Charting Financial Independence: A Millennial’s Guide

I'm excited to share a recent podcast appearance! Join me as I unravel the secrets of financial mastery with valuable insights from my journey as a Financial Planner. From emergency funds to navigating investments, we cover it all.


Typically, my outreach efforts have been centered around providing crucial financial education to individuals who are on the brink of retirement, guiding them through the intricacies of financial planning for their golden years.

However, I was invited to be a guest on Learning with Lowell in his Millennial Monday spot. For this special podcast episode, I embraced the opportunity to shift gears and share my expertise with a younger audience just embarking on their financial journey.

It’s an invigorating departure from my usual focus, allowing me to offer insights tailored to the unique challenges and opportunities that younger individuals face as they navigate the early stages of financial independence. I’m eager to contribute valuable knowledge that empowers them to make informed decisions, set a strong foundation, and build a roadmap towards financial success.


In this insightful podcast episode from Learning with Lowell, I cover fundamental money management principles, including the importance of emergency funds and strategies for handling debt.

The discussion extends to topics such as budgeting, investing in stocks, and planning for homeownership. Practical advice is shared on finding trustworthy financial planners and recognizing and reporting unethical practices in the industry.

The episode takes a personal turn as Lowell asks about how I became a Certified Financial Planner and I was able to share about my journey into financial planning after a family tragedy.

Additionally, valuable tips are provided on keeping backup records and becoming a financial planner, along with book recommendations for enhancing financial literacy.

Here’s a brief summary of the podcast discussion based on the following timestamps:

  • 00:00 Introduction:
    • A warm welcome and introduction to the podcast episode.
  • 00:45 Financial Basics:
    • Discussion on fundamental financial principles and the importance of establishing a solid foundation.
  • 03:15 Emergency Funds:
    • Exploring the concept of emergency funds and their significance in financial planning.
  • 05:08 Where to Store Emergency Funds:
    • Insights into the best practices for storing emergency funds for optimal accessibility and growth.
  • 09:10 Handling Debt:
    • Tips and strategies for effectively managing and reducing debt.
  • 12:30 Budgeting:
    • The role of budgeting in financial planning and ways to create and stick to a budget.
  • 15:55 Rich Dad / Poor Dad and Using Debt:
    • Drawing on the teachings of “Rich Dad, Poor Dad” and discussing the strategic use of debt.
  • 20:10 Securing Mentors:
    • The importance of mentorship in the financial planning journey.
  • 22:50 What to Do After Having an Emergency Fund:
    • Exploring next steps in financial planning after establishing an emergency fund.
  • 25:45 Stocks:
    • Overview of investing in stocks and considerations for building a diversified portfolio.
  • 28:00 Planning for Home:
    • Financial considerations and planning steps for home ownership.
  • 31:00 Credit Card Debt:
    • Addressing credit card debt and strategies for responsible credit card use.
  • 34:50 Investing Any Amount of Money:
    • Insights on getting started with investing, regardless of the initial investment amount.
  • 38:15 Finding Good Financial Planners:
    • Tips for identifying and selecting reputable financial planners.
  • 41:20 Reporting Bad Actors:
    • Discussing the importance of reporting unethical financial practices.
  • 44:45 Life Insurance:
    • Exploring the role of life insurance in financial planning.
  • 50:30 Trusts:
    • An overview of trusts and their significance in estate planning.
  • 53:25 Time to Make a Financial Plan:
    • Determining the right time to create a comprehensive financial plan.
  • 57:45 Personal Story/Death in Family and Finding Path into Financial Planning:
    • Sharing a personal story related to a death in the family and the journey into financial planning.
  • 01:05:50 Keeping Backup Records:
    • The importance of maintaining backup records for financial documents.
  • 01:08:55 Becoming a Financial Planner:
    • Insights into the path of becoming a financial planner.
  • 01:11:10 Books for Financial Literacy:
    • Recommendations for books that contribute to financial literacy.

As I reflect on this enriching podcast experience, I want to express my sincere gratitude to Lowell Thompson and his podcast Learning with Lowell for the opportunity to share insights into financial mastery.

To my treasured clients and those of you approaching retirement, I encourage you to not only listen but also to share this episode with the younger individuals in your life. The knowledge shared here is a beacon for those just starting their financial journey.

Together, let’s bridge generations and empower each other towards financial success. Thank you for being a part of this meaningful conversation. Here’s to a future of financial wisdom and prosperity!

Brian Bickett, CFP at Iron Mountain Financial Planning, LLC

Brian Bickett, CFP®

Brian Bickett is a fee-based CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ professional located in Rapid City, SD and serving clients across the country. His financial advisor approach provides him deep understanding of your retirement goals and allows him to connect your money to your life in a way that feels right to you.

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