The Sunday Best is a collection of articles I’ve curated from the furthest reaches of the internet for your reading pleasure.
Every week, I scan hundreds of headlines, read dozens of posts, and bring you the best of the best to save you time and mental energy.
Financial Independence (FI) is a primary focus, but it’s an awfully broad topic. I tend to approach FI and early retirement from a fatFIRE perspective and through the lens of a physician, so expect to see those biases in the selected articles.
For more great articles, take a peek at The Sunday Best Archives. Now let’s get to the best… The Sunday Best!
The Sunday Best
Are you looking for a way to track your net worth that you can manage yourself (i.e. a Personal Capital <- referral link alternative)? Mike Pearson of Credit Takeoff has a slick answer for you using Google Sheets and Google Data Studio. Check out his free Net Worth Tracker Dashboard ( <- not a referral link).
A healthy retirement can be better realized with a proper simulation. Edith from Cracking Retirement has learned that a healthy retirement also benefits from proper stimulation. The same could be said of many activities, not all of them PG. Retirement Needs Stimulation.
Big ERN at Early Retirement Now is The King of
Stimulation Simulation, and I somehow neglected to feature the last eight posts in his long-running retirement simulation series. Today, I rectify the situation. Here’s a great Guide for First Time Readers of the series and the most recent 8 parts.
- Part 31: The Yield Illusion (or Delusion?): Another Follow-Up!
- Part 32: You are a Pension Fund of One (or Two)
- Part 33: How to Calculate Your Safe Withdrawal Rate without using Simulations
- Part 34: Using Gold as a Hedge against Sequence Risk
- Part 35: Asset Location: Do Bonds Really Belong in Retirement Accounts?
- Part 36: Safe Withdrawal Math with Real Estate Investments
- Part 37: Dealing with a Bear Market in Retirement
- Part 38: When Can We Stop Worrying about Sequence Risk?
After writing about financial independence for the better part of six years, “Stockbeard” at How to Retire Early has reached that glorious pinnacle. What will the father of three do now? Suddenly, FI.
It’s Christmas in July with this thought-provoking post from XRAYVSN. In Pursuit Of FIRE, Don’t Recreate The Gift Of The Magi.
You can reach FI by saving up to a lump sum, by creating cash flow streams, or any combination thereof. I focused on the former but ended up with quite a bit of the latter. My 4 Current and 4 Future Passive Income Streams.
The Chase Sapphire Preferred Card 🔥 Newly Increased Welcome Bonus! 💪
The Chase Sapphire Preferred is my top pick for your first rewards card. It now offers a welcome bonus of 80,000 points worth at least $1,000 when used to book travel (after a $4,000 spend in 3 mo) and other great perks you can learn about here.
On the rewards side, plenty of dentists and doctors become millionaires. Here’s another 5 millionaire interviews from ESI Money to peruse.
- Millionaire Interview #181
- Millionaire Interview #182
- Millionaire Interview #183
- Millionaire Interview #184
- Millionaire Interview #185
Dr. Peter Kim of Passive Income MD and Passive Real Estate Academy is in a similar situation, but the anesthesiologist is not hanging up the white coat just yet. What he is doing sounds irresponsible at face value, but things are not always as they seem. Create Massive Leverage Through Passive Real Estate Investing.
- Dr. Kim’s signature course opens for enrollment in a couple of weeks. Join the waitlist to be offered a substantial discount, and you’ll be under no obligation to buy (but you’ll get a deal if you do!).
Education, Exercise, and Ethanol
Did you know I created this website to enlighten, educate, and entertain? It’s true; the 3 E’s are right there in my mission statement on the About Me page.
Physician on FIRE is a personal finance website created to inform and inspire both physicians and our patients with insightful writing from a physician who has attained financial independence and the ability to retire early. The site has a triple aim to leave visitors enlightened, educated, and entertained.
In my personal life, I’ve been focusing on a different set of 3 E’s. That’s just a happy accident, and one of them is the same, but let’s roll with it.
These efforts go back to when I was still gainfully employed but mentally preparing for this semi-retirement lifestyle I’m now living. Leaving my job and now living the lockdown life emphasized the importance of education, exercise, and ethanol in my life.
Like Edith (a 4th E!) says, retirement needs stimulation.
The brain needs new stimuli, and I continue to feed it daily. Even though I don’t go to work or school anymore, I treat every day like it’s a school day.
I learn a lot just reading financial news, books, and blog posts as I put together this weekly Sunday Best series.
I continue to expand my Spanish vocabulary on a daily basis with DuoLingo and the Drops app. Ellos hacen el aprendizaje divertido. I use Google Translate to fill in the gaps when I’m not sure how to best say something (as I did just now — I would have used “aprender”).
I’m also learning how inappropriate some episodes of The Office can be for boys who are 9 and 11 years old. They, in turn, are expanding their vocabulary as we make our way through the series. Spoiler alert! We’re on Season 4 and it’s good to see Jim & Pam finally get together.
Back in the good ol’ days when we could travel, we were putting miles and miles on our feet most days as we explored the cities we temporarily called home. We didn’t need a formal exercise routine.
We did do some body weight exercises in Mexico, and my wife and I trained for and ran a half marathon in Barcelona during our two months in Spain earlier this year.
Now we’re back in the States, and gyms, if open, are not the best place to be. I started doing daily pushups and situps in mid-March, and I’ve been doing 100 of each every single day since mid-April, closing in on 100 days of that routine.
We’re also training for another half marathon, and yesterday morning, we ran 10 km with our boys. It was their third consecutive summer training for and running a 10k. We’re very proud of them!
I like drinking. A good beer buzz one of my favorite ways “to happy,” as Jonathan Clements might put it.
I also recognize that, especially when it comes to the consumption of ethanol, too much of a good thing can be a very bad, bad thing. Without a doctor job and the responsibilities that go with it, I have fewer reasons not to drink, so I have to be cognizant of where I’m at with that.
Like any personal finance nerd would (and I know a couple others that do), I started tracking my consumption on a spreadsheet, along with a number of other daily habits (like education and exercise) in early 2018.
One serving is equal 60 ABV*ounce units. A “standard” beer is 12 oz. at 5% ABV. A serving of wine is 5 oz. at 12% ABV, and a serving of liquor is 1.5 oz. of 40% (80 proof) ABV rum, vodka, etc… 60 is the magic multiple. So a 16 oz. craft beer at 6% ABV is 1.6 servings of alcohol (6*16 = 96, and 96/60 = 1.6).
Yes, I’m that precise with it. I mean, it’s a spreadsheet, after all. We can’t be rounding off and fudging numbers.
Each of the last two years, my wife and I had a Sober October, and we plan to do so again in 2020. There was talk of an aburrido Abril in 2020, but with everything shut down and few entertainment options, we opted not to follow through with that. We also take a full week off from drinking each month.
Last year, I had a soft goal of averaging 2 drinks per day, and having so many built-in alcohol-free days helped, but I ended the year at 2.15. Summer and celebrating this newfound freedom put that initial goal out of reach.
This year, I went with a more restrictive goal of no more than 60 drinks in any month. I’m 6 for 6 so far, averaging a healthy (for me) 1.7 servings a day. I’m far from perfect, but happy with where I’m at.
Cheers to being semi-sober in semi-retirement! 🍻
A Featured Financial Advisor
For those of you who would rather not DIY, I maintain a short list of recommended financial advisors. Among the good guys and gals who work frequently with physicians, only the lowest cost, fee-only fiduciary advisors were invited to be on this short list. Among them is RFK Capital Management.
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We believe most investors can manage their own investment portfolios using index funds if they receive and follow good advice. Our main service offering is our DIY Investing Service. You will receive a personalized financial plan, an investment policy statement, a review of your insurance policies, and support and guidance in becoming an effective investor using low-cost index funds.
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Have an outstanding week!
-Physician on FIRE