The why is important. Really important. I’ve written about it. Others have written about it. Without a reason, your goals won’t make a lot of sense and, frankly, you probably won’t reach many of them. 

Not because you aren’t good enough to reach them. No, that’s not it. 

It’s because you’ll find another goal and then focus your attention on that until the next best thing comes along. 

Trust me, I’ve been there. I know what it’s like to set a goal because it sounded good to me at the time and then, as time gradually dragged on, I would lose interest in that goal and wind up changing course – sometimes, drastically. Every time, the cause was the lack of a reason. 

My why was missing.ย 

The more we understand our why…the purpose…the reason we’re living differently than most of those around us, the better prepared we will be to see it through. To stick it out. To not lose focus. 

Today, I’m spewing that reason all over this blog post…but, it won’t be just text-based. Nah, there’s enough text on the web. 

I’m going to use photos. 

My reason for early retirement

Okay, let’s get some last and final text out of the way before we get to the good stuff. I promise to make it good.  

Why did I retire early?

  • I hated corporate America
  • I enjoyed a solid and loving upbringing and never had to wonder where my next meal was coming from; I had my college paid for by my folks; I got a good job right out of college and always made good money and bought the things that I wanted to buy; but still, for some reason, I wasn’t happy
  • I don’t really care what other people think of my choices; it’s my life and not theirs; I’m responsible for what happens to me
  • I am incredibly internally motivated; I can make up my own goals and go after them without the need for oversight and structure
  • I don’t believe that being frugal and living an inexpensive life in a 200 square foot Airstream is all that challenging or extreme
  • Frankly, I suck at following somebody else’s rules, and
  • I didn’t want to spend the rest of my life sitting in an office; I want to explore and build a life I’ll be proud of at the end

Here’s the deal: I may never own a home again, and that’s okay. I believe homeownership to be entirely overrated (though I do agree that there are benefits – both financial and emotional, to owning a home). 

Expensive cars don’t impress me like they once had. 

Every time that someone asks me “What do you do?“, I never say that I work in information technology. That’s too normal. Too restrictive. Instead, I say that I’m either “early retired” or “we travel for a living”. 

This is why I retired early – in photos

Below is a collection of photos that I’ve shot this year. My favorites. These photos represent why we sold two homes and 90% of our possessions, packed up our stuff and set sail into the sunset in our Airstream. 

If I had to do it all over again, I wouldn’t change a thing. 

Thanks for reading!

Zabriskie Point in Death Valley for sunrise
Artist’s Palette in Death Valley just before twilight
Zabriskie Point in Death Valley for sunrise
My wife Courtney was super excited for the sunset over Badwater Basin in Death Valley
One of the many awesome camp spots – this was in Long Pine, CA
Sunrise over Mono Lake, CA
The southern Oregon coast
One of our campsites above 9,000 feet in the Colorado Rockies
That time we literally stayed on wine vineyards in Oregon
Triple Falls in Glacier National Park…which took a little “back-country hiking” to get to
Great Sand Dunes National Park in Colorado
A uniquely-designed Earthship outside Taos, New Mexico