My goal of being financially independent by the time I’m 45 seems both outlandish and kind of a waste of time. The main question that I get when I tell people (which are few in number) is what am I going to do with extra 20 years compared to the conventional retirement age of 65. This kind of “break” from the normal isn’t something that most people even contemplate, let alone attempt, it’s just not really done.
I don’t fit into most moulds of what the majority of people would term an “adult” (I use this term loosely, because as a 35 year old, there aren’t that many people in my age group who feel that they are sufficiently grown up). I have absolved myself from the responsibility of parenthood with surgery last fall because I decided that having children really wasn’t my thing, and my wife was in agreement over this lifestyle choice. I would term myself as eccentric more than anything, mainly due to my non-acceptance of the “normal” life.
What I have tried to do is reduce the responsibilities in my life to a bare minimum. Most of the responsibilities I gave up just made sense either financially or timewise, but I’m glad I made the decisions I did. I have no debts, my monthly expenses are low enough that I could afford them on a minimum wage salary, and my wife and I have no dependents – we have simplified as much as we can, other than the fact we still need money to live.
So, that’s our current “project” – to accumulate enough savings to get rid of the final major responsibility we have in our lives – having to work.
The thing about our jobs is that neither of us mind doing them. The work isn’t overly taxing (we both work nice desk jobs) and it does keep us engaged on a day to day basis. The issue with the job is that it keeps us engaged way too long in a day. If I had a choice, my ideal work day would be about two and a half hours long, not the 8 to 10 hours it is now. It would be a much better thing to do if it was just another part of my waking hours, rather than taking up most of the time I’m able to do things.
In my next post on Thursday, I’m going to start looking at my retirement portfolio, and publishing my current project, which is tearing it apart, to hopefully make it better.