FREE Financial Classes and Seminars in the Cedar Falls/Waterloo Area
30 in 30 has ben cancelled due to the virus and the venues that are closed down because of it. That does not mean personal finance has to stop. You can go here to watch an entire series of personal finance videos at no cost. Use this opportunity to increase your education on the topic and then act when appropriate. You can also go to the online Financial Happine$$ Academy above to learn more in-depth information on money management, investing, and retirement. Financial Freedom awaits!!!!!
Investing Seminar Class #1 / This first investment class identifies the path that will lead you toward becoming the wise and efficient investor. / Instructor: Mike Finley / Waterloo Library / 5:30 - 7:00 / Wednesday, April 1st
Health Savings Accounts and Other Workplace Benefits / Understanding these benefits can help you make the best use of them / Instructor: Casey Redmond / UNI Library, ScholarSpace Room / 4:30 - 5:30 / Thursday, April 2nd
How to Retire Early / Do you want to retire before you get "old"? This class will provide you the information you need to "graduate" to the next, best version of your life. / Instructor: Casey Redmond / UNI Library, ScholarSpace Room / 5:30 - 6:30 / Friday, April 3rd
The Smart Way to Buy a Home / Buying a home will be one of the biggest decisions of your life. Make it with as much knowledge as possible! / Instructor: Mike Finley / UNI Library, ScholarSpace Room / 1:00 - 2:30 / Saturday, April 4th
Organized for Life-Death / The best time to prepare your loves for when you are gone is when you are HERE. Learn what to do! / Instructor: Patty Rausa / UNI Library, ScholarSpace Room / 1:00 - 2:30 / Sunday, April 5th
How to Build Credit and Save YOU Thousands of Dollars! / Increasing your credit score can open doors that are shut to those with poor credit. / Instructor: Megan Redmond / UNI Library, ScholarSpace Room / 4:30 - 5:30 / Monday, April 6th
Retirement Seminar Class #1 / The path to a successful and happy retirement awaits those who are ready to take control of their money AND their life! / Instructor: Mike Finley / Cedar Falls Community Center / 5:30 - 7:00 / Tuesday, April 7th
Investing Seminar Class #2 / The successful investor understands the history of markets, investments and the many risks that are involved far beyond the volatile of markets. / Instructor: Mike Finley / Waterloo Library / 5:30 - 7:00 / Wednesday, April 8th
How to Protect YOU from Identity Theft / There are individuals trying to steal your identity. It is YOUR job to stop them! / Instructor: Megan Redmond / Cedar Falls Library / 11:30 - 12:30 / Thursday, April 9th
Budgeting for a Better Life / The budget helps you live the life you want to live instead of what others want for you. Take control of YOUR life! / Instructor: Megan Redmond / Cedar Falls Library / 11:30 - 12:30 / Friday, April 10th
Understanding IPERS and your 403(b)/457 / Those retirement plans have rules and costs and plenty of information that is worth learning about by YOU. / Instructor: Casey Redmond / UNI Library ScholarSpace Room / 2:00 - 3:30 / Saturday, April 11th
Understanding your 401(k) / Those retirement plans have rules and costs and plenty of information that is worth learning about by YOU. / Instructor: Chase Murphy and Travis Martinek / UNI Library ScholarSpace Room / 3:45 - 4:45 / Saturday, April 11th
How to Invest for a Child's Future Education / Saving and investing wisely can reduce the cost of college and possibly eliminate any debt coming out of college. That is a BIG deal! / Instructor: Mike Finley / UNI Library ScholarSpace Room / 3:00 - 4:30 / Sunday, April 12th
Insurance 101 / There are insurance polices worth owning and their are MANY that you don't need. Educate yourself on what you should and should not buy. / Instructor: Mike Finley / Cedar Falls Library / 11:30 - 12:30 / Monday, April 13th
Retirement Seminar Class #2 / Putting together a cost effective and tax efficient investment portfolio is a must as you head into a world with little to no earned income. / Instructor: Mike Finley / Cedar Falls Community Center / 5:30 - 7:00 / Tuesday, April 14th
Investment Seminar Class #3 / The world of asset allocation is introduced so the individual can properly allocate an investment portfolio to maximize growth while reducing volatility. / Instructor: Mike Finley / Waterloo Library / 5:30 - 7:00 / Wednesday, April 15th
How to Build a High Credit Score / The high credit score reduces the amount of interest one pays on loans over a lifetime. The time to build that score is NOW. / Instructor: Mike Finley / Hawkeye Community College, Tama Hall Room 128 / 12:00 - 1:00 / Thursday, April 16th
The Path to Financial Freedom / Financial Freedom awaits those who are ready and willing to make the needed sacrifices for a better tomorrow. Make that YOU. / Instructor: Mike Finley / Upper Iowa University / 1:00 - 2:30 / Saturday, April 18th
Understanding Taxes and How to Reduce Them / The tax man cometh. It is YOUR job to find ways to reduce that burden so more money can go where you want it to go. Make that YOU. / Instructor: Mike Finley / Upper Iowa University / 1:00 - 2:30 / Sunday, April 19th
Estate Planning / There is no better time to make a plan for those who are left behind. They will be glad you did. / Instructor: Casey Redmond / UNI Library ScholarSpace Room / 5:30 - 6:30 / Monday, April 20th
Retirement Seminar Class #3 / There are multiple strategies when withdrawing funds from the investment portfolio in retirement. The key is finding the right one for YOU. / Instructor: Mike Finley / Cedar Falls Community Center/ 5:30 - 7:00 / Tuesday, April 21st
Investing Seminar Class #4 / We go deeper into asset allocation and how to put together a portfolio that serves your needs over the needs of the financial services industry. / Instructor: Mike Finley / Waterloo Library / 5:30 - 7:00 / Wednesday, April 22nd
How to Invest Wisely in a Retirement Plan at Work / That retirement plan is for YOUR future. Understanding your options and making wise decisions can pay off BIG TIME. / Instructor: Mike Finley / UNI Library Room 287 / 11:00 - 12:00 / Thursday, April 23rd
How to Invest Wisely in a Roth IRA Outside of Work / There Roth IRA can be your ticket to a home down payment, emergency savings, early retirement, and much, much more. Get one! / Instructor: Mike Finley / UNI Library Room 287 / 11:30 - 12:30 / Friday, April 24th
The Smart Way to Buy a Vehicle / There are many ways that you can reduce the cost of buying a vehicle not just upfront, but over the lifetime of that car and YOU. / Instructor: Mike Finley / Upper Iowa University / 1:00 - 2:30 / Saturday, April 25th
Maneuvering the Vanguard Website / This class provides provide you an opportunity to follow along with this tutorial on Vanguard's website and its many features. Computers provided. / Instructor: Mike Finley / Upper Iowa University / 1:00 - 2:30 / Sunday, April 26th
How to Reduce Your Taxes in Retirement / Taxes can be a drag on your financial situation in retirement. Learn how to reduce them so you have more money for other adventures. / Instructor: Casey Redmond / UNI Library, ScholarSpace Room / 6:30 - 7:30 / Monday, April 27th
Retirement Seminar Class #4 / Learn how to make the most of your fixed income (pensions, Social Security, immediate annuity, part time work, etc.) in retirement. / Instructor: Mike Finley / Cedar Falls Community Center / 5:30 - 7:00 / Tuesday, April 28th
Investing Seminar Class #5 / We wrap up the discussion on asset allocation as we discuss the investment options that will serve the individual best in the "real world." / Instructor: Mike Finley / Waterloo Library / 5:30 - 7:00 / Wednesday, April 29th
The Journey Going Forward / How does a person take their new financial education and create a better life for themselves and their loved ones? You learn from others who have done it! / Instructor: Mike Finley / UNI Library, Room 287 / 5:30 - 6:30 / Thursday, April 30th
Retirement Seminar Class #5 / How to make the most of Social Security and the many benefits as you prepare for a future without earned income. / Instructor: Mike Finley / Cedar Falls Community Center / 5:30 - 7:00 / Tuesday, May 5th
Investing Seminar Class #6 / How to invest wisely without letting emotions and/or crooks in the backdoor causing your portfolio AND your life great harm. / Instructor: Mike Finley / Waterloo Library / 5:30 - 7:00 / Wednesday, May 6th
Retirement Seminar Class #6 / How to make the most of your Medicare benefits as you reach age 65 and beyond. Also, we will discuss healthcare prior to age 65. / Instructor: Mike Finley / Cedar Falls Community Center / 5:30 - 7:00 / Tuesday, May 12th
Investing Seminar Class #7 / How to select the right financial advisor who has the most knowledge AND works solely for you and your needs as a true fiduciary." / Instructor: Mike Finley / Waterloo Library / 5:30 - 7:00 / Wednesday, May 13th
Retirement Seminar Class #7 / Learn how to make the most of your fixed income (pensions, Social Security, immediate annuity, part time work, etc.) in retirement. / Instructor: Mike Finley / Cedar Falls Community Center / 5:30 - 7:00 / Tuesday, May 19th
Investing Seminar Class #8 / We pull it all together with everything we have covered over the previous classes to make sure your portfolio last longer than you do. / Instructor: Mike Finley / Waterloo Library / 5:30 - 7:00 / Wednesday, May 20th
Retirement Seminar Class #8 / We review the financial AND the psychological piece as we discuss what the future may hold as you create the best version of YOU. / Instructor: Mike Finley / Cedar Falls Community Center / 5:30 - 7:00 / Tuesday, May 26th
Change equals growth and growth is what we need to expand beyond where we are right now. This requires action and for some people, it's doable and for others, well, they find themselves "paralyzed" and unable to change. What causes this "paralysis?" It is fear most of the time and that emotion can cost you dearly over a lifetime. Fear of failure. Fear of looking "stupid." Fear of being embarrassed. It can even be fear of falling on your face while your detractors laugh at you. Yet, many people overcome their fears and take the needed action that is required for the growth of self. They stand up to those fears and push them aside. How can you be one of those people?
Take one small step forward today. Not tomorrow. Not one day. TODAY you change. TODAY you do something, no matter how small, that moves you closer to the person you want to be. Don't worry about the future, focus on the present moment. Push your fears aside and tell that person in the mirror that change is required to grow. Find people who will support you and distance yourself from those who will not. Surround yourself with the right people and the right environment as you move closer to your dreams (write them down into short and long-term goals, make them specific, and check them off as you achieve them). Change your world by changing YOU. YOU are the answer!C
Spring 2018 Schedule
[caption id="attachment_4128" align="alignnone" width="232"] The Spring 2018 Schedule[/caption]
At some point you have to come to terms with the real change agent in your life. It is not your parents. It is not your spouse. It is not your boss. It is not some politician or government entity. It is YOU. When you stop looking "out there" for someone to fix your problems, you can start looking within, and that is where the truth lies. It is that person in the mirror that will ultimately decide your fate. What you think will lead to what you do and that will ultimately tell us what direction your life takes going forward.
Mahatma Gandhi told us, "Be the change you wish to see in the world." He was right way back then and he is right today. Stop looking for someone else to change your life. YOU change your life. Once you make that shift within your mind, behaviors start to change, and habits are created. Instead of seeing problems, you find solutions. Instead of criticizing, you praise. You take full responsibility for your life because you understand who is in charge of it as you look in the mirror and say, "I AM the answer!"
External rewards will not and have not brought the kind of meaning and happiness that the average person seeks. External rewards? A trophy, a powerful position, a new car, fame, the newest bit of technology, and yes, even money, are not and never have been the solutions to reaching a high level of personal fulfillment. Those external rewards are fools gold for those who chase them. Spending a life seeking pleasure at every turn will ultimately lead to an empty existence. There is a solution to finding happiness and it can be achieved by those who are ready and willing to seek it out. Look within for the answers to life's deep questions.
The answer to a fulfilling and happy life will be found intrinsically based on who you become. Here I am talking about an internal reward based on what you do to make the world a better place. This leads to giving. Helping others and providing service to your fellow man, woman, child and four-legged friend can change your life and the lives of others. What can you do and how can you help? This will shine the light that will glow brightly within you, pushing aside those external rewards that quickly lose meaning. This state of being can be achieved by anyone who is prepared to seek the truth hidden in the noise we call life. Make that YOU.
How does a person create a great life for themselves and the people they love when they find themselves stuck in a life that does not appear to feed their soul? That is a big whopper of a question and the answers could be endless based on who you speak to on the subject. Here is where you should not go to find the answers: The media, entertainers, sports "heroes," and sometimes your close circle of friends and family. Here is what I have learned along my journey of life. Be yourself and that means not letting others "guide" you toward being something they want you to be. Living life trying to please others will never take you to the place you want to go. Find your passion. This will be much easier once you are being true to yourself.
Once you find your passion, identify ways to live it on a daily basis as best you can in and around the life you are currently living. Basically, find what you love and do more of it whenever possible and that might very well be separate from your everyday life. Who knows, you might just make a living doing what you love. The more time you spend doing what you love, the closer you will get to finding meaning in life. Happiness will follow as you walk your unique path in life becoming the best version of YOU. Here is the bottom line: Find your path, get on it, stay on it even when life is difficult, don't let others knock you off, if they do, get back on it, and finally, circle back and help others find their path. Enlightenment to follow!
Action is what defines the successful from those who end up not accomplishing their dreams. Without action, education is simply information. Education is a wonderful thing, but it if is not followed by action, there is minimal benefit to the individual. So, why do some people take action and others do not? Here are some reasons: fear of failure, fear of success, fear of looking stupid, fear of sticking out from the crowd and maybe the biggest one of all, fear of leaving the "safe" world that your thoughts and actions currently reside. It is easy to play it safe and seek safety in this world of uncertainty, but that does not translate into a life well lived. This leads to the next question. How does a person turn into someone who does take action?
You reach a point in your life when sitting still and doing nothing is not going to cut it any longer. Basically, you are at the end of your rope and the thought of change is greater than the thought of doing nothing. This can be different for every person, but the idea is pretty simple. You are ready to take that step into the unknown because it is more important to you than what is currently happening in your life. This means you are ready to take the call to adventure (see Joseph Campbell's description of the hero's journey for a more detailed look into this issue). Pick up that phone that is ringing, calling you to this "new you." Your future awaits as you die a metaphorical death so the new version of you can be created. Enlightenment to follow!
It is important to know when you have enough, otherwise you could very easily find yourself chasing after more and more and more in this world of endless gratification. This idea of enough is not a new one, but many people fail to fully grasp its importance. It was discussed in detail in the book Your Money or Your Life and my first book, Financial Happine$$. The question is, "How many people get it?" When I gaze out into the world, I see millions of people chasing illusions presented to them by people who have a great deal to gain by selling a product or service. Enough is about finding meaning in life that goes far beyond money and stuff!
Identifying when you have enough in your life allows you to stop chasing after more of what you don't need. It really is that simple. You can then pause and reconsider what exactly you want to do with your time, energy and yes, even your money. The man or woman who has enough is profoundly changed. They redirect their life toward other pursuits that brings meaning and fulfillment their way. They get it! Here is the good news: When the individual is "ready" they can stop chasing after more stuff that isn't really that important (and never was) and start identifying those things that are truly important. Financial Happine$$ to follow!