Earn a Masters Degree in Financial Independence While Driving to Work
A theme on this blog is eliminating waste from our lives. Nowhere in our life is there a bigger waste of time than that spent in our cars. The average American wastes almost one hour just on their round-trip work commute every day. I recently heard of Zig Ziglar’s concept of “automobile university”. The concept is that by using the time the average American spends in their car, in 3 years you can learn the equivalent of 2 years of college material. Essentially you can waste all of this time or you can learn the equivalent of a master’s degree every 3 years. The more time you are wasting in your car, the more time you have to learn.
I have found listening to podcasts is a great solution. They are available on demand, are generally free to download or stream and you can keep them to listen to as many times as you like. The only downside is that literally anyone can make a podcast and put it out there. (Maybe a complaint people have about blogs after reading ours!) Therefore, it takes some time to swim through the crud to find the good stuff. Luckily, I have done the swimming for you and am going to give you some good starting points.
The first two podcasts that I highly recommend for anyone working toward financial independence and early retirement are the Financial Mentor Podcast and the Mad Fientist Podcast. Each have very well-developed blogs/websites that I have reviewed in a previous post. When we first started trying to figure out early retirement plans, we were stuck thinking in the traditional model of earn as much as possible, save and invest as much as possible in traditional stock/bond mutual funds and then stop working and live off of these investments. The most important thing we’ve learned listening to these podcasts is how little we actually knew and how many different paths are available. Listening to the different perspectives of these hosts and their guests has been eye-opening to the number of possibilities and the need to figure out our own way. Both podcasts are very informative yet easily accessible and interesting to those with limited financial understanding and are a great place to start. The only criticism I have of either of these podcasts is the lack of content. As of my writing this post, there is about 30 total hours between these podcasts. I guess that is the benefit of being an “early retiree” as each of these guys are. They can do what they want and think is of value when they want to. Kudos to both!
That, however, left me looking for other good listening material. The next 2 podcasts that I would recommend are the Dough Roller Podcast and the Radical Personal Finance Podcast. If you have the time to invest in your financial education, I would recommend both of these podcasts.
The Dough Roller Podcast is produced by Rob Berger, a lawyer turned financial blogger. This podcast is well-rounded with some episodes very focused on X’s and O’s and some more focused on psychology and behaviors. Some of the recurrent themes that I think make this podcast a worthwhile listen for anyone reading this blog are emphasis on understanding your investments and controlling investment costs, the importance of educating yourself rather than following one size fits all advice and Rob’s obvious desire to continue learning and his passion for teaching and helping others with a wide variety of financial topics. This podcast definitely is not specific to early retirement and tends to stay towards more conventional advice. He does have an interview featuring Mr. Money Mustache which is a fun listen. In later episodes, I have noticed him drifting a bit more in this direction and he even dedicated an entire episode to hedonic adaptation. The understanding of this concept is at the core of achieving early financial independence. If you don’t know what I’m talking about, give this episode a listen.
The Radical Personal Finance Podcast produced by financial advisor Joshua Sheats certainly lives up to its name. I just stumbled upon this podcast in the past few weeks. In just the few episodes I’ve had a chance to listen to, Joshua has looked at the positives attributes of living like a multi-billionaire and a homeless person, has interviewed a person who actively promotes tax evasion and has posted a 3 hour interview with Jacob Lund Fisker of Early Retirement Extreme. His unique approach is to use examples from the most radical and extreme positions and learn from them while discarding things not useful to yourself. He advocates developing a financial plan specific to your own personal values, needs and abilities. He certainly does not condone tax evasion or encourage the extremes of homelessness or gluttony, but does encourage listeners to study, understand and learn things from each of these ways of life that can be applied to your situation. This is very much in line with the message of this blog as written in this post. Where some of the other podcasts are lacking in content, my biggest complaint with The Radical Personal Finance Podcast is that it is information overload. Joshua produces a new episode every day and all are at least one hour in length. It is my hope that he finds a way to streamline his message a bit, without watering it down as he finds his voice on this podcast. For those with time and interest in diving deep into personal finance or who pick and choose topics of interest to them, this podcast is a valuable resource.
If you have any other recommendations or feedback or know of a different resource for me to review, leave a comment or drop me an e-mail.
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