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Tripp Friedler

Tripp Friedler
Free Gulliver


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About the Author

TRIPP FRIEDLER is Gulliver. A born adventurer, he has weathered his share of storms, has found himself tied down by the little things, has cut plenty of knots, and now helps others chart their journeys around the jagged obstacles of unforeseen disasters and the whirlpools of complacency.

A graduate of Philips Exeter Academy, Tripp earned a Bachelors degree in Economics from Amherst College. He earned his Juris Doctorate at Tulane University Law School, graduating in the top 10 of his law class. Tripp has gone on to be certified as a Chartered Life Underwriter (CLU), a Chartered Financial Consultant (ChFC), and an Accredited Estate Planner (AEP). He recently received a Masters degree in Financial Services from American College and is currently pursuing a Masters in Counseling at Loyola University.

Tripp's work experience is as varied as his education. After graduating from law school, he worked for Phelps, Dunbar, Marks, Claverie and Sims doing First Amendment and corporate law. In 1986, he cut a knot, leaving the practice of law for good.

Tripp became the third generation in his family to enter the insurance industry, where he specialized in providing strategic, financial, and investment advice to high net worth individuals. Over his career, Tripp has helped over 1,000 people with their financial plans. He has done such diverse work for clients as design and create private placement insurance products, manage a group of hedge funds as well as design sophisticated estate plans for an assortment of personal and corporate clients. Tripp's experience also includes business planning for mid-sized public companies and privately held corporations, and designing, analyzing, and implementing incentive compensation and deferred compensation packages.

Tripp tied and then cut more than a few knots along the way. He managed Gautreau's, a top restaurant in New Orleans, from its opening in 1990 until he sold it in 1996. His work for the restaurant led to his first "15 minutes" of fame, as Time Magazine used his photograph and interview in an article in 1991. He managed a band, The Blue Runners, producing a recording for Island Records in 1991. He started his own record label, Monkey Hill, producing many nationally-released recordings, with two of the bands signing major record deals.

Tripp comes from a long line of community leaders. He formed the Young Leadership Council with a handful of other young business leaders in 1986. Today the YLC boasts over 1000 members and has raised millions for charitable and civic purposes. Tripp has served as President of the Young Leadership Council as well as a Board Member of the Arts Council, the Bureau of Government Research, the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Foundation Advisory Council, and the Community Service Center.

Tripp's greatest accomplishments have nothing to do with money or status. They are his three children and his marriage of 15 years. In fact, asked to list one of his most meaningful life experiences, he'll tell anyone who'll listen about winning the U10 Boys Championship in soccer when he coached his son's team.

When asked today what he does Tripp will answer, " I free Gullivers." He is the President and CEO of Free Gulliver, LLC, advising clients in strategic, estate, and financial planning. "My mission is to free Gullivers, allowing them to maximize their unique strengths unfettered from distractions.

- Excerpt

 

FREE GULLIVER:
Six Swift Lessons in Life Planning

by Tripp Friedler

INTRODUCTION

The excerpt below suggests that instead of worrying about saving for retirement we should get busy building careers we love. It's written by Tripp Friedler, an attorney, estate planner, chartered life underwriter, chartered financial planner, and Gulliver-gone-wild.

The father of three children, Tripp helps release Gullivers from the little things that tie them down. His book has earned the praise of Fast Company founder Alan Webber and former Time Magazine managing editor and CNN chairman Walter Isaacson, among others. More information about the book and the author follows the excerpt.


Never Retire

by Tripp Friedler

According to older dictionaries, the definition of retire is "to put out of service, to withdraw." Anyone who has been lucky enough to retire his debt knows this and hopes it never returns. But when your old car gets retired, it doesn't move to the beach. It ends up in the salvage yard. Given the definition, most people would not like to be retired.

How is it that retirement came to be seen as such a good thing? Everyone you talk to wants to retire by the time they reach 60. This book takes a different view of retirement by starting with a very simple premise:

No one wants to retire from work they love.

Beverly Sills, who enjoyed a long and respected career as a star soprano, retired from singing to become chair of the Lincoln Center. In her early seventies she retired from that position, only to reappear six months later as chair of the Metropolitan Opera. "So I smelled the roses and developed an allergy," she told The New York Times.

Ms Sills, like most of us, did not want to be put out of service. Many people in their eighties lead productive, active lives, whether they're working or not. My grandfather died at 95 and worked until he was 92. He didn't do it for the money; he did it for the love of work.

The average age of retirement has plummeted from 70 in 1930 to 62 today. In the same time, the average American's lifespan has increased from 48 to 72. If we start working at 22, expect to retire at 60 and live to age 82, then our retirement comprises almost 27 percent of our entire lives. The implications of these statistics are serious, both personally and financially -- as well as for the national budget deficit.

We no longer worry about living long enough to enjoy our retirement. Now we worry about living so long that we run out of money. We have put a lot of pressure on ourselves to have a large nest egg ready for retirement. Out of fear, too many of stay in jobs we hate in order to save a little more. It bears repeating:

Staying in a job you hate is crazy.

The first question I ask clients who want to talk about retirement is simple: Why? I try to get them to rethink the concept of retirement by defining the word. Most definitions I get are a variation of a simple idea: "Doing what you want, when you want." Under this definition, most people who love their jobs are already retired.

Look at Michael Jordan. Here is a man who so loved what he did that he refused to retire -- in fact, he added two more championships to his name. Many celebrities, athletes, actors and television journalists continue to work well beyond the "pinnacle" of their careers. While they might not have had the success of their youth, they were still productive. Their love of their profession was so strong that they refused to quit. Why should you quit?

Next I ask my clients what part of their work they most enjoy. What would they like to continue doing into retirement? Most of us have in our jobs a few tasks we love, and the luckiest of us have a whole day filled with enjoyable activities. I ask my clients to identify these pleasurable activities, and then try to make those tasks compose a majority of their time at work. I once heard a great line that sums up this philosophy:

Frank Sinatra did not move pianos.

The point is clear: focus on your passions and talents, and try not to get bogged down in the chores you hate. Be a Gulliver -- live large -- and don't let the little things tie you down. If you concentrate on what you love in your work and pursue it fully, your "Golden Years" can begin today.

RETIREMENT PLANNING EXERCISES

 

1. List the things you love most about what you do for work.

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2. Do you love these things enough to continue doing them during your retirement?

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3. What percentage of your work time do you spend on these activities?

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4. What can you do right now to increase the percentage of time spent working on these activities?

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5. What do you think you could get paid to do only those activities you enjoy so much you'd continue to do them after you retire?

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6. Do you think you can live on that income, considering the other resources you have (current savings, social security payments, etc.)?

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7. What steps can you take to increase the income you earn from doing these activities?

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8. List people you think have retired successfully.

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9. Explain what you admire about their retirements.

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10. How can you emulate what you like about these retirements?

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Copyright ©2005 by Tripp Friedler. All Rights Reserved. Please feel free to duplicate and distribute this file as long as the contents are not changed and this copyright notice is intact. Thank you.

- About the Book

FREE GULLIVER:
Six Swift Lessons in Life Planning

by Tripp Friedler
Published by Trost Publishing

Do the turbulent waters of a troubled economy find you looking for a life jacket? Are you trying to get ahead but feel like you're treading water? Do you come home exhausted at the end of the day, unable to muster the energy to pursue your dreams in your "spare time"? Do you feel tied down by the little things, unable to tend to your life goals because just tending to your life is too taxing?

Maybe you're a Gulliver? You remember: Big guy, gets in a shipwreck, swims to shore, exhausted, falls asleep. Wakes up in the morning to find Lilliputians have tied him down - - little guys with tiny strings -- so he can't move. Ever feel like Gulliver? Sure you have. We all have. The time has come to cut those knots.

Free Gulliver is a little book for big people. It will help you slice through those knotty problems that keep you from doing what you were put here to do. You remember what that is, don't you? That thing you put on the back burner so long ago an hour in the microwave wouldn't thaw it. That gift you have. That natural talent you can't find an outlet for -- can't afford to pursue -- not until you get your debts paid down, not until the kids are in school, not until the kids are through college, not until you retire... Little things. Lilliputians with little strings. Keeping you from the life you love.

Free Gulliver will show you how to cut through those lines, little by little, and get moving again toward the life you love. It's written by Tripp Friedler, an attorney, estate planner, chartered life underwriter, and Gulliver-gone- wild. Tripp has studied the life plans of the rich and famous and found out -- guess what? -- they're just as stuck as the rest of us. Friedler has made a business of helping people get their lives back on track. He can help you, too.

Free Gulliver: Six Swift Lessons in Life Planning will help you:

  • Remember what you're supposed to be doing here
  • Take an honest look at where you're life journey is right now
  • Free up the time and money you need to be you
  • Find unexpected ways to express your natural talents
  • Make a life plan that realistically gets you from here to there

 

Free Gulliver turns financial planning upside down (as if your finances haven't been through enough upsets lately). Instead of helping you have enough money when you retire to do what you really want to do, it helps you start doing what you want today, because you never retire from a life you love. Free Gulliver will help you find meaning and fulfillment while still generating the income you need to get by. It will liberate you from the little things that tie you down. It's a swift trip. Won't you give it a try?

ENDORSEMENTS

"For those who feel that things have gotten too complicated, too tangled up, too damned crazy, this book offers candid, straightforward, and practical advice. There is real help here, and the calm voice of someone who's been there and found a way to make his own life better. It's the kind of help we can all use from time to time."
-- Alan M. Webber, Founding Editor, Fast Company

"For all people who want to simplify their lives and still reach their goals, Tripp Friedler has written a delightful and useful book. It shows how to clarify your vision and focus on what's important. With real case studies and reference to his own journey, Friedler makes his lessons wonderfully readable."
-- Walter Isaacson, CEO, The Aspen Institute

"Tripp Friedler uses straight talk and apt illustrations to teach how to free ourselves and find the meaning that lies waiting in every life. By following his own passion, he helps us realize ours."
-- Peter White, Wealth Advisor

"This book is terrific. Traditional, financial life planning leaves you believing that the proper asset allocation or security selection will bring happiness. This is not the case. In order to live a full life everyone needs to ask the questions that are presented in this book. Friedler challenges the reader to think, discuss and set the groundwork for a balanced and fulfilling life. It is truly a shame that this aspect has been left out for so long."
-- Peter Ricchiuti, Assistant Dean, A. B. Freeman School of Business, Tulane University and Director Of Research, Burkenroad Reports

"Tripp Friedler, using his own life experiences, takes us on a wonderful journey. Along the way, we learn to better understand how our career and retirement can become more meaningful and satisfying to us. We also get to learn the importance of defining the legacy we will leave for future generations. He helps us enjoy the journey and achieve our goals."
-- Frank Helsom, Former CEO, Bessemer Trust

"With an unusually caring and human voice, Tripp Friedler explains how having a better life comes down to making simple choices. Friedler uses plain language and real-world examples to guide readers through a decision-making process that can profoundly improve their lives. For anyone stressed out about the quality of their life and what the future will bring, this warmly written book will help you see-and realize-your own possibilities."
-- Keith Mcallister, Media Consultant, Former Executive Vice President and Managing Editor, CNN

Copyright ©2005 by Tripp Friedler. All Rights Reserved. Please feel free to duplicate and distribute this file as long as the contents are not changed and this copyright notice is intact. Thank you.

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