Dissatisfaction. Vision. Plan???

How to avoid signing your life over to a mortgage
mountainFrugal
Posts: 229
Joined: Fri May 07, 2021 2:26 pm

Re: Dissatisfaction. Vision. Plan???

Post by mountainFrugal »

FWIW - Ken Wilber was a dishwasher at a restaurant in Nebraska for like a decade while he was meditating, reading and writing when not dish washing. He would use the time while working to practice awareness or think through what he was working on. "Grinding" and spiritual practice are not opposites of one another necessarily. Just googled this video after I wrote this: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=viLvhdtv6eI

Seems like some high level ERE and spirituality combined.

AxelHeyst
Posts: 922
Joined: Thu Jan 09, 2020 4:55 pm
Location: The Mountains, USA

Re: Dissatisfaction. Vision. Plan???

Post by AxelHeyst »

It occurred to me that I might be haranguing you to make better plans when you don't actually know how to do that. Some theory and examples might be helpful.

A plan is a Desired Outcome and a set of steps (instructions) for how to achieve that desired outcome.

The outcome is the thing that is desired. The steps are the means. Sometimes, the means aren't very fun. They aren't supposed to be; they're supposed to be the how. When you are doing step 16.c, you might think to yourself "this sucks, why am I doing this?" and if you have the Plan in mind, you will promptly answer "because if I don't do this, I won't get my Desired Outcome" and keep doing it.

If you don't have the Plan well in mind, then you'll quit, because it won't make any sense to you why you would continue. Also, if you don't trust that your plan will work, i.e. that the Steps will actually result in your Desired Outcome, you'll probably quit. This is why Plans should be good.

Okay let's make some Plans.

Plan 1 Desired Outcome: Travel in South America for >=2 years, searching for my destiny. Ideally 2 years is enough runway time for me to find something to do that's aligned with my purpose that also throws off income - it's a risk I'm willing to take.
Step 1: Live at home to reduce shelter and food costs
Step 2: Seek and destroy all other expenses, to achieve <=$300/mo expenses.
Step 3: Work this UPS job diligently, taking all opportunities for overtime or extra shifts, to make >=$2,000/mo.
Step 4 (Optional): Keep an eye out for other higher-paying jobs or side hustles that could bring me in cash faster.
Step 5: Living with family will be tough. Create a separate plan for maintaining mental health and improving relations with all family members while I'm there. See it as an opportunity.

Step 6: Calculate how much $ I need to be able to travel S America for 2 years:
Income: $2,000/mo
Expenses: $300/mo
Savings: $1,700/mo

One-Way Ticket to S America: $750 (probably high, but let's go with this).
Estimated CoL while in S America: $500/mo
Cost for 2 years in South America: $750 + 24*$500 = $12,750

Maximum months I have to work to be able to achieve my Desired Outcome: $12,750/$1,700/mo = 7.5mo

Plan 1 Analysis:
.If you don't find any source of income in South America, you'll be broke and in S America in two years. You might want to add a buffer for a return flight.
.If serendipity doesn't shine on you, you'll be back in the same situation you are now, just one adventure further along in your life. That's fine if you're cool with it, just go in eyes open.

Modifications:
1. Increase months worked to increase time in S America. Might be wise to do 5 years to give serendipity more breathing room ($30,750$1,700/mo=18months)

----

Plan 2 Desired Outcome: Full Autonomy ASAP so I can do whatever I want for the rest of my life.
Step 1: Keep the UPS job for now; it pays well enough, isn't cognitively demanding, and you have a fair amount of hours left in the day for other pursuits.
Step 2: Find a farm or land somewhere still within biking distance of work that will let you build a microhome (<400SF) and pay <$200/mo rent.
Step 3: Continue living at parents place while building your microhome. (Skillz!!)
Step 4: Within six months, move in to your microhome. Your CoL is now $500 or less/mo, income is $2,000, SR=75%. Not bad, but ASAP means >85%SR.
Step 5: Now that you have your own space, a bit of cash, and a fair amount of time freed up, put your mind to increasing your income. Freelance translation, perhaps, or some other opportunity you kick up. This will take some time, but let's say you're pulling in an extra $2k/mo for $4k total income one way or the other by the end of the first year. Your SR is now 87.5%, $42,000/yr. Five years of this gets you to $168,000, which is 31x. Maybe you consider that FI and call it there. You're not yet 27. (!!!) Buy some tickets to S America: you're going there for as long as you like, inclusive of forever.
Step 6: Goes without saying, but don't neglect all your other projects: Druidry, mindfulness, gardening, practical skills, etc.

Possible Modifications:
1.Keep the UPS job while getting ACE certified. When ready, switch over to that because it's funner and pays just as well or better (?). Otherwise plan stays the same.
2. Keep the UPS/trainer jobs as long as you need, but work diligently to get translation income up to some level. Once you cross some threshold of income, you can go digital nomad and buy tickets to S America and stay there as long as you like.

--

These are just examples to demonstrate one possible format and approach, and approximately what I consider a decent level of detail to get started. I think everyone, regardless of disposition, should have the skill of being able to crank out a few well-formulated Plans (and analyze them critically!) for any given Desired Outcome. Doing it for other people is fine practice if you run out of plans to run on your own life.
Last edited by AxelHeyst on Wed Nov 17, 2021 1:16 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Jin+Guice
Posts: 878
Joined: Sat Jun 30, 2018 8:15 am

Re: Dissatisfaction. Vision. Plan???

Post by Jin+Guice »

jacob wrote:
Mon Nov 15, 2021 9:23 am
IIRC, the semi-ERE concept originally came about because people feared that they might go stale and watch TV all day (instead of doing hippy bullshit) once they no longer needed to earn any money(?). It was a way of stopping short of the goal line in order to keep running so to speak.
Actually my initial motivation was that 5 years was too long for me to work full-time for EvilCorp, or worse, BoringCorp if there was a viable alternative.

RoamingFrancis
Posts: 486
Joined: Wed Oct 30, 2019 11:43 am

Re: Dissatisfaction. Vision. Plan???

Post by RoamingFrancis »

AxelHeyst wrote:
Tue Nov 16, 2021 8:57 pm
Plan 2 Desired Outcome: Full Autonomy ASAP so I can do whatever I want for the rest of my life.
Step 1: Keep the UPS job for now; it pays well enough, isn't cognitively demanding, and you have a fair amount of hours left in the day for other pursuits.
Step 2: Find a farm or land somewhere still within biking distance of work that will let you build a microhome (<400SF) and pay <$200/mo rent.
Step 3: Continue living at parents place while building your microhome. (Skillz!!)
Step 4: Within six months, move in to your microhome. Your CoL is now $500 or less/mo, income is $2,000, SR=75%. Not bad, but ASAP means >85%SR.
Step 5: Now that you have your own space, a bit of cash, and a fair amount of time freed up, put your mind to increasing your income. Freelance translation, perhaps, or some other opportunity you kick up. This will take some time, but let's say you're pulling in an extra $2k/mo for $4k total income one way or the other by the end of the first year. Your SR is now 87.5%, $42,000/yr. Five years of this gets you to $168,000, which is 31x. Maybe you consider that FI and call it there. You're not yet 27. (!!!) Buy some tickets to S America: you're going there for as long as you like, inclusive of forever.
Step 6: Goes without saying, but don't neglect all your other projects: Druidry, mindfulness, gardening, practical skills, etc.

Possible Modifications:
1.Keep the UPS job while getting ACE certified. When ready, switch over to that because it's funner and pays just as well or better (?). Otherwise plan stays the same.
2. Keep the UPS/trainer jobs as long as you need, but work diligently to get translation income up to some level. Once you cross some threshold of income, you can go digital nomad and buy tickets to S America and stay there as long as you like.
This approach sounds really good to me right now. I don't really want to go to Oaxaca yet. I do, however, want to spend the following year as involved in the local sustainability group as possible. I attended a project today for prairie ecosystem restoration and biodiversity preservation - there is a TON I can learn there.

With regards to work, I will keep the UPS job for as long as I need to/can tolerate, but I really need to look for other opportunities. Personal training seems like a good first step.

As for housing, does anyone know of examples of alternative housing that works well in the suburbs? There are only a handful of tracts of land where I might be able to build a microhome. A vehicle could be doable, but it would certainly be less than ideal. The other idea that comes to mind is doing a Rob Greenfield-style tiny house in someone's backyard. Now that I'm more connected with local eco circles, I should be able to use that to get the message out that I'm looking to do something similar.

When I have more energy I can formulate this in terms of a Plan with a Desired Outcome. :D

white belt
Posts: 942
Joined: Sat May 21, 2011 12:15 am

Re: Dissatisfaction. Vision. Plan???

Post by white belt »

RoamingFrancis wrote:
Sat Nov 20, 2021 7:41 pm
As for housing, does anyone know of examples of alternative housing that works well in the suburbs? There are only a handful of tracts of land where I might be able to build a microhome. A vehicle could be doable, but it would certainly be less than ideal. The other idea that comes to mind is doing a Rob Greenfield-style tiny house in someone's backyard. Now that I'm more connected with local eco circles, I should be able to use that to get the message out that I'm looking to do something similar.
Does renting a room in a shared house qualify as alternative enough? That’s what I do and it’s the cheapest option in my VHCOL area. Maybe you can work out a deal with the owner to maintain the property and landscape in exchange for discounted rent. With the right setup, you’ll have space to tinker with gardening and outdoor projects. I think that approach is going to be cheaper than any tiny house or even van living (but not as Instagram worthy).

The biggest issue with tiny houses is zoning. Even if you can find a homeowner who is willing to let you set up a Greenfield situation in the backyard, you still are at risk if nosy neighbors complain.

Jin+Guice
Posts: 878
Joined: Sat Jun 30, 2018 8:15 am

Re: Dissatisfaction. Vision. Plan???

Post by Jin+Guice »

white belt wrote:
Sun Nov 21, 2021 10:52 am
Does renting a room in a shared house qualify as alternative enough?
I would recommend this unless you know how to build a house. Building a house is fucking hard. Even if it's tiny. You know the saying "if it floats, fucks or takes literal years of your fucking life and multiple highly paid trades to construct, rent don't buy."

Unless you super want to know how to build one, just rent a room. Alternatives would be van (still hard/ expensive) or figuring out where you can secretly camp (or just finding someone who will let you secretly camp in their back yard for work). We had a Wwoofer who was camping in fields he happened upon a bunch. He said Hinge was the best dating app for getting women to come meet you in your tent in a vacant field.

AxelHeyst
Posts: 922
Joined: Thu Jan 09, 2020 4:55 pm
Location: The Mountains, USA

Re: Dissatisfaction. Vision. Plan???

Post by AxelHeyst »

White belt and JnG give good advice. Let me clarify some about what I had in mind when I wrote that example Plan above.

By microhouse, I mean something as dead simple and easy as possible. Something like this:
6’x12’ footprint
A-frame 2x6 construction, very much like Greenfields Aframe
Lots of insulation since you live in Chicago
Electrical system: a penetration in the wall that you fish a power strip through, and run an extension cord to a plug in the outside wall of a nearby house.
Water system: a blue plastic jug with a spigot, over a sink, that drains into another bucket. Dump in a greywater sump outside.
Toilet: either humanure bucket style, or just poop somewhere else. Piss in a bottle if it’s too cold outside.
Heating system: electric space heater or Mr Buddy propane and blankets. You won’t need much in 68sf well insulated box.
Cooking: electric hot plate or Coleman propane (5lb tank outside)

That’s the most sophisticated build I recommend as a first project. You could build that for $1,000 depending mostly on insulation and roofing material choice. You probably have a friend or two who could help out.

But, to essentially +1 wb and JnG, don’t try to build that while in a housing situation that sucks. Either be comfortable in your parents house, or get a shared room/space elsewhere for not very expensive that you aren’t desperate to escape. If everything else is going well, and you’re genuinely stoked to learn some basic construction skills, and the idea of spending 500hours on it doesn’t scare you off, then go for the microhome idea.

IF it fits in your Plan. And you should be able to articulate three reasons why it’s a good idea and three reasons why it’s a bad idea, and know ahead of time why it’s probably going to fail if it does, and why you’re okay with those scenarios (graceful failure).

sky
Posts: 1338
Joined: Tue Jan 04, 2011 2:20 am

Re: Dissatisfaction. Vision. Plan???

Post by sky »

If you can find a place to put it, a tent like this one makes a good home and can be removed if needed. Add a woodstove or chinese diesel heater and you can keep it warm even in severely cold weather.

https://www.elkmountaintents.com/produc ... bell-tent/

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