EP 832 – Mountains To Climb: Overcoming Our Own Challenges With Joe Saul-Sehy

Note Closers Show | Joe Saul-Sehy | Mountains To Climb

Note Closers Show | Joe Saul-Sehy | Mountains To Climb


Each of us has our own mountain to climb, but it’s the journey, the setbacks, and the community we build along the way that truly defines our success. For today’s episode, Scott Carson sits down with the co-host of the #1 finance podcast, Stacking BenjaminsJoe Saul-Sehy. They talk about Joe’s journey, the financial mistakes he has had to overcome, what drives him, and how we all have our mountains to climb. From the importance of surrounding yourself with good people to the power of setting clear goals, Joe discusses how these principles have shaped his journey and contributed to his success. Learn about the importance of finding your “who” – the right people and resources to support you on your journey. Tune in now!


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Mountains To Climb: Overcoming Our Own Challenges With Joe Saul-Sehy

I’m super jacked up for this special episode. When I started podcasting several years ago, I attended an event called Podfest and was figuring out what we were going to do with the show, who I could talk to, and what shows I could admire. This special guest was one guy I heard speak on the stage there and I’ve been following him since then. You may know him if you’re in the financial space and listen to podcasts.

He’s the co-host of the number one financial podcast out there and has an amazing book that was picked by CNN as one of the Top 15 financial books in 2023. I’m talking about the amazing, the rock star, the badass, the name of names, the man of mystery from Texarkana out there, my good buddy, Joe Saul-Sehy. This guy works out of his mom’s garage.

I don’t know if that’s a plus but the rent is low in mom’s basement, which is great.

It’s great to have you on here. I’m looking forward to having you on since we talked back at FinCon. Things have been rocking and rolling. How’s everything going in the thriving metropolis of Texarkana?

What’s funny is that Texarkana before we moved here, I had to look it up on a map but I love this town. It is such a nice place. I’m a total advocate for Texarkana. I spoke at a Rotary Club and they wanted me to talk about podcasting. I’m like, “These people are going to become podcasters.” If anybody knows anything about Rotary, it’s a bunch of retired people who get together and chat. They’re all community leaders.

Instead, I talked about why we moved away from Texarkana and moved back. Scott, not only do I live in Texarkana but I moved to Detroit for a couple of years. When we were deciding through a series of events that we were going to move, it was like, “Where do we want to move to?” We decided to come back to this. I don’t like Texarkana. I love Texarkana. What a great place. Come visit us.

It is a great city there. I live in Austin, Texas, which is big. I’m going to get out of the big city of the metropolis and the craziness here. People are a little bit more sane in normal cities out there in a lot of cases versus a lot of the craziness that we see happen in major cities. You’ve lived in some big cities like Detroit. You worked for Ameriprise and American Express as a financial advisor for years. Can we talk a little bit about that aspect? That’s your big passion for finance. You talk not only on the podcast a little bit about the changes that took place to get you where you’re at. Can you share a little bit of that backstory, Joe?

The big thing that happened was I was a money disaster and still a disaster when I was teaching other people to be great with money. I realized what a double standard that was. It’s amazing that you can tell people all the right things to do but think they don’t apply to you, and they did apply to me. I got my house in order. I’m still a very good advisor. I was one of twelve advisors in the United States who spoke on behalf of American Express in the media. I was like a subject matter expert. I did TV twice a week.

I own my company but it was a franchise. The guy who was the local guy overseeing my franchise wrote a two-week notice letter that goes, “I’ve been lucky. I’ve saved a bunch of money. I don’t know what I want to do. I know it’s not financial planning. Financial planning is 90% right but I don’t want to live my life at 90%. I want to live my life at 100%. The frustrating thing is I work so many hours in financial planning working with people like me that I don’t have time to figure it out. I think I have other mountains to climb.”

I go, “I like financial planning. I don’t love it. I don’t love the one-on-one meetings. I love the topic of finance. I love teaching it to people. I’ve been lucky I got my house in order. I built this business. I’m going to sell it, go back to school, and become a high school teacher and a track coach because I’ve got other mountains to climb too.”

What’s funny was for me, it was a metaphor. Other mountains to climb meant doing this thing I love. God bless teachers but you don’t get paid very well. I go and sell my business. Do you know what Chris did? He went and climbed the highest mountain. It wasn’t a metaphor at all. He went and climbed Everest twice. He runs an adventure travel company. Not only did he inspire me but also a bunch of people around me.

Life is finite. We only have so much time. The whole thing about money is in the end, it’s not about money. It’s about deploying it and having money to deploy it on those things that you love in life. I have a friend in Australia. She has this thing that she calls the SHIT2 gold ratio. She’s like, “You want to get rid of the S and get more gold.” The cool thing is with this move, I was able to do that.

The whole thing about money is in the end, it's not really about money. It's about deploying it on those things that you really love in life. Share on X

What’s funny is I didn’t become a teacher. I started taking teaching classes. I went back to school, which is weird being an old guy. The woman next to me is wearing a class ring where she just graduated from high school. Whitney was her name, I remember. Whitney is half my age. It was so weird. What they taught me was I wouldn’t be able to teach. I would have to jump through hoops. Don’t send anything to administration because they’re not going to handle the classroom problem the way that you want to.

During my off time, I was bored in school. My friends that I’d done PR with are suddenly hiring me to write their newsletters for their clients and their scripts for TV. I’m doing what I love doing. I’m teaching about money and ghostwriting a bunch of stuff for people. I do the mascot and I figure out I’m making as much per hour in shorts and a t-shirt.

I’m home every day when my kids who are in high school come home. I’m living my best life. Why wouldn’t I do that? That became a blog. The blog became the podcast The podcast somehow blew up. We could talk about how that happened, which was weird. When Kiplinger called us the Best Personal Finance Podcast in America, that changed it for everything.

It’s a little bit when that gets shouted out there. The reason I wanted to bring that up is we have so many of our readers out there working in their 9:00 to 5:00. They’re working their career but they like to think about real estate investing, want to become full-time, or want to switch the course of their ship. They don’t like the path that it’s on. They’re frustrated. They don’t necessarily have their house to try to get things done.

What I always joke about is so many investors go to event after event trying to figure things out properly. I’m like, “You’ve got to figure out what’s best for you, not what’s best for the guy selling from stage or what your best friend is doing. Honestly, sometimes let go of the rail and take some steps to the right place so you can climb your mountain.”

You get frustrated seeing people who jump from diet to diet. That’s what I was doing. When I was bad with money, I was looking for shortcuts. There were two lies that I told myself. Lie number one was none of this applies to me. I already went over that one. Lie number two was if I make a little more money, it’ll solve the problem. This is 1993. In my first year as a financial advisor, I made around $85,000, which in 2024, that’s making $170,000 with inflation to put that in perspective.

Do you know what’s funny? I made $85,000 and it wasn’t enough money. If I would’ve made $100,000, I would’ve spent $120,000. If I made $120,000, I would’ve spent $150,000. If I made $150,000, I would’ve spent $180,000. My systems and habits were bad. It wasn’t about more money. What I needed to do was create a moat between what I brought in and what went out. I had to do that. The second thing I had to do was hide money for myself. When I hid money from myself, it then became available for stuff I wanted. The game of hiding money for myself, I can’t advocate that enough. Get your direct deposit moving into places where you can’t spend it and good things happen.

Note Closers Show | Joe Saul-Sehy | Mountains To Climb

Mountains To Climb: Get your direct deposit moving into places where you can’t spend it and good things happen.


It’s like putting a bowl of candy in front of us but it’s there. We’re going to devour it. When you say hide money, my mom would take money and hide it in books. She learned that from her grandmother. We had all these books. I’d open a book and there’d be $200. She’ll go, “That’s not for you. That’s for something else.” When I needed it, it magically showed up.

I used to do the equivalent. Here was the thing. I would have my checking account at a bank that I banked at all the time. For my savings account, I had a different account that I direct deposit in. It was across town. I had no X. I didn’t have any online access to it. I made sure I got rid of that. I got rid of the debit card. I physically had to drive across town to get that money.

What’s amazing is as humans, we are lazy enough. If that money’s in a bank right in front of me, I will go blow it. $200? What could I spend that on? All of a sudden, I’ve got 500 things I could do. If it’s across town, miraculously, my brain comes up with five different ways I can solve that problem and not drive across town. It is amazing how creative my brain gets going. That’s not worth it.

That’s not a bad idea. Like a Grubhub, you get Moneyhub. You drive around your town and pick up your money for it. I have a buddy who sells weed in California. That’s what he does. “Give me your ATM card. I’m going to the bank for $300. Here’s your card back and your doobie.”

You get a little nice relaxer later.

I’m glad you shared that out there. A lot of folks struggle with that. We’re a big advocate of people who put away money, start an IRA account, start putting money inside, and then use it as a self-directed account to buy a note, invest in a property, or even lend it out to other people out there.

This is a cool thing. Let’s talk about notes for a second. One thing that people always talk about when it comes to money is locking up your money is bad. Putting it in something that’s locked up is bad. I got to tell you, there are a number of times when my clients save their ass because their money was in something that was a liquid. Don’t get me wrong. You don’t want every last dollar in something that’s a liquid.

If I’ve got my money in a note, the thing that you do, I can go through the hassle of trying to transfer that and sign a buyer for that. That’s going to take me a little while. That’s going to be a pain in the butt. That will help you go the right way because of the fact that it is locked up. I used to think locked up was always a bad thing. I don’t want my emergency fund locked up. I want that across town in a bank I can go to. If my investment is long-term and it’s going to pay if I don’t touch it, what a great lesson.

Amen to that. That’s the thing. Everybody wants the whole get-rich-quick. “What do I have to do? How much Bitcoin do I need to buy to double up? How much GameStop stock can I buy?” The point is investing is not a short-term game. You have to invest to build wealth over time. We harped that with our students all the time. “Buy it out. It’s paying you $300 to $400 a month.” That’s not exciting. They’ll pay the electric bill. If you do that monthly for 24 months, at the end of 24 months, you’ve got a six-figure autopilot income coming in that you can say, “F you if you don’t want to work. Go climb mountains then.”

Do you know Alan Corey? Alan Corey’s got a great story about this. I love Alan’s approach. Alan was like, “You take that $300.” The way Alan looks at that, he’s like, “That $300 pay my utility bills at home. I never have to worry about those again. Those are gone.” He accumulates a bunch more money and is like, “That’s my grocery budget. That’s my cell phone.”

Thing by thing, instead of looking at life like, “How do I build this mountain of money with no goals quicker,” he’s like, “How do I hit the easy button by buying more stuff?” Before you know it, Alan’s like, “I’ve got all these properties and it’s all paying for my lifestyle. I never ‘need to work again.’” It’s like the backway. Alan did the back door into financial independence that way, and I love it.

A lot of the time, people get so discouraged thinking about retirement. They’re like, “I got to save $4 million or $6 million before I can retire.” I’m always like, “No. If you can build cashflow that’s going to generate the income off of that $4 million, you’re a lot closer than you think if you got to systematize it.” You did an episode where you’re talking about the average 401(k). OG mentioned something like $150,000, $140,000, or something like that. They’re never going to get to that point because they give up. I’m like, “You can generate some cashflow off of that if you invest it properly. Do not do scratch-offs.”

It is frustrating to see the number of people out there that get frustrated. They look at these big numbers they see in the media and think, “I’m never going to get there.” There are some stories I’ve seen. A woman named Becky Heptig is the co-host of a podcast called Catching Up to FI and Good Friend. Becky and her husband started at 50 and retired at 60.

She’ll be the first one to tell you that they also had some good things that happened to them during those ten years. Her husband got a big promotion at work but they had to still take that money, save it, and get it invested. She had to do all the legwork around that but she made it happen. I hear this all the time. People are like, “It’s too late for me.” No. Start from where you are.

Note Closers Show | Joe Saul-Sehy | Mountains To Climb

Mountains To Climb: People sometimes think, “It’s too late for me.” No, start from where you are.


Plant your flag and start taking action. It’s always the difference that’s the same thing. “I need to lose 20 pounds and go to the gym more than January 2nd because I’m too sore on January 3rd and I give up on January 4th. I’m going to take a class. I got to do a little bit of work.” I’m like, “You got to do a little bit of work. You got to market, put some energy behind it, and give it time for your little amount of work where you didn’t grow and blossom.”

It’s aggravating. People don’t understand the timeframe. We want that quick fix and hit for success. We go on to something else. You’re never going to find success bouncing around from action to action without giving something time. Let your energy and actions grow like a seed. You have been a big fan of different cities. There’s laughing OG. Paula Pant is hilarious when you have her on there. Afford Anything Podcast is right there. Where do you see the podcast going in 2025? It’s got to be a mind-blowing thing about where you came from when it first started.

It is. I can’t believe the number of people who are listening. The way that we’re headed is frankly, not just with the podcast but with everything that we do is trying to meet people where they are. A few years ago, we had this college kid, Richie, who worked with us. In 2024, we have a team of eight people. Richie was awesome but he was a part-time college kid who went to school at the Texas A&M Texarkana branch. He was a cool kid who came over after school. He’d help me edit shows and do some social media posts.

I feel like people are spread out where they are. You have people on TikTok, Instagram, and Facebook. Certainly, we can’t be everywhere but we become multi-platform. Two days a week, we do Instagram lives. People have told us they like those versus the podcast because they get to ask the guest questions. They get to participate. All I am then is an emcee. I have some questions about our Instagram live guests but they get to participate, which is super fun.

I see that not backing down. I see that continuing. YouTube has become a bigger part of what we do all the time. With that said, the basic product, which is better on the podcast because we’ve done it for longer, is I still like the formula. Life is about fun. The way to teach people is to make it fun. I love the fact that the only negative criticism I see about us is the same negative criticism all the time.

The way to teach people is to make it fun. Share on X

If people go look for our negative reviews, what you’re going to see that we will never change is that we screw around too much. 1) You’re not going to be everything to everybody. 2) They’re missing the joy in life. Talking about finance can be so much fun. For every money nerd that I lose, hopefully, we pick up three nonmoney nerds who are like, “These guys are hopefully funny. They’re talking about money stuff.”

How is money stuff funny? It’s so serious that our blood pressure goes up. We think we got to be perfect all the time. We see these people on social media. They all seem perfect. Nobody’s perfect but we think they are. We get all worked up. Our goal is to be more like The Tonight Show. You wind down your day. Maybe you open up your favorite beverage, sit back with Joe and OG, neighbor Doug, and whoever our mentors are that day, and chill out, or on a real estate podcast with Crystal and me. It’s the same vibe.

We picked up Scott Carson and Ruth the Realtor’s car, drove around Texarkana, and then booted his thing out. At the end of our discussion, I want to do more of that in our videos as well. We’re not good enough yet at that medium to be able to put the humor in it. We got good at audio first. Level two is the audio stuff is so second nature. We can spend time designing a show where we screw around. That’s where our video is going. For all our detractors who want to screw around less, sorry but we’re going the other way.

You’re not going to be everything to everyone out there. As an ex-financial advisor and a banker for Chase back in the day, I came into being a banker getting my securities license and working with Smith Barney and some other companies. I saw all these new financial advisors coming and trying to talk investing to clients. The bank talks about P/E ratios and all this other stuff. It’s the exact loss of it.

That’s one of the things I love about stock. You’re not going to find the acronyms here. You’re going to find straight-up salt-of-the-earth information that you can provide with the wacky humor that you and Aaron wrote me about. The thing that people don’t realize is you have to explain it to people. In a comical way, I’m explaining it at a fourth-grade or fifth-grade level but that’s what you need to do. It’s okay to poke fun at yourself and say you’re not perfect. Not everybody is. That’s one of the most important things that you can do to get people to empathize with you.

It’s okay to make fun of yourself and say you are not perfect. That is one of the most important things that you can do to get people to empathize with yourself. Share on X

We get distressed borrowers all the time. They’re all stressed out because they’re losing their faces and homes. I’m like, “That’s okay. I’ve been there. You were hiding from the mailman to show up with another certified letter and call blocking that phone number. I get it. Let me help you. I got the tattoo, t-shirt, and scars that go along with it. Let’s help change that by laughing about it. Let’s make a change and move forward in the right direction.”

You are singing off my song sheet. When I first started writing on the internet, made that transition, and started my blog, I thought, “I’m going to give super serious tips about finance. I’m the only dude writing about finance on the internet.” 1) I found out I wasn’t the only one. 2) I also found out that nobody wants to read boring things like, “Here are the rules around Roth IRA.”

What people want, and this blew me away too, is they want you to talk about the emotions around what you do and how scary it can be. The reason that resonates with us is because so many people are doing this bravado crap where they’re not afraid of anything. “I’m more manly than you are.” When somebody said, “No, this was seriously scary,” I didn’t know what the hell I was getting into and I did it anyway. When you hear that, you’re like, “Maybe I can do that. I can face that fear.”

The second thing is we discovered also that people want to hear about how we F stuff up. It’s the mistakes we made. The stories that resonate the most with our listeners is when somebody has got the balls to come on and go, “It’s hilarious because I lived through it. Here’s what I messed up.” If we can tell stories about stuff we messed up or you come on and tell stories about stuff you messed up, and have these great conversations, then hopefully, somebody’s going to avoid that mistake. They’re going to go, “I remember when Joe and Scott stepped in this. I’m not going to make that mistake.”

That’s the thing about being an entrepreneur. You’re going to make mistakes and do something new. You’re going to learn along the way.

I realized I’m not going to stop making mistakes so I need to make them faster.

I made a few mistakes a few years ago. I had a couple of deals go south and it was horrible dealing with that but we overcame that. We took care of folks as best we could. We kept moving on and said, “That’s not always going to happen. We had some things. Let’s keep marching forward to make some things happen but here’s what you can learn from my mistake along the way so you don’t make that same mistake.” It’s so valuable out there. I have a new episode coming out. I’m getting feedback from my students. I’m like, “I’m trying to trade with a guy and he’s being rude. I have an episode called Note Traders: Stop Being An A*****e to New Investors.

It’s so true. Karma is such a bear, too. This will be an old-guy lesson for people hopefully. The other thing is when I became financially independent, I felt great. What I felt awesome, though, was when I realized that if I ever got in a bind, I had enough people around me who would take care of me. That was a true blessing. It was because of the fact that instead of worrying about my net worth, I was worried about taking care of my community. If I take care of my community, my community will take care of me.

All of a sudden, I had the realization that I frankly can’t imagine how badly I could screw stuff up to have all these people abandon me at this point. I got to have to be bad to have that happen but it makes me want to give more. You and I have talked about this before but we haven’t done it on a microphone. It’s the number of people that get attracted to real estate-type investments because they think that you’re getting something for nothing or that they can sit back and do nothing.

I’ve been in the sit back and do nothing. When I sold my business, that was the first thing I did before I decided to do the teaching thing. It’s super boring. You start wondering, “Is this all there is for life?” The fun in life is serving other people. It’s such a blast, and so fulfilling and fun. Go find somebody to serve. It is a good time. If you’re being a jerk to somebody so you get one little step ahead of them, good for you.

We all start in the same position. I was telling my investor students, “Don’t worry about it. He or she was in your shoes two years ago. I got the photos to prove it right here. I got the emails and receipts. Their shit still stinks. They made funny mistakes too.” The most successful people want people to succeed and avoid making mistakes. I’m like, “Do this. Let me help you. Don’t ask for opinions. Ask for counsel.” An opinion is a crap. Everybody has one. It doesn’t mean it’s necessarily a good opinion. Counsel is usually somebody’s where you’re at or where you want to be, and they can guide you along that path much more efficiently versus listening to any Tom, Dick, and Harry giving you an opinion.

Emily and I decided to end our book by talking about good advice and good advisors. This idea that we will stand alone is prevalent in the FIRE community, the Financial Independence, Retire Early. You don’t need an advisor. They’re ripping you off. You have to do it yourself. I agree. There’s a bunch of crappy advisors out there. Every single smart person I worked with when I was an advisor could have done my job themselves.

The big a-ha for me was that they had me in their corner. They were moving fast at a target and they needed to surround themselves with somebody who would disagree with them, fight with them, and say, “Carson, you’re messing this up. What are you doing?” It’s somebody who had your back. Mary Barra, just to make an example. A lot of people don’t know who Mary Barra is.

My dad was a GM guy. Mary Barra is the CEO of General Motors. She has a bunch of advisors running General Motors. Those advisors I call vice presidents. When they sit in a room, I hope like hell. GM is not the best company in the world but the fact that she’s kept them relevant has been pretty amazing. She has these vice presidents to keep them relevant. I hope they fight with her. She goes into a closed door and they’re like, “Mary, we can’t do that.” I’m sure that’s what they do because GM is still on the map. At one point, that company was gone. They were done.

This is what the average person does when they have advisors What Mary doesn’t do is show up for work twice a year, knows nothing about a car, and goes, “How’s this car thing going?” A lot of people think that when you hire financial advisors or tax advisors, that excuses you from going to the meetings, knowing the stuff, reading the books, and listening to the podcasts. That’s not what a good advisor does. A good advisor takes somebody who’s super knowledgeable already and gives you that edge. It’s so important to surround yourself with these super good people. If they tell you they got there on their own, they’re so lying.

Note Closers Show | Joe Saul-Sehy | Mountains To Climb

Mountains To Climb: A good advisor takes somebody who’s super knowledgeable already and gives you that edge.


It’s all about having coaches and advisors help you along the way and help you gain that competitive edge but you still have to clock in for your knowledge and success. Otherwise, as we see with a lot of professional athletes or other things like that, they show up bankrupt and their money got blown doing something they had no clue about.

Billy Joel. Have people go look up that story. If you don’t know that story, that’s exactly what we’re talking about.

It was funny. I bought a note on a Miami Dolphins cornerback. It was a note on a condo. It was in foreclosure. When we finally get to the right person on it, I’m like, “What happened here? You haven’t paid. You bought this.” It was advised by somebody who had access to my accounts and they took care of it. I’m like, “Sorry to hear that. Is this your signature, the dot and the line?” He’s like, “Yeah, it’s my signature, the dot and the line.”

I’m like. “Here’s what we’re going to do. We’re going to let you get out of this but we saw that happen with a lot of folks.” Think about Steve McNair having issues like that or Vince Young dealing with stuff like that. Also, some of the Texas guys.” I’m like, “You got to check in with what you’ve got going on no matter what you do. If you’re investing your bucks, you need to know where that buck is going. Otherwise, you’re going to end up having somebody else spend it and they’ll fund somebody else’s dreams.”

Surround yourself with good people.

One of the great things I love about your book Stacked is the Homestudy Course 2 is phenomenal out there talking about goals. I love how you start by saying, “You have all these goals you want to achieve. You have to identify the top 2 or 3 that are the most important to you.” When you think about what’s going on in the next months and where you want to go, what are the three top three goals for yourself, Joe?

I’ve never been asked that and I am lucky. I have everything I want. My top three goals, though, are very simple. I want to be more involved in my local community. I need to continue to find great people to work with on our team so that I can let those great people run more and more of our organization. I don’t want out. I’m not going anywhere. I love what I do. As my people have upgraded, it becomes great because then I can do two things. 1) I can focus on the piece of the business that I frankly have a unique talent for. 2) I can get more involved locally, which gives me a lot of excitement.

You heard how excited I get about Texarkana. I take part in this nonprofit called Partnership for the Pathway. We build walking trails around town, and I love that. I go out on my morning run and it goes by three schools along this trail that we help build here in town. There are kids walking to school very safely up and down this trail that we built. It’s fantastic. A lot of people don’t want trails in their backyard. When we first go, we’re like, “We’re going to put a trail behind your house.” They’re like, “Nope. We don’t want that.” We show them the numbers and they’re like, “Bring it.”

In most cases, a trail going through your community will raise your property value, not by a little but by a lot. Potential buyer sees the fact that you have a green way right behind you and they can go work out without having to jump in the car, especially the younger they are. Millennials like it even better. Gen Z likes it even better than Millennials like it. Trails are number one.

Believe it or not, people worry about safety, especially. What’s funny is in most places, crime goes down when you’ve got a trail. Do you know why? It’s because the bad guy or woman does not want to do a bad thing in an area where somebody might walk by. You find crime goes down and property values go up. I want to do more on that. I get excited talking about that. That’s number one.

Number two is I also want to do more public speaking. I like doing that. I was at FinCon where you and I saw each other last in person. I got to be the closing keynote speaker. That was great. I want to do more of that. I want to talk to more audiences. I joined a group. This is good advice for people. Always find your who. Who is the right person? There are a lot of people and you see this. Scott. I was at Podfest and everybody’s like, “Do your TED Talk.” I don’t believe any of these people. They seem the slimiest. I’m like, “No, I’m not doing it.”

I found a woman who’s in a group that I trust a lot called The Strategic Coach. At The Strategic Coach meeting, this entrepreneur told me, “I joined the National Speakers Association. It’s a phenomenal organization.” It’s huge. I realized in one meeting all the things I’m doing wrong, trying to do more speaking gigs. I’m doing so much wrong. In one meeting, they cured all that. Find your who. I want to do more speaking. I don’t want to be like this one woman who taught me at one of the National Speakers Association meetings. She makes 125 speeches a year. I don’t want to do that. I want to do twenty maybe but if I could do that, that would be great.

The third thing that I want is I already do a bunch of traveling. My spouse and I spend every Tuesday together doing whatever the hell we want. We generally go to the movies or out for walks. A time with my spouse is important but I already do that. What I want to do over the next years is extend that. My kids are doing some pretty fun stuff and they’re in a busy time of life but a friend of mine talked about creating a vacation.

We all get together in some city. I buy hotel rooms for everybody. Go do whatever you’re going to do during the day and we have dinner together. My daughter, her fiancé, my son, Cheryl, and I go to a place. We were in Telluride, which is a super expensive town. We could get a hotel for a couple of days for not over-the-top money and stay in this cool, quirky place.

You can go up over the mountain and go to another town. You can go wherever you want without a car. If we’re close enough, we can get together and do our stuff. If we’re far enough apart, we won’t spend every minute together and maybe have the big family fight that nobody wants. I want to start doing this. I go to enough conferences. I want to do fewer conferences and do a family retreat every year.

I used to travel 36 weeks out of the year on the road. It kills me. We went to virtual workshops and virtual summits years ago. Everybody was all scrambling around COVID. I was like, “That’s going to be business as normal. We’re working from home for the most part.” That’s one of the first things that we do every year. Steph and I were talking about this. “Where do we want to go? What do we want to do differently? Let’s figure out how we plan that and work that into the schedule to make things happen.”

That’s important because when I talk early in our book, Stacked, about goals, right away, everything drives off that. If you never block off that time and put those fence posts down and say, “Nope, I’m doing this this year,” you never get to it. What I used to do was I’m like, “I’ll see if I can get time off work.” I’ve got a nephew who I keep telling he’s doing it wrong. He’s like, “I can’t get time off work.” I’m like, “Ten years are going to go by. You’re going to look back and go, ‘I don’t remember any of that.”

I remember those days and don’t get me wrong. When you’re young, you have to hustle to get ahead. People go, “You need to do meaningful work.” You don’t get meaningful work when you’re the average 24-year-old. You got to swim a moat. There is value there. I do wish I had stopped a little bit and said, “I got to go have some fun.”

Not just go hang out at college universities with twenty-year-olds. They’re trying to learn something like you did back in the day. “Who’s the creepy guy? It looks like my uncle is in class with me.”

That’s a different story. I remember my dad and my dad’s cousin, older guys in their 40s. They stopped when I was at Michigan State to pick me up to go on this fishing trip. My dad’s cousin’s eyes are going out of his head with these coeds, “Look at that.” I’m like, “What a pervert. You are a purchase. Calm down.”

A client of ours is an older guy. He goes, “There might be snow on the mountain but there’s still fire in the furnace.”

I did have a client who was in his early 80s. His name was Art. I remember Art told me when I was a financial advisor, “Do you know what’s great about being 81?” I’m like, “Probably a lot of stuff, Art.” He goes, “What’s great is that 81-year-olds look great and 25-year-olds look great. The field keeps getting wider.” I’m like, “I didn’t need to hear that, Art.”

Maybe he never dates somebody over 25.

No. This guy was happy with 81. He was probably happy with 85 or 87, a cougar.

That’s not a cougar. That’s something else. That’s the cougar squared. We can spend all the time on here talking about it. I know you have a busy day, Joe. Thank you so much for coming on the show. Readers, make sure you check out the Stacking Benjamin Podcast. He’s also a co-host with our friend Crystal Hammond in Stacking Deeds. Go out anywhere to get your financial books and pick up a copy of the book Stacked as well. Joe, thanks for coming on the show.

Thank you, Scott. It’s fun as always.

Joe talked about what’s the mountain you want to climb. Quit putting it off, find a way to go do it, plant your flag on your three most important goals, and take action to make some things happen. Go out and do that. I guarantee we’ll see you at the top.


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About Joe Saul-Sehy

Note Closers Show | Joe Saul-Sehy | Mountains To ClimbJoe is the creator and co-host of the Stacking Benjamins podcast and co-author of STACKED: Your Super-Serious Guide To Modern Money Management. Current board member at large of The Plutus Foundation. Former board president and Board Member of Partnership For The Pathway. While Joe’s “money expert story” includes being a former financial advisor (16 years) and representing American Express and Ameriprise in the media, his real story is how he was a money disaster in his early life, pulled his financial house into order, and left his business at age 40 to pursue an entirely different path. Joe was the “Money Man” at Detroit television WXYZ-TV, appearing twice weekly. His advice has appeared in Bride, Best Life, and Child magazines, the Los Angeles Times, Chicago Sun-Times, Detroit News and Baltimore Sun newspapers. He’s also appeared online in more than 200 different places, including CNBC.com and WSJ.com. The Stacking Benjamins Show was called the “Best Personal Finance Podcast” by Kiplinger. Lifehacker listed the show as one of the top 10 of 2021. Joe and the SB team have won five Plutus Awards and the Academy of Podcasters “Best Business Podcast” award (beating well-known shows like The Tim Ferriss Show, How I Built This, and Gimlet’s StartUp). The Stacking Benjamins Show is created in Joe’s mom’s basement in Texarkana, Texas, where Joe lives with his spouse Cheryl and their cat Cooper.


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