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FI Weekly – December 20, 2022: What if Things Go Right?, EconoMe, Community Posts


But What if Things Go Right?

Diania Merriam was on the podcast this week (Episode 416) and it was an extraordinarily powerful episode describing how she quit a toxic work environment on principle and really flexed her FI-muscles.

Her email newsletter with 8 Lessons Learned from 1 Year of (F)un-employment is, simply put, a must-read.

My favorite was #2 ‘We’re so scared of what could go wrong, but what if things go right?’

EconoMe Conference 2023

I also floated this at the end of the episode with Diania, but wasn’t certain at the time of recording:

I can officially confirm that I’ll be attending the EconoMe Conference which is being held March 17-19, 2023 at the University of Cincinnati.

This is the first live FI event I’ve attended since 2019 and I could not be more excited!  We’re still figuring out the details, but I’ll definitely be helping to co-host some of the events and workshops.

If you’re looking for an in-depth FI event, EconoMe is a great choice in every way.  I’d absolutely love to meet and hang out with as many ChooseFI community members as possible, and this 3-day event is a perfect opportunity.

Diania was kind enough to offer our community 10% off if you use the coupon code “CHOOSEFI” at checkout.

Two Great Community Posts

I wanted to pass along two posts I saw in our ChooseFI Facebook group:

  • Daan spent over 9 months creating “The Ultimate Excel Finance Dashboard” that he wanted to provide the ChooseFI community as a free resource.  My brother downloaded Daan’s dashboard and thought it was exceptionally useful.

ChooseFI Community Taking Action This Week

  • Joanna said, “My 1% better feels like way more than 1%! I’ve been on a career break since my husband and I relocated for his job in the summer of 2020. During the past couple of years, I became a certified running coach and started teaching group fitness at the local gym as a hobby job (with the perk of a free gym membership!). In May I launched my own online run coaching and personal training business and just this past week received a dream job offer working full-time in corporate fitness.”
  • Jason said, “So, at my mid-year review earlier this year I let my boss know I was happy with my job, but unhappy with my salary. He asked me to follow up with a list of key accomplishments, etc. and that he would run it up the chain and see what he could do. I figured he was blowing smoke and at best they’d give me about 5%.  Instead, my salary went from $78,000 to $100,872 overnight (24% increase) just by asking about a raise.”
  • Sheila said, “My 1% better is that after maxing out my 2022 ROTH IRA and 401 k, for the first time I set up an HSA. I’m going to check and see if I can max that out quickly.”
  • Michael said, “My 1% better this week is $1250 (post-tax dollars) better! I’m glad to say I’m using travel rewards points for the first time. I have a minor family emergency for which I need to travel back home (from CA to NY), and the timing was last minute of course. The flight would have cost me $1250 total.”
  • Justin said, “My one percent better this week equated to over $1,000 better over a year! My wife and I finally switched to Mint Mobile. I’ve been hearing about it on the podcast for years, but I’ve always been skeptical on the quality of their service, so I never switched. But I finally got fed up with Verizon and switched. We’re now paying less for the whole year with Mint Mobile than we were for ONE MONTH with Verizon.”
  • Kate said, “I started listening to various podcasts and discovered FIRE. My 1% better every day is to continue to immerse myself, family and friends with these concepts (some do not approve or see the need to change their lives and it is ok).”
  • Laura said, “A few years ago when I started to listen, I made a goal to hit over $100k before my oldest daughter graduated high school and just in the nick of time, I did it! This goal only came about after listening to Episode 147 with Tori Dunlap. So thank you ChooseFI!”
  • Kevin said, “My 1% better this week was to convince my wife to apply for and receive the Chase Sapphire Preferred credit card. She’s been using a United Credit card for years (she only has one credit card which she pays off monthly) and we’ve used those travel points to go on many vacations. Second, I joined the ChooseFI/Expat group because my wife and I want to move overseas and the endless Google searches and conversations we were having were not productive.”

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At least once in most of our FI journeys, we have pondered what our life would look like if we started earlier. Maybe you have even wondered what value could’ve been gained if you had started in your teenage years. Well, for some context into the possibilities decision that could provide, we decided to have 17 year old listener Devin on the podcast to discuss what life can look like when you go against the cultural norm of going to college, and instead opting for an entrepreneurial and FI friendly lifestyle. Oftentimes we mention that there are rewards that come with stepping out of your comfort zone, and the same can be said for going against the societal norm and carving out your own path! For our younger audience who may be interested in getting started with their FI journey, let this episode be a useful resource and reassurance that this journey can begin no matter your age!

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