Welcome!

Welcome to the Young Analytical Mind!

I’m Josh Bird, the writer for this website.

This blog was created to accumulate information on personal finance, investing, economics, psychology, and anything else interesting! Looking at the personal finance blogging space, I saw a lack of information that went into the detail on the math and reasoning in personal finance. As a math-loving engineer, I do my best to take information from all sources and distill it down in a way that is interesting, funny, and informative. Articles can range from needing no prior knowledge to diving deep into a subject.

So whether you are completely new to personal finance or a seasoned expert, there is something for everyone.


About Me

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My journey began right before I graduated college. It was late 2012 when I got my first "big boy" job offer as a budding chemical engineer set to graduate from the University of Houston in May 2013 when I realized something… I had absolutely no clue how to handle money. Seeing how I was about $65,000 in debt with student loans and had absolutely no savings, I figured it was a good time to learn to do so. So I began my quest to learn everything I could about money and how it worked.

I've spent literally 1000's of hours reading, researching, and rereading everything I could find on personal finance and investing. With my background in engineering, I wanted to create a system that could optimize my finances for the long term. Along the way I discovered that there are a TON of misconceptions out there and most of the "conventional knowledge" about finance is completely wrong. I've made it my mission to help other people optimize their finances and live their life to the fullest potential.

Since then I have completed an MBA from the University of Houston and continued to dive deep into the world of finance.


YAM Finance Principles

Over the course of my research, I have found that a select few topics come up over and over again across mediums, authors, and time frames. It is on that basis that I created the following principles that I personally follow.

Budgeting

The budget is the backbone of the personal finance plan. Trying to be successful with money without a budget is like riding a bike with no handle bars. Sure, you can do it, but if you hit a rock in road you are going to have a really bad day.

A budget is simply a plan you make for spending your money every month. While it does take some time to figure it out (usually about 3 months) it makes everything else so much easier. I show you step by step how to create a budget and give you tools for getting started.

Posts to get started with:

Planning

So, why learn about all this money stuff anyways? Can’t we just vote our way into prosperity? Unfortunately, I don’t think that will be happening any time soon. We need to take our futures into our own hands and take action NOW before it becomes too late.

My goal is to put you in a position where money begins working for you, rather than you working for your money. It won’t be easy, but I guarantee you it will be worth it. In the posts below, I lay out the plan that I have put together and personally follow. It has brought me from $65,000 in student loan debt to saving 30+ percent of my income every year and the ability to have options rather than just problems.

Posts to get started with:

Debt

The biggest misconceptions in personal finance revolve around debt. While it may seem like a useful tool for success at first the more you dig down the sooner you realize how devastating it can be. It can cause depression, divorce, discontent, and in some rare cases sadly, even death.

Apart from a first home mortgage (which has guide has guidelines), I recommend people to avoid any and all other kinds of debt. From credit cards to car loans to home equity loans, I suggest you get out as fast as possible and stay out for the rest of your life. You will thank me later.

Posts to get started with:

Investing

Investing is a special place in finance. People can go into seemingly infinite detail into the world of investing and study after study shows the same strategy always wins out:

  • Minimize Fees

  • Minimize Taxes

  • Invest For The Long Term (think at least 7 to 10 years)

  • Broad Diversification

  • Manage Risk and Expectations

The fact of the matter is that good investing is usually insanely boring. You won’t have cool stories to tell about your recent trades or all the cryptos that you bought. That’s why I have put the together the simplest investment plan on earth.

Posts to get started with:

Retirement

Most people think of retirement as an age, but I prefer to think of it as an amount of money. Across the airwaves of personal finance you may see it written as F.I.R.E (Financial Independence/Early Retirement). It is a niche group of people who have flipped the script on what it means to be retired.

In the depths of tax accounting, there are ways to access retirement accounts early (without paying a penalty) and ways max out other tax deferred accounts to make the most out of your savings.

Posts to get started with:


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