Want to know one of the best life tips for living a rewarding life? Here it is:
Commit to projects that scare the shit out of you and make you deeply uncomfortable.
Why? Growth doesn’t happen when you stay safe in your comfort zone. Think about it. Extraordinary accomplishments require extraordinary effort and discomfort:
- Want to become a physician? You better study your ass off.
- Want to run a marathon? You better hit the pavement.
- Want to play a Chopin piece? Better get busy on the piano.
Outside of your comfort zone
Your best life.
Public speaking is terrifying for most people. Supposedly, many fear it more than death. I’m no exception.
When I spoke at CSU back in 2017, it was my first time in front of an audience since university. The CSU experience was so terrifying that my leg shook. Thankfully, there was a podium to hide my wayward limb behind.
But, the experience was also rewarding, so I volunteered to speak again at a Camp FI in Florida. I went on to give talks at Camp FI Midwest, Camp FI Rocky Mountain, and a couple of Chautauquas. Every talk went a little better and I felt myself evolving. I became a more confident person. Interactions with other humans didn’t terrify me anymore. After the Camp FI Rocky Mountain talk, someone in the audience paid me one of the nicest compliments I’ve ever received. It was this:
You should do stand up comedy.
To understand why it was such a huge compliment, we have to take a walk down Memory Lane.
*** queue the weird, go-backwards-in-time music ***
As a kid, I had speech impediments. I stuttered. I couldn’t make certain words come out of my mouth. It sucked. So, not only did I hate speaking in front of groups, I hated speaking at all. Through therapy, I was able to overcome most of it. But, kids can be assholes and the damage was done. Hello, introversion!
*** back to the present day ***
The person who told me that I should do stand-up comedy is Diania Merriam. Over the course of the weekend, I got to know her and discovered that she’s a hell of a human.
And, she invited me to speak at the conference she created, EconoMe. What the hell is EconoMe? I ripped off this blurb directly from the EconoMe website:
EconoMe provides dynamic speakers on financial independence as well as networking opportunities to link you with folks with similar interests. It’s like reading and listening to a month’s worth of blogs/podcasts all in one day!
The question you should ask about events like EconoMe is this:
I know about FIRE; I have to save money and then I can quit my job when I have enough.
What else is there?
There is a lot more. Money is just the starting point. I find these questions much more interesting:
What happens after I have enough money to quit?
How do I find and build community?
How do I discover my passion and purpose?
How do I overcome my fears?
How do I build a satisfying life that’s true to myself?
The money part of the FIRE equation isn’t easy, but it is simple. The 4% Rule is basic math. Figuring out life is much more interesting, challenging, and ultimately, more rewarding.
I quit my job in 2017 and life as an early retiree has been challenging and surprising. It’s also been great. I wouldn’t trade it for anything.
I won’t lie and tell you I have all of the answers. However, I believe that I have a thing or two to teach. At EconoMe, I hope that I can help and inspire you.
When and where?
EconoMe will take place the weekend of November 13th at the University of Cincinnati.
What happens at EconoMe?
Saturday, there are talks, breakout sections, and a big party. On Sunday, we’ll hike, tour a brewery, and more. See the schedule here.
What will be speaking about?
- Conquering fear to live your best life.
- Lessons learned in my pursuit of early retirement.
- Why the word retirement sucks even though I just used it.
Tell me more!
I plan to talk for 30 minutes. I’ll discuss what holds us back and why. My main goal is to inspire you to do something awesome.
You’ll learn. You”ll laugh. You’ll cry. Hopefully, that last one isn’t the result of a shitty talk!
Will the dinosaurs be there?
Can I touch them?
Sure, but they bite. Remember that they are dinosaurs.
Who else will be there?
The lineup is pretty great!
- Bitches Get Riches
- Kevin Ha, the Financial Panther
- Naseema McElroy from financially intentional
- Joe Saul-Sehy from the Stacking Benjamins podcast
- Angel Cellucci
- And there are more to come!
More about the speakers here.
See You In Cincinnati?
Perhaps the best parts of FIRE life are the random opportunities that occasionally materialize and send your life on a different path. If you told me 5 years ago that I’d become a public speaker, I would have told you that you were insane. But here I am. EconoMe will be a crowd of over 500, my biggest room yet. Oof.
If you do plan to go to EconoMe, click here to get an early bird, discounted ticket. If not, perhaps we’ll meet at some other FIRE event or when you’re passing through Colorado. See you soon.
Join the 10s who have signed up already!
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