Gilberto de Piento's Journal

Where are you and where are you going?
Gilberto de Piento
Posts: 1511
Joined: Tue Nov 12, 2013 10:23 pm

Re: Gilberto de Piento's Journal

Post by Gilberto de Piento »

I've been working from home for about two months now. Honestly I'm not working much because no one is really asking for output from me and because I get held up whenever I need input because everyone is moving very slowly.

While I like not having to go to the office and not having to put much time into working, life is very unfulfilling and disconnected. I don't hate spending a lot of time around the house but I don't like it either. Now in addition to long-term life trajectory limbo my life also has a daily routine that is unmoored.

A motivated person would use this time wisely by trying to make more money or further their career or otherwise improve their lot in life. I've made some small steps in this direction but there are some barriers to doing anything big. Again, a motivated person might get work done but so far I really haven't taken advantage. On again off again depression doesn't help, the distraction of the internet doesn't help, and a bad workspace doesn't help but these are mostly excuses.

I feel like this is a good dry run for being retired. It has taught me some things about what works for me and what doesn't. For one, I am capable of sitting around doing not much for some time but it doesn't suit me long term. Just hanging out is easy but unfulfilling and having little to keep me busy along with some other problems are making me angry and depressed. Also, I thought maybe my partner and I would come together to find things to do but my partner has retreated further instead.

That said, this time is only comparable to a poorly executed retirement situation. If I really was retired I could find a fun job to do or volunteer or travel or take on a project I care about. Instead I am tied to a work phone and computer waiting to see if I need to jump into action. I also can't join up with other people who are free because of the danger of covid. This experience hasn't put me off retirement but has confirmed my suspicions that retirement will need to be structured appropriately or it will just create new problems.

"The cure for depression is action."
Yvon Chouinard

Thanks for reading. Hope you all are having a good day and staying safe.
Last edited by Gilberto de Piento on Tue May 12, 2020 5:30 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Frita
Posts: 571
Joined: Thu Mar 15, 2018 8:43 pm

Re: Gilberto de Piento's Journal

Post by Frita »

Good for you in using this time to further envision what would and would not work for you in early retirement! The isolation of COVID19 definitely limits options one has.

I found that my spouse and I had very different ideas of ER. It actually takes better communication due to the increase in time together. During these last two months, it’s been more stressful simply because there are no away from home outlets.

Hang in there, better times are coming!

Gilberto de Piento
Posts: 1511
Joined: Tue Nov 12, 2013 10:23 pm

Re: Gilberto de Piento's Journal

Post by Gilberto de Piento »

Frita wrote:
Tue May 12, 2020 11:29 am
Good for you in using this time...
Thanks Frita!

Gilberto de Piento
Posts: 1511
Joined: Tue Nov 12, 2013 10:23 pm

Re: Gilberto de Piento's Journal

Post by Gilberto de Piento »

May 2020

Due to low spending, the $1200 government stimulus check, and Google finally deciding to cut me a check for some money they owed me I had the best month since 2018 in terms of total spent, SWR, and years to FIRE.

Also, if you add the money that a 4% withdrawal rate would result in plus my internet income for the month you get about $20 more than I spent (see the chart with the red, yellow, and green lines below). I'm going to take this to mean that in May I was financially independent. ;) This has happened a couple of times before but the income and expenses this month are the most realistic that they have been. It would be great if I could do this all the time.

Due to some gains in the market my assets are close to where they were before the covid crash.

Expenses
Alcohol & Bars 78.06 (high spending, trying to keep local brewery going)
Bills & Utilities 108.21
Business Services 72.32 (a couple sites renewed)
Charity 50.6 (donating to food bank)
Clothing 21.34
Gas & Fuel 19.23 (low)
Groceries 230.61 (low)
Gym 46.95
Mortgage & Rent 790.73
Sports 44.8 (bike maintenance)
Taxes 200
Total -FI 1662.83

Income
Paycheck 2590.81
Amazon 61.87
Google 402.36
Internet Ads 64.48
Checking 2.77
457b 1500
Stimulus Money 1200
Total +FI 5822.29

Savings 4159.46
Savings wo 457b 2659.46

% Spent 29%
% Saved 71%

SWR 6%
SWR with Internet Income 4.4%

Years Remaining 3.8
Years Remaining with Interest 3


A quote that feels tailor-made for this moment in time:
After it has been so long manipulated, chopped up, habituated to intense stimuli, and jerked around from one lurid but empty object to another, our attention is so fragmented we cannot sustain it long enough to create anything independent of the programs that surround us. We lose our capacity to sustain thought, understand nuance, and put ourselves in another person’s shoes, Susceptible to any simplistic narrative with immediate emotional appeal, we are easy targets for not just advertising, but for propaganda, demagoguery, and fascism. In various ways, all of these serve the money power.
Charles Eisenstein, Sacred Economics

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Gilberto de Piento
Posts: 1511
Joined: Tue Nov 12, 2013 10:23 pm

Re: Gilberto de Piento's Journal

Post by Gilberto de Piento »

June 2020

For June spending was higher than I would like it to be. $250 of the excess spending was on fixing up the house which is a good investment. I also had to spend $236 to cover my cell phone plan for another year (if you pay ahead with Republic you get two months free).

I'm halfway through the year and continue to be on track to meet my goal of saving $30,000.

Expenses
Alcohol & Bars 60.88 (Still trying to support local businesses instead of buying cheap beer at the grocery store)
Bills & Utilities 92.97
Business Services 33.98
Charity 60.6 (Food banks and NPR)
Clothing 42.66 (bought some summer clothes)
Entertainment 16.5
Gas & Fuel 60.3 (got gas twice - should have waited until July to fill up again but it was very low and it is good to keep the tank full these days)
Groceries 364.54 (high)
Gym 46.95
Home Improvement 250.78 (working on the house)
Internet 23.73
Mobile Phone 236.77 (once per year payment to Republic - get two months free for paying ahead)
Mortgage & Rent 790.73
Restaurants 32.5 (trying to keep local businesses going)
Taxes 200
Total -FI 2313.88

Income
Paycheck 2545.11
Amazon 66.08
Internet Ads 44.7
Checking 2.84
Gift 35
457b 1500
Total +FI 4193.73

Savings 1879.86
Savings wo 457b 379.86

% Spent 55%
% Saved 45%

Years Remaining 10.7
Years Remaining with Interest 5

SWR 8.8%
SWR with Internet Income 8.4%


Compassion is the keen awareness of the interdependence of all things.
Thomas Merton

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Gilberto de Piento
Posts: 1511
Joined: Tue Nov 12, 2013 10:23 pm

Re: Gilberto de Piento's Journal

Post by Gilberto de Piento »

July 2020

A three paycheck month resulted in a some good numbers with a savings rate of 68% and a withdrawal rate of 7.1%. The bulk of the spending above the fixed costs was due to home repairs and donating to political campaigns. The house spending continues to look like a good investment.

Not shown in the numbers and charts below but I am a few thousand away from having a net worth of a half million dollars. :shock: I can't use all of this for early retirement though, as much of it is tied up in a house and pension. I have about $335,000 in FIRE assets as shown in the last chart below.

I'm still enjoying working from home. I work every day but it just feels a lot less burdensome than having to physically go to work. I get just as much done but I don't have to spend as much time working on it because there aren't pointless meetings and the time sitting at a desk doing busywork.

My personal life sucks but unfortunately I can't go into details here even though I could really use a place to vent.

Expenses
Bills & Utilities 129.54
Business Services 33.98
Charity 120 (Donated to Biden and a local politician)
Clothing 48.25 (New swim suit)
Gas & Fuel 52.13 (Filled car twice, had to do some driving)
Groceries 194.75 (Not bad)
Gym 46.95
Home Improvement 339.41 (More repairs)
Mortgage & Rent 790.73
Restaurants 18.66 (Helping to keep local places in business)
Shopping 23.73 (Kitchen stuff)
Taxes 200 (Annual taxes spread out across the year)
Total -FI 1998.12

Income
Paycheck 3968.66
Amazon 32.89
Checking 2.96
457b 2250
Total +FI 6254.51

Savings 4256.39
Savings wo 457b 2006.39

% Spent 32%
% Saved 68%

SWR 7.1%
SWR with Internet Income 7%

Years Remaining 6.1
Years Remaining with Interest 4


Do what you can, with what you have, where you are.
Theodore Roosevelt

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