wolf's journal

Where are you and where are you going?
wolf
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Becoming a Renaissance Man #02

Post by wolf » Tue Sep 17, 2019 12:18 pm

In my post #02 I write about how I‘ll aproach the barriers of change.
It is based on Jacob‘s book „Early Retirement Extreme“, chapter 1.2, page 12-14.

As Jacob writes in his book, the following variables can be used to overcome the barriers of change.
1. Increase dissatisfaction with present situation
2. Strengthen vision of the future situation
3. Build a plan to get from the present to the future
4. Lower the perceived cost of the plan.

Increase dissatisfaction with my present situation
I have to ask myself honestly with what I‘m not satisfied at the moment. Many aspects of my life are quite good, but in order to get where I want to be, I need motivation. And that motivation comes partly from a dissatisfaction of my present situation. Currently I have no framework in place, which guides me. By that I mean an overall life guidance. Yes, I got some systems in place, e.g. ERE, Finances, Family, etc. But I don‘t live by a framework, which is based on an identity. Due to the missing framework I don‘t have a definite scope. I can‘t say what should be definately out-of-scope or should be in-scope. When I found out about ERE, I had some purpose. And to be honest I focused the first few years more on the financial part of it. The positive side-effect of this is, that money is (currently) no problem any more. One could also say that the money problem is solved, but I don‘t like that absolute statement, because it isn‘t certain for alltime. I‘m also dissatisfied, in the context of a renaissance man, that I focus too much on salary work. It‘s an „activity“ I do full-time and it is not balanced with other activitities I‘d like to do. My financial progress is solid, but my non-financial topics, e.g. hobbies/interests/social etc. are stagnating. I‘m a bit depressed when I compare my way of life with the life of a (modern) Renaissance Man. In addition to that I don‘t feel many flow-moments anymore. When I decided to start ERE, to define milestones, to set SR goals, to work towarks something in the distant future, I was overwhelmed by all the aspects of it, but that has ebbed. I read much about Renaissance Man and I think of it as well, but I do too little to become one.

Strengthen the vision of the future situation
What‘s important here, is that I visualize all the positive aspects of the life of a Renaissance Man. Of course everybody has a unique interpretation what a Renaissance Man is and what one does. So I gotta also visualize the future situation. I can do that by reading book and stories about dead and alive Renaissance Man. That strenghtens also my intrinsic motivation to become one. I ask myself what would be the life of a Renaissance Man look like. I would be a more interesting life. It would be a more balanced life with many different parts, aspects, domains and areas. My life would be more flexible and less fragil. I could easily adapt to changing circumstances and challenging situations. It would be more than just financial resilience. Risk mitigation would be skill-based, not money-based. Leading a life of a Renaissance Man leads to a multi-stage life, which is predicted to become more important for persons living and working in the 21st century.

Build a plan to get from the present to the future
My plan consists of an identity, processes (like habits, project-activities, routines, rituals) and several moduls in my Web-of-Goals. Most of all my plan is based on habits. I‘m a person who does many things regularly, therefore I favour habits. Positive habits must be obvious, attractive, easy and satisfying. It is a process-oriented approach. I become what I do regurlary. Outcomes are a result of my processes. That‘s part of the plan. I reflect myself, the plan and the process from time to time. That‘s the second important part of the plan: self-reflection, if I‘m on track. I also appreciate and process feedback from you all in this forum. From Ray Dalio‘s book „Principles“ I learnt to be (hyper)realistic and to follow a dream with great determination. But I don‘t neglect the importance of goals. Achievable goals can be motivating too. If you progress towards them and if you achieve them, you‘ll be proud. So, I‘d like to use the best of the two approaches (processes and results). With that I hope to improve the success rate of my plan.

Lower the perceived cost of the plan
I start from the Status Quo. Where else could I start from?!. The higher the cost of the plan, the less the success rate. Therefore I plan with small, incremental steps and improvements. One step at a time. I brainstorm actions, measures, Todos, activities, habits and goals that make sense to me. Everything I decide, set or define must be achievable. I do what creates value. If something creates value, then the benefits are higher than the cost. Whenever it is possible I‘d like to look out for investments in my future self and I try to avoid cost, which have no positive impact. In order to lower the cost of the plan, I‘d like to catch „2 Birds with 1 Stone“ ;) , e.g. get others to pay me for work, where I can learn something new too. And also very, very helpful is ERE. In Jacob‘s book there are several ways to lower the perceived cost of the plan.

I hope that what I wrote was not too confusing and not too abstract, but I must say that it‘s challenging to write all my thoughts about that in Englisch. I wanted to, because „language“ is another module of my web-of-goals.

By the way, I use a two-digits sequence number for the „Becoming a Renaissance Man“-series, e.g. this one is #02, because that is my usual approach: underpromise and overdeliver. It would be great, if I‘d make it to #99. Well, one post at a time, I guess.

classical_Liberal
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Re: wolf's journal

Post by classical_Liberal » Tue Sep 17, 2019 1:13 pm

Another great post @wolf.

I've been pretty adamant about my hatred for SMART goals. Implicitly this means goal oriented behavior in general, because I beleive SMART goals cause one to become overly goal focused vs process focused. I think this leads to many people forgetting that it's the process towards goals in which life is lived. Hence focusing on goals and measurements (or the idea of smaller goal post inside of larger goal) gets in the way of happiness, which leads to failure of goal because the person doesn't like the chosen process/measurements.

I'm going to use the batch cooking example, because @J+G commented about how he hated batch cooking, you, OTOH, loved it. Now, a goal may be to create a low cost, robust, renaissance style food/eating system. I have no problem with a general goal like this. It allows for experimentation in process. A SMART goal would be one that includes specifics, measurements, and a timeline. For example, I will batch cook my meals weekly, go to local market and only purchase ingredients needed for that meal, waste no food, spend less than $25 per week, and stick to this for 6 months. This is great... if it turns out someone loves batch cooking.

I would argue other effective means to the first, non SMART goal exist. One could purchase staples and spices, then go to local market biweekly and only purchase loss leaders, choose to learn to cook meals with whatever these varying ingredients happen to be. Or one could do the same with staples and scavenge food and learn to cook with those ingredients. Or one could choose to only cook with what they can grow or trade for, etc.

Through the experimentation above, without specifics or measuring points, someone can choose the style that is most appropriate to their situation and preference. If the original goal was SMART and batch cooking related, a person like J+G will become frustrated and may just give up. "ERE is impossible!" This is why I think the true definition of renaissance man has to do with experimentation in process, vs goals. The flexibility that such experimentation creates inside of a lifestyle leads to Renaissance behavior.

Looking back at the ERE book, I see why @Jacob decided to avoid specific goals or approaches to ERE as much as possible. There are so many. Yet, we still have to be conscious of most people (me included up until about a year ago), who are simply wondering what the mechanics of living on 7-8K a year look like. ie a "How to guide". It's no small feat for a Wheaton 2-3 to even open their mind enough to believe it's possible to do this, even more difficult without concrete examples of how people are doing it. So some examples are necessary, yet simultaneously we must avoid pigeonholing what ERE or Renaissance behavior is to those specific examples. Not an easy task for any person to undertake. The one thing I am certain of, overly goal centered behavior will not work. It leads to the fascination with certain goals which are easily measurable, like "the number", and ignores process as it's difficult to measure.

Anyway, this turned out to be a bit longer than I anticipated. I look forward to more updates!

bigato
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Re: wolf's journal

Post by bigato » Tue Sep 17, 2019 6:11 pm

Nice considerations, c_L. This has been growing in the back of my head for a few years already. Good concise way to describe it: goal oriented vs process oriented. Ray Dalio would say that he rather create a system within which he will improve over time, instead of focusing on specific goals. One concrete example regarding expenses would be: budgeting (setting goals) vs just tracking the expenses and reviewing them month by month from time to time. This could also be called theory vs reality.

wolf
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Re: wolf's journal

Post by wolf » Wed Sep 18, 2019 1:29 am

Different people have different thoughts about the lifestyle of a Renaissance Man. And for me that's ok, of course. I have to find my own path, set my own definition, and visualize my own future situation of the Renaissance Man. That's the reason why the path is non-linear with many different options. There are many alternatives, decisions to make, routes to take. For me it's also true exploration of (personally) undiscovered territory. I do know methods, tools, navigating skills and maps, though, thanks to Jacob's "navigational" ERE book.

I find SMART goals in itself not good nor bad. It depends on the usage and purpose. I think I'd like to take a process-oriented approach primarily with elements of a results-oriented approach secondarily. And to be fair, setting an identity is a result. It's a Northstar for me. It guides the way and is helping me to find my way through the undiscovered territory. And there will be no one absolute measure to me what the life of a Renaissance Man must look like. It's an ideal, which I strive forward, but I'll never reach it completely, because everything is changing all the time. Circumstances change. People change. Framework/methods/tools change. Etc.

So I "becoming a Renaissance Man" is more like an incremental approach to me. There will be phases, sprints, moments to decide, but the Northstar stays the same. And if I find something more important, something more meaningful or useful, then I'll have to evaluate, compare and decide. Never say never. Who knows where this path will lead? Important to me is (at the moment) that I start on a path towards meaningful to me, which is kind of an ideal/Northstar. Because as I already said in "dissatisfaction of present situation", I long for an overall framework, for a new mission or project in life. That has to do 1) because the FI-side of the ERE-equation is pretty good progressing and 2) there are changes in my private and work life. Both together have been creating a void over the last months, that I think must be filled with something new. And I can't think of something better than becoming a Renaissance Man. It fits together with what I thought, what I read about, what I can visualize my future to be look like.

To come back to what c_L said. My approach is two-folded: process-oriented primarily, results-oriented (tactical side) secondarily.

wolf
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Becoming a Renaissance Man #03

Post by wolf » Fri Sep 20, 2019 3:33 am

Becoming a Renaissance Man #03

Describing the baseline of the models of my Web-of-Goals.

In today‘s journal post I‘d like to ilustrate a rough baseline for the moduls of my Web-of-Goals. With it I‘d like to set a starting point. A baseline will help me with comparisons with changes. So what I already did is to brainstorm topics of the moduls of my Web-of-Goals. I‘ll post those topics in another post, because chronologically and logically those have to tend more towards outcomes and to be defined processes and habits.

So, let‘s start by listing elements of the baseline of each module in my Web-of-Goals. (in no special order)

PHYSIOLOGICAL personal asset
I run, go for long walks in the woods, exercise hiking, exercises with my body weight, do High-Interval-Intensity-Training, ride my bike, stretching, yoga, try to eat almost always a plant-based diet, avoid sweets and snacks, sleep overall pretty good, wash my hands regularly over the day and after I went into a building/apartment/house, etc., know first aid.

As you see, I list (at the moment) only things I do. If I listed also elements which I don‘t do, it would be to open and a never-ending story. Therefore I start only by listing things I do.

PERSONAL DEVELOPMENT
I read regularly books and articles about personal development, ego development, psychology. I do a quarterly review, status and outlook, which I call QURSO. I reflect and measure my personal life satisfaction and contentment. I measure my Mental-Wellbeing-Scale (MWBS). I write a journal, in which I document lessons learned, important events, feelings and thoughts. I review the highlights of each week in retrospect. I do know many personality typing models and use them as good as I can in daily life.

TECHNICAL personal asset
I know a lot about personal computers and other IT stuff. I use linux. I like to write technical documents and system-thinking. I‘m not a nerd, but I comprehend technical stuff easily. Abstracting and analyzing things is always happening in my mind. Work-wise I enjouy working in a technical environment, more than the business side.

LANGUAGE
Although I‘m not a huge fan, others say that I‘m good at presenting, moderating meetings and coordinating by protocols, todo-lists, etc. German is my native language, but I‘d love to read and write and speak and listen in English. In addition to that I do software development and computer programming, which is in my mind another „language“. I value words and the correct meaning of them. Regurarly I like to read high-quality newspaper. I write focus sprints (xx minutes of intensive writing). I do journal reviews. Communicating correctly without misunderstandings is important to me. I‘d like to ask „why“ a lot. I‘d like to ask more than I do like talking. I‘m good at listening.

EMOTIONAL personal asset
Meditating, listening to music, watching good movies and TV series (IMDB>7). Within my journals I reflect feelings, goals, actions and thoughts. Emotional intelligence is important to me, but it‘s less developend than cognitive/mental intelligence. Emotions are my soft spot, because I‘d like to behave rationally (see also System 2 and „Econ“ of „Thinking Fast, and Slow“ by Daniel Kahneman). Most of the time I‘m within my own head and introspective. I‘m an introvert naturally.

SOCIAL personal asset
I am able to SmallTalk, but I don‘t do it proactively. I can work on my own, but I like also to work within teams from time to time. I meet my family regurlarly and phoning my parents. I like to be part of a community which is in line to my own understanding of the world (ERE-Forum with you). Besides my neighbours I don‘t have any other friends/“social contacts“ outside of family and colleagues at work. Socializing comes not naturally to me. If people deserve it (when trust is high and/or I know that people learn and develop) I help them without any second thoughts.

ECONOMICAL personal asset
Well, as you guess, economical topics are one of my special domains in life. I live a pretty efficient life (compared to the average). Saving money is a side-effect of this lifestyle. All money-related things are easy for me. I reduce all kinds of waste in my life and try to help trusted others to do as well. I‘m living in accordance to many things what Jacob wrote in his book about the „Lifestyle of a Renaissance Man“.

ECOLOGICAL personal asset
As I try to life money-wine efficiently I also try to avoid ecological waste. I know (not do) permaculture. And I use the ecology around me (aka nature) to do sports and recreation. But other than that I don‘t have any further connection to ecological topics practically, e.g. I don‘t grow my own vegetables and I don‘t know the names of birds, plants.

POLYMATHS SKILLS
I already live a Renaissance Man lifestyle, but my income source is coupled directly to my salary work. I know about the polymaths skills, such as adaptability, flexibility, creativity, etc, but I don‘t make use of it. Much of my time I work full-time as an employee. I have already read books about polymaths skills, system thinking, etc., but as I already said doing is challenging for me. I love to live in a world of theories.

INTELLECTUAL personal asset
As an INTJ/P I like to read a lot. I collect many data and information. I re-read books. I love mental work which stimulates my mind. I‘m a method-person, who likes to make use of systems and frameworks. INTJ/P!

Well, that‘s it, a kind of baseline of the modules of my Web-of-Goals. Becoming a Renaissance Man is non-linear and I don‘t know what kind of value such a journal post (about baseline) will have in the future. It‘s important to me that I progress my path, and with every journal post I do so. Before I‘m able to come up with new ideas, to-be processes and habits and actions, I have to know where I start. In order to find my way I have to know where I‘m now. Defining my baseline is therefore important.
Last edited by wolf on Wed Sep 25, 2019 12:51 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Bankai
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Re: wolf's journal

Post by Bankai » Fri Sep 20, 2019 6:30 am

Excellent series of posts! Do you believe full time job is compatible with renaissaince man ideals/lifestyle? I find it difficult considering the amount of life-energy full time employment requires. Do you think your unsatisfying progress might be due to this as well?

wolf
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Re: wolf's journal

Post by wolf » Fri Sep 20, 2019 8:27 am

Thank you Bankai!

Is a full time job compatible with renaissance man ideals/lifestyle? Well, I guess it depends of the job role and job circumstances.
I can imagine myself working full time in a generalist job/role, then yes, I think so. And if I change my employer or the sector I'm working in, in order to learn many different skills, then yes, I think so. If that is realistic? I don't know.
And it also depends what you mean by full time. Here in Germany (and I guess in other European countries as well) it is possible to work full time with only 35 hours per week. If you add flexible hours, working from home and having great independence of how you do things and many vacation days, it could help achieving a (my initial version) of a renaissance man lifestyle.

I share your conserns as well, that full time employment require a great amount of life-energy, if it has a negative effect on yourself. However, with job-crafting, full time work can also have a positive effect on yourself, regarding life-energy. If your motivated and stimulated, than I wouldn't say that it is only absorbing life-energy.

How do you think about it? Do you believe a full time job to be compatible with a renaissance man lifestyle?

Forskaren
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Re: wolf's journal

Post by Forskaren » Fri Sep 20, 2019 11:01 am

I see that the full-time work give you a cash flow while decreasing your free time. That combo favor using money to solve problems, while not favoring the broader toolbox of the renaissance man.

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Bankai
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Re: wolf's journal

Post by Bankai » Fri Sep 20, 2019 5:07 pm

It seems possible for certain people in certain circumstances. Myself, between sleep, work, commuting, maintenance & workout, I maybe have four hours left in the day, and these are the hours with the lowest energy, i.e. before sleep. So, after being up for 12 hours it's not easy to muster energy and motivation for DIY projects/learning etc. Doing anything more than 1-2 hours a day is not sustainable (tried that many times with net negative results).

I agree that job crafting helps, but only to a point. I also have a quite flexible working arrangement with some work from home & 7 weeks of holiday, but it's insufficient to fully recharge and be able to commit significant time to multiple priorities. Maybe 1-2 on top of daily exercise, but not 6-7 like on your chart.

I'm maybe overly pessimistic, but all the accounts of people following renaissance man ideal I seen were from people who either never had a full time 'job' or have already quit one.

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Re: wolf's journal

Post by jacob » Fri Sep 20, 2019 5:22 pm

I've always lived <20min from work (Chicago was the one exception. The dog was really limiting in finding something close in the right price range.) So, 8-10 hours work, half an hour commute, 10-15 min HIIT at home, 8 hours of sleep, one meal a day that's cooked in batch, that leaves about 6 hours per day to do other stuff. Not having a TV or not paying attention to it helps a lot.

It's also easy to overestimate all the skills one ought to be able to learn in a year or two ... and underestimate all the skills one can learn in 10-20 years.

I usually have several things going at the same time. This often makes it feel like there's no immediate progress on any on them, but it all adds up. I also note that some on the forum are way more type A than I am in terms of getting things done with long lists and scrums and project planning. I never spent any energy or time on that ;-) The renaissance ideal is supposed to be about being a rounded human... not an A++ super-student. At least I think so.

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Bankai
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Re: wolf's journal

Post by Bankai » Fri Sep 20, 2019 5:38 pm

There's also maintenance of self and surroundings as well as time required by SO (and others) to keep the relationship(s) on track. I suspect six hours of free time is overly optimistic unless someone is a king of efficiency.

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Re: wolf's journal

Post by jacob » Fri Sep 20, 2019 6:20 pm

I also kept my surroundings simple(*) and found an low-maintenance SO.

However, I do see where you might be coming from. Since we moved into this brick-house of ours, I do find myself spending more time on irrelevant upkeep. In principle I can write this off as learning technical skills, but it's the kind of skills that would be irrelevant if it wasn't for the house, e.g. rooting a bathtub drain, painting windows, or building kitchen cabinets. It's a lot easier to reduce time spent solving problems or dealing with things by avoiding them in the first place.

(*) Deliberate voluntary simplicity helps a lot. Cut out all that is unnecessary. VS is an easier/wiser version of minimalism which risks focusing too much on overoptimizing.

mooretrees
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Re: wolf's journal

Post by mooretrees » Fri Sep 20, 2019 6:24 pm

It is really fun to read about your journal entries about the Renaissance Man. I like how carefully and methodically you are approaching it, it seems like that is the way to make progress. I am curious to read what you will want to achieve with your web-of-goals. Looking forward to more posts!

wolf
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Re: wolf's journal

Post by wolf » Fri Sep 20, 2019 11:50 pm

Thank you mooretrees! Approaching things carefully and methodically is a feedback I also get often at work. One has to stick to one's strengthes.

Jacob, you mention a good point here. I do indeed follow a deliberate voluntary simplicity and I live in an apartmant, which needs low-maintenance. My surrounding (where I live in) in that kind of sense is pretty simple. That helps me to focus on activities, which are important to me.
After I come home from work I can immediately start with learning, reading, etc. What's also helping is that I can work from home, which improves my time efficiently additionally. By going by bike from and to work I destress, because my way leads through nature. Efficiency and having free time is not any of my concers. Effectivity on the other hand is where I want to improve, therefore my interest in the Renaissance Man skills/ideal/development.

wolf
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Becoming a Renaissance Man #04

Post by wolf » Wed Sep 25, 2019 1:21 am

Becoming a Renaissance Man #04

Brainstorming aspects of the moduls of my Web-of-Goals

Before I can think of concrete outcomes and habits, I brainstorm and associate aspects, which are on my mind, when I think of the modules of my Web-of-Goals.

PHYSIOLOGICAL personal asset
health, illness, physical security, medicine, mind and body, stress, resilience, fragality, anti-fragility, relaxation, food, nutrition, sport, fitness, becoming older, regeneration, fast, physical strain, toxic, first aid, water.

PERSONAL DEVELOPMENT
Loevinger‘s stages of ego-development, ERE-Wheaton-Levels, human needs, identity, ego, Big5, psychology, „Thinking Fast, and Slo“ by Daniel Kahneman, self-reflection, self realization/actualization, MBTI and other personal typing models, preferences, beliefs, psychological development „The Evolving Self“, dreams, success, progress, different layers of personal development.

TECHNICAL personal asset
physical constructions, complexity, mechanics, electronics, information technology, communication, media, math, networks, innovation, R&D, degrees of freedom, first, second and third order effects, system analiysis, architecture,

LANGUAGE
programming languages, precise way of talking and speaking, focus sprint in writing, comprehensibility, understandability, writing, talking, speaking, argumentation, discussing, presenting, asking, making statements, verbal/nonverbal, English, German, grammar, syntax, meaning of words, dialoge, understand and being understood, structure, making a point.

EMOTIONAL personal asset
art, history, music, awareness, consciousness, integrity, authenticity, goals and actions, outcome and process, degree of personal influence, Emotional Intelligence, relationships, being human, interdependence vs. Independence/dependence, beauty, empathy

SOCIAL personal asset
family, friends, social network, trust, small talk, socialize, make new contacts, grow relationships, helping, team work, civic activism, solidarity, community, communication, collaboration, democracy/meritocracy

ECONOMICAL personal asset
finances, budgeting, calculating, ROI, inflation/deflation, purchasing power, trade, competition, cash flow, price and value, investment, cost-utility analysis, income, expenses, savings, GDP, real/net/gross returns, asset allocation, wealth, capital, net asset, equity, business, money.

ECOLOGICAL personal asset
sustainability, self-supporting, permaculture, theory of evolution, weather, climate, plants, animals, nature, suvival of the fittest, ecology, universe, earth, elements, loops/circulation/cycles, climate zones, interdependencies, feedback loops

POLYMATHS SKILLS
adaptibility, flexibility, multi-stage life, Renaissance Lifestyle of ERE, asking why, curiosity, many areas of interest, role models, multidimensional, nonlinear, creativity, doubt, challenge status quo, lifelong learning, diversity, explore, find out, knowledge on several subjects, universal education, theory AND real life adaptation, intrinsic motivation, creating something new

INTELLECTUAL personal asset
multiple intelligencies, IQ, brain development, global awareness, critical thinking, analyzing and solving complex problems, cognitive and mental abilities, rational thinking, visual thinking, capacity of reaction, ingenuity, methods, frameworks, models of thinking.

---

I avoided to look up the words on wikipedia.., because I wanted to see what I can brainstorm by myself. I did it in German and translated it into English. There are many more aspects for sure, but that‘s what I came up with. If you do have remarks, feedback, etc. about what is missing/important/…, please share.

I‘m still figuring out my path to become a Renaissance Man. Unluckily there is no blueprint. It is non-linear and I have to find it for myself. But I guess, that‘s beneficial too, because then I have to compute everything and have to be creative.

wolf
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Becoming a Renaissance Man #05

Post by wolf » Sat Sep 28, 2019 1:01 am

Becoming a Renaissance Man #05

Reviewing and rethinking my investment strategy in regards to economical personal asset of my Web-of-Goal.

Due to the ongoing debate about indexing, I'm reviewing and rethinking my investment strategy. Two things started that process: Investing is of course part of my ECONOMICAL modul of my Web-of-Goals, so I'd like to combine it with "Becoming a Renaissance Man".

So far, I thought I would be good with a portfolio, completely with ETF Index funds. And I worked many hours to create a perfect (of course in my subjective opinion) portfolio, in regards to asset allocation, ETFs, region allocation, etc. But from the beginning I saw the dominance of BlackRock ETFs in my portfolio. It is (too) easy to create a portfolio with ETFs indexes. And I thought I was successful, because of the diversification it provided. Currently I‘m invested with about 50% of my available money. I‘m invested in government and corporate bonds of emerging and developed markets. Those provide a small source of passive income. And I‘m glad that I did started with investing two years ago. Since then I waited for the market to come back, in order to start investing in equity index funds. (Un)luckily I didn‘t start to invest. I don‘t know if its good or bad. Maybe it was bad, because I missed possible gains. Or maybe it was good, because I would have made a huge mistake, investing my money all in ETF index funds. I don‘t know, I‘m figuring it out at the moment.

So there I am. 50% of my money sits in bank accounts and waits to be invested. My original plan was to start investing latest in November this year with DCA in equity indexes. As you can imagine, I‘m not so sure of that anymore. That leads me to reviewing investment strategy.

I came up with some ideas, but nothing is set. I thought of:
- Dogs of the DOW / DAX / NASDAQ100 / FTSE100 / NIKKEI225
- Rebuilding the index Global Titans 50
- Rebuilding part of MSCI World
- partly investing in indexes, which covers Small Caps, REITs, Emerging Markets
- Using factor ETFs in order to select companies, that are worth investing in
- researching Dividend Income/Growth strategy

There are advantages and disadvantages, as always. I also have to consider local (German) tax policies, such as tax on dividend income of foreign companies („Quellensteuer“). In addition to that, it is important to consider my situation, such as SWR, retirement income, knowledge about investing, availability of data and information of equities.

Another point is to consider the total expenses rate of the investment strategy. A portfolio, consisting only with ETFs, would be about 0,5% annually. That‘s something, but it would be not too high. On the other side, if I‘m able to reduce that TER by investing by myself it could save some money. But of course there is the risk of earning lower than the average when investing by myself.

And there is the following factor, to be considered Sleeping well at night.

Well, that‘s it for the moment. Of course it is to be continued. I‘m going to do more research.

wolf
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Becoming a Renaissance Man #06

Post by wolf » Thu Oct 03, 2019 3:47 am

Becoming a Renaissance Man #06

Where to start and how to continue?

During the last few weeks I committed myself to the path of becoming a Renaissance Man. I started with a big momentum, have been highly motivated, and created a plan to start with.

Now, after writing about the barriers of changes, the status quo, the modules of my web-of-goals and the habits I currently do, it is time to be creative.

Parallel to my thought process I read „Ultralearning“ by Scott Young, „Atomic Habits“ by James Clear and „Chop Wood, Carry Water“ by Joshua Medcalf. In addition to that I also re-read the chapters about the lifestyle of a renaissance man in the ERE book. All those booked helped me to create ideas, think about areas of improvement and issues in my current lifestyle.

I don‘t measure any progress. Nor have I installed a controlling process. Basically it is a process-oriented approach and only if I define concrete milestones or actions I am going to use a controlling process for that specific milestone/goal. Primarily I want to focus on habits and processes.
Controlling a nonlinear approach is very difficult. Therefore I don‘t have any expectations in mind. It is just moving forward, progressing and doing my best I can. What I do have in mind, is, if I use time, energy in order to work towards that identity of a Renaissance Man.

Writing is one of my favourite habits. Everyday in the morning I write approximately one page about selected topics. I would call this a strength of mine. I‘m interested in it, it motivates me and I have the feeling, that it creates ideas and connections between different topics.

So I started a new daily habit. I write exactly one page about „becoming a renaissance man“ each day. I hope to build a solid mental/cognitive foundation to create ideas and connect topics. I would relate that habit to my intellectual module of my web-of-goals.

I was writing yesterday and an I had another idea. I has been always very interested in English. Some years ago I wrote my private journal completely in English. As you know, I also defined a language module in my web-of-goals. Therefore I was thinking to start writing completely in English in my private life (not at work). It‘s challenging, because I‘m used to write everything in German, but it could be beneficial to my language literacy skills.

Vaikeasti
Posts: 35
Joined: Fri Aug 30, 2019 3:02 pm

Re: wolf's journal

Post by Vaikeasti » Fri Oct 04, 2019 3:42 am

Thank you so much for this journal. It is so well written, thought and organized.

I think that different languages can give you insights to different frames of mind. Learning the way a language works can help you see things differently.
For example I know some english, swedish and finnish. By comparing the similar words and thinking about the etymology of them in these languages I have had many insights and chuckles. Even the differences of what is a closed compound (which is yhdyssana or "unitedword" in finnish) and what is not is thought provoking.
And I find that it is easier to me to express myself in english than in my native finnish. Like writing fiction or brainstorming happy thoughts.
But writing official text is easier in my own language.

You really are an inspiration.

Nuuka
Posts: 88
Joined: Thu Sep 26, 2019 11:22 pm
Location: Finland

Re: wolf's journal

Post by Nuuka » Fri Oct 04, 2019 9:39 am

One approach to planning is “scenario-based” design. It is used when (due to complexity) it is not possible to define systemic (all encompassing) decription.

In scenario-based design, small stories are used to describe sequences of events and actions by involved phenomena and actors. You can think them as short stories, short cartoons or short video clips. These scenarios are used to illustrate parts of the future.

Could you develop some scenarios how your Renessaince Man acts in certain situations? For example:
- Renessaince Man’s father or mother dies (family values)
- Renessaince Man finds a wallet with credit cards and cash on the street (honesty)
- Renessaince Man is in office party and department secretary is a bit drunk and starts to flirt (respect for others)
- Renessaince Man has committed to something but finds out that he is no more able to honour his commitment (integrity)

Can you come up with scenario where your 2019 Wolf and 2019 Renessaince Man would behave differently?

wolf
Posts: 925
Joined: Fri Jan 06, 2017 5:09 pm
Location: Germany

Re: wolf's journal

Post by wolf » Fri Oct 04, 2019 11:59 am

Thanks Vaikeasti for the kind feedback! I think too, that in some cases I prefer to write in English. I guess English is sometimes "easier" than German. In addition to that, the English focuses more on the doing, the verb. Whereas German focuses more on the noun. But I like doing more. It sounds more lively. Is that the same (verb vs. noun) in Finnish?

Thanks Nuuka for the idea! It has helped me right now. I just did my focus sprint, which is writing one page on my computer. I wrote about the scenario, when/if a Renaissance Man works full-time and if that is compatible. That was the topic of today, dedicated to you :-)

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