Then it happened. Well actually a few things happened. It started out with the Playing with FIRE documentary. I began getting more and more involved. Sharing with others in the South Florida FIRE community and reaching out to those with cameo’s in the documentary, all in an attempt to make it the best event of 2019. Stay in motion.
Sending messages to those who purchased tickets. Reaching out on social media. Lots of activities. I was already involved in the ChooseFI South Florida Facebook group, but through a little internet browsing I came across Miami FIRE through Meetup.
As I attended a local meetup I really enjoyed talking with everyone. Just sharing a little bit of our financial stories, what our current careers look like, where we stand in the financial world, and offered advice or examples of what we have learned in our journey so far.
From FIRE to Client
Unexpectedly I actually was asked if I would work with one of the individuals to get their finances back on track. Just like that I was working with a client.
Somewhere along this same time frame one of my beta clients was coming up for our quarterly review. Because they had enjoyed working with me and were on the right track towards their version of financial freedom we decided to meet quarterly for a check-in.
Honestly they are the best. In the next year they will be debt free and ready to make some big investments towards retirement. I couldn’t be more excited for them.
Just like that I was back to believing in myself a little more and realizing that I needed to put myself out there. Not just to get clients, but really to enjoy people and what they have to offer.
The Miami FIRE was one example and of course the big event of the FIRE documentary and happy hour was another way to get out there and talk with people about some of the things I enjoy most.
From FIRE to Water
In a turn of events my wife and two twin brother in laws were heading up to Orlando, but not before we stopped in Ginnie Springs a fresh water spring near Gainesville to have a little fun. I talked about this a few weeks back, but added more detail in the story ahead.
My wife might have enjoyed it the most the fresh spring waters the most. She was like a little kid again, not wanting to leave. I would share more pictures but she’s in a bathing suit and she would make my week agony if I shared these and I prefer happiness.
The main reason for our adventure was a workplace training for one of the twin brothers, Omar. It turns out my wife’s old mentor and boss started a company a couple years back. Today that company is doing quite well and he needed some extra help on a project.
So we decided to make it a travel adventure and stopped by the springs first before a day of training for Omar and a day of working remotely for the rest of us.
Interestingly enough I talked with the owner about my coaching business and what I was working on. The FIRE documentary trailer which he seemed pretty intrigued by which I feel like it rare outside of the personal finance space. Also we talked a lot about his business and some of the financials behind it. Which of course I found fascinating.
I even pointed out a few items to update on his website since I built and tested my website not long ago to make sure everything was on point and working.
I was not surprised when the owner of the business contacted me via text message and asked if I had a few minutes to talk. Based on our conversation at his office and over lunch I figured he wanted me to clean up his website and maybe even talk over his financial situation with the business or personal.
So it took me a little bit by surprise when briefly into our conversation, the topic turned to working on a BSA/AML(Bank Secrecy Act/Anti-Money Laundering) related project for his company. Also let me be clear although it sounds really cool, like hunting down drug dealers laundering money in Mexico, it’s certainly not that sexy, I promise.
Stay in Motion Working Remotely
The opportunity would last 2 months, work remotely, and approximately earn the same rate as my previous 9-5 job. As the owner jokingly said I want to start you at this rate because I have very low expectations of you, funny guy I tell you.
One of the expectations associated with the project would be to drive back up to the Orlando area and have a couple days of hands on training. Because we know each other from past interactions I think he wanted to take some extra time with me and “invest” in me. If things worked out well and other opportunities arose I believe he would consider me for future projects.
I talked it over with my wife. The smart, beautiful, and kind one in the family. She had figured the phone call would be about a job opportunity. After careful consideration I decided to give it a go.
In fact just after watching the FIRE documentary, which ended a little after 9 pm. I drove up to Orlando an additional 3 hours to a hotel nearby and started my day with hotel coffee and breakfast. Followed up by a training and lunch with the owner, more training and repeat the next day. I was even able to get a Crossfit style workout in at the hotel gym.
For the months of July and August I have been working in between 40-60 hours per week mostly during the weekdays and even a little on the weekends. As our deadline approached towards the end of July it was an opportunity to add to the paycheck.
Stay in Motion
Action in motion tends to stay in motion. I think this is where everything started. Reaching out to others in the personal finance community. Attending a FIRE meetup. Offering to drive my brother in law to Orlando( the story originally started with me offering to drive him to Orlando since he doesn’t have a ton of driving experience).
All of this started the wheels in motion. Now looking at the events past they don’t specifically have anything to do with coaching. I wasn’t networking looking to work with referral partners. I didn’t attend a meetup for my ideal client is one that is likely in debt and looking to get their finances on track with an action plan and a partner who has their back.
Taking a Step Back
One thing I had to come to terms with was spending more time on my self employed project than my website and coaching business. I would be earning a competitive hourly wage. My efforts to grow my website and more importantly my coaching business would be decreased.
Over the last 2 months I have taken a step back from social media, staying weeks ahead of my writing schedule, and really some of fluff that can go along with a business that is based off of using the internet and social media.
My continued diligence has been consistent. Each week I write a weekly post as my goal has been 52 weeks straight and still going strong. Remember stay in motion. I find myself worrying less about the specifics of increasing my social media presence and instead doing my best with the clients I have.
This has never been about the money. It’s nice to be compensated for your time and to feel valued. But I still plan on our investments leading us into financial independence and not entrepreneurship.
Getting Paid is a Strange Concept
Over the last year my wife has supported us financially. The last two months of getting a paycheck has been almost an odd occurrence. Fun fact, I received a paycheck from my self employed 1099 project on almost the same day I spent my last day at work in 2018 as I mentioned in my first part of the series.
I didn’t know what to do with the money. We don’t need to buy anything that we have been waiting on saving up or an expected bonus. I also realize that two months worth of income isn’t going to speed up our financial independence day by a considerable amount.
It’s an interesting time and I hope to build on the momentum I have with my self employment, website, and above all money coaching business.
I look forward to the travel and events I have ahead including volunteering full time at FinCon just like last year. It will be a fun and interesting few months ahead as I continue to stay in motion. I look forward to the slow and steady approach of making a difference with each client one by one. Who knows, maybe you will be the next client.