Discovering the FI Community | Camp FI Southeast 2020

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Today’s episode was recorded live at Camp FI down near Gainesville, Florida.

Camp FI is a retreat of 40-60 people at locations across the country filled with people chasing FI and supporting fellow members of the community.

This episode highlights people who were convinced to come to CampFI without any background to the FI/RE movement.

Two other interviews include a graduate student studying the FI/RE movement and the camp’s creator, Stephen.

Stephen talks about the origins and future of this camp and the motivations to keep this community growing.

Listen, learn, and let us know what you think.

Episode Summary


  • Inspired by an interview with Vicki Robbins
  • She was drawn by the way people see the role of work in their lives
  • The community was also very open to being researched
  • She noted how diverse the age and background was of the movement
  • It also came out that most people actually love their jobs
  • The last thing she called out was how intentional and conscious of their decisions
  • You can email her at if you’re interested in being interviewed


  • He never could have imagined being at a conference like this
  • A friend of his recommended that he came
  • He notes how ready he is to take action the minute he gets home
  • Mike really recommends that people give this community a chance
  • Tactically he got an overview on how to get his realtor’s license
  • He didn’t image the generosity that he found with the community


  • Rupel is a practicing physician
  • She loves the challenge of why you’re living life the way you are
  • Rupel calls out the trouble she sees with physician burnout
  • She also noted how easy it was to have deep, personal conversations with this community
  • While at the conference she moved investments away from higher fee options to low-cost index funds
  • She hopes that doctors will dig a little deeper and find why they love doing what they do
  • Refocusing on that and restructuring their life she hopes will alleviate the burnout
  • Since hearing about the movement, she ditched her overpriced apartment and bought a home

Creator of CampFI – Stephen

  • Stephen tried to make more of an emphasis on making real connections with the attendees
  • He hopes that people who are looking to get involved with FI/RE community will just jump in
  • Stephen first attended a camp like this in 2016 and knew he had to spread this idea to more people
  • This year they look to have at least nine of these camps all across the country
  • Stephen had no background in event planning and didn’t know what to expect
  • Luckily everyone showed up who bought tickets the first year
  • Also worth noting that CampFI is where Cody & Justin met and The FI Show was born


Key Takeaways

  1. FI isn’t so different: Many of the stories we heard from FI “newbies” during the week mentioned that this community isn’t just a bunch of “weirdos” and “money nerds”. It’s just people making slightly more conscious decisions.
  2. So many paths: There was so much diversity: age, gender, profession, and general paths to FI. It showed just how many ways there are.
  3. People are good: The American news cycles are often rough and draining. It’s nice reminding yourself just how good people really are.

Call to Action

Start leaning on or creating a community around you that supports your growth as a person and your goals to reaching FI.

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