I Dream of FIRE

In pursuit of financial independence and personal fulfillment

Dreamcatcher: Posts and podcasts that inspired me this week

Welcome to the Dreamcatcher, where I share the content that inspired me in some way in the past week. This week, I didn’t listen to any podcasts (gasp!), but I watched some videos that inspired me. Maybe I need to tweak that headline?

Hierarchy of financial needs (and the meaning of life) – Mad Fientist

If you’ve seen my Highly Effective Money Management Matrix, you know I love when people apply a system used for one thing to something else. Most of us are familiar with Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs that shows the natural order in which we need fulfillment in order to survive and then thrive. Brandon has taken that concept and reworked it for financial well-being, and he’s made a compelling case for how we grow from caring about money from a bare-bones survival aspect to transcending that concern and realizing that once we have that covered, there’s a whole life out there to live. It’s a fascinating read that I highly recommend.

High school students have no way of knowing which career to choose. Why do we make them do it anyway? – Bitches Get Riches

This touches on so many of the thoughts I’ve had about student debt, teens becoming adults, and the future of higher education. The life experience of most 18-year-olds is a carefully curated, mostly scripted play with some room for interpretation. They go to school. They learn from the curriculum approved by large group of people, and they’re basically told that’s it, figure it out. Oddly enough, I watched a couple of brilliant TED talks about the problem with this approach to education from Ken Robinson, called “Do Schools Kill Creativity?” and “Bring on the Learning Revolution!” for work purposes, but there’s an important crossover issue there. You should most definitely watch those, because Robinson is absolutely hilarious as well as bitingly insightful. (They only have about 57 million views between them. Clearly these ideas need my help to spread. Oh, and I also watched Robinson’s one-hour program on Netflix, “Finding Your Element,” which was on My List even before I watched the TED talks. The universe is trying to tell me something.) When you’re all done with that, check out the Bitches’ follow-up article, “Actually helpful, nuanced, non-bullshit way to choose a future career.”

The new tax law loophole that benefits retirees – The Retirement Manifesto

Fritz points out a new benefit of the recently passed tax law that allows retirees to convert more of their pre-tax retirement savings to post-tax savings. This could help reduce future tax burdens for people who would be required to make hefty required minimum distributions that could bump them into higher tax brackets in the future. If you or someone you know is retired or nearing retirement, this is a post that could save quite a bit of money down the road. I shared it with my parents!

 

2 Comments

  1. Huzzah! We’re so happy you liked the articles. We have so much sympathy for young people on the cusp of adulthood, especially when they’re being asked to make these huge decisions… because we were them once, and we understand how damaging the process can be.

    • It really is a lot to ask someone with so little life experience to set the (often very expensive) course for their foreseeable future before they’ve even finished high school in many cases. I wonder if, as we societally get further from the career-for-life model, future generations will feel more comfortable with the idea that they’re choosing what is likely a short-term path that they will iterate on and re-evaluate in the future. Perhaps it wouldn’t be so daunting then?

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