I’ve learned so much by starting this blog and have come a long way in my journey of financial freedom. In this post, I want to look back to where I’ve been and where I’m going – what an exciting journey.
The concept behind the blog
I wanted a place where I can document my journey towards financial security. In the process, I learned a lot more than I thought I would. My definition of financial independence has evolved and matured quite a bit.
My unique message is that doctors can achieve financial independence far sooner than thought possible by my peers. In that process, they can lose their reliance on income from a job and practice medicine exactly the way they always wanted to.
I don’t have the rosiest outlook on our medical industry. The art of medicine and the healing is among the best things I’ve ever done in life, bar none. But the actual day-to-day practice of medicine and all the shit that comes with being a doctor is a complete turnoff.
Physicians have an amazing potential for a high income and have the confidence it takes to realize financial independence uniquely to their own lifestyles.
There seems to be a trick to building a financially free life and living the kind of lifestyle that is the least dependent on socioeconomic disruptions. I have identified it to be the following in somewhat of this order:
- drastically cut back expenses
- pay off debt
- avoid further debt
- save and invest intentionally and conservatively
- become financially free
- loosen your purse strings
- capitalize on market risk by mastering a niche investment
The purpose of the blog
Writing helps me think and I enjoy researching the topic of personal finance. Money has replaced the ability for us to barter and is now necessary in order to secure a safe and free lifestyle – what a shame.
I don’t think a physician should be a slave to their job. Learning to be less reliant on the income of medicine allows us to practice medicine anyway we wish.
In this process, we learn about other topics of interest we might develop. Capitalizing on this can give us the opportunity to practice medicine the way we wish it could be practiced.
Early in a physician’s career, having a high income is important. But it won’t go far if we don’t learn how to optimize the spending, saving, and investing.
Later, we inevitably will want more free time or at least more autonomy over our time. Maybe we want more OR time or want to do fewer night shifts. Maybe we don’t want to see the higher acuity or perhaps we want to teach more.
In my case, volunteering or providing healthcare at lower rates is more in line with my preferences. I don’t mind making a little bit of money, but I know it’s necessary for me to give back a lot as well.
Branding of Dr. Mo
It was important to me that I brand myself. Having a clear message and knowing what we want will make us far more marketable.
The term “marketable” might sound like I’m trying to sell myself but it has many other advantages. By defining what I want/don’t want, I will connect with those who have similar interests and the right opportunities will come my way.
That’s exactly what has happened every since I started this blog. Every single interest of mine has been echoed by others who have provided me with leads, connections, and recommendations. I am very grateful to every one of these individuals.
As I work more on branding myself, I am learning a lot more about myself. I might go down one path and realize that it’s not for me at all. At the same time, I read a book which leads me to another book which helps me fine-tune my image even more.
Dr. Mo enjoys writing. Loves the topic of personal finance. Feels that medicine can be practiced far better than it is right now. He has a vision for an ideal medical practice which is a work-in-progress. He wants to build a location-independent lifestyle. He believes in sustainable living and minimizing the stress of day to day life.
A sustainable medical profession
In the first decade of practicing medicine, it’s hard to find a doc who would ever think that perhaps one day they may not want to practice medicine. There is a honeymoon phase in which they envision themselves working well into their 80’s.
They have shut out the many years of brutal stress and lack of personal time they had to endure in order to become physicians.
Medicine is a field of an insane amount of waste. Yes, I mean physical waste in terms of the environment. But also waste of resources in order to prevent one single mishap. It has become a clown show.
We earn more than ever before and doctors are still working absurd hours, under a massive amount of stress. Our minds are pulled in even more directions now that we are interrupted by staff, colleagues, patients, and technology.
As patients are empowered less and less, the doctor takes on the responsibility which the patient should be assuming. The ever-increasing reliance on healthcare that’s being built isn’t profiting doctors more -though it makes for a very lucrative medical industry.
We prescribe medications which are tested on millions of animals for which they had to suffer horrible lives and die painful deaths. These medications often do diddly for the eventual outcome of someone’s life. We have essentially sold the art of medicine to statisticians of big pharma and big medical device companies.
Alternatively, I can practice medicine <2 hours a day, make more money per hour than I did when I was employed full-time. I can pay for my overhead, my own benefits, and practice the way I want to. This, to me, is a far more sustainable way of practicing medicine.
Teaching and earning
Each one of us has certain skills that they will have spent quite a lot of time acquiring. I am not talking about clinical skills, though those certainly can be incredibly valuable.
Look at the people who put on the very successful EM:RAP series. It’s their passion, it’s what they have spent years developing. And now it’s providing incredibly valuable resources to other doctors and making the developers a healthy income.
Look at the godfather who spent years educating himself on the topic of personal finance before successfully breaking down common personal finance topics for doctors. His website is profitable and his brand is reliable.
There are those such a Dr. Mega who lead healthtech innovation and bring the world incredible advances in medicine and technology. She is doing what she loves and producing a much healthier income.
The point here is that you already have some clout by being a medical professional. If you choose to go down the shady route then you will be recognized fairly quickly and avoided. Instead, by mastering your niche interest, you can bring that information to your clinician colleagues who will learn from you and gladly pay you for your expertise in that field.
I would – and have -paid good money to other doctors who can break down a concept for me which would take me years to learn on my own. Doctors speak doc, we get each other and trust each other more than what’s obvious.
It’s okay to stand out
I hope that many of you will go on to start your own blog, to brand yourself exactly the way you want to see yourself. Record your podcasts and get in front of a video recorder to teach your niche topic.
It will take a few years to exact your message. Just by being out there you will sharpen your viewpoint and the inconsistencies in your ideas will surface for you to remedy.
Don’t be ashamed of your beliefs, don’t be embarrassed if other don’t follow you. Try to be inclusive without conforming.
It’s hard to stand out and you will be called out on it. Many will disagree with you but among the 1,000,000 physicians practicing in the US, and the many more all over the world, some will appreciate that they have those ideas in common with you.
I am really excited when I get to engage with another physician on the topic of debt, investments and the ideal medical practice. I am learning far more than I can teach right now – but give me another decade and I think I will become a great resource for my fellow doctors.