Do you ever sit at work, stare blankly into the monitor and wonder how much better your life would be if you didn’t have to be there? I often drift off into a day dream where I visualize that I’m financially free and am doing whatever I want. Making more than enough money from my investments that allow me to break the shackles of modern day slavery (a job). I usually start my Monday mornings plotting out my plan to escape the rat race to do whatever I feel whenever I feel and not have to worry about money.
After a while I usually whip out the windows calculator and start to do some calculations based on my returns from my portfolio so far (terrible analysis) even though I know that this is not the way you should forecast future returns but I don’t care. I start to compute how long I think it will take for me to reach the magical goal of financial independence…’if I make X% returns it’s possible I could be there in 5 years… but if this happens then that pushes it out to 10 years… if I get lucky with the market then it’s only 3 year…’ . I then go to www.timeanddate.com and start to plug those dates in and look at how long it will take me to reach that date. I firstly look at years then months then weeks…
This is not a healthy thing to do. I KNOW that I shouldn’t be counting down and rather trying to enjoy the work life right now and in 5-10 years I should be able to wake up one day and say ‘Hey you know what. I don’t actually need to go to work today, I make enough passive income from my investments that covers all my expenses plus inflation’. But I just can’t help it! Monday is always the worst day for me because it’s the start of the working week and I always reassess my life come Monday. I like my job, I like the people I work with and I get paid great for what I do, so what gives right? Why am I so obsessed with the idea of FI that I save over 70% of my net income and invest it? Because even though I have all these great things from my job it’s still a job that requires me to give up 38 hours a week. As much as I like my job I sure as hell wouldn’t do it for free. If I was a billionaire there ain’t no way I’m turning up to work come Monday morning. I would still drop by to see the people but I could think of over a 1000 things I’d rather be doing than sitting in front of a computer for 9 hours a day.
RING RING! My desk phone starts to ring jolting me from my beautiful fantasy back to reality. I quickly close the spreadsheets, websites, and calculator and return to being a corporate drone for the next 9 hours until a get to go home, only to wake the following morning to do it all again…
Does anyone else feel this way?
“Does anyone else feel this way?”
Yes. Yes I do.
Are you me? hah
Glad I’m not the only one haha. So are you trying to exist the matrix too?
And the rat race wasn t for us. I ve always known this deep down in my heart but I just don t know how to communicate this without sounding as though I was making excuses not to work or help anyone.
Ah, I love this blog already!
I was an office drone for 12 years – I used to walk around seeing everyone pluged into their screen thinking I must be the crazy one because they all seemed content with their bored lives and mundane chit chat.
I used to want to scream out something, anything, just to break the monotony. I sometimes did cartwheels in the corridor when no one was around, or leave little random graffitti in the toilets just to feel alive.
Anyway, fast forward a few years and, actually by accident, I am on FIRE. I had bought 5 houses in my 20s and yeah, the property market went nuts. Now I own my own home (small, simple, adequate), live off the modest rental income and do a PhD in a topic that I am passionate about. And I love every single day of my life. I have a baby and I spend hours giggling with him doing absolutely nothing and can’t think of anything better. I also vollunteer, garden, cook, entertain, join stuff, keep fit and bake meals for sick friends. The sort of stuff I could never do when I was a 40hr+ drone. Thank you for waking us up to the AMAZING opportunities we have in this time and country to live such fabulous free lives.
I love so much about the comment Heather.
I’ve been a cog in the system for nearly 7 years now and can’t wait for the day I get to unplug.
This is a freedom that not every country has to offer, so lucky to live in Australia.
motivating comment. very inspiring
I hear you! I must say though that having this goal makes office drudgery a little bit easier to bear. I also found that when I started counting down the time to FI i started measuring my purchases against my earnings, ie opportunity cost when buying anything – for example if i earn 20 bucks an hour and a new t shirt costs 20 bucks, i would wonder if it’s worth an extra hour in the office. That really puts things in perspective for me. We are only a year into this journey, and have been working for 12 years now. So glad to have found this Aussie site, keep up the great work!
Will do 🙂
40hrs a week. If only my work week was that small. I would have time to do heaps more. 80hr weeks won’t be for much longer hopefully.
I’ve worked out at a 6% average return about 6-7 years and a 12% average return will see me retire in about 3 years. Although I will probably just reduce my hrs down to about 40 and keep investing to increase my net worth.
Love reading everyone’s stories though. Very inspiring and gives me the focus I need to get this done.
I’m 41, have been FT worker for 15 years and have 270k equity in house, (150k mortgage), 100k super and about 15k in mortgage redraw.
Going ok but really wanting to knuckle down and do what I can before I hit 55-60yrs!!!
Interesting, and inspiring blog 👌
Thanks Tom 🙂
I’m glad you’re enjoying the blog mate 👍
“Does anyone else feel this way?”
I 100% get this. Like you Matt, I work in IT and like you, I quite like what I do and like you, I get a decent salary for it. All good on paper. But I just can’t stand having to do this 40 hours per week 46 weeks of the year (taking out annual leave and public holidays). My ideal life is doing this kind of work maybe 20 hours per week, maybe 30 weeks per year. Filling the rest of my weeks with family and friends and random walks into whatever project takes my fancy, or even just relaxing with a bit of pottering around. And filling the rest of my years with travel. Loving Flamingo FI. This is the FI that really speaks to me.
Escape The Matrix