We’re super excited to share this post with you from Lauren at The Geoscience Behind Finance. She’s been a part of the personal finance community for some time now, but we have the distinct honor of helping introduce her new site to you!
Here’s more from Lauren:
The Geoscience Behind Finance is a perfect mix of my two intellectual passions: geology and personal finance. I am not only giving my readers a sneak peek into my life as a geologist but I am also providing clear and concise information that my readers can benefit from to save more money, pay down debt and build wealth.
Come and check it out!
How This Geoscientist Uses the Scientific Method to Help you Save Money, Pay Down Debt and Build Wealth
According to the Nation Science Foundation, there are currently 66,000 geologists working in the United States (2015).
Of those geologists, only 3% are African American (National Science Foundation, 2015).
As I started writing this piece for The Money Mix, I was just as shocked, as you may be right now, to discover these facts. Being geologist is an anomaly but being a black, female geologist is like being the last unicorn grazing on Mars!
The first thing I am always asked is, “Did you have a rock collection growing up?” And my answer is, “Yes, I certainly did! I started off with those Scholastics’ rock collections that my mom bought during elementary.”
The second question is, “How did you become a geologist?”
Even though I had (and still) have a rock and mineral collection, I didn’t even know what a geologist was until my junior year in college!
In my junior year of college, I was a business major but discovered geology…my destiny. I studied the fundamentals of geology for an extra 2 years after college and eventually went to grad school, had numerous internships, research positions and pursued a full time job as a geologist.
I had achieved my dream of becoming a geologist but quickly learned that my passion for personal finance and business never faded. I needed to use the skills that I learned in college to navigate adulthood. Bills, debt, taxes, homeownership…
There were so many questions that I had about all my new responsibilities. I took lots of time to research and answer them for myself. I started to notice that the very same questions I was answering were the questions that thousands and even millions of others had, as well. There is a group of knowledge hungry individuals out there who are seeking out the unique voice that I have as a female, black, scientist who also has a love/need for personal finance.
That is why I rebranded my website, in December 2018, from One Queen, One King to The Geoscience Behind Finance. The determination and resolve that I exhibited in my journey to be one of only 1000 black geologists in the U.S. is the same energy that I promise to my readers.
As a geoscientist, I not only follow the Scientific Method in my everyday work life but this process has shaped the way I make observations and answer questions my readers are most interested in.
1. Make Observations, Ask Questions and Do the Research
Most scientists start by observing their own surroundings and experiences. From these observations, they then can start asking questions. Why does this happen? How can I improve what I am witnessing? Questions like these eventually become the basis, or hypothesis, for their experiments.
Newton’s Law of Gravitation, one of the most famous scientific theories in history, was developed after he observed an apple falling from a tree.
George Washington Carver, one of the most prominent scientists of his time, developed methods to prevent soil depletion after witnessing the barren and overproduced fields of the south.
And the list goes on…
When developing a blog post, just like these famous scientists, I start by looking at my own life and surroundings. What kinds of obstacles am I facing? Where are some areas that I can improve upon? What future goals am I setting for myself and my family and how can we achieve them? Writing blog posts that are based on my own life become very relatable examples and lessons learned for my readers.
Just like scientists conducting an experiment, I also build upon previous studies. Doing background research is one of the most important steps in the Scientific Method. When writing posts, I use facts from other studies and articles to build trust with my readers and validate my posts.
It’s also nice to see that I’m not the only one making improvements to my financial situation.
2. Testing my Hypothesis with an Experiment: Scenario-Based Analysis
Scientists test the validity of their hypothesis with an experiment. I am a big proponent of scenario-based analysis. As a scientist, I test multiple methods and provide a range of possibilities that support my hypotheses.
As a personal finance blogger, I use this same mindset. When I write about my personal experiences, I use tools, like calculators and case studies, to provide relevant examples for my readers.
3. Collect and Analyze Data, Draw Conclusions and Communicate Results
My job, as a geologist, is to interpret data and draw conclusions from that data.
A major step in the Scientific Method is communicating your results to the public. Scientists communicate results that can help, warn and inform.
Being a scientist is just like any other job! After I analyze the data, I report those conclusions and recommendations to my management. Major decisions are made, daily, off of the recommendations that I provide. Lots of responsibility is put onto my shoulders to provide an unbiased, critical overview of my work.
This is also true of the blogging world. The information that I provide my readers needs to also be an analytical view of the topic I’m discussing. I know my readers are counting on me to provide information that will help them save money, pay down debt and build wealth so I need to take the greatest care in offering the best information I can.
With our reader’s lives becoming more busy and fast-paced, they look to bloggers to not only communicate critical information but to communicate it in a clear and concise manner. Just like in my daily job! As a personal finance blogger, I communicate with my readers through lists which include specific action items. Lists, like these, tend to improve lives of my readers by consolidating information into easily doable tasks.
Following the Scientific Method has shaped the way I solve the Earth’s biggest mysteries and also helps my readers save money, pay down debt and build wealth.
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Note: The Money Mix hosts guest posts as a way to further diversify and amplify the personal finance community. We don’t agree with everything written in our guest posts, nor do we endorse the author or ideas expressed in the post.