Elegant's journal

Where are you and where are you going?
elegant
Posts: 93
Joined: Sat Apr 13, 2013 2:19 pm
Location: Land of Milk and Honey

Re: Elegant's journal

Post by elegant » Sat Nov 02, 2013 3:24 am

George the original one wrote:Over HALF of your expenditures were bank related?!?
I actually purchased several thousand USD from the bank. Spreads were horrendous, took that into account. Not to mention the fact that the Israeli currency keeps getting stronger and stronger vs the USD, because interest rates are slightly higher in Israel.
Dutch Girl wrote: Time to work more on your anxiety, on "what to do next"? There really is a new life out there, Elegant, waiting for you.
Yes! thanks :)

elegant
Posts: 93
Joined: Sat Apr 13, 2013 2:19 pm
Location: Land of Milk and Honey

Re: Elegant's journal

Post by elegant » Sun Dec 01, 2013 8:53 am

November Update

Key developments:

- Turned 29 years old.

- "Work" is still dull as ever. Basically I just surf the web all day ;). My office has been relocated and now I have to share a room with another person. Luckily I'm paid globally, not by the hour, which means I can effectively arrive whenever I want and go home whenever I want and still get paid the same (no matter if I work hard or not). My boss has been promoted and he doesn't really give a damn.

- Looks like I could switch to another department as early as this summer! This is exciting because these guys actually want me to come and they appreciate me for my skills, something that I do not get at my current department. They are located in Tel Aviv, closer to my flat. The downside is that they want me to sign for another 3 years. I'm gonna have to work there too, I won't be able to surf the web as I currently do.

- I realized I have changed a lot in these past two years. Whereas in the past I used to consider myself a highly ambitious person, I currently view ambition as a vice, a negative quality. It causes one to experience so much stress and grief. In a purposeless world, ambition is meaningless.

- Considering some options with regard to increasing my revenue. Thinking about renting out one room in my flat, or cancelling my car lease. My employee pays for gas, insurance and maintenance, however, so perhaps I should reconsider. I only use the car for work because commuting to work by bus is a terrible experience. I also have to do some work related trips to northern/southern Israel and I don't intend to do it by bus.

- I feel the market is too high. This rally cannot well. I cannot bring myself to increase my position. Most of my money is in a local money market fund, and only a small portion in a low volatility global stock ETF.

- I made 177$ off adsense this month, which is 6.5% of my net dayjob salary!


November Numbers (₪ figures in brackets)

Income
Net Day Job (after taxes, health insurance, car lease): $2,700 (₪9504)
Adsense: $177 (₪623)
Amazon: $23 (₪81)
---------------------------
Total November income: 2900$ (₪10,208)

Expenditure
Food: $130 (₪460)
(comprised of junk food, eating out, vending machines, buying candy, coke and pastries from the workplace supermarket, ready-made sandwiches, Hanukkah donuts, etc)
Electricity (September-October bill): $35 (₪124)
Water (September-October bill): $10.5 (₪37)
Cell phone: $19 (₪67)
Internet: $28 (₪100)
Barbershop: $17 (₪60)
ATM cash: $28 (₪100)
------------------------------
Total November Expenditure: $269 (₪948)

Total Savings Rate: 92.7% :D

Goals for December (inspired by m741):


- Avoid coke. This is a serious addiction I've developed since childhood and it has to stop. I will only allow myself one can.

- Go easy on porn. I finally came to see it as a problem. It's my fourth biggest addiction, right after coke, chocolate and the internet. It's bad for my mojo, life energy, well being and social life.

- Read Affluenza

- Use food budget to buy rice and lentils. COOK some Majadra myself and eat it instead of buying shit at stores.

- Finish DuoLingo French class

- Look for creative solutions to deal with noisy neighbors (loud voices at 4am).

- Start running. At least once a week. No excuses.

- Look for one room flats in my area to rent. I want to move out and rent out my 3 room apartment. This should bring extra cash.

- Aim for 250$ a month from adsense & amazon


Net Worth (November 2013)

Debt: $0

Money Market Fund: $122,010 (₪429,477)

Stock Index Fund: $16,825 (₪59,276)

Other accounts (Cash, Savings, Accessible retirement funds): $69269 (₪243,828)

Mortgage free apartment - estimation: $284,000 (₪1,000,000)

Total Net Worth (November 2013): $492,210 (₪1,732,581)

Years to retirement: Unsure. I would not define myself FI because I don't have sufficiently high passive income and because I predict my expenditure will rise in the future (possible wife, child, cancer, etc).

Thanks for reading, would greatly appreciate your comments.
Last edited by elegant on Fri Feb 07, 2014 7:31 pm, edited 1 time in total.

DutchGirl
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Location: The Netherlands

Re: Elegant's journal

Post by DutchGirl » Wed Dec 04, 2013 4:43 pm

Cool savings rate.

Sounds like the new work option could be a winner for you. I'm definitely not saying that you should become ambitious again or stressed out by the work load; but I'm guessing it will be more entertaining and more fulfilling than your current job!

You could post here whenever you've completed a run. I'll check to see whether you've managed to get them to once a week at least... I'm currently using a hometrainer, I've got a five-day-stretch currently, tomorrow will be day six...

elegant
Posts: 93
Joined: Sat Apr 13, 2013 2:19 pm
Location: Land of Milk and Honey

Re: Elegant's journal

Post by elegant » Wed Jan 01, 2014 5:00 pm

December Update

Key developments:

- Got a new big project at work. I actually have stuff to do now, and there are lots of expectations. I hope this will work out well - my professional confidence deteriorated somewhat in the past 2 years. First I was nervous because I didn't do anything, now I'm nervous because there is too much to do!

- I got my peer review sociometric results. I'm in the worst 4% in terms of "teamwork" and "motivation" and "competence for senior position". I'm in the top 4% in terms of "professionalism".

- My boss bluntly told me I should seek counseling. Then he told me he would be happy to provide the counseling himself.

- I had a meeting with one of the ultra-big bosses, checking the possibility of moving to a new post this summer.

- my IM project is going well, grossing in over 200$ per month in semi-passive income.

- We had the worst snow storm in over 100 years in Israel. I took a little winter vacation and spent two weeks at my family home. Great time at low costs.

- Still sitting on a huge pile of cash, not investing any additional funds. Local currency just keeps getting stronger and stronger vs the USD (1 USD = 3.47 ILS) and other currencies.

- Received my first dividends! 133$!

December Numbers (₪ figures in brackets)

Income
Net Day Job (after taxes, health insurance, car lease): $2,736 (₪9495)
Adsense: $205 (₪711) - requested to hold\accrue payment
Amazon: $6.25(₪22) - requested to hold\accrue payment
---------------------------
Net December income: 2736$ (₪9495)

Expenditure
Food: $37( ₪130)
Just two take-aways this month - one pizza plate and one home-fries. I spent two weeks at home so mom did most of the cooking. For the rest of the month I ate at work (for free). Bought 1 coke, 2 candy bars at work. BMI is 22.

Electricity: bill is due next month
Water: bill is due next month
Cell phone: $19 (₪67)
Internet: $29 (₪100)
Barbershop: $17 (₪50)
Taxi: $17 (₪50)
Lottery ticket: $18 (₪64)
Currency conversion: $16 (₪57)
New book (investing) : $24 (₪84)
------------------------------
Total December Expenditure: $140 (₪472)

Total Savings Rate: 95%

Net Worth (December2013)

Debt: $0

Total ERE Net Worth (December 2013) excluding mortgage free apartment: $214,584 (₪744608.04)

Goals
Avoid coke - reduced consumption but not completely.
French class - did not finish, lost interest.
Noise problem - success! learned to fall asleep to the 4 hour tune of "om mani padme hum". I put it on repeat using youtubereplay.com. I put it on a strong enough volume so now nothing can wake me up. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0Ix9yfoDHJw
Running - failed. did not move my ass.
Moving apartment - failed. Too much hassle.
IM income: almost getting there, currently at 211.25$
porn: failed
reading affluenza: failed. but I started reading the hangman's daughter (great book)
Last edited by elegant on Fri Jan 03, 2014 1:43 pm, edited 1 time in total.

leeholsen
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Re: Elegant's journal

Post by leeholsen » Wed Jan 01, 2014 9:38 pm

dutchgirl is right that savings rate is outstanding.

i'd recommend entering some 3k or 5k or 10k races to get you into running. theyre great and you run with lots of others around your level, you might pick up some friends that run and get better that way.

mxlr650
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Re: Elegant's journal

Post by mxlr650 » Thu Jan 02, 2014 12:25 am

Elegant wrote:porn: failed
IMO, I would see this as motivation problem rather than the issue with watching too much porn. You are in your 20s, no wife, no kids, and you have financial success. However, in the overall scheme of things, I believe there is no engaging theme that you are after.

It is a total BS that porn itself is bad - look at sites like efukt - they are pretty hilarious and sheds light on human behavior which I find interesting. Same goes for movie critics - they publish something valuable even though purists claim movies to be a passive entertainment. It will be impressive if you can entertain or educate us based on your astute understanding of that sticky genre :-)

elegant
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Location: Land of Milk and Honey

Re: Elegant's journal

Post by elegant » Thu Jan 02, 2014 1:13 am

@leeholsen thanks, I tend to believe however that long runs are bad for your health. There was a thread about it a while ago.

@mxlr
Your analysis seems to be spot on. I really dont have much of a direction in life at the moment.

I LOL'ed when you mentioned Efukt, that is indeed pure entertainment, but I reckon we shouldn't discuss such things on ERE forums so nobody will be offended somehow.

I don't think porn is evil, degrading or anything like that. Thing is that by consuming it on a daily basis I feel I'm somehow losing my "mojo" / life energy / etc, which affects many other aspects of my life.

I started watching porn after I broke up with my last girlfriend which was 5 years ago. In essence, after consuming porn, the LAST thing on my mind is trying to find a girlfriend.

I guess this is how us men are wired.

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UrbanHermit
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Re: Elegant's journal

Post by UrbanHermit » Thu Jan 02, 2014 11:18 pm

You bought a lottery ticket, and it was 10% of your monthly expenses?!? ROFL

leeholsen
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Re: Elegant's journal

Post by leeholsen » Fri Jan 03, 2014 12:47 am

elegant wrote: I don't think porn is evil, degrading or anything like that. Thing is that by consuming it on a daily basis I feel I'm somehow losing my "mojo" / life energy / etc, which affects many other aspects of my life.

I started watching porn after I broke up with my last girlfriend which was 5 years ago. In essence, after consuming porn, the LAST thing on my mind is trying to find a girlfriend.

I guess this is how us men are wired.
just my 2 cents.

its my opinion that you could go without porn and women and be okay. imo, you will desire what you pay most attention to. for instance, i think after watching football games every weekend for months; its much more likely those who watched will want to buy a new car or truck.
i know if i dont have a girlfriend on thanksgiving, i intentionally avoid ads that sucker in the lonely around the holidays as its been my experience that i'll settle for less if i allow myself to get sucker in. i just avoid them and my mind finds other things to think about. advertising works, why not direct what ads you see.

DutchGirl
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Re: Elegant's journal

Post by DutchGirl » Sat Jan 04, 2014 8:41 am

- My boss bluntly told me I should seek counseling. Then he told me he would be happy to provide the counseling himself.
Yeah. That's, ummm, "interesting". Make sure to not be counseled by your boss, please. My mother was in a similar situation once (where her boss also counseled her and did a very lousy job at that). It was very awkward too. Luckily for my mum, she could retire soon and has been much happier since.
I'm in the worst 4% in terms of "teamwork" and "motivation" and "competence for senior position".
They don't know you're also in the top 4% in terms of "financial independence". I can see where the lack of motivation came from - maybe with this new project you might actually find some motivation, or a challenge.

I believe I've said it before, that it might be best for you to start looking for a job that better fits with who you are and with what you want from life. Or maybe this new project makes your current job interesting again.

Good luck!!

elegant
Posts: 93
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Location: Land of Milk and Honey

Re: Elegant's journal

Post by elegant » Sat Jan 04, 2014 4:42 pm

@DG thanks much for following this journal and for your feedback.

Yeah, that boss of mine is a snake, I seek to keep a safe distance from him.

I feel the new project is in fact making me feel better, albeit slightly nervous.

My plan is to retire by 2018, and sacrifice the next few years in my soul devouring work.

I will then be 34. This will also allow me to lock in 20% of my state pension (payments will start when I'm 67).

I will maintain my current savings rate. If the markets are kind my invested net worth by then will be around $430k.

Given the 3% rule, this will allow me to live on 14,000$ a year which is twice as much as I need, given that I already own my apartment & don't plan on getting married.

For accountability purposes I aim to maintain this journal until October 2018.

leeholsen
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Re: Elegant's journal

Post by leeholsen » Sun Jan 05, 2014 11:50 pm

i'm a little curious how long you would have to work to get 50%,75% or 100% of your state pension ? i mean if theyre going to give you twice or five times what you'd get at 2018; imo it's worth staying.

imo, it would be like a stock doubling or quintupling in 5 years. i'm just saying; i'd stick it out if it's mot too many years.

George the original one
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Re: Elegant's journal

Post by George the original one » Mon Jan 06, 2014 2:09 pm

I'll counter leeholsen's opinion with the fact that you can't really predict whether the pension will be available 33 years from now when you go to collect it. Governments change priorities and promises.

leeholsen
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Re: Elegant's journal

Post by leeholsen » Mon Jan 06, 2014 3:11 pm

George the original one wrote:I'll counter leeholsen's opinion with the fact that you can't really predict whether the pension will be available 33 years from now when you go to collect it. Governments change priorities and promises.
2nd that.

you might see if there's some way to get a cash value or if you can roll over your value into an ira, but i'm just speculating; dont really know how pensions work.

elegant
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Location: Land of Milk and Honey

Re: Elegant's journal

Post by elegant » Fri Feb 07, 2014 8:51 pm

January 2014

• I'm trying to quit my current job - my contract ends on October 2014, and by then I hope to secure a position in a completely different government organization. My application is in progress - kind'a screwed up the interviews but I'm still hopeful.

My options:

A. Stay in current job, enjoy state funded pension and retire in my forties - and suffer till I get there from the toxic environment and lack of neither appreciation nor motivation. This is hardly an option, even though this organization is huge and I could theoretically move within posts.

B. Quit current job and move to another organization, lose the car, get a slightly better pay, start anew with full motivation and retire in my fifties

C. Quit the government and look for a job in the private sector, get a possibly much better pay but lose any pension benefits, employment stability and the legal ability to retire before the age of 67

D. ERE as soon as my contract ends. This thought excites me because I think I could actually do this. I'm trying to prove I can live on less than 20,000 ILS a year (~6000$), and thus far I have saved about 740,000 ILS ($210,000) excluding my fully owned apartment. The 3% rule would work.

I should note that the 6k calculation is based on the fact that
1) I eat mostly at work
2) I pay nothing towards transportation
3) I've been healthy thus far in my life
4) Inflation in Israel continues to be very low

• In other news, I've committed to an investment strategy of 50/50 bonds/stocks. I will cost average into the market every two months. I'm sitting on way too much cash as it is.

Finances, January 2014

• This has been a bad ERE month due to yearly property taxes and the like. However, my passive IM income is slowly growing!

• Began recording every expense with an expense managing app.

Income
Wage-slave income: 2867$ (10,094 ILS)
Internet Marketing: 235$ (827 ILS)
Total January income: 3102$ (10,921 ILS)

Expenditure
Yearly property tax (ugh): 981.5$ (3,455 ILS)
Amazon purchase: 21$ (74 ILS)
Cell phone: 19$ (67 ILS)
Internet: 28$ (100 ILS)
Barbershop: 17$ (60 ILS)
Bank fees: 5$ (19 ILS)
Passport Photos: 15$ (55 ILS)
Special Taxi fare: 10.5$ (37 ILS)
Bus fare: 2$ (7 ILS)
Water bill (2 months): 9$ (31 ILS)
Electricity bill (2 months): 30$ (107 ILS)
Domain renewal: 25$ (87 ILS)
Homeowner insurance: 148$ (522 ILS)
Food (including eating out, coke and chocolate snacks): 45$ (160 ILS)
Total January expenditure: 1356$ (4871 ILS)

Savings Rate
This month: 55.4% :oops:
This year: 55.4% (target: 90%)
Money left to spent in 2014 (20,000 ILS challenge): 15,129 ILS (75.6% left)

Kindly feedback.

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JohnnyH
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Re: Elegant's journal

Post by JohnnyH » Mon Feb 10, 2014 3:48 pm

95% savings rate!... Amazing!

mxlr650
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Re: Elegant's journal

Post by mxlr650 » Tue Feb 18, 2014 5:04 pm

Elegant wrote:C. Quit the government and look for a job in the private sector, get a possibly much better pay but lose any pension benefits, employment stability and the legal ability to retire before the age of 67

D. ERE as soon as my contract ends. This thought excites me because I think I could actually do this. I'm trying to prove I can live on less than 20,000 ILS a year (~6000$), and thus far I have saved about 740,000 ILS ($210,000) excluding my fully owned apartment. The 3% rule would work.
How about semi-retire, and get part-time private sector job?

ohcanada
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Re: Elegant's journal

Post by ohcanada » Tue Feb 18, 2014 6:21 pm

Do you invest in Israeli index fund? I currently have 10% of my stock investments in the EIS etf and believe your countries' index is quite undervalued relative to the US market.

elegant
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Re: Elegant's journal

Post by elegant » Sun Feb 23, 2014 7:11 am

@mxlr650 - yes. given that my expenses are so low I could get a part time job, but as it seems now my internet marketing venture could hopefully save me this trouble!

@ohcanada - yes, I have some exposure to the local market but since Israel is just 0.2% of the global GDP so I only keep it at 5% or so of my portfolio. Specifically I invest in a local ETF that tracks the Tel Aviv-100 index which is the largest index available. I agree the market seems relatively undervalued.

elegant
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Location: Land of Milk and Honey

Re: Elegant's journal

Post by elegant » Fri Feb 28, 2014 6:12 pm

February Update

Well, the decision has been made (for the first time in my life).

After 9 years in the same organization I will be leaving in October 2014. I got many other offers from other functions within this organization but turned them all down. I can't handle this environment anymore.

Meanwhile I have continued my application to a whole different organization. I'm really excited and hopeful that it'll work out well.

ERE wise this has been a good month. My online income is growing steadily and for the first time ever it has surpassed my expenditure!!! but I keep accruing it as unpaid earnings, so it is basically pretax income. I have no idea how much tax I'm supposed to pay so I won't treat this as ERE income until I sort all the tax issues.

I should note that my low expenses are a direct result of work perks. I mostly eat lunch at work. My employer pays for gas, car insurance, car maintenance, life insurance and health insurance. I suppose I will have to bring this to consideration once I quit my job.


February Income:
Paycheck (after tax): 10,059 ILS (2,865$)
Online Income (pre-tax): 1214 ILS (346$)
February ERE income: 10059 ILS (2,865$)

Expenditure:
Barber (twice a month): 120 ILS (34$)
Pharmacy (contact lens solution): 70 ILS (20$)
Internet: 100 ILS (28$)
Taxi: 75 ILS (21$)
Postal services: 11 ILS (3$)
Bus: 7 ILS (2$)
Parking fee: 27 ILS (7$)
Cell phone: 67 ILS (19$)
Eating Out: 194.5 ILS (55$)
Groceries: 115 ILS (33$)
Sweets, Snacks and Soda: 72 ILS (20$)
Total Expenses: 858.5 ILS (242$)

Savings Rate
This month: 91.47%
This year: 71.96% (target: 90%)
Total money spent this year: 5639.5 ILS (1606$)
Total money earned this year (after tax): 20108 ILS (5278$)
Money left to spend in 2014 (20,000 ILS challenge): 14,360.5 ILS (71.8% left)

ERE Net Worth Update

Global Stocks - 106,957 ILS (30,559$)
Israeli Government Bonds -26,398 ILS (7,542$)
Israeli Money Market Fund - 412,952 ILS (117,986$)
Checking Account #1 - 1,432 ILS (409$)
Checking Account #2 - 4,519 ILS (1291$)
Checking Account #3 (PayPal) - 1,500 ILS (428$)
Index linked savings account - 41,878 ILS (11,965$)
Tax deferred account #1 - 98,049 ILS (28,014$)
Tax deferred account #2 - 59,025 ILS (16,864$)

None-ERE Net Worth
Long term retirement account - 3,473 ILS (992$)
The apartment where I live - ~950,000 ILS (271,428$)

Total ERE net worth: 751,853 ILS (214,815$)
Total net worth: 1,705,325 ILS (487,235$)
Number of years supported: 37.5 years
Estimated SWR: 2.66%

DutchGirl
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Re: Elegant's journal

Post by DutchGirl » Sat Mar 01, 2014 2:44 am

Looking good.

And congratulations on your decision to leave your current job. You still have a lot of time left before you will leave. I assume that they know you'll be leaving - so you give them plenty of time to find someone else (and if they don't, that's their fault, not yours). And you've given yourself a lot of time to find something new as well. In all cases, even if you don't have a new job in October, I'm sure you'll survive, financially.

I'm not sure whether you'll need to find new life insurance. If you would die, you would already leave behind a sizeable heritage. Adding say another 1 million ILS to that from a life insurance - what would that do for anyone?

Anyway, I hope March will be another success for you. Good luck!

wizards
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Re: Elegant's journal

Post by wizards » Sat Mar 01, 2014 5:23 pm

Congratulations on the decision, reading your journal I think this is a wise move.

You definately have the financial muscle to cope with this change.

Best of luck!

And second DutchGirl regarding life insurance, no need for this when you have a substantial fortune.

elegant
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Re: Elegant's journal

Post by elegant » Wed Mar 26, 2014 3:56 pm

Just found out my application for the other government organization has been turned down.

I'm shocked. My ego is shattered.

My dream of retiring at 30 years old is coming true... but somehow I'm worried.

I wonder why that is?

Is it because I'm so used to living in boxes? So used to pleasing others? So addicted to the comfort of a regular, global paycheck?

Maybe its because the "retirement" is being forced upon me in a sense?

I reread jacob's post about the requirements for early retirement. I think I meet the basic requirements.

1. I have no debt. My ERE net worth is nearing 250k USD which is an absolutely HUGE sum for a young person in my country. I have zero housing costs as I own my flat. a I sit mostly on cash and am slowly DCA'ing to a 50/50 stock/bond portfolio.

2. I can live on very little money. My 20,000 shekels experiment (6000$ per year) is coming on nicely. I believe I'm gonna make it on even less than that by the end of 2014.

3. I have no desire to ever work again.

My dream is coming true - and I am well prepared for it.

So why am I so worried?

As ever I would appreciate your kind support. I dont know any of you guys personally but I feel I can trust this community more than anyone else.

steveo73
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Re: Elegant's journal

Post by steveo73 » Wed Mar 26, 2014 6:19 pm

^^^

Great post. Well done.

As for feeling down my advice is to let it pass because it will. I would be focussing on the positives rather than the negatives. I am dying to get into your situation and its not happening any time soon.

DutchGirl
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Re: Elegant's journal

Post by DutchGirl » Thu Mar 27, 2014 3:02 am

Hi Elegant,

I know that Henk (viewtopic.php?f=9&t=4891) is also progressing from the working-for-money stage to the not HAVING to work stage. Maybe you and he can also share some fears and challenges? Maybe you recognize something from his story, and the other way around?

Maybe (looking back) this other organization refusing your application is the best thing that could ever happen to you.

Financially, you are ready for this. You are spending less than 3% of your assets every year. And who knows, the next few months or years you might create a new income for yourself, maybe enough to cover your expenses, or even just enough to cover half of them (in which case your withdrawal rate would go down to a ridiculously low 1-1.5%).

I would try to see it as an adventure. But I can definitely understand that it's scary, too! I'm nowhere near where you are (perhaps I can l live five years off of my savings, but definitely not more, so I'll need to save some more before I can call myself FI). Probably when I'm close I will also start agonizing over "will I continue or stop" and "but what else is there to do in life?". But my strong suspicion is that life does continue after reaching FI and after quitting your job - and that we humans should try to look beyond what is 'normal'. If you look at all things happening in nature, how the hell did we end up in 9 to 5 jobs for 50 or so years of our lives?

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