The trap had been set.  I arranged my baseball cards in the three boxes that I had arranged in a circle around my bedroom floor.  I checked again to make sure that anything of value had already been packed away in the dresser drawer in the closet.  Bill’s mom would be dropping him off in a few minutes.  I salivated as I thought about the bundles of cards he ...

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I return there sometimes in my dreams.  Plodding down the streets of my childhood, I turn sharply to the right and push through the door as the bell clangs announcing my presence.  A middle-aged man is bent over rummaging; he peers past the display case and calls to me in acknowledgment.  The air is warm and humid inviting me to peel off my jacket, hat, and gloves.  I throw them ...

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I have spent a good part of my career investing time and energy towards side hustles.  I generally categorize them into two distinct types of ventures.  The lazy side hustle involves starting a business or consulting in a field tangential to ones main hustle.  For example, an accountant who works normally as an auditor may do a few tax returns on the side during tax season.  I call his ...

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The lows don’t mean you are loser.  To the contrary, they mean something else that is completely antithetical.  They mean you are pushing the envelope.  You’re learning from past mistakes.  The lows mean that you are at an inflection point.  The trick is not to see the pit you are currently trapped in as a pit.  Think of it more as a privileged vista in which to view the pathway ...

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I say that financial independence is bittersweet and you look at me with your jaw slack, your eyes questioning.  You scan to the top of my blog, and you see the words “personal finance,” and you’re wondering if I’ve gone slightly daffy. But then I point to my byline, personal finance with a twist, and continue on my belligerent rant.  I have said before that Read more...

Basketball dreams I had one dream throughout childhood. (It certainly wasn’t to be a seven-figure failure!) To play basketball.  Now before you start to criticize me for my grandiosity, the goal was more simple.  I had no plans of playing in the NBA, or even college for that matter.  I had one simple goal-make my high school basketball team. Easy you say, right?  Well, the team was super competitive, and most of my ...

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Physicians-in-training make a pittance when one looks at the hourly rate,  Especially when I was residency, in the early 2000’s.  I often worked upwards of 100 hrs per week and made $30,000 per year.  The first year, called internship, is replete with long hours and crushing responsibilities.  Opportunities to make an extra buck are all but impossible.  In the second and third years, however, there is much more elective time.  During these ...

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How do I start a side hustle? I have heard this plea so often, It is no wonder there are many how to blog posts trying to answer this exact question.  As helpful as they may be, most of the ideas espoused are both time and energy-consuming.  For instance, starting a blog is great!  But if you want to truly make money, be prepared to put in full-time hours.  Or 
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There was once three brothers who set off on the journey of a lifetime by embarking on three separate roads.  Each brother was uniquely different, and quickly these roads diverged. It was believed that the eldest brother was most wise because his path was clear and straight. The middle brother was a strong walker but easily distracted.  It was hard to keep him concentrated on the task at hand. And finally, the youngest ...

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The story is almost universal.  A guy (or gal) suffers through a horrendous day of work and scours the internet searching for an escape hatch.  The magical mix of search words "early" and "retirement" likely leads to Mr. Money Mustache, or Get Rich Slowly, or some other fantastic resource.  Hours later, after being fully submerged in the financial independence blogosphere, he resurfaces with haired mussed and rabid eyes. ...

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We shop a lot. Now I didn’t say we buy a lot. But we spend countless hours on the weekend walking through malls and shopping centers. I’m not sure exactly why. It may be that there is enjoyment in the visualizing without actually having. Or, more likely, as a family of four with two growing children, we have many items on our purchase list to check off. Inevitably, repeatedly, our kid’s eyes ...

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It’s a miracle that I’m not a financial moron.  No one taught me about finances.  I never took a course in college.  In fact, a few years ago before I found the FIRE community, I was pretty clueless.  Well, not exactly.  I made reasonable financial decisions.  Heck, even good decisions.  I didn’t, however, have the vocabulary or knowledge behind what I was doing.  So was I lucky? Did I merely ...

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Hustles are hustles, and side hustles add a little on the side. But if you want to maximize your income. You have to innovate. When I started as an employed medical physician at the beginning of my career, I was overjoyed to make X. After years of watching money go out the door in medical school, and then making 0.25X in residency, I couldn’t believe that I was earning so much. ...

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We are a product of our upbringing.  For many of us, this means we develop values and beliefs about money and work from our parents.  Our communities, however, also play a role.  It is in these communities that we learn a joint value system, a blueprint for how to approach and interact with the world.  It’s easy to underestimate the profundity of this effect. I grew up in vastly different cities.  One ...

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When my children each finished Montessori school, my wife and I researched a bit before choosing the local public option.  My area has extraordinary private schools.  Although high cost, many of these alternatives provide unique and worthwhile twists on traditional education.  We talked extensively with the kids, and after much research, we came to the budgetary friendly decision.  The public school, with somewhat fewer bells and whistles, provided an education on ...

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I truly believe that the business asset class is important in supercharging the race to financial independence.  While many dream of starting their own Google or Amazon, I find myself much more interested in the small, less scalable business.  The kind that spins off some revenue, builds experience and know how, and is fun. Although I have owned multiple small businesses (mostly medical practices and real estate), the one that I ...

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My mother, the accountant, threw out 10 million.  An I just took it.  Accepted it.  Calculated the number of years, and I was off.  But it didn’t feel right.  So I asked my financial advisor.  A few weeks later and after much information was solicited, I was given 85% chance of my money lasting through retirement.  He went on and on about Monte Carlo and all sorts of other rubbish, and ...

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I loved my Prius. I’m not a car guy.  I’m really not.  But when my Prius started to fail after 120K miles, I took an active interest in picking my new mode of transportation.  I had a few caveats.  I was driving 100 miles a day.  I wanted either a hybrid or fully electric car.  And I needed something safe for the snow.  Preferably four-wheel drive. My first instinct was to get ...

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My blog is called "DiverseFi" because my path to financial independence was not the typical one. Although I’ll talk more about this in another post, my journey neither started from humble beginnings nor was frugality my guiding principle. In fact, it was only after discovering the FIRE community, did I realize that I was indeed financially independent. That changed my life. Changed my habits. I slowly became more ...

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