Do You Need Help To Achieve Financial Independence?

When we started down our path to financial independence and early retirement (FIRE), we made many massive investing mistakes which I have documented extensively.

My primary purpose in starting this blog was to become a consumer advocate to help educate others to avoid our mistakes. I also wanted to share our story to challenge long held assumptions about money and life and inspire new possibilities in others.

I often get nice comments or e-mails from strangers thanking me for helping them to change their mindset and get started on the path to financial independence (FI), and it is a great feeling. However, in my personal life I have not actually witnessed much of this change.

I have introduced the concepts and theory behind FI and the value of becoming a do-it-yourself investor and financial planner to anyone who will listen to me. I have gotten several family and friends interested.

However, I have only witnessed a couple of people (literally two to be exact) actually take the actions necessary to go down the path of being DIY’ers and seek FI quickly on their own.

More often than not, people I have talked to about FI or told about the blog get a strong initial interest and make one or two changes, and then they fizzle out quickly. Some take no action at all and continue along their same path.

The concepts are simple, but they are often not easy.

  • There is a tremendous amount of overwhelm in getting started.
  • There is often considerable complexity to change once one has started down a wrong path.
  • It can be difficult to start and stay on course without a deep held belief in what is possible.

This made me realize that there is a gap between theory and practice. As big of a critic as I am of the financial industry, I realize that many people need additional help beyond reading blogs or books to take control of their financial lives.

Unfortunately, for those that have not already amassed a large net worth, there are few good options in the world of traditional financial advice. Even for those with a high net worth, the world of traditional financial advice can be a minefield that is difficult to navigate without the knowledge to at least start by asking the right questions.

I therefore began an experiment to scratch my own itch. I heard a question sent in by a fellow Doughroller podcast listener named Andrew a few months ago that caught my attention. The essence of his question was that he really wanted to take control of his financial life, but didn’t know how or where to begin.

I heard a lot of my younger self in his question and so I reached out and offered to provide individual coaching to him. I offered to mentor and guide his personal financial education in a way that I wish I had someone with the desire and ability to help me when starting my career 15 years ago.

He agreed that we could share his results publicly through my writing at in an attempt to allow others to benefit from lessons learned. Thus, “The Andrew Experiment” was born.

A few months ago, we published the first installment of “The Andrew Experiment” explaining his starting situation and things we could (and could not) work on in more detail.

This past week, “Part 2: How To Become a Millionaire By Age 40” was published.

To read the articles in their entirety, click the links provided above.

I would then love some feedback as I consider offering coaching as a service once I completely wrap up my job. This feedback will also steer the direction of my future writing. Specifically I would love to have as many inputs as possible on the following issues:

  1. How many of my audience currently or at some point in their journey got benefit from a traditional financial advisor or some type of alternative individualized coaching arrangement? What particularly did you find beneficial? What was a waste of your time and money?
  2. How many of you are currently having a hard time getting started or are in a rut on your path to financial independence and think personalized coaching would be beneficial?
  3. What are the particular issues and problems that you find most difficult? Do you struggle more with technical financial issues (budgeting, debt reduction, investing, tax planning) or are your problems more behavioral/psychological (implementing and following a plan consistently, struggling with fears, doubts, fulfillment, purpose and/or happiness)?
  4. For those of you looking for help, would you prefer a one time consultation to get started with follow ups as needed, or would you prefer recurring regularly scheduled coaching sessions (monthly, quarterly, annually, etc.) to keep you accountable and on course?

You can e-mail me privately through our contact page or leave us a public comment below. Thank you for your feedback!

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6 comments on Do You Need Help To Achieve Financial Independence?

  1. Oh wow! Yeah, a coaching gig would be an amazing way to help people out once you don’t need to work your full-time job any longer. 🙂 As for what I need help with, it’s mostly how to prioritize investing and debt. ie. Should I pay down student loans or invest those funds?

    1. Agree that it could be an enjoyable post-FIRE gig that would allow me to connect with and help people on a one-on-one basis. That is the one thing that I struggle with when kicking around whether to retire fully or continue at least some part-time work as a physical therapist. Appreciate your feedback!

  2. The majority of people need this type of one-on-one help. It’s a fact the financial industry has exploited for years. I applaud your willingness to enter the fray on a larger scale than just family and friends. I suspect there are several in the FIRE community who would be great at this sort of thing. Good luck, and keep us in the loop on how it goes.

    1. Agree Oldster that most people need some help. Unfortunately, many people that I’ve encountered take help to mean doing everything for them, which is why the traditional financial industry is not going anywhere despite the obvious conflicts of interest and massive costs. Working with Andrew has been awesome as he has a true desire to learn, but just needed some guidance on how to get started and someone to re-adjust his expectations. I think that if I could find people like him and figure out how to provide a quality service at a fair price, it would be a win-win.

    1. He actually had no real desire to RE when we got started. It will be interesting to see how his mindset changes as his wealth grows and he sees how realistic this is for him.

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