How much does income affect your post-retirement lifestyle stability?

One of the most spirited debates within the early retirement community revolves around the influence that a high level of savings (as well as income) has on a person’s ability to retire early.  I have argued in the past that although a high income can help, an aggressive savings schedule is a far better measure to determine a person’s fitness for early retirement.

From our honeymoon on Maui
From our honeymoon on Maui

My rationale was simple: it is a person’s lifestyle that ultimately determines how long he or she can survive without a full time job post-retirement.  Meaning, a more frugal lifestyle will generally enable earlier retirement than a less frugal lifestyle, regardless of income.

But yet, I would be remiss if I did not address the obvious monkey in the room. Continue reading “How much does income affect your post-retirement lifestyle stability?”

Maybe spending all that money in my 20s was a good thing

With all this talk about early retirement and the hilarious financial mistakes that I made in an earlier life, it is tough to consider the possibility that maybe, just maybe, all that money that I recklessly blew through in my 20s might actually turn into a good thing.

A pile of moneyI have written before about how imperfect I truly am.  Throughout my life, I have made some pretty common financial mistakes that I am literally paying for to this day.  While I never saddled myself with high interest credit card debt, my spending habits were, shall we say, less than frugal.

For example, a year out of college I bought a used Corvette convertible for $25k, which happened to be just under a half year’s salary at the time.  Just months out of college and BOOM, I had already blown through nearly half of my salary. Continue reading “Maybe spending all that money in my 20s was a good thing”

Life is short, so live a little…they say

“Life is too short.  I wanna have some fun now.”  Or, maybe it goes something like “Life’s short, live a little”.  However it is said, the underlying point remains pretty clear: don’t delay your ability to spend some serious cash.  After all, “life is short”.

And you know what?  I agree.  I 100% agree that life is too short and, well, let’s have some damn fun before it is too late, shall we?

Working until you are 60 or older does not sound like much fun to me.  Life is short, so why spend the most productive years of your life in an office?  Live a little, damnit.  Live!

Courtney and me on a San Francisco brunch cruise
The wife and me in San Francisco

To me, the best way to ensure a lifetime of having fun is to not work a day past your 40th birthday (or, perhaps better said, be financially independent by then).

Imagine for a minute hopelessly trying to blow out that trick candle that one of your jackass friends placed on your 40th birthday cake and thinking to yourself how freakishly awesome life is going to be in your 40s and beyond not commuting into an office, answering to managers, filling out status reports or delivering PowerPoint presentations.  Ladies and gentlemen, this sounds like a hell of a lot of fun to me! Continue reading “Life is short, so live a little…they say”

Lookie there! Spend money on experiences, not things!

Over the last couple of years, my wife and I have transitioned over to a philosophy of spending money on experiences rather than stuff – like trips to Sedona, Disney World, Glacier National Park for my birthday this coming July…even a pumpkin patch last October to get us into the mood for Halloween.

Our Hawaiian honeymoon
Our Hawaiian honeymoon

We simply enjoy experiences a lot more than stuff.  To both my wife and I, the excitement of buying more stuff just wears off much too quickly, which generally leaves yet another object that once brought a smile to my face in the back of a closet, or a car that has just become any ol’ car rather than (cue exciting sound effect) “a Cadillac”. Continue reading “Lookie there! Spend money on experiences, not things!”

Lookie there! Apply intermittent fasting techniques to your spending habits

Welcome to the very first installment of “Lookie There!”, a series of posts that are designed to highlight interesting, thought-provoking or downright weird financial news or opinions from others bloggers on the Internet.  The idea is to find the most interesting content out there and talk about it – right here.

Pointing fingerToday’s topic is courtesy of Travis Pizel from Enemy of Debt, and he wrote about applying the principles of intermittent fasting, which is a dieting (read: “lifestyle”) technique where food is only consumed within an 8-hour window of time each day, to your spending habits. Continue reading “Lookie there! Apply intermittent fasting techniques to your spending habits”