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Re-Introducing Four Walls of Fire: A Normal Guy’s Journey to Building Wealth

If this is your first time here, welcome! You’ve stumbled upon Four Walls of Fire, the stationary of choice for jotting down all the thoughts, ideas, dreams, goals, complaints, and tips that are rolling around in the brain of one financially-focused United States Marine who’s married to another.

I’m writing this after having written a little over a dozen articles already. Realizing that I haven’t truly introduced myself to you besides the short About the Author page, I decided to say “hello” and pull back the curtain a little bit so you can see where I stand and the viewpoint the rest of my articles are coming from.

My wife and I are a little different than most people. Our desires don’t line up with The Jones’ or anyone else who’s trying to keep up with them. Some would say we’re a little crazy. Who saves 50% of their income anyways?

We’re not chasing a lavish lifestyle with new cars, a home that we can’t afford, or fancy clothes and jewelry. Sure, we have things that we want in life that we don’t necessarily need, but what we really want is freedom.

Most of our generation has blinders on all the time. Looking straight ahead, they only know one routine. College. Work. New car. New house. More work, more money and more stuff.

What the heck are people thinking?

Our world today idolizes those who appear rich, not those who are truly wealthy. One more time. Most people look at rock stars and believe that living a similar lifestyle should be their top priority.

Here’s what these people are missing. The amount of money that you earn is not what’s important, the only thing that matters is how much you save. This is why there are so many stories about famous people going broke.

Tweet: Our world today idolizes those who appear rich, not those who are truly wealthy. One more time. Most people look at rock stars and believe that living a similar lifestyle should be their top priority. @FourWallsofFIRE

The life we should all be after is the one without car payments. With a house that’s paid off. A life where you have investments that provide enough income to pay for all of your expenses so that you can walk away from your job whenever you want. Freedom.

That’s why Four Walls of Fire exists.

I’m just a normal guy trying to live a life that’s so far from normal that most people don’t understand it. I want to spend every moment possible with my wife and son, and I have a plan to do just that.

For starters, I’ll be forever increasing my income. I’m a United States Marine, but my income potential doesn’t stop with the military. I’m always working on side hustles that bring in more income and increase how much money I’m able to save.

I have an eBay store and this web site, my wife owns a personal training business, and we are Airbnb hosts. Making money has never been so easy, and we are fully aware of that. We’re constantly looking for new income streams that can aid us in reaching Financial Independence.

Additionally, we are consistently working to decrease our expenses without lowering our quality of life.

If you’re just getting started, look no further.

Pay off your consumer debt. Drive an inexpensive vehicle. Decrease your grocery bill. Cut the cord. Dial back your internet speeds. Learn to travel the world for free on credit card points. Slash your mortgage payment by renting a room.

Boom. If you can follow half of those steps you can cut your expenses by 25% or more. Follow them all and you’ll be on your way to early retirement in 10-15 years.

What do you do once you’re saving more?

Invest in something you understand. If you’re not familiar with an investment type, learn about it or don’t use it.

You can invest in index funds, mutual funds, individual stocks, or real estate. There are plenty of options for investing your money as you become familiar with various strategies.

When do I have enough savings to retire?

There are studies that say once you have 25x your annual expenses saved, you can live off your investment returns forever. There are also several tools available to determine what your “Financial Independence number” is.

While the math behind it all may seem confusing, keep in mind what’s really important. Instill positive money habits and work to improve them.

Why You Should Follow Along

Maybe you don’t need financial advice. Maybe you’ve got it down pat. Or, you might be sinking and reaching out for a floating ring, hoping to get pulled back in and not lose your home, your car, and your possessions. You probably fall somewhere in the middle.

If you want to improve your financial standing, no matter where you fall on the spectrum, Four Walls of Fire can boost you to the next level of success.

2 Comments

  • Reply
    financialserenityblog
    August 17, 2019 at 7:54 pm

    I remember you and your wife in a few of the FI/FIRE groups when you first joined the community. Nice to see you have a blog now. Where are you stationed at these days? It’s good to see another enlisted financial blogger especally a Marine.

    • Reply
      Matthew
      August 21, 2019 at 6:58 pm

      Sorry for the delay! We’re still at Fort Meade!

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