Meet The Geoscience Behind Finance
Hey there, Your Money Geek readers!
I’m excited to “take over the airways” for a fellow personal finance blogger that I admire. Michael, you are really a good role model for aspiring bloggers in all aspects, from producing quality content to marketing your website. You even have enough time to take out of your day to engage, teach and have fun with the PF community. Michael, thanks again for giving me the opportunity to guest post on your website and entertain your audience for the day.
Before I outline this week’s best financial blog posts let me take a moment to say ‘Hello!’
My name is Lauren and I founded The Geoscience Behind Finance where I am using the Scientific Method to help readers save money, pay down debt and build wealth. I am a geologist by background and trade that lives in Houston, Texas. When I moved to Houston a couple of years ago, I was excited to start on my dream career path.
With all, that excitement came new responsibilities and challenges: mortgage, car loans, and retirement planning. The same questions I started to answer about these new responsibilities and challenges were the same questions my peers had. I noticed there were no resources targeted towards individuals in my industry so I started my blog to share my passion for finance while helping other geologists (and everyone else) reach their highest potential.
3 Posts That Caught My Eye This Week
I read for enjoyment just as much as I read to learn. These three posts, below, embody my objectives perfectly. I crave new content that pulls the reader into the life of the blogger/storyteller. I enjoy content from bloggers who are pursuing different lifestyles than mine. Many times, I learn more from their pursuits, successes, and trials & errors than I would read about someone who is on my same path. I am able to learn how to incorporate their lessons, guidance, and advice into my world and that helps me accomplish my goals, financially and as a writer.
I can’t stress enough how funny and entertaining this post is by Financial Mechanic. She details 7 surefire ways to annoy and nag your significant other when introducing him/her to the Financial Independence, Retire Early (FIRE) Movement.
The FIRE Movement is absolutely life-changing, to say the least! For all of you who are unfamiliar with this movement, those who seek FIRE do so by maximizing their savings rate, decreasing their expenses and increasing their income. As Financial Mechanic outlines, some even save up to 70% of their income to reach this lifestyle. The goal is to accumulate resources that provide enough passive income to cover living expenses throughout the life of the individual/family. The life-changing part is that when you reach FIRE, you will be able to retire from work and pursue other passions earlier than in a traditional work setting.
Although FIRE is life-altering for many, it may not be realistic or appealing to some. I admire FIRE seekers but I am in no hurry to retire early. Financial Mechanic pokes fun at the audacity and arrogance of some FIRE seekers in pushing their ideas on others around them regardless of that individual’s financial or personal situation. Through satire, she reminds us that although we make certain choices about our financial lives, those around us may not have the luxury to do so. We should, therefore, teach and not drive change by force.
On Can I Retire Yet? Darrow Kirkpatrick does a great job at outlining certain lifestyle choices he gave up to retire. He and his wife gave up the pursuit of career power/influence, the dream to one day buy a big, beautiful home, and future international travel.
When we think about FIRE, most of us know that we will have to give up these big ticket items in order to retire early. Hell, most of the FIRE blogs out there have at least one article dedicated to forgoing materialistic pursuits for FIRE. What makes this post different is that Darrow doesn’t sugar coat the fourth lifestyle choice he made in the pursuit of FIRE. He admits that pursuing FIRE can lead to forgoing guaranteed long term security. He outlines that since his coworkers will be working for a longer period of time, they will have the opportunity to save more money which could potentially leave them with a better financial situation in the long run. Retiring at 50 puts Darrow and his wife at risk to decades of the unknown. It’s healthy that FIRE seekers not only understand the opportunities that FIRE allows them, but also the risks and challenges that they may face.
Marc, from Vital Dollar, took the time to get guidance and advice from a population that many of us ignore and sometimes downright reject. He spent spend time with the homeless through his volunteer work and was able to incorporate their lessons learned into his everyday life.
In 2017, after reading the book The Hole in Our Gospel, he started volunteering at a local homeless shelter as a way to give back to the community. He states that he was definitely taken out of his comfort zone but grew as a result.
In his post, Marc outlines 11 very important lessons, some apply to finance and others that are critical for everyone to understand as they pursue their path in life. His first lesson deals with the notion that some people simply start out in life with a disadvantage. In the personal finance community, when giving advice we need to consider that there are people who have faced grand challenges and are working towards a better future for themselves and their families. PF bloggers should be cognizant of the advice that they give you, their readers. Not everyone wears the same shoe size and there are times when we cannot give blanket, generic advice to someone who really needs something solid and critical. We need to put ourselves in the shoes of others by asking more questions and getting to know our readers better. Whether you are religious or not, this post is definitely worth the read!
The Geoscience Behind Finance Post You Are Going to Enjoy!
Continuing on my theme of learning from writers who may not be on the same career path as you, I want you to take some time to read this post.
I was inspired by International Women’s Day to write a post on helping women excel in science. It is our duty to make sure every woman reaches her desired highest potential. As a society, we need to make sure there are multiple avenues to achieve success.
In the US, women hold only 24% of STEM jobs available. Participation rates are markedly low considering the ~50% participation rate for women in the workforce. In general, women are found to be less likely to reach management levels. In fact, there are only 24 women who hold CEO positions in Fortune 500 companies.
Women in STEM, unfortunately, also leave the workforce at very high rates. The workforce is, undoubtedly, dominantly male. Therefore, it is critical that women receive support and advocacy from men to maximize their careers. Men in the workplace can do this by assuming 4 key roles: mentor, sponsor advocate, and friend. This post outlines the importance and impact of each of these roles.
Although this post is targeted at how men can help women succeed in a male-dominated STEM work environment, anyone can take on these roles to increase the number of women and minorities in any industry!
Geeky Fact of the Day:
If you enjoy geeky facts, you’ve come to the right place! I’m a scientist so I have tons to share about myself. Here’s a good one.
Recently, my husband and I have been spending quality time together by watching Breaking Bad on Netflix
I know! I know! I’m way behind the train. But give me some credit, I’m catching up.
Each episode starts with credits rolling across the screen and periodic element abbreviations are highlighted in each name.
It started out by me wanting to test my knowledge of the periodic elements but it really turned into me shouting out the periodic every time one is highlighted on the screen in EVERY episode.
I’m pretty sure that I miss the first 2 minutes of each episode because I’m shouting at the TV. Good thing my husband has seen Breaking Bad three times already.
Michael and Your Money Geek readers, thanks for letting me take over for the day! Keep digging for wealth!
Thank You for hosting this weeks Best of the Web. – Michael