FI or bust; FBeyer.

Where are you and where are you going?
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cmonkey
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Re: FI or bust; FBeyer.

Post by cmonkey » Tue May 29, 2018 2:58 pm

For the cat issue, spread citrus peels around. Cats HATE citrus.

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FBeyer
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Re: FI or bust; FBeyer.

Post by FBeyer » Thu Jun 14, 2018 6:36 am

This is Water:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8CrOL-ydFMI
I paraphrase:
If all you care about is freedom, you will end up feeling trapped.
I've come across the idea expressed in this video several times over the last couple of years. To some extent it ties in with Stoicism, but to a greater extent it ties in with Buddhism. In order to live: kill yourself.

If you can't use your intellect to do so then use your education and develop some plasticity of thought.
Plasticity is paramount if you ever:
  • want to get out of whatever hole you find yourself in.
  • find yourself in the same situation over and over again, and you want that behavior to change.
  • discover that certain fears are starting to take over your life.
  • need a constructive outcome from an argument or negotiation.
  • want to change as a person.
  • want a fulfilling existence.
You have become your ego, and that needs to die in order to free up the rest of you.

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Hobbes
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Re: FI or bust; FBeyer.

Post by Hobbes » Fri Jul 13, 2018 3:22 pm

Beg pardon good sir!
So I dutifully perused your journal for references to your book, and, after trying the forum search function (didn't go well, despite several search queries) and searching each page in your journal individually for 'book,' I was only able to locate references to how long it is. And that it's being written. And that it has something to do with learning, and possibly something about coaching people. Or not. I also learned that you read _a lot_ of books all at once!

So: your book? I'd be interested to hear what it is about, and, when it's ready, how one would go about procuring a copy?

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FBeyer
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Re: FI or bust; FBeyer.

Post by FBeyer » Sat Jul 14, 2018 3:35 am

I think the FI community is myopically focused on 'saving money' rather than spending money right. There is a tendency to focus on money, rather than what people have done with their lives in order to live closer to their ideals. People think FI is about money, when it is really a matter of lifestyle engineering. So therefore, I wanted to write a book that deals with the good life, and how to find it, and in particular show how to live A Good Life without spending more money on it than you should.

The idea is to first explain the psychological biases that keep us from doing a lot of the things that we instinctively know we should, but we are afraid of for various reasons. And also expand on certain other ideas that are useful when you want to Get More for Less. Then I want to provide the reader with a long list of things to do/try/experiment with in order to gauge their own agency, competency and to experience those various psychological biases in a completely safe (but admittedly sometimes also weird) environment.

The overarching theme is the idea of spending right, not spending less, and what is right for everyone of us is completely unique. Therefore it is imperative that people learn what 'enough' means to them, so that they can be free to follow their dreams in the safest, most productive manner possible. That requires some experimentation and I'll try to propose a framework for doing so.

Financial independence is mentioned in a separate section, but it is not the main focus of the book. The book is rather akin to Your Money or Your Life, actually, except I suggest a playground of things to experiment with, in order to experientially dial in to one's personal needs. EREs will recognize a lot of ideas from Jacob's book, but overall it is meant to be much more accessible to the layman.
In terms of frugality it IS rather extreme, once you start applying it, but I never mention a specific spending level, or set artificial boundaries on expenses. I'll have to trust that the reader will know the right level for that, over time. My hope is that the extreme levels of frugality will start to sneak up on people so they 'discover' how little you can really live on, rather than set it as a goal at the onset (like some tend to do with ERE where the current 'goal' seems to be 7000$ per year.)

Furthermore, the book is built like a toolkit, so the topics are separate and can be applied independently of each other. That way the reader can mix and match. That also means the books gets rather long, even though you might only need a subset of the information in it.

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Hobbes
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Re: FI or bust; FBeyer.

Post by Hobbes » Sat Jul 14, 2018 1:11 pm

I like moving the implicit focus from gathering money to lifestyle engineering, paired with experimentally determining the level of spending that is just right to support those lifestyle goals for the individual. The former strategy always reminded me of Smaug from the Hobbit, in the sense of being a coiled serpent guarding your wealth-pile from any would-be spending (even if that spending could be justified).
But you mention 'living the good life': out of curiosity, what do you mean by that? Said differently, what does that look like to you?

ThisDinosaur
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Re: FI or bust; FBeyer.

Post by ThisDinosaur » Sat Jul 14, 2018 1:50 pm

FBeyer wrote:
Sat Jul 14, 2018 3:35 am
So therefore, I wanted to write a book that deals with the good life, and how to find it, and in particular show how to live A Good Life without spending more money on it than you should.
How far along are you in writing this book? The idea reminds me of an article on Less Wrong. Assuming the science there is legit, you could apply a leveraged Pareto principle technique to optimizing happiness obtained for effort expended. This sort of book should be heavy with inspirational sounding quotes that can be used in promotional materials.

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FBeyer
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Re: FI or bust; FBeyer.

Post by FBeyer » Sun Jul 15, 2018 8:30 am

ThisDinosaur wrote:
Sat Jul 14, 2018 1:50 pm
... This sort of book should be heavy with inspirational sounding quotes that can be used in promotional materials.
Which is pretty much what it is currently. So I'm glad you pointed that out!

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FBeyer
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Re: FI or bust; FBeyer.

Post by FBeyer » Mon Jul 16, 2018 7:51 am

Hobbes wrote:
Sat Jul 14, 2018 1:11 pm
... out of curiosity, what do you mean by that? Said differently, what does that look like to you?
Missed this the first time around: Are you asking me what my personal Optimal Life looks like?

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Hobbes
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Re: FI or bust; FBeyer.

Post by Hobbes » Wed Jul 18, 2018 1:48 pm

That was my original intent. But also, as a follow on, is your personal optimal life what you argue for in the book? If not, what do you argue for?

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7Wannabe5
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Re: FI or bust; FBeyer.

Post by 7Wannabe5 » Wed Jul 18, 2018 3:06 pm

Sounds interesting. Will you send your readers out into the woods to see if they can live on nothing?

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FBeyer
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Re: FI or bust; FBeyer.

Post by FBeyer » Thu Jul 19, 2018 5:34 am

No, safe environment is the keyword here. It's all meant as experimentation that not only encourages a bit of introspection but also, hopefully, ends up showcasing (in an experiential rather than speculative manner) how 'deprivation' can willingly and consciously be incorporated into part of everyday living and most what it takes to mitigate the feeling of deprivation is a change of mindset.
It's not less, it's just different.
The whole idea of experimenting with deprivation is so alienating that I'm including an entire section of the book to show and tell the reader what the point is, and how to get the most of it.

It's all VERY benign, trust me, but since people are usually so averse to change I feel like these self-inflicted lessons have to come with a sea of caveats.

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7Wannabe5
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Re: FI or bust; FBeyer.

Post by 7Wannabe5 » Thu Jul 19, 2018 6:10 am

Are you also going to suggest something like the opposite? For instance, after not owning a car for years, I am enjoying zipping around in one this summer. Also, whenever I don't own a television for a number of years, I find that I am even amused by the new commercials when I start watching again. IOW, are you going to offer suggestions in alignment with the notion that hedonistic adaptation is cyclical?

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FBeyer
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Re: FI or bust; FBeyer.

Post by FBeyer » Fri Jul 20, 2018 1:44 am

No I am not. I do address (unless it's still stuck in my mind rather than on paper) that a sense of fulfillment and a sense of comfort are often in opposition.

You are so far removed from the intended audience of the book it's not even funny. I do not 'trust' the average recipient of 'my message' to take the idea of toying with hedonic adaptation as anything but an invitation to keep scaling up. Once crazy people like you and I have our shit figured out, we can experiment with our own neurochemistry at will, because we have an experiential basis to fall back on before things get out of hand. Roughly speaking. The mechanism by which people like you and I function is obviously different but the end result is somewhat the same.

I'm trying to help people gauge their values, and their own agency towards making more from less, not from intermittent upscaling.

I do, however, think it's an amazing concept.

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