building of a bank, expensive sport cars and a huge mansion with an enormous garden and swimming pool and we had to chose from the pictures what meant success for us.

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Running costs of the Devil

Below you may find all the costs of my current car, a 2011 Renault Megane Sport Tourer BOSE Edition with the famous 1.5 dci engine. I’m trying to log everything, even the tips I give after getting it washed. The only expenses missing from this are my time spent getting it to a service, and my transportation costs if I need to leave it there for a few hours and I need to get back to my workplace in the meantime.

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Crosul Companiilor 2016

Crosul Companiilor is a 5k run organized in all major cities in Romania every year. I’ve been preparing for it for the first time in 2012 with the guys from Wolters Kluwer, but it was organized in the same weekend I planned my vacation on. Back then I’ve chosen to go to Greece instead of sweating with the others. And then in every year I had better stuff to do then running, so never participated.

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Home automation on a budget – Orvibo S20

At the end of 2014 one of my dreams came true, when I have bought my first apartment which after staying in rented properties for ~8 years, I could finally call my home. Even though real estate prices were not as high as before 2008, they were still way too high for me, as I would never have enough courage to get into debt for 30 years… Instead I’ve opted for a loan with a period of just 4 years and have bought an apartment in a village 5 kilometers from Cluj-Napoca: Floresti.

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Motivation at the workplace – and the lack of it

Have you ever felt bored at your workplace? Horrible feeling, isn’t it? Especially if you have some tasks to work on, but you just don’t have the energy to do it. The easiest fix to this problem is to just go home earlier that day (if the company policy allows it) and do something you really love. These long afternoons may help dealing with demotivation at work at that moment, but not always works on the long run.

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Should we accept freelance projects to work on after our daily work?

I am pretty sure each software developer has been thinking at least once about dumping his/her workplace and getting into freelancing. I have always been dreaming about being my own boss, being able to accept only projects that are really interesting and of course having a flexible schedule. And by flexible schedule I mean to be able to work 3 hours one day and 12 on the next. Or working two hours from 7 to 9 in the morning and then again work a few hours in the evenings.

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