Okay, saying “mogul” sounds pompous and ridiculous at this point, especially when looking at my current bank account, but I’m shooting for the stars here. No halfway measures. I’m all in!
This blog is a place for me to chronicle my journey from massive debt to a new horizon. I discuss my many failures and struggles on the way to becoming debt free, and then to cash flow positive. I need to break free from debt and then find a way to fund my life and retirement.
I’m calling this blog MDTM, short for Massive Debt to Mogul. No in betweens. No maybes. Going all out for success. The only way to go is up.
The Massive Debt
I hit bottom in my financial life. At least I hope it’s the bottom. My debt had sky rocketed to about $95,000 in total, between credit cards, car loans, and medical expenses (doesn’t include current mortgage). I didn’t see the extent of the debt until I finally took my blinders off, in 2015. It was a shocking number. I had to check myself for concussion symptoms.
The debt accumulated over the years. It didn’t happen overnight. We moved around frequently, buying and selling homes during the housing boom and bust of the 2000s. That added large chunks of debt and hurt. We spent freely with credit cards, not frivolous and always assuming we were being frugal, but never running a budget to verify. I worked as an underpaid manager for years, losing out on potential promotions and raises because we couldn’t afford another move. We were always surprised by large expenses, the curse of not having a budget and planning for them. We added kids to our house…four of them. And we added medical expenses over the years, during a time when medical insurance continues to rise.
That all added up to a lot of red on the financial spreadsheets. The bottom line is that we never faced our financial situation…until now. Now we are aggressively dealing with our problem and I am cataloging our journey here.
Join me for the journey and let’s see where it takes us. I hope to network and meet all kinds of great people along the way. So make sure you reach out to me to connect, on Twitter, e-mail, carrier pigeon, Hogwarts owl…whatever.
Thoughts on Debt
I’m not a fan of debt. Well, who is? Debt sucks! And big debt sucks more!
I want to aggressively get rid of my debt. It’s crippling my finances, preventing me from doing the things I want to do, like make repairs on my house, take family vacations, invest in real estate, and save for retirement.
But I’m not one of these guys who will tell you that you need to eliminate all debt and follow a specific formula. I also don’t believe in going completely frugal to reduce debt…that focuses only on one side of the income/expense ledger.
I believe in investing, even while in massive debt. I believe in risk taking, using debt when needed, and I believe in cash flow.
I’m no guru. I’m always learning as I go. There is no blueprint for me to follow. I simply identified the debt I have and went about a plan to eliminate it. I will have failures along the way, but I’ll learn from them. I hope to learn from you as well.
My Background Story
I included a few pictures of me, one is a cartoon, a way to have some fun. Here are some quick bullet points and a tweet to give you more background on me…
Mini Golf Attendant
Navy – Jack of all trades, master of none
— Brian (@PBJBusiness) August 8, 2016
• Married my high school sweetheart (everyone now…”awwwww”).
• We have four kids, all younger than high school age, and all girls. Yes, ALL girls! Even the dog is a girl. I’m doomed!
• College graduate from the United States Naval Academy.
• Veteran of the U.S. Navy. Very proud to have served my country.
• Currently work in logistics. My professional career in the civilian world has taken me through large and small operations, involved warehouses, retail operations, and contract work.
• Investor interested in dividend paying stocks and options primarily. New P2P investor.
• Spreadsheet maniac who will put everything into a spreadsheet and analyze it to death. I think they call it obsession.
• Big sports fan, into everything from college football to baseball and pro cycling.
• I’m a non-conformist, a contrarian on most subjects, which means I go against the grain. If culture dictates one thing, I generally do the other.
• My general approach to things is “ready, fire…aim.” I dive into things before I read the instructions, or I just throw out the instructions. Great for taking action, not so great for the finer details.
• I am a constant learner, always seeking more knowledge on a subject. I typically dive into a topic with both feet and consume myself, becoming borderline obsessive…or fully obsessive.
• I am a continuous improver, comfortable with change. I seek to improve everything I do, from warehouse work to cleaning up my finances.
• Hobbies include road cycling, home brewing (making beer at home), and reading everything from military history and business books to Harry Potter and Divergent books.
Heading Towards Mogul
Here on the blog, I share all of the things that work for me, including product and service reviews, great resources for help, and all of the elbow grease I throw into my efforts. I also share all of the things that don’t work for me, the failures.
Check my Resources Page for links to companies I like and use, among other things.
Once I have this debt situation under control, I want to become a real estate mogul. Not the arrogant, in your face, Donald Trump type of mogul. More like the conservative, quiet, and responsible type of mogul…the guy you never hear about. I’m on a personal finance journey and determined to hit it big.
I plan to grow my cash flow from real estate to the point where it can replace my regular income. I don’t know that I will stop working my regular job, but the goal is to replace that income and make it a serious decision.
Join me on this journey and learn from my successes and failures…and failures…and failures. I plan to fail a lot. That’s the only way I know to succeed…fail, learn, and try again.