Stepping up a level from MMM to ERE forums finally

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Stasher
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Joined: Thu Mar 18, 2021 11:23 am
Location: Vancouver Island BC
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Stepping up a level from MMM to ERE forums finally

Post by Stasher »

Through reading some of the forums the last several years and then really digging into them the last year it was finally the time to create my own account here on ERE. I have thoroughly enjoyed the ERE website since 2013 and bought Jacobs book in 2014 reading it twice while I consumed everything Financial Independence, Minimalism, Simple Living and Early Retirement. I of course went hard on the FIRE path religiously reading MMM content until he stopped producing new and helpful content relevant to FIRE journey as it was more post RE life. Through that time I of course would pop back to ERE and read the rotating previously published posts as they are such good evergreen content.

I signed up for the MMM forums in 2013, locked in with a tight group of friends in the journals section and even created my own massive thread that spanned 5 years. I finally left work in 2017 and since then have enjoyed getting paid for outdoor adventures by spending time on my hobbies and fun that turned into a very mellow small income stream. The past 4 years have been a wonderful journey of decompressing, seeking solitude at times and then battling ego, identity and then of course main stream consumption (FOMO).

As I strive to work up the Wheaton Level hierarchy I have found myself needed to move beyond the MMM level. I find that my ecological impact our lifestyles, consumption and footprint is too important to not acknowledge and that what we think is very little money is in fact so much. We can live an amazing life with less money, less things and of course a lot lighter on the planet. Naturally this means moving up to ERE levels and in the future beyond.

That brings me to this post here on introduce yourself, so hello everyone. (on a side note I think an extra little bump to finally create an account was following @2Birds1Stones journal on MMM and then seeing he had one here as well) I am 47 as of this past month, the same month 4 years ago that I left the industry and career I had for 21 years to experience life in this thing called FIRE. My children are now both in their 20s and my wife supports mine(our) journey but still does LOVE her job (which she actually started only 1.5yrs ago) and works down the street a couple blocks from our house. We have a small "mom&pop" retail store and it generates a small amount of monthly income, we have full time staff and don't need to work there. Thanks to my wife working (I tell her she can leave anytime) , my occasionally tourism/outdoor based freelance income and the small stipend our business provides combined with slowly moving the needle to an ERE lifestyle and barely touch our investments the last 4 years.

Thanks for creating these forums Jacob and allowing us to get more intimate with the content beyond your book and the blog.

Cheers ~ Stasher

chenda
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Joined: Wed Jun 29, 2011 1:17 pm
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Re: Stepping up a level from MMM to ERE forums finally

Post by chenda »

Welcome :)

What's the vibe like over at MMM, looking briefly it seems to have quite a lot of 7 figure retirees well above MMM himself's budget ?

Stasher
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Joined: Thu Mar 18, 2021 11:23 am
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Re: Stepping up a level from MMM to ERE forums finally

Post by Stasher »

Hi @Chenda , overall the vibe is great and from the connections I have made extremely helpful on my path to FIRE.
As Jacob has stated in many discussions here though it seems that most don't have any plan to reduce their consumption. They drop from 70-90k a year spending down to 50-70k, invest the rest and often just find a means to spend still. I think this is why there is such a rise in new terms such as "coast FI" or "Slow FI". So many aren't willing to be honest about how much they spend and the impact that consumption carries with it. The large MMM population of dropping from 90k/year spending to 50k/yr does have a significant impact like Jacob states, just wish more would go further. They are content at the MMM level and don't go beyond it.....thankfully a small niche does and hopefully more make it here.

AxelHeyst
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Re: Stepping up a level from MMM to ERE forums finally

Post by AxelHeyst »

Welcome stasher, really glad to have you here. I look forward to hearing about your post-FI, increasingly ERE lifestyle journey. It's really helpful to be able to get perspectives from "the other side", as it seems many people use forums as a way to maintain accountability/motivation to hit their number and then fade off.

Stasher
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Joined: Thu Mar 18, 2021 11:23 am
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Re: Stepping up a level from MMM to ERE forums finally

Post by Stasher »

Hi @axelheyst , yes the forums are an incredible way to build community, learn and get that necessary push/accountability to reach your next goals. I plan to start a journal and share some of my personal finance thoughts, budgets, expenses and what I am trying to navigate at this point of my journey.

Scott 2
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Joined: Sun Feb 12, 2012 10:34 pm

Re: Stepping up a level from MMM to ERE forums finally

Post by Scott 2 »

Welcome! Always interested to read someone navigating the post-FIRE life. Too often, people seem to fall off once the money problem is solved.

Stasher
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Re: Stepping up a level from MMM to ERE forums finally

Post by Stasher »

Hey @scott2 , the navigation has been interesting. Post FI has been a whole lot of building and reflecting on the "self" rather than the money. With the time to finally slow down you really get a chance to look at society and yourself, where do we all fit and how are we behaving on this planet. Looking at Jacobs newest WL chart I have a long way to go to proper ERE but I am working hard on it, we need to grapple with both our mindset and our bank account to do so. Money problems due to my diverse systems and investments are solid and now how do I double down even more to have a gentler footprint on the planet and be less of a consumer and more of a creator/provider for myself.

Western Red Cedar
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Joined: Tue Sep 01, 2020 2:15 pm

Re: Stepping up a level from MMM to ERE forums finally

Post by Western Red Cedar »

Welcome to the forum. I had a chance to check out a few of your blog posts this week. Looks like lots of great stuff on there, and the photos are amazing! You've crafted a compelling, post FI lifestyle up in BC. How was your experience monetizing some of your hobbies and passions (climbing, cycling, backpacking, etc...)? I've considered a similar path, but worry a bit about how it might impact my feeling about those activities.

Married2aSwabian
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Joined: Thu Jan 07, 2021 7:45 pm

Re: Stepping up a level from MMM to ERE forums finally

Post by Married2aSwabian »

Welcome! I will follow your journey with interest, especially since I was also over on MMM for about five years and just recently started participating here. I’m also interested to know more about how it’s gone for you with leading paid guided backpacking trips, etc.? I’ve thought about doing something similar, including trips to southern Germany - Black Forest, etc.
We’re also working on moving up the WL scale ... currently about 5. I like your approach to “reflecting on the self” ... that is important! Minimalism, mindfulness and ERE / FI seem to go hand in hand.

Stasher
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Joined: Thu Mar 18, 2021 11:23 am
Location: Vancouver Island BC
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Re: Stepping up a level from MMM to ERE forums finally

Post by Stasher »

@WRC .. your journal and love for the outdoors was another part of the forums I have been lurking on and enjoying the past year. The PNW is amazing and I am grateful this is where I am spending my journey up the Wheaton Levels. I hope to address the questions you have regards to monetization of what was a hobby passion during my working years to become a nice diversified income funnel to stabilize my post FI years. The only weird issue I face now as I work to achieve say WL6 and higher is that I am conflicted a bit on the consumerism and ecological impact of my influencer/review/tourism work.

@M2S .. I feel I am around WL5 as well and to get any higher I need to work on my preconceived notions as well as break down the decades of societal indoctrination that occurs in NorthAmerica built around Capitalism. I feel that I have plateaued on the MMM forums and like you am ready to do better for myself (& community)

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