Fox's Journey: And Onto the Sunlight!

Where are you and where are you going?
TopHatFox
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Re: Fox's Journey: And Onto the Sunlight!

Post by TopHatFox »

Fuuuuuuck this shit lol. I don't want to do the salary man to FI path for years. It's too repetitive, physically unhealthy, and depressing. With a soon-to-be Masters, now fixed up jaw, and expected 150K, I'll have enough of a base to make some kind of varied life work, and I can improve it over time too! : ) : )

bigato
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Re: Fox's Journey: And Onto the Sunlight!

Post by bigato »

150k is probably good for van life long-term in usa, isn't it? Being smart about spending the minimum and all. After you have all of your time free to you and I'm sure you'll find more ways to earn small money with smaller projects.

TopHatFox
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Re: Fox's Journey: And Onto the Sunlight!

Post by TopHatFox »

I've been thinking that it actually makes a lot of sense to farm and save up an initial base amount to then live an interesting life. And while we're at it, asking ourselves "How do I live an interesting life?" is actually one of the most useful questions.

I think having that base amount takes the worry off being able to house and feed ourselves, and not only frees up the mental energy to focus on long-term projects, but also encourages calm to enjoy the present.

The "interesting life question" is then an excellent brainstorm to what to do next. Is working in a cube farm an interesting life? Hardly, unless if you find something extremely unique to work on. Is hiking the Florida Trail and writing a guide about it an interesting life? Yes, yes it is. Consider doing that.

I think after that the important question is "and how do I sustain an interesting life?" Because while that initial saved up amount is useful to take care of you, it's just a start. Other issues need to be addressed, like staying safe on trails/roads for years, and making $ while out on the road, so that you can continue living such a life for decades to come, and adjust to other life stages over time.

daylen
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Re: Fox's Journey: And Onto the Sunlight!

Post by daylen »

TopHatFox wrote:
Wed Apr 24, 2019 8:09 am
"and how do I sustain an interesting life?"
Learn to enjoy math and history. The last liberal arts.

prognastat
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Re: Fox's Journey: And Onto the Sunlight!

Post by prognastat »

I'm somewhat planning to do that. I plan to stay in my current job which doesn't make for an interesting life until I'm at 4% SWR on my goal then switching to lower paying, but interesting jobs to mostly just cover expenses without saving much but coasting to 3% SWR. Once at 3% SWR I can even switch to jobs that don't pay enough to cover expenses as I'll be FI.

TopHatFox
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Re: Fox's Journey: And Onto the Sunlight!

Post by TopHatFox »

prognastat wrote:
Wed Apr 24, 2019 10:17 am
I'm somewhat planning to do that. I plan to stay in my current job which doesn't make for an interesting life until I'm at 4% SWR on my goal then switching to lower paying, but interesting jobs to mostly just cover expenses without saving much but coasting to 3% SWR. Once at 3% SWR I can even switch to jobs that don't pay enough to cover expenses as I'll be FI.
Yeah, exactly prognastat! Having that initial nestegg, even if it's just enough to feed and house ourselves, allows us the freedom to take on interesting jobs or life paths that pay less or not at all, including lifestyle entrepreneurial paths that can take years to develop.

wolf
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Re: Fox's Journey: And Onto the Sunlight!

Post by wolf »

And how high would that initial nestegg has to be in your opinion? Would it has to be 25x (or 33x) of the annual combined cost for food and housing?

I think in my situation I have achieved that (perpetual budget for food and housing). But instead of switching to semi-ERE (e.g. more interesting job, going on an adventure, change to part-time) I'd rather want to stay on that high-paying full-time job. Why? Because that would be the FASTEST path to full-ERE (-FI). Maybe that's an INTJ-thing. And maybe that's because I am risk-averse. And maybe that is because of the different work culture in Germany. Or mabybe it is because I am in my late 30s. I don't know. Honestly, I am struggling with that. It is a choice between the known and highly optimized status quo with good pay and the unknown, uncertain but fun future.

So THF, what would you do? Would you work 2-5 years in that high paying (but sucking) job, in order to achieve full-ERE? Or would you switch to semi-ERE, when you reached your initial nestegg?

I find it a difficult decision, because what I thought some years ago that I wanted to do some distant future, is not the same thing I want to do now anymore. Time progresses, so do you.

TopHatFox
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Re: Fox's Journey: And Onto the Sunlight!

Post by TopHatFox »

150-250K USD in a 60/40 portfolio and 20K in checking/savings sounds like a good amount. And the ability to work seasonally or do some small projects or long-term projects that lead to at least a few K/yr.

I dunno, I don't really stay in high paying but sucking jobs for longer than a few months, so that point is moot for me. If I get some sort of counseling job, I could see doing that for a few years. I guess I'd rather live an interesting life in my 20's and 30's, rather than a routine and money-rich one, just with a cushion of $ to fall back on.

I wish my current job wasn't so stressful so I could just coast...but alas, such is life at times.

In other news, I get my braces off in 2 weeks, and I finished 4 out of 14 MPA classes. : )

classical_Liberal
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Re: Fox's Journey: And Onto the Sunlight!

Post by classical_Liberal »

I'm all for Semi-ERE and for experimenting with different lifestyles. I also think certain things are best done at certain ages, and now is the best time for you take on these adventures. A couple of devil's advocate points though.

1) It is highly likely your priorities will change later in life. Van-life, slow travel, thru-hiking may not be what you want to do in a decade. So keep this in the back of your mind. There is nothing wrong with changing lifestyles, just don't put all your egg in one basket at such a young age. Prepare yourself for a successful transition to other lifestyles in the future if your priories change.

2) You have a ton of things going for you. Great savings for such a young age, low level spending skills. However, another you should consider is your education. You have an undergrad degree from a top tier university and soon will have a Masters. This is a huge asset that gives you significant "street cred" in the salaryman and workingman quadrants. This opens up opportunities that 90+% of the population does not have. Without usage this asset will depreciate. A decade of nonusage will make it highly unlikely this education provides you anywhere near the leverage it gives you today. I suggest you design the "seasonal work" and "projects" part of your plan to utilize your education in some form so that it does not lose value.

2Birds1Stone
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Re: Fox's Journey: And Onto the Sunlight!

Post by 2Birds1Stone »

1) Priorities seem to change daily/weekly here ;)
2) Comparison is the thief of joy

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Re: Fox's Journey: And Onto the Sunlight!

Post by unemployable »

classical_Liberal wrote:
Wed Apr 24, 2019 8:50 pm
2) You have a ton of things going for you. Great savings for such a young age, low level spending skills. However, another you should consider is your education. You have an undergrad degree from a top tier university and soon will have a Masters. This is a huge asset that gives you significant "street cred" in the salaryman and workingman quadrants. This opens up opportunities that 90+% of the population does not have. Without usage this asset will depreciate. A decade of nonusage will make it highly unlikely this education provides you anywhere near the leverage it gives you today.
As a point of reference, I am finding my engineering degree from a top-10 university, not to mention a very difficult to obtain professional certification, is essentially worthless after nearly a decade since my last real job. Now I made that bed and am surviving on a sub-4 withdrawal rate, but try to stay hungry and don't stagnate.

I would have tried to do a better job of networking while still working and leaned on it more after my first couple years of quitting. Work sucks, I get it, but try to build bridges rather than burn them.

Jean
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Re: Fox's Journey: And Onto the Sunlight!

Post by Jean »

same as unemployable. Your degree is probably worth much less than you imagine. Don't rely on it alone.

TopHatFox
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Re: Fox's Journey: And Onto the Sunlight!

Post by TopHatFox »

classical_Liberal wrote:
Wed Apr 24, 2019 8:50 pm
1) It is highly likely your priorities will change later in life. Van-life, slow travel, thru-hiking may not be what you want to do in a decade. So keep this in the back of your mind. There is nothing wrong with changing lifestyles, just don't put all your egg in one basket at such a young age. Prepare yourself for a successful transition to other lifestyles in the future if your priories change.

2) You have a ton of things going for you. Great savings for such a young age, low level spending skills. However, another you should consider is your education. You have an undergrad degree from a top tier university and soon will have a Masters. This is a huge asset that gives you significant "street cred" in the salaryman and workingman quadrants. This opens up opportunities that 90+% of the population does not have. Without usage this asset will depreciate. A decade of nonusage will make it highly unlikely this education provides you anywhere near the leverage it gives you today. I suggest you design the "seasonal work" and "projects" part of your plan to utilize your education in some form so that it does not lose value.
I'm not really sure how the priorities would change to be honest. I've been dead set on not having kids since I was a kid tbh. What else is there to do besides staying healthy, developing hobbies, traveling, and trying to form some decent relationships? Seriously, what other priorities are there?

I agree though, the future is unforeseeable, and at least some sort of part-time work would be good to keep healthy anyway.

Jean
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Re: Fox's Journey: And Onto the Sunlight!

Post by Jean »

Sacrificing your life for the future of other's people kids?

TopHatFox
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Re: Fox's Journey: And Onto the Sunlight!

Post by TopHatFox »

Eh

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Re: Fox's Journey: And Onto the Sunlight!

Post by unemployable »

TopHatFox wrote:
Thu Apr 25, 2019 11:09 am
I'm not really sure how the priorities would change to be honest. I've been dead set on not having kids since I was a kid tbh. What else is there to do besides staying healthy, developing hobbies, traveling, and trying to form some decent relationships? Seriously, what other priorities are there?

I agree though, the future is unforeseeable, and at least some sort of part-time work would be good to keep healthy anyway.
Well, those are really vague goals. What hobbies? What kind of relationships with what kind of people? "Staying healthy"... don't we all want that? Travel where, and what kind, and to accomplish what? Do you want to go to Nepal to see what Nepal is like, or are you there to climb Everest, or are you there to hook up with some Nepalese babe and take her back to the States?

I didn't think I'd spend 10 summers in the Colorado mountains. Nor did I think that after spending so much time in the Colorado mountains I'd be looking at living somewhere else. I certainly didn't think I'd be looking at buying a place to live somewhere without a like $150k/yr job.

My life and outlook thereon has been completely different at 19, 29, 39 and 49... well I'm not 49 yet, but I've changed a lot in the last decade. Gained a lot more focus, for sure.

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Re: Fox's Journey: And Onto the Sunlight!

Post by jacob »

TopHatFox wrote:
Thu Apr 25, 2019 11:09 am
What else is there to do besides staying healthy, developing hobbies, traveling, and trying to form some decent relationships? Seriously, what other priorities are there?
Wealth, wisdom, fame, power, enlightenment, making a difference, legacy, estate, status, respect, security, honor, competence, compassion, faith, authenticity, fun, winning, liberty, independence, dependability, ... and many others. Which one are prioritized in slogans, toasts, mission statements, or coat of arms says a lot about what a culture or a person values. Think of the selection as the filter of possibilities. Adding one or subtracting one can completely change what you're driving for.

classical_Liberal
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Re: Fox's Journey: And Onto the Sunlight!

Post by classical_Liberal »

TopHatFox wrote:
Thu Apr 25, 2019 11:09 am
I'm not really sure how the priorities would change to be honest.
No one is sure, that's life. The only sure thing is that they will, if they don't you haven't grown much as a person. This is why you shouldn't burn bridges, it might come in handy later if you even want to cross a certain river again. Two people chimed in on how your education will be worthless in a decade if you don't use it. Since you're gonna need some income, choose to earn it by using part of your education. Then that bridge is maintained for later usage.

Or burn it, it's your life.

TopHatFox
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Re: Fox's Journey: And Onto the Sunlight!

Post by TopHatFox »

I don't think I have an issue with using my education or working. I think that's fine and it can be good to work to keep sane and buffer the portfolio/FIRE plan. I think the larger issue is using the education/working while doing the things I want, such as thru-hiking, van travel, and other adventures.

bigato
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Re: Fox's Journey: And Onto the Sunlight!

Post by bigato »

I think that some people are wanting to tell you that in the future you may want something that you don’t now, and that something may cost more money that you can afford, and thus you should keep the option of making more money in case that happens.

Or, in my opinion, it’s smart to keep earning some side money here and there even after you think you have enough. And keeping some profitable skills honed for when/if they are needed. Or have “getting rich” as a side-goal for the long run.

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