037 | Playing With FIRE | Documentary | Scott Rieckens

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In today's podcast we speak with Scott Rieckens, the creative force behind the upcoming FI documentary called ‘Playing With Fire' and we learn about his FI journey and this exciting project.


In Today’s Podcast we cover:

  • A discussion with Scott Rieckens, the creative force behind the upcoming FI documentary ‘Playing With Fire’ we’ve discussed on previous episodes
  • Scott is devoting the next year of his life to create this documentary about the FI community
  • Scott’s background story and how he found FI
  • How they were on the ‘hamster wheel’ just working to pay for the lifestyle they were living
  • The importance of a side hustle or entrepreneurship
  • Scott consumes a lot of media, including podcasts and found the Tim Ferriss show especially valuable
  • Lifestyle creep in their living arrangements in Coronado
  • How Scott found Mr. Money Mustache and the FI community through the Tim Ferriss podcast
  • Living a life of happiness while pursuing Financial Independence
  • You don’t need $10 million (or a similar amount) to retire early
  • How Scott enjoyed the positive nature of the FI community
  • How Scott presented the FI concept to his wife and the thought of ‘why isn’t everyone doing this?’
  • How Scott framed FI to his wife with the focus on happiness
  • Looking at expenses in the framework of a 10-year timeline
  • Scott’s wife’s list of the things that make her happy on a weekly basis
  • Considering moving out of Coronado and California generally: Geographic arbitrage
  • How your entire life costs less when you leave a high cost of living area
  • How they approached the decision to move out of Coronado and what that process looked like
  • How moving allowed Scott to take a year of his life to create the FI documentary Playing With Fire
  • Scott’s wife was not only on board with the decision, but she wanted to travel in a camper and go on an adventure
  • Pursuits that matter to them that they now can pursue on the journey to FI
  • The timeline behind Scott’s FI journey and decision to create the FI documentary
  • Scott’s surprise that no FI documentary already existed and his start approaching us at ChooseFI to discuss the project
  • How the idea of FI can be life-changing for so many people
  • How this documentary can help spread the message of FI
  • How he decided to call the documentary ‘Playing With Fire’
  • Hot seat questions
  • Scott’s biggest financial mistake was taking on too much student loan debt
  • Scott would have ‘house hacked’ to buy property in his college town if he could do it all over again

Links from the show:

Books Mentioned in the Show:

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10 thoughts on “037 | Playing With FIRE | Documentary | Scott Rieckens

  1. The other FIRE type documentary that I’m aware of is Affluenza. Vicki Robin and Joe Dominguez feature in it and appear in the credits. It has a lot about rejecting consumerism, and a nice bit of what we’d recognize as FIRE today. You can find it on YouTube for free, here is a link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YhMllHwkAoM

    I think it came out around 20 years ago, so our community is due! Good on Scott for trying to get a new one made. I just re-watched it a little while ago. It’s amazing to me what’s changed since 1997. But more amazing is how much as stayed the same – we’re still waking up to trying to get off the hamster wheel.

    What a great episode. Glad to find it as I’m listening through your back catalog of awesome content. I’ve been resisting Facebook for years since social media seems like such a downer. But the FI community is so positive, maybe its worth signing up for.

    • Thank you so much for leaving this feedback we are at FinCon this week with Scott and I will definitely share this message with him. I’m sure it will put a smile on his face 🙂

  2. Another great episode!
    Was Scott’s email to family and friends with the best resources (including ChooseFI’s pillars of FI episode) posted anywhere?

  3. I was hoping to get a copy of the letter Scott sent to family and friends, that introduced them to this new life path. However, the link in the show notes has been marked out. Is there somewhere else this can be found? Thx!!! Kass

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