083R The Hobby Checklist

083R | The Hobby Checkbox

Recap of Monday’s episode with Cody Berman, a checklist to optimize your hobbies, a highlight on the San Diego local group, and messages from the ChooseFI community.

  • What great present did Brad receive from his mother for his birthday this past week?
  • Brad recaps his first local adventure with his family.
  • Jonathan presents an idea for a small business for Brad’s daughters.
  • Will Brad be on the next “Survivor”?
  • Jonathan remarks about the advantages of taking challenging courses in high school and earning early college credits.
  • How can students finish college early, to minimize the opportunity costs of college?
  • Brad recommends setting up “canned responses” in Gmail to optimize your emailing.
  • Review of the value of jobs in college and what types of jobs could be the best for a student.
  • How can one job help develop your FI potential in multiple ways?
  • How can you optimize your hobbies?
  • Related article: How To Get The Most Out Of Your Hobbies
  • Jonathan’s checklist for hobbies
    • 1. Enjoyment: it’s bringing enjoyment to your life.
    • 2. Cost: it fits within a price range that you’re comfortable with.
    • 3. Networking: brings you into a community.
    • 4. Fitness: it makes you healthier.
    • 5. Skillset: it adds to your current skillsets.
  • Brad mentions the importance of pursuing mastery.
  • Brad and Jonathan practice evaluating hobbies, determining whether they’re productive hobbies.
  • Brad and Jonathan will be at Project Movement in Philadelphia. Catch up with them for a ChooseFi meet up on Sunday, July 22 at Yard Brewing Co. at 6 p.m.
  • The San Diego ChooseFi group has begun using real-life submitted scenarios to develop FI plans for group members.
  • Dan, from Facebook, is excited about replacing the air filter in his car – learning a new skill and saving money on car maintenance.
  • Charlene is excited that her 15-year-old son requested setting up a Roth IRA for her son.
  • Daniel, an active ChooseFi listener, mentions that the Navy Federal Credit Union just opened a new platform called “Easy Start Investor” for Navy Federal members, which shares some similar advantages as M1 Finance.
  • Jonathan summarizes some of the benefits of M1. Check out our full review of M1 Finance to learn more.
  • Message from Prussant, spoke with a group of new, young-adult recruits at work to introduce them to the concepts of financial independence.
  • Leave a ChooseFI review by Monday, July 16, to win a set of discs from Cody Berman.



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7 thoughts on “083R | The Hobby Checkbox”

  1. You mentioned something about rebalancing accounts and short term gains when you were extolling the alleged benefits of an M-1 account. I hope you didn’t mean to state that rebalancing was going to incur short-term capital gains. If you did say that intentionally, then I highly recommend you look at tax-loss harvesting (and accordingly, tax-gain harvesting). Check it out at https://www.bogleheads.org/wiki/Tax_loss_harvesting or look at the hundreds (thousands?) of forum posts there.

    This ought to change your view of rebalancing. If your bands are really out of whack, then consider just using new money to put into the underperforming fund. I guess I don’t understand what an M-1 will do for me instead of what I can do myself with a three-fund portfolio.

    • Hey Greg
      “If your bands are really out of whack, then consider just using new money to put into the underperforming fund” <-- M1 does this automatically, it always applies your new funds in a way that will preserve your target allocation. That's all I was trying to say. If you enjoy doing that yourself and enjoy the process then I agree it won't offer you significant value. but for the vast majority of people I think this will have real appeal. We did talk about TLH and Capital Gains harvesting in 18&18R . Hope that helps thanks for listening #BogleOn

  2. *raises hand as someone who is getting fit using the Nintendo Wii* There’s always one, isn’t there? Well, Jonathan, you did say someone could disprove you… so here I am! 😉

    The Wii had “Wii Fit,” and it’s not super popular, but the Nintendo Wii U has “Wii U Fit,” which comes with a fitness tracker for just $20 that is one of the most accurate pedometers on the market. My husband and I have been using our “Wii Fit Meters” for years as a frugal alternative to FitBits and other fitness trackers that cost more and break more easily (I think we’ve had our Wii Fit meters for over 4 years now, they’re still going strong.) As a part of your “Skinny Waist, Fat Wallet” challenge, we’ve been competing within Wii U Fit to climb Machu Picchu (our characters in the game climb it based on the altitude changes recorded while walking in the Fit Meter) and walking the Appalachian Trail (based on steps recorded in our Fit Meters) and I’m proud to say that I’m winning on both right now. It’s our primary form of exercise and it routinely gets me up and out to try and get more steps and more altitude to maintain my lead over my husband on both competitions.

    Additionally, we’ve done video game live streaming and raised over $30,000 for charities with our video game playing… but that’s a different story. 😉

    TL;DR – I’m a big believer that video gaming can be a FI hobby, but maybe that’s just because I’ve been doing it in a FI way for years. And for my husband and me, it’s definitely a hobby that’s brought a ton of value to both our lives (and to the lives of hundreds of other people, through our charity efforts).

  3. I loved this round-up. I’m a little behind but listened to it today on my way to officiating a local team against the U-19 New Zealand team! Although it is a side hustle, I also think of officiating as a hobby. It checks most of the boxes you discussed. I am able to give back to the sport, there is exercise (13 games slated for this weekend) and social component with other officials. There is also ongoing growth with a pinnacle to strive to meet. I am headed to a clinic in the Fall to hopefully move to the next level but I will never be done. It’s just one of the many reasons I love it so much! Keep delivering relateable & reflective content. Thanks for all you do!

  4. How funny, I had leaped around podcasts, and am only just now finding this one (that I must have jumped over) and found that the post I had put on the FB group about my 15 year old opening his Roth was mentioned! How exciting!

    We are a new family (April 2018) to the Choose FI group, but had started with Dave Ramsey 4 years prior and paid off all our debt, so we had really started then talking to our boys about staying out of debt and how important IRAs and saving were, but even more so since finding this podcast and starting to really optimize our budget and getting our savings rate up. I would share things that I heard on the podcast and talked with both our boys about compound interest and showed them calculators to show them how starting investing as soon as they started working would do so much of the hard work for them over the years.

    While both of our boys seemed to get it, I was beyond excited that our 15 yo wanted to put his whole first pay check in when he started working this summer! Over the whole of summer he ended up putting approx 75% of his income into his Roth and saving about 15% (he’s saving to buy his first car in cash), and then obviously spending some too.

    All we did was share with our kids! Our 21 yo bought his first car in cash and his younger brother is on track to do the same, and they now both have Roth IRAs that will hopefully allow them to hit FI far faster than their slower to learn parents who are only just now “getting it”!

    Until this month our 21 year old hadn’t opened his IRA yet, the cool thing that I just shared last week on the FB group was that our eldest turned 21 at Thanksgiving and we offered him the options of either the traditional big 21st party, a vacation, or $3,000 to fund a Vanguard IRA. He thought about it and decided to go the IRA route! Once again a proud Mama moment … we have also talked about how he is going to set up an automatic payment each pay to continue to fund it. He might not have started as early as his younger brother, but they are both still decades ahead of where either of their parents were at their ages!

    Thank you again Brad & Jonathan, you can’t begin to understand how much you have impacted our family just since April this year and not only my husband and myself our our way to FI, but now our 2nd generation FI kids and hopefully lots of future generations as well!

  5. I just found the podcast recently and my trying to catch up. I generally love most of what you say, but today’s focus on putting down dining hall workers obviously bothered me. I want to challenge your downplaying of the dining hall job as not having any value. This was one of the jobs I had in college. I was defiantly going for the library job where you really didn’t do anything. Instead, I was assigned to the dining room.

    Some of the benefits that you seem to not consider. Since it was an essential role, I was paid more than the ave student wage and allowed to pick up extra shifts to work ~34 hrs a week. I was allowed to register 1st for classes – so I always got to take what I wanted. I switch majors Junior year so this was key for me finishing in 4 years. I paid my own way, so until I had the dining room job, I didn’t have money for food and had to get creative to get access to food. By working in the dining room, I was guaranteed a meal each day. With this job, I was promoted to managing the dining room – I came out with the experience of managing 20-30 people per shift, managing schedules, doing annual reviews, etc. We were also given the opportunity to cater – making 2-3X the money as well as having the opportunity to network with faculty, donors, guests, and lots of people that I’m not sure I would have met otherwise. I received several job offers (not food service related) directly due to the experience I received or the people I met working in the dining hall. I think you can find benefits in any job if you lean into it and nothing should be seen as below you.

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