Planning for Your Next

by Dr David Phelps

by Dr David Phelps


 want to bring your focus to the exit. The exit from what?

 The exit from what you're doing right now in your life. 

To me, the exit doesn’t mean retiring. I hate the word “retire” because I believe we've always got to be doing something that provides value, not only to us but also to other people.

You bring value in a lot of ways. For most of you, that value is in your practice – for example, through the patients you treat, and by providing a place of employment for your staff. That’s wonderful! Beside monetary return, your practice gives you significance, and we all need that in life. We need a purpose and meaning. 

When a lot of my colleagues in Freedom Founders are trying to exit, here’s the thing I see. They hit their Freedom Number – the certainty that they have enough passive income to completely support their family’s lifestyle, so that they can let go, slow down, or transition completely out – and you’d think everything would be good. What else is there to deal with? I’ll tell you what else: finding out what their next is.

What is your next? When you no longer need to work in your practice, what is the next thing in your life that will provide your life purpose and meaning?

Many people talk about retirement someday in the future. That could be as early as the late fifties, but for many of our colleagues that is getting pushed back into the late sixties! When they actually get there though, the scary thing they’re confronted with is, “Who am I now? I’m no longer a dentist. I no longer have this office where I go and help people like I had for the past forty years.”

If you’re not planning for your next (along with your financial positioning that will get you there), getting to that point beyond your Freedom Number may be a disaster. At that point, letting go is harder to do. You'll want to let go. Your body will want to move on, but then you think, who am I? 

We all have to retain a level of significance and purpose in our lives, as long as our body and our minds can last to do that. There are many ways to do that. 

When our members in Freedom Founders hit their Freedom Number, a lot of them find that the next place they want to give back or find significance is right within our community. By taking on leadership roles, they help younger doctors follow the path. They guide them through and give them the confidence they need to be successful. They learn confidence from having a tribe of people who are there to support them. 

There are countless options people can choose once they hit the point of financial freedom, be it spending more time with their family and passing on a legacy, serving in their community or abroad, etc. – but regardless of what it is, your next is very important. We focus a lot of attention on what comes next in Freedom Founders so that when people meet their financial goals, they're positioned to move on; they know what their next is.

If you haven’t been thinking about your next, it's never too early. You might need someone to help you focus on what you're really good at, or find the things that you actually have passion for. These may be things that you haven’t been able to explore before because you've been so buried in the financial game or trying to run the rat race.

Discovering your next is very freeing, but don't put pressure on yourself to do it quickly, because it doesn't happen overnight. You need time to let it settle.

As always, stay focused on your freedom, and remember to keep your next in mind.

P.S. Whenever you’re ready, here are some other ways I can help fast track you to your Freedom goal (you’re closer than you think) :

1. Schedule a Call with My Team:

If you’d like to replace your active practice income with passive investment income within 2-3 years, and you have at least $1M in available capital (can include residential/practice equity or practice sale), then schedule a call with my team. If it looks like there is a mutual fit, you’ll have the opportunity to attend one of our upcoming member events as a guest.

2. Get Your Free Retirement Scorecard:

Benchmark your retirement and wealth-building against hundreds of other practice professionals, and get personalized feedback on your biggest opportunities and leverage points. Go to to take the 3 minute assessment and get your scorecard.

3. Ready to Step Away?

“How Much is Enough?” This simple question keeps hard-working professionals at the hamster wheel of active income far longer than they need to be. Watch this free training, and discover a proven model for determining how much you really need before hanging up the handpiece!

4. Apply To Visit The Mastermind:

If you’d like to join dozens of dentists, docs, and practice professionals on the fast track to Freedom (3-5 years or less), visit to apply for a guest seat.

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