My name is Don Golden, and I am a bankruptcy lawyer. Two years ago, I read a book called Lead for God’s Sake and it really moved me. I truly felt like I was being called to give something back to my community. In the past I had lead courses on personal finance at my church such as the Good Sense Budget Course and Dave Ramsey’s Financial Peace University. But, due to time constraints caused by a growing business and a growing family, I had to stop leading them. I scheduled a meeting with my Pastor to talk about leading a budget or a personal finance course at church. However, although my pastor was very thankful for the offer, it turned out someone had replaced me and was already leading Financial Peace University. Instead, he asked me to fill an opening on the Finance Committee. I agreed to accept the position, but I still felt like I was being called to serve in another way. Then it hit me! I had helped thousands of individuals and families get out of debt by filing bankruptcy over the years. Maybe I could do something more for them. Maybe I could use my knowledge of personal finance to help my clients live a better financial life after bankruptcy. I quickly decided that I wanted to help consumers go from broke and bankrupt to financial freedom.
So, the first thing I did was I created a course that teaches consumers how to rebuild their credit after bankruptcy. The course is called Rebuild Your Credit, Rebuild Your Life. If a consumer follows the advice and instructions I provide in the course, they should be able to rebuild their credit to 700 or above in 12-24 months. If you are a client and have received your discharge, you should have received an email with login and password instructions as this is something I provide to all my clients absolutely free as a thank you for using my firm’s services. If you are not a client and are interested in learning more about the course, click here: https://www.freshstartforlife.com/rebuild-your-credit.
However, although rebuilding your credit is an important and beneficial step, it doesn’t really help you reach financial freedom. So, I was stuck. Even though I truly felt like I was being called to help people in this way, I wasn’t sure how to do it. Time went by and you know what happened next, COVID hit. Suddenly, I had more time to think and read. During this time, I read a book that applied Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs to business. Do you remember Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs? I had certainly heard of it but I had to look it up. It’s a psychological theory that categorizes human needs into 5 different areas, basic needs, safety needs, belongingness and love needs, esteem needs, and self-actualization.
Seeing this modified and applied to the needs of a business made me realize that it could also be applied to personal finance. So, I came up with my own 5 categories of needs/levels of personal finance and they are:
- Basic Needs (food, clothing shelter, transportation, etc.),
- Safety Needs (emergency fund, health insurance, life insurance, disability insurance),
- Wealth Building (funding a retirement account, investing outside of a retirement account, passive income opportunities, etc.),
- Financial Freedom (you no longer have to work for a living) and finally,
- Legacy and Self Actualization (you have more money than you can spend in your lifetime and you are using your financial resources to live out your life’s true purpose.
In addition to the personal finance hierarchy of needs, I have also developed The Golden Rules of Financial Freedom. These are rules that apply at the different stages/levels of financial needs and are designed to help you achieve Financial Freedom! I will be unpacking these concepts for you in a series of podcast episodes. My hope is that you will get value from this series and that it may help you not only gain financial freedom but maybe even legacy. But even if legacy seems out of the question, you should definitely set a goal to reach financial freedom because let’s face it, there is going to come a time when you can no longer work, and you will have to live off Social Security and whatever else you were able to save during your working years. The question is what sort of lifestyle will you be able to live when you are no longer able to work? Will you be able to live the lifestyle that you want and/or dreamed of or will you be just scraping by? Which leads me to the first Golden Rule of Financial Freedom, YOU MUST START NOW! No matter how hard things have been for you in the past, make the decision right here, right now that you are going to take control of your situation and make a change. Commit to listening to the show every week and to taking the steps necessary to reach financial freedom! If you are still mired in debt and would like to learn about ways that we can help you, click here (I think we should create a landing page to convert to an appointment)
I’m excited to share these ideas and principles with you in the coming weeks, months and years. As I said earlier, hopefully you will get a lot out of this material and it will help you go from Broke and Bankrupt to Financial Freedom!