Forest Hills football star turned wealth management adviser compares gridiron lessons to financial control
(GRAND RAPIDS, MI) – Former Michigan State University and NFL tight end Mitch Lyons has put to pen all the lessons he learned over 12 years on the football field in his new book Retirement of Steel, which published Jan. 6. In the 173-page book, Lyons, a 1988 Forest Hills Northern graduate and Michigan State University football standout picked in the 1993 draft by the Atlanta Falcons, reflects on his playing days and how lessons learned from coaches and observing money management by NFL millionaires helped carve out a successful 20+ year career in wealth management.
Individuals can order an autographed copy of the book on Lyon’s website: www.mitchlyonswealth.com.
The success only came, however, after several years of financial uncertainty following his career-ending injury in 1999. Now, with the book, Lyons hopes to empower those facing retirement to ensure they have financial security.
“My personal experience of seeing the chaos and pain that financial problems create drove me to commit that I would protect my family from that,” says Lyons, 50.
Owner of Mitch Lyons Wealth, Lyons created what he calls the “Retirement of Steel” process ( the title being a nod to his last three years in the NFL playing for the Pittsburgh Steelers) that aims to help clients build a retirement portfolio that is sheltered from unexpected or uncontrollable events in the financial markets.
In the book he shares the “Steel” process in detail while also providing tips on tackling tax matters all while sprinkling in personal stories of financial stress and high- and lowlights from his playing days. The primary intent of the book, however, is to help educate consumers on how they can keep their money safe throughout retirement.
“I’m really excited to share my life lessons in Retirement of Steel,” says Lyons, a Grand Rapids native who resides in the Rockford area with his wife Angela. “More importantly, however, is how passionate I am about helping people nearing retirement age to build a retirement plan that is as strong as steel.”
Spread out over 10 chapters, Retirement of Steel, which includes a foreword by Lyons’ Steeler tight end coach Mike Mularkey (who went on to be the head coach of the NFL’s Bills, Jaguars and Titans), ranges from how Lyons’ career ending knee injury sparked a period of uncertainty to step-by-step tips consumers should follow to ensure their financial portfolio can withstand the ebb and flow of financial markets.
Mularkey believes readers will enjoy the football analogies while realizing Lyons’ passion and competitiveness to helping clients win in the financial game.
“Mitch Lyons is a fierce competitor, a man of faith and a leader who elevates the people around him,” Mularkey says in the foreword. “I believe (readers) will see in the pages of this book that Mitch still prepares, attacks and executes in the financial world as he did in an NFL career that was cut way too short,” he adds.
Even after years of sharing his personal story, writing the memories down on paper for the easy-to-read, quasi auto-biography was visceral for Lyons, especially recalling the moment that ended his playing days.
From the book:
“In a split second, after seven years in the NFL, my career was over. My dream came to an end on the field of Arrowhead Stadium in Kansas City in December 1999. I was 29. In the blink of an eye, my life was upended. I remember recovering from surgery in January (2000), sitting on the couch. The stock market went through a precipitous rise. I looked at my accounts and thought we’d be good to go. We’d make it through until I could find other work. As we’ve seen, the stock market is unpredictable. Initially, I thought we were in good shape, but the tech bubble burst, and we lost a lot of money..”
Lyons eventually found himself back in Grand Rapids, and for the next 10 years he tackled the financial services industry working at national firms with the same tenacity as his playing days. In 2010, Lyons and a partner opened their own wealth management firm. Lyons hung out his own shingle in September 2020 with Mitch Lyons Wealth (www.mitchlyonswealth.com). As well, from 2011-2018, Lyons also served on the Board of Trustees at his alma mater Michigan State.
His time spent chasing Wall Street’s ups and down wasn’t what he wanted, so over time he began to seriously doubt whether the “rules of thumb” and riding the Wall Street rollercoaster were really the best way to a fruitful retirement. He has since focused his efforts on educating clients about those fallacies and helping them protect their wealth from unnecessary taxes, fees and risk.
His Retirement of Steel process aims to help clients get a plan in place that protects against 6 key retirement risks.
“I have helped many retirement-age clients keep their hard-earned money safe with the Retirement of Steel process,” Lyons notes. “I am very passionate and motivated to help others realize their retirement dreams by growing wealth without depending on Wall Street’s uncertainty or paying unnecessary fees and taxes. And, trust me, I don’t like to lose!”
Learn more about Retirement of Steel and Lyons’ company offerings at www.mitchlyonswealth.com.