Littlejohn Financial

Finding Financial and Emotional Balance: More Isn’t Always the Objective

True Wealth Podcast - Financial Podcast by Financial Advisors

How can you achieve financial and emotional peace while thriving in today’s challenging economic landscape? Discover strategies for adopting a minimalist lifestyle, prioritizing mental health, smart financial management, and investing in personal growth. Lets talk about balancing your life, accumulating wealth, maintaining a high quality of living, and building long-term happiness.


Episode Highlights:

  • Three crucial stages of financial growth: accumulation, maintenance, and distribution.
  • How simplifying one’s lifestyle can lead to financial success.
  • The pitfalls of lifestyle inflation and the necessity of maintaining a robust emergency fund.
  • Useful tools and apps for tracking spending and managing finances.
  • How individual goals and lifestyles impact retirement strategies.
  • Challenges millennials face in the workforce. (longer hours, relatively lower income, and high turnover rates)
  • Balancing work-life and personal life to avoid burnout and achieve financial goals.


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00:00:00 Adopting this minimalist lifestyle. You know, of course it starts with creating the budget and not going outside. Because to get to the accumulation phase, you have to have a base. Otherwise, you just never get there. You’re just chasing this accumulation phase. And so, you know, even if you’re doing the right things, you know, saving 10 to 15% requirements, saving 10%, but then you have a bunch of outstanding debt. You’re not really accumulate. You’re almost taking back.


00:00:40 What’s going on, everybody? This is Matt Dickson and with me in studio today…


00:00:45 Justin Bruggeman.


00:00:47 All right, guys, we have got an awesome show for you today. We are going to be talking about some really important stuff. And I think inside of the show, we’ve got something for every single listener, no matter what your age, no matter what, you know, your financial situation. We’ve got something here that you probably want to hear. Justin, thanks for joining us today. 


00:01:07 Or we don’t want.


00:01:09 Yeah, or maybe you don’t want to hear it. But kind of the the thing I want to talk about today is. You know, we’re in. I didn’t know this. I’ll be honest, but. Millennials, right? There’s a lot of conversation around millennials. They are making up an extremely large portion of the workforce right now. In fact, millennials are making up. I think by the year 2025, they estimate 75% of the workforce. Yeah, the global workforce is not just in the US. And I didn’t realize that it was that large. In fact, back in 2016, millennials became the largest generation in the labor force. And that’s quite an, I mean, eight years ago? Yeah. And if you would have asked me, I would not have guessed that at all. And so one of the things, you know, when I think about millennials, I’m thinking about how they’re in this accumulation phase, right? Right. Where they’re working hard to try and make their way in life. And how’s that going for them versus maybe some other generations in the past? But then the second part being, you know, once you actually accumulate some wealth, how do you kind of maintain a lifestyle? And so what are some of those kind of challenges inside of that accumulation phase? And more than just that, it’s looking at how do we balance the work life, the home life, the personal life, right? Because we always want to talk about how do we accumulate wealth? Well, you know, I think that it’s something where, you know, we got to look at this and say there’s more to it than just building wealth.


00:03:00 Right?


00:03:02 It’s taking care of yourself along the way because it’s really easy to get burning. Let’s just jump right into this thing and kind of start talking about, you know, we’ve always got this drive for more. And I was watching an old Western just the other night and it introed with, you know, I forget the quote, but it was something to be effective. Every man’s just looking to put more gold in its wagon. Right. And I kind of think about it from the standpoint of, well, you can keep doing that. You can keep piling gold in the wagon, but you pile too much in there and the weight of it might start to break the axis. Right. Like there can be something almost too much. So how do you find a balance where you’re not doing so much outside of, you know, living that you kind of lose sight of where it is that you’re going in and are you enjoying the ride along? 


00:04:01 Almost your output. Weighing more than your input. 


00:04:05 Yeah. 


00:04:05 So are you just putting too much time? 


00:04:07 Yeah. Do you got any kind of recommendations for the listeners? Well, you know, hearing this and saying, yeah, maybe I do feel burnout or how do I accumulate? Let’s just talk about some ways that people can no matter how old they are, whether they’re millennial or not, how can they be kind of in that sweet spot? 


00:04:27 Well, to go back just a little bit, because you brought up the accumulation. So there’s there’s few phases you go through in life, especially working life, that’s the accumulation phase is building. Well, that’s what it is. And you’re accumulating assets and you’re growing. And then it goes kind of into a maintenance and then a maintenance phase. And then more of a distribution or income reducing phase. So we are talking about, you know, the millennials and making up that much of the workforce. And they are very much still accumulate. Which I’m curious with that number is so many millennials are working is because if you go back far enough, single income household was more common. 


00:05:19 True. 


00:05:20 Then too. And then with the inflationary environment and how expensive things have got now most common and it’s two income households. And so that could be a bit of the shift of why it’s or people are just wanting to live more extravagant lifestyles than in the past. 


00:05:40 Yeah. Yeah. I mean, I think trying to keep up with a certain image or a certain lifestyle is definitely driving part of that. I know when you look at it, this is kind of weird, but millennials and Gen Z, they’re working more than any other generation ever had. Right. This is what studies are showing. And they’re also, you know, making a disproportionately, you know, less income on a relative scale when you adjust inflation into the mix and everything else. So, you know, they’re working longer, harder hours, but it’s not really reaping the benefits. And that’s what I really want to talk about. It’s like, okay, well, we get it. The cars are stacked against you. You know, you’re having to work more and for less. But how do you overcome that? And how do you make the most of the opportunities that you have? 


00:06:37 Because the reality is, we can go through a ton of different steps, right? Like I can just read off of a page and say, 67% of young professionals are feeling pressure to build wealth, and it’s leading to burnout. Burnout isn’t an all-time high. There’s a mental health crisis going on. There’s so many different issues at play here. But how is, how do you kind of overcome that? 


00:07:05 Yeah. And it’s a difference too, just because also the millennial generation changed and the Gen Z, I think generation, they change jobs. 


00:07:13 They do.


00:07:15 I mean, it wasn’t even, I mean, you could go to the work at the mill for 40 years around here. That was a common. 


00:07265 Yeah. I can’t tell you how many people I’ve met in this area. Yeah. I just worked with it. Paid a really good living wage and they didn’t need to go find another job because all of their needs were met. You’re right. Turnover. Do you know what’s costing annually? Like over 30 billion dollars to the U.S. economy, just millennials and their job turnover, because it costs money to replace people and retrain people 30 billion dollars. And that’s a lot. 


00:07:57 That is.


00:07:57 And you start looking at this and the stats aren’t good. There was a huge survey done and 44% of millennials said that they were more likely to be engaged with their work and their manager if they were just, you know, regularly meet with their boss and have some communication. But we’ve seen those numbers slump. It’s down to like 20% where millennials are meeting with their managers on it on a basis. So they’re showing up to work, they’re not getting any direct line of communication with their boss, they’re feeling unsatisfied. There’s turnover, it’s costing the economy a lot of money. And as a result, they’re changing jobs more often than any other generation before them. So turnover is huge, they’re dissatisfied, they’re making less. And there, this is the one statistic that it’s going to stick when it comes to millennials, hear this one and really let this set in. 


00:09:0 Millennials are 40, less than 40% are defined as thriving in any aspect of their wealthy, whether it’s mentally, physically, like how they’re doing at work millennials are just getting crushed as far as their wellbeing is concerned and things are contributing to that, like they’re overworking themselves, right? You mean we already look the stat where it’s like, hey, millennials are really rapidly trying their hardest to improve their net worth and to grow, you know, their portfolio. It’s a struggle. So they’re they’re working long hours. They’ve got in that comes at a price, right? Like your health. You’re going to have increased stress levels, you’re not going to be sleeping as much. Your personal relationships, that’s going to get a strain on it too.


00:09:54 And I think that we’ve seen that people have really kind of like, shut the door on personal relationships in a big way. So those deep relationships, we’ve seen that really start and, you know, some of that’s here, too, right? You can really distract yourself with social media or Netflix or whatever it is. You can kind of get into a hole, shut the world out. And unfortunately, we’re seeing that in a mental health crisis.


00:10:27 And it’s a little bit can be is. They just didn’t have time to develop a good habit. I mean, it maybe it wasn’t as typical as, you know, saving 10 to 15 percent, you know, for retirement, saving another 10 percent just for savings. And they just kind of jump out where everything is so expensive. They never really got the accumulation phase to start the accumulation phase.


00:10:54 No, that does make sense. I was, I saw something where it was talking about how millennials were forced to into the workforce kind of prematurely to kind of like, you know, help save for college or whatever the case may be. So a lot of people started working when they were 16 or 17 years old. You know, say that same person 37 today, like that 37 year old’s already been in the workforce for 20 years. That’s a really long time to be in the workforce for someone that young compared to prior generation. And so we’re seeing burnout happen a lot earlier in life. 


00:11:30 And that’s a little bit of, you’re just not, you’re putting in the effort. And generally the wealth should help itself. I mean, if you’re spending less than you make, you have all these habits that, you know, you’re saving 20% of your income, whether it be retirement or savings, but they’re just finding out that it’s not enough. 


00:11:51 Right. And it’s not doable because of inflation. 


00:11:54 Right. Just to stand the standard of living, of, you know, getting out of even the house, say 18, 19 years old or after college and going to rent. You can’t find renting at a really an affordable. Right. No, you can’t. And then even your, and because usually that phase is all right. You’re renting in a cheaper amount. You’re saving up, you know, for a down payment on a home. And now it’s harder to get to that point. And people are just structurally just adding more debt quicker without having the habits in place. I’ll say. 


00:12:31 No, you’re right. And I think you touched on something that’s really important. It is recommended that you save about 20 percent of your income every month. Right. And whether that be a retirement, you know, probably some of that going into retirement accounts or just personal savings. I think that’s a really good first tip, you know, to start the day out with, go ahead and start saving some money and just adjust your lifestyle to where that savings fits within your means. So whatever you got to do, make that work. You know, give it a try and see if you can do it. Because if you can, that might be a really good first step. Justin, let’s take a break. And when we come back, let’s actually talk about that. How can millennials find both financial and emotional peace? How can they thrive when times are hard? That more when we get back. So this is 93.9 FM 1240 KQEN. You guys are listening to True Wealth Radio. 


00:13:28 All right, everybody, welcome back from the break. You guys are listening to the True Wealth radio show. I’ve got Justin Bruggeman in studio with me today, and we are talking about kind of how you can save, but also kind of your mental state, right? And not going..


00:13:46 Trying to do both.


00:13:47 Yeah. How do you not go off the rails? And we were talking about how hard for the break, we were talking about how hard it is, especially for millennials who are making up the bulk during the workforce right now. How can they get ahead while also maintain a quality of lifestyle? And let’s jump back into that, just and when we left off, you know, you’re kind of talking about, you know. Healthy saving habits a little bit. Yeah, I think that’s–


00:14:13 Establishing the habits. 


00:14:14 Yeah. And then I wanted to add that, right. One of the things that I think is really important is kind of adopting this mental life stuff, right? So, you know, you look at someone like Warren Buffett, this guy still lives in his hometown, he still eats at McDonald’s, the guy is not extravagant. Like you live well, well below his means. And he has his whole life. And I think that that’s something that we can kind of learn from too, where it’s like, Hey, you know, let’s get back to maybe prioritizing the essentials and not necessarily, well, I want this, so I’m going to make sure to go get it. If you can, if you can focus more on what you want and deny and, you know, delay a little bit of gratification, I think that’s a really big deal because 60% of millennials are earning six figures or wait, so I messed that one up of the millennials that are earning six figures, 60% are living paycheck to paycheck because of lifestyle inflation. So I look at that and I say, well, you’re probably not living. I think you’re probably pushing. 


00:15:28 Most yeah, most like, yeah. I mean, it’s, you know, adopting this minimalist lifestyle, of course it starts with creating the budget and not going outside. Right. As to get to the accumulation case, you have to have a date. Otherwise, you just never get there. You’re just chasing this accumulation. And so, you know, even if you’re doing the right things and, you know, saving 10 to 15 percent retirement, saving 10 percent, but then you have a bunch of outstanding debt. You’re not really accumulate. You’re almost skating back. 


00:16:05 Right. And I can’t tell you how many times I’ve seen someone who, you know, they’re telling me about their financial picture and they might have, you know, I don’t know, even have $150,000 in their retirement account, but they don’t have $1,000 in their savings account, because they are living paycheck to paycheck. So it is really important to have three to six months of money set aside where it’s like, well, if I’m making $5,000 a month, maybe I should have $15,000 or something on hand, maybe a little bit more where it’s like, well, my roof started leaking and I didn’t realize that I need a new roof. It’s okay. I’ve got $5,000 ready to go fix that problem so that you’re not having to put it on a credit card or not having to pull a key lock on your house. It happens way more often than you would think. And so I think you’re right, Justin. It’s a really big deal to have. 


00:17:03 Well, if we’re being realistic, even, you know, most common ways be like, you know, start saving 1000 then have like $5,000, you know, just in case. Five thousand isn’t the same as a was even five years. 


00:17:18 No. 


00:17:19 And so having a real look at what these costs are, I mean, like you and set up a roof on your home. 


00:17:25 Yeah. Five, six thousand dollars easy. 


00:17:28 That’s probably what it used. You know. 


00:17:30 Yeah. I don’t know. 


00:17:31 Close to the 10th now. 


00:17:31 Probably. Yeah. It wouldn’t surprise me at all. 


00:17:35 And even repairs on your vehicles, they’re just more expensive. And they were. 


00:17:40 Have more cash. And so like you said, start picking numbers, pick anything that you, that you can actually accomplish and do it right. Get some money in your savings. One other tip that I’ve got is simplifying and decluttering your house, your living space, right? Because I mean, the studies show it that a clutter free environment significantly reduces stress and it improves your overall well being. If you’re always tripping over garbage. Or if you don’t have space to get something done, but there’s junk in the way you’re going to be on edge and you’re going to be just here. And so in it, don’t try and do a whole house. Right. Like if you–


00:18:24 Start small. 


00:18:25 No, seriously, like–


00:18:26 Babies. 


00:18:26 Yeah. And baby steps. If your entire life is just cluttered with garbage, say, I’m going to pick this one room and I’m going to make it great and then move on to the next one. But if you can declutter and simplify your life, you’ll probably find out that you had three of one item that you probably don’t need three of. You can sell it and get down to one. And it’s going to even with vehicles, right? Like this is one where I’m guilty. I probably have too many vehicles and I sit there and I pay insurance on the truck I don’t drive. And I pay to have it maintained when I don’t really use it. If you don’t really need it or you don’t use it, probably okay. Go ahead and just like. 


00:19:12 Otherwise, you’ll justify the reason to keep. I was. I mean, if you really are going to go to this whole, you know, minimalist ice other. But if you’ve gotten to a point where that’s what you need to do. That’s right. And then build back up the way that makes sense. 


00:19:28 Yeah. So get rid of your garbage, maybe own less stuff.


00:19:32 And maybe garbage isn’t the word. 


00:19:34 Well…


00:19:35 Get rid of the stuff you don’t want.


00:19:36 Yeah, because I mean, I actually don’t know if you’ve watched this show, but that show about Hoarders, right? I love it. And I don’t know why, because the whole time I’m watching it, I feel bad. But it inspires me to clean a little bit. But, you know, these people, they look at this stuff and they say, well, I actually need it and I feel better with it until they get rid of it. You can just like you said, you can justify having it, but that doesn’t mean it’s a good reason to have it So, you know, incorporate, you know, kind of going through and doing some spring cleaning and other healthy practices, right? Like, you know, working out or doing some sort of exercise where you’re giving your physical body, you know, a little boost because that’s also really gonna affect, I think other habits in your life, even like savings and all that other stuff that we’re trying to be better at. If you’re not well mentally, it can be harder to execute on the other end. 


00:20:40 Yeah. Absolutely. And it’s just a matter of even like what you said, it’s starting with one room and then moving, accomplishing a task, accomplishing something and actually finishing it. Cause if you’re trying to do say a whole house, you’re not, you’re never going to because by the time you get, you know, all the way around, you’re just starting over. 


00:21:00 Yeah. My wife is horrible about this. I think it’s like a slight, you know, case of ADHD or something, but she’ll squirrel and go into something else. And so she’ll be like washing something and then she sees something else. And she’s like, oh, well, I need to deal with that, too. And then I look, I’m like, you have like five messes and you’re trying to clean. And I’m like, you got to just pick one, stick to it and get that done and then move on. 


00:21:26 You’ll find you get a lot of things done, but nothing. 


00:21:29 Exactly. 


00:21:31 Which is, yeah, it’s…


00:21:32 Do you struggle with this?


00:21:35 All the time? 


00:21:35 Yeah. So that’s. But you know, if you know, I mean, you know that you have this problem. Do you ever like actually force yourself to just do one thing? Okay, does have you find like, did you find that that makes you more effective at getting something? 


00:21:50 Yeah. 100. Well done. Well, yeah, I mean, I can do a lot of things. Okay. 


00:21:56 You know what I found interesting? You know, I was obviously out sick the other day. Didn’t come into the office but I was working from home and at home, I decided I was going to work on the couch and I had my laptop and I had my one screen in front of me. Right. And so I was doing something that typically I would use three screens for. I actually got way more work done with just one screen. But I think the trick there was when you have all the things, right, all the screens in front of you. It’s easier to get distracted because, you know, you’re running all these different tabs and you’ve got all these different screens. You can find yourself being less productive. So pick something and focus on it. 


00:22:48 Right. 


00:22:42 Pick a dollar amount that you’re going to save every month. Quit worrying about all the other stuff. Focus on that. Pick something, accomplish it. You’re going to feel better and move on to the next thing because you’ve got some… 


00:22:57 Yeah. And it’s the check in the box because there’s a lot of that are even box check. So if you naturally are not a very good saver every week, say, and just that’s picking them. 


00:23:10 And it goes the other way too. If you’re naturally like a workaholic, right. And you like just cannot break out of that cycle of the 50 hours a week, you know, just force yourself to block some time off on your calendar and take those days off. Like force yourself to have that, that work life balance where you’re going to set some boundaries, whether it’s, and it doesn’t have to be just at work. It can be at home too, or with your hobbies. Some people are the opposite. They’re like, I’ve got this hobby, whether it’s fishing or golfing, whatever it is. And you get so deep into it, you’re blocking out the other stuff and you actually kind of slide backwards on that self care. So you need to find kind of that happy medium where you’re flexible with work, you’re flexible at home, and you’re not super rigid because it’s really, really easy to get into kind of some bed.


00:24:09 So maintaining the balance of spending time with your family and working. And that’s where you do get a lot of your. You know, urge to do more, you know, the times you spend with your family and then doing the things that you enjoy doing around otherwise. We were. 


00:24:30 No, I see that all the time. People are like, you know, you know, I’m not doing so well. And, you know, if you look at balance sheet balance sheet, fine. You start drilling down to the real root of the problem is what you just said. They’re not doing what they actually like because they feel like they have this obligation to go put more gold in the wagon. And that’s not necessarily what it’s all about. So Justin, I’m going to take us into a commercial. But I’m doing this for a reason. I’ve got some stuff I really want to talk about. It’s going to take me a while. I want to talk about ways that you can kind of grow personally and how you can grow your career. But I don’t want to jump into it. I want to take a profit break. So when we get back, we’re going to talk about this. This is the True Wealth Radio Show. This is Matt Dickson.


00:25:23 And Justin Bruggeman. 


00:25:24 You guys are listening to 93.9 FM and 1240 KQEN. All right, everybody, welcome back. We are halfway through the True Wealth Radio Show today where we’re throwing a lot at you. So make sure to buckle those seat belts because we’re really going through a ton with you today. And I think Justin, you’ve got something good for us here. We’re talking about millennials and how they’re burnt out, but we’re trying to inspire a little bit of hope here and talk about ways that we can grow and ways that we can develop and do better, even when times are tough hard. So talk to me a little bit about that. What’s on your mind? 


00:26:06 Yeah, what they would consider is well, starting with the budget. 


00:26:09 Yeah, we talked about that. 


00:26:12 That’s a great is a realistic one. Prioritized savings minimizes expensive unnecessary expenses. 


00:26:20 Yeah, we talked about kind of decluttering your life, making sure that you’re not just bogged down in a bunch of junk, getting some exercise. Talk about that a little bit. 


00:26:30 And especially when it doesn’t necessarily mean need to be a patent paper. They have a lot of apps out there that help you but…


00:26:38 Yeah, I think like one of them I’ve heard of, I don’t know if it’s good or not. But men’s, I think, kind of tracks them in, you know, after expenses, I think I heard of like you need a budget. 


00:26:50 That one I never heard of. 


00:26:53 It was like, why in a year? There’s a bunch of them. Just Google it. They’re out there. 


00:26:56 Yeah. And there’s plenty. A lot of them are free. I mean, a lot of times you don’t need the extra stuff.


00:27:00 Do you ever use the Credit Karma app? 


00:27:02 Yes. 


00:27:04 Credit score and some of the stuff is going on. 


00:27:06 I think Matt actually links that. 


00:27:09 I don’t know. For me personally, a bank with Chase and I look at their spending app, right? Where they…


00:27:56 It breaks down.


00:27:17 That actually helped me a bunch. Because I’m like, well, well, well, we’re spending this much on food. And I’m like, what are like our waste? And oh, wait, we’re spending that much on Amazon. I didn’t realize that we spent as much as we do on Amazon, but it makes sense. I mean, granted, we literally buy all of the stuff for the house on Amazon. It just shows up, but it allowed me to find some subscriptions and some stuff we weren’t using and I cleaned some stuff up. I think we’re saving like 800 bucks a month or something crazy just by ratcheting a few things down and saying, wait a minute, you know, we’re paying for like, you know, TV subscription we don’t watch. And so you start eliminating some of that stuff and be a little bit more mindful and it’s like, you can really save another thousand dollars a lot of the time if you’re being really super watchful. So some of those apps and some of those spending trackers, they’re a conversation starter. I’ll say that. 


00:28:19 Yeah. And the big, even we’ve been talking about millennials and them not really getting to the accumulation phase the way that they need. Right. It’s mainly because of that. 


00:28:29 Oh, yeah. That’s sky high right now. 


00:28:32 Yeah. I mean, the average millennial has 20 almost $28,000 of non mortgage debt. 


00:28:39 I mean, we were. I’m going to just say we were sold. Go to college. Don’t worry about it. Right. Like, just borrow the money. You got to do it. This is the way like that’s what we were sold. And a lot of people did it. Not everyone did, sure, but a lot of people did that. And then they came out of college and then there was this huge awakening of like, well, now what? We have the degree. What’s it good for? And for I think maybe, you know, I don’t know, 75, 80 percent of the the workforce. Yeah, I mean, sure, it might have helped a little bit. Might open a couple of doors. But it yeah.


00:29:18 But did it really open the door as much as you thought it would? Like I looked at it, right. It’s like, well, if I’ve got a degree, everyone’s going to want. And it doesn’t really matter what it’s like that. I’m just going to be a hot commodity, but here’s the problem. If everyone has the degree, does it even matter? I mean, sure. If you’re going to be a doctor, you got to like do the thing, right? I wanted to be a teacher. I had to have the teaching degree. It got me in the door, but anymore I look at this and I’m like, you know what really is going to move the meter? Do you have a strong professional network? And do you know the right people? Do people like you? If no one likes you and you don’t know anybody like good luck.


00:30:03 It’s harder to find work, though. 


00:30:04 Yeah, it is. 


00:30:05 Unless you’re the base. 


00:30:06 Yeah. Or you have some skill that no one else has. But you need to be likable. Right. You need to just kind of naturally have a good head on your shoulders. And can you communicate? If you can communicate really well with people and you have some skills, like I’m not going to throw the skills part out of it because if you don’t have any skills, well, you’re going to probably do unskilled labor, but you’ve got some skills. You’re a people person. You can communicate. Well, I don’t know that you need the degree as much as you think that you do. And that’s coming from someone who was a teacher for you. So there’s my two cents, not that it’s worth anything, but no. 


00:30:50 Coming back to the debt management. 


00:30:51 Yeah, go back to–


00:30:52 Going on your…


00:30:52 Sorry, I had to go on it. 


00:30:54 Your red. 


00:30:54 Yeah. 


00:30:55 At college education. You know, it’s you found yourself in debt and you’re trying to get, you know, the space to be human. There’s ways. Of doing or getting rid of the debt quicker, whether it be, you know, a snowball effect or paying off the highest interest for which by snowball effect is pretty much paying off the smallest one first and then moving that payment to the next one. And it grows, grows, grows your payments with large. You know, sometimes considering, you know, consolidation loans and things like that will make sense, especially in the times now with interest rates, kind of where they are, especially, you know, credit card debt is the highest it’s been in a long time.


00:31:44 Credit card debt is the–


00:31:46 The amount of debt and what it costs is hot. And so if there’s ways to consolidate and lower, not necessarily lower your payment, but lower your interest and keep them the same payment, you can get out of that a lot quicker. And but it takes being extremely disciplined and not adding more debt to it. It’s really easy to make $5,000 debt payment, but it’s also really easy to rack up $5,000 more debt.


00:31:12 Here’s another interesting one. I want your take on this, Justin. This is something I saw. I’m not going to try and steal this and be original. Not my thought, but I saw someone say once that, you know, the person who is trapped in kind of like financial mediocrity or just, you know, in the sludge of just getting through the motion, they care about their credit score, but the person who is looking into the future and building wealth and doing things kind of in a better way. They’re looking at their assets and what are they doing with their money in that regard? They’re building assets and they’re monitoring that side. They’re not looking at the credit score as much as they’re looking at, you know, what am I actually doing with my stuff? They’re not living their life to build a credit score. They’re building their life to build assets. And so I think that’s another one too, because not all debt is bad, right? Some debt is good debt. Like you went out and you bought a house, you got a loan to do it. And, you know, you turned around and you sold it four years later for. The $100,000 profit. Well, that was probably good debt. You had a place to live in bank carried, you know, the liability of all that money being out there and– 


00:33:32 It costs you a little bit of money. Yeah. The interest and things like that. 


00:33:26 So not all that is bad day. It’s good debt can be good. And I think that’s where, I mean, Dave Ramsey will just go on thing. You just, you got to pay every single thing off. And it’s like, well, if your car’s financed at 1.9% and you’ve got $40,000 sitting in the bank making five and a half percent, should you really pull all of the five and a half percent out? We’ll pay off the thing making or the, you know, costing me 1.9. Maybe not all that debt is bad. 


00:34:08 Well, it’s the irresponsible person trolling. That can be good. You know, in ways and even the easiest example is it can buy you time. But if it. It can harm you, too, because if you get way to end that where you’re now being ran by payments instead of using the debt to leverage something else.


00:34:33 Yeah, I think we talked about that on a show recently where we were talking about, you know, the ultra high net worth people who, you know, they they finance literally everything to the point where a couple things go wrong and then they’re way out in front of their skis. And they’re like, well, I’ve got three mortgage payments, and I was making a million dollars a year, but now it’s 750 and I can’t cover that one. And then that goes into foreclosure and I took key lock on this other one and then the dominoes start to talk. And so, yeah, it’s a really big deal to be super, super savvy with your debt. And if you don’t know what to do, you know, maybe you talk to someone who is, you know, more experienced in the area than you are, or offer some, you know, additional insight to where you can make more.


00:35:28 Which where I mean, the credit score does matter because it makes consolidation and things like that. 


00:35:34 Yeah, I’m not going to discount it because if you’ve got a good credit score and you can go loan money at 2% instead of 8%. Now, yeah, it does matter, but you can’t make every single decision based on this hundred percent credit score. You know, oh, gosh, I can’t take this loan. It’s going to drop the score 20 points. You know, it’s like, whoa, whoa, whoa. We got to look a little bit further down the line. 


00:35:58 So talk to me a little bit more about, you know, we were talking, start this segment on personal growth, developing your career. Do you want to maybe talk about like, I mean, I know we talked about networking, but maybe kind of continuing your education or continuing your learning, building that maybe. 


00:36:20 Yeah, I mean, there’s always benefits to increasing your skills. I mean, so when I’m looking at continuing education, I look at the book because we have.


00:36:27 Yeah, we do. Right.


00:36:30 Which is we try to pick things that are the most interesting as possible. You know, when you have 25 hours of work a year. But just increasing your skills. There’s a lot of what’s now online. You can get you can do any. 


00:36:47 Yeah, you can go get certifications, different accreditation a lot. It’s more accessible, right? Like in back of the day, you have to show up to the, you know brick building with your textbook and your–


00:37:01 Night college, things like that. 


00:37:02 Yeah, stuff like that. Now you can just log in, you know, what the video play in the background. You can read a text online. You can do a lot of stuff and build your resume up where, you know, you can sell yourself a lot easier or get enough knowledge where you’re like, hey, do you want to hire me? And someone says, yeah, or you can start finding some.


00:37:28 Finding something, doing something you enjoy that makes a huge difference. 


00:37:32 That’s really something I did want to talk about. You kind of forgot even.


00:37:38 Because if you don’t really enjoy it, you’re not going to spend 30, 40 years doing. And that is, you know, could be one of the most important things. You may not be there yet, but get right wherever whatever you need to do to get to doing the things that you want to do, which I mean, there’s no perfect. Right. 


00:38:01 Because if you spend 10 years perfecting a skill that you hate. Like we talked about the cost of turnover being over 30 billion dollars. The U.S. economy was your personal cost of turnover where you have to completely rebuild yourself and kind of start at the bottom and work your way up. So like you just said, just do something you enjoy. So let’s talk more about that when we get back from break, doing stuff that you enjoy.


and how that might kind of transition you over instead of you’re in this accumulation phase. How do we get into that spot where we’re maintaining or being generous? So that and more when we get back is Mack Dickson.


00:38:42 And Justin Bruggeman. 


00:38:43 You guys are listening to the True Wealth Radio Show on 93.9 FM and 1240 KQEN. All right, Justin, I’m getting tired. We’ve gone through so much. We’re talking about how do you accumulate How do you kind of transition over from that accumulation phase? How are you balancing your home life, your work life? Just take the microphone and talk to me a little bit. What do you got? 


00:39:12 We’ve been, I guess, more complaining, I guess. 


00:39:14 Well, we did do our fair share of that. But let’s talk about the..


00:39:17 Accumulation phase is, you know, establishing a budget, getting to where your savings needs are, where they need to be, your funding, retirement and then what? And then this is a transition to the maintenance. You’ve got the habits that you think you. And you continue doing those and then you grow your wealth in different ways, depending how people do that. It’s different for every person. How much you need to save is different for every person. 


00:39:51 Right. Because I mean, I know the deli will go out and say something like you need to kind of have 10 to 12 times your final salary and ready to retire. But I look at that and I’m like, man, that’s a really blanketed statement. That doesn’t necessarily rain true because what if, you know, your dream in retirement was you wanted to travel Europe and the rest of the world until you die, you might need a lot more money than just 10 to 12 times your annual salary. And so, like you just said, this is a really custom, think some people they walk in and they’re like, Matt, I want to retire. And I’m like, well, what do you want to do? And they’re like, I just want to have a garden and not go anywhere. I’m tired of going places. Just want a garden. I’m like, well, let’s look at the numbers. Like you have way more than you’ll probably ever need. Right. 


00:40:42 And so it’s very, very unique to what it is that you want. What are your expenses like? Is your house paid off? You know, do you have three different accounts that you can pull from? That’s where I really think the value of a financial plan that’s really tailored to that specific person really comes in. 


00:41:00 Because it could be, you know, it is a kind of a blanket state, you know, 10 times, you know, your final salary, maybe you have real estate. 


00:41:10 Or maybe your final salary was greatly reduced compared to where your other salary was for the most of your career, because you took on a job where you’re doing something you like, you’re not really even doing it for the money. So that’s just kind of bogus.


00:41:23 And there are times when people have pension, you know, between pension, social security, some real estate, they may not need a million dollars. Yeah, no, it just may not make sense. It might not be for their lifestyle. So they’re just accumulating more to, you know, maybe there’s a plan for it. It’s paying. You know, giving it to heirs. 


00:41:49 Well, and here’s the other thing that people don’t think about. They’re 50 years old and they’re starting to stare down the barrel of retirement. And they look at this thing and they’re like, oh yeah, I really need this much. Then here’s what I’ve noticed. They get the 60, right? And then they come back and they’re like, so what I wanted to do at 50 is much different than what I now want to do at 60, which can be much different than what they want to do at 70. So being able to be objective with yourself. What are you really going to do when you retire? What are you really going to need that can actually shock people because you might not need as much. 


00:42:31 And reality of it is, it’s depending on your lifestyle, longevity. There’s a lot of different things. Like statements are great. I mean, to be honest, you have 10 times your income in retirement. You’re probably okay. Unless you’re planning on living in very extravagant. 


00:42:53 Yeah, unless you want to live to 120 and drink 300 dollars. 


00:42:56 Exactly. 


00:42:57 Wine every night. What makes you not?


00:42:59 When the average life expectancy is mid 70s. Yeah, I have high mid 70s. 


00:43:03 Yeah, I think it’s like 76..


00:43:05 76, 78… 78 women, 76 men. And so, you know, accumulating all this. But then not use it either. Is it good? 


00:43:17 And that’s why I find it so funny when people fret over, when do I take my social security? Right. And they try and like predict this thing down to the penny. And I’m like, hey, man, you don’t know when you’re going to die. Do you? No. Well, then we’re just giving you the best estimate based on, you know, how healthy are you today? What’s your family history look like? You know, what are your needs? You know, you need to retire early because you’re helpful. Okay, maybe we should take social security early or well, you really need every dollar you can get in retirement. The kind of strap let’s go in and delay it. There’s a lot of a lot of areas. 


00:43:56 When can you and when should you? It’s a very, very different conversation. 


00:44:01 It’s an uncomfortable one. Sometimes I don’t know. 


00:44:03 Sometimes a very uncomfortable. 


00:44:06 But you know what? That’s why we’re here. We live for that uncomfortable conversation because it doesn’t bother us. Right. Like we’ve had that conversation so many times that we’re really actually, at least for me, it’s really not that uncomfortable.


00:44:19 No, and it’s it’s even more interesting that as time goes by, change.


00:44:26 Right. And you know, it’s really weird. I say the bulk majority of the time, people are actually really surprised and they’re like, wow, I actually didn’t think that I could retire. I can’t. And then they feel great. It’s rarely actually the other way around where it’s like, all right, I’m ready to retire. And then, you know, you’re like, pump the brakes. You can’t, you know, I think it definitely errs more on the side of, you know what? Yeah, you’re probably okay. And even if they’re not, you kind of figure out ways to say, well, I know you wanted to spend 4000 months in retirement. Maybe we can whittle that down to 3200 minutes, a completely different picture. And then, you know, you just work with. Yeah. 


00:45:11 And it’s just the difference to this. The Baby Boomer and Gen X generation are better savers. 


00:45:19 They are. Justin, we’re running out of time. So give me a phone number and email or whatever. How do they get a hold of it? 


00:45:26 541-375-0898 or visit our website at


00:45:33 All right. Well, thanks for sticking around and listening to the True Wealth Radio show. This is Matt Dickson.


00:45:38 And Justin Bruggeman. 


00:45:38 You guys catch us next week. We’ll be back here Tuesday or have a great rest of your week.


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