When you think of early retirement it’s important to get a few things straight before dreaming of a hammock swaying in a tropical breeze.
#1 - Early retirement is about freedom, not comfort.
The bloggers on early retirement make it pretty clear that the lifestyle of early retirement does not involve cash-burning adventures around the world and endless parties. It simply means the removal of having to work for pay, replaced with the ability to play at work. You can now be a carpenter, landscaper, graphic designer, dodgeballer, or writer without the need to be rewarded with money or the risk of being fired for incompetence. This blog is living proof of that.
#2 - Your lifestyle costs will naturally dwindle.
If you look at your expenses, how much of them are related to the cost of doing your job? If you didn’t commute into work each day how would that change your gas bill? What practical purpose would your car serve? Dry cleaning your clothing to look good in the office? Paying for lunch around the corner because you didn’t prepare something in advance? Most of your budget is actually just normal expenses with a hefty convenience tax piled on.
#3 - You may need to work to socialize.
Retirement clubs have a strict ‘grey-white hairs only’ rule. The popular sport among this group, pickleball, is not for the early retiree. Victoria has its share of retired ladies sure, but they’re fully engaged in knitting and book clubs. If you’re looking for a good place to meet smart people like you, you might have to go where they are - at work! And, you’ll need to figure out an answer to the question, “what do you do?” when meeting new folk. My theory so far is that anything other than “I do XYZ at ABC Co.” turns the conversation down a weird and short path.
It’s early days, but I want one theme of my writing to be around personal finance. It’ll be geared around the central purpose of freeing yourself from the sin of wages. If you have any ideas for topics post them here in the comments or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org!