Why do I have to be Financial Independent to live my dream life?

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No matter how far you travel, you can never get away from yourself

Haruki Murakami

This blogpost will tend to be more philosophical than the others I’ve made so far. I’m an idealist and I have a rich inner world. If it were up to me I could easily stayed inside most of the week just doing writing, reading and thinking.

About the quote above and why I relate it to the topic of this blog post: While I dream about FIRE every day, I just realized that basically nothing is going to change in my life after I hit my FIRE-number. I’m still me, I’ll still be the same person. No matter how far I will come in my FIRE journey, I’ll still have to handle my everyday “problems”. It’s not like all my issues and dilemmas will magically dissappear when I got 600.000 $ in my index funds. So why is it a part of me that still believes everything will be fine when I hit that number anyway?

  1. My current work situation: Nothing extraordinary here. I work 9 – 5 as most people do. The problem (as I see it) is that my job drains my creative energy, so when I come home from work I don’t have any more energy to work on what I actually want to do. My leftover energy is spent on my GF, weight training, making dinner/meeting friends and then prepare for the next day. When the weekend arrives, I’m normally so exhausted by work that I don’t have the spark to do something creative.I know I should read Atomic Habits by James Clear to get rid of my procrastination after work, but anyway..is it normal to get so low on energy by a day job? My daily schedule is like this: preparing for work –> 45 min commute –> work –> 45 min commute –> thinking about work and preparing for the next day. It feels like I’m trapped in a hamster wheel! How can I live this life for 6 – 8 more years? Is it an option to start working part time now? E.g. Semi-FIRE? And then delay my orginally FIRE date, so I can enjoy life more today?I want my time back. I feel like there’s never enough time to do things I like, e.g. reading all the books I’ve delayed, writing more, watch more films, spend more time in nature and play board games with family and friends. I believe FIRE will help my situation so I don’t have to work anymore. At least I don’t have to work with something I don’t want to.
  2. Switch to part time work: Will this really be a solution? Or will I be depressed by knowing that my finances isn’t that secure anymore? Because, if I’d work 3 days a week at my project management job, and then had 4 days free time, maybe I would have the time to launch a side-hustle/business on the side? I have some ideas, but really..I think I’m just scared to try something new, to jump into the unknown. It’s like I must now that something is secure before I hop into it. I hate that. The book “Into The Wild” express this a lot better than me:

“So many people live within unhappy circumstances and yet will not take the initiative to change their situation because they are conditioned to a life of security, conformity, and conservatism, all of which may appear to give one peace of mind, but in reality nothing is more dangerous to the adventurous spirit within a man than a secure future. The very basic core of a man’s living spirit is his passion for adventure. The joy of life comes from our encounters with new experiences, and hence there is no greater joy than to have an endlessly changing horizon, for each day to have a new and different sun.”

3. Switch career: To keep my head up some more years, I can switch career to something I probably would like even more. But is it sure I will like my new career more than my current? And for how long will I eventually enjoy this career? Will I get tired of it fast?

Something that has been on my mind lately is to switch career to become a career counselor. That’s quite ironic isn’t it? I want to help other people to find their career, and I can’t even find mine? Anyway..I like to help people, and the most happy moments in my life is when I am able to improve someone’s life. Or what about life coach? Do some people actually work as a life coach for a living?
I found a life coach course I liked here: Life Coaching Certificate Course
Has anyone taken it? And will it be worth it?
It would be extremely interesting to start a buisness as a life coach/career coach.

Why rush to financial independence?

I ask myself these questions:

What’s motivating my desire to rush toward financial freedom in the first place?

What does financial freedom mean to me and why do I need it now?

What will I do with my life after I achieve financial freedom?

For most people (and me included), the common answer is that they dislike their careers and just want to end the pain so they can do something they really want.

Their real goal is to have sufficient financial security so they can give themselves permission to do what they really want with their lives.

They’re in a rush to retire because they want to end their current careers and get a new life. They have entrepreneurial dreams and goals they’re ready to pursue.
Unfortunately, they labor under the myth they need financial freedom to do it.

What Am I Going To Do After I Retire?

I ask myself this question because it is important. Why can’t I just do what I want right now? Do I really need financial independence to do it?

Is my financial freedom goal driven by what I’m “moving toward” or by what I’m “running away” from?
This is a critical distinction because “running away”-goals lead to momentary satisfaction – a honeymoon period – before dismay and discontent set in. “moving toward”-goals are what lead to happiness and fulfillment.

The sad truth is that I think my financial freedom goal is in the “running away”-part. My motivation for FI is to escape the 9 – 5, so that I can be able to design my own life. Complete freedom to choose for my self. But I should change this to a goal that I can move toward.

..because if I had all the time in the world, what would I do? I think I would go for a long vacation. But after that? I know I would use my time to create something. A life coach business for example. Because after all, let’s be honest, I can’t go around all day doing nothing! I would bore myself to death. And that’s something that I think is what all FI-bloggers have in common, wh got so much creativity we just want to show the world, but we’re stuck in the 9-5!

This is my journey for freedom! Will you join me?


3 Replies to “Why do I have to be Financial Independent to live my dream life?”

  1. I really liked this article as I find myself sometimes asking the same questions.
    I already work less hours (90% and hopefully soon 80%), and I seriously think of switching careers. Or maybe a different job will do?

    Concerning “Atomic Habits” by James Clear, my boyfriend is reading it, has implemented some of the suggestions and is happy about it. Having read a few pages myself, I think it’s an interesting read.

    What about your nutrition, can you change something to be less exhausted?
    And your mindset? Do you have too high expectations towards yourself in your job? Can you slow down and still work good enough?
    Can you reduce your commute time or change it so it is less stressful? I bike to work and I love it, a bit of daily excercise.

    I featured your article on http://www.FIREhub.eu

    1. Great to hear that you liked the article! Thank you so much for the feature on FIREhub, I really appreciate it.

      So even if you work some less than 100 %, you still think about switching careers? What do you work with now? And what would you eventually switch to?
      I will definitely read “Atomic Habits” soon.

      I feel like I’ve implemented a good nutrition regime in my daily life, so I don’t think that’s the problem. The reason to why I think I feel so exhausted is maybe partly because I’m introvert. You can read more about my thoughts here: http://www.route2fi.com/2018/11/12/seeking-financial-independence-as-an-introvert-infj/

      But yes, I do have high expectations towards myself, sometimes it feels like I’m never good enough. I wish I just could manage to take it more easy. Tips here is always welcoming!

      My commute time can be reduced to 20 minutes if I buy a car, but that’s not an option. I can always switch job, but I started my new job 3 months ago, so I would like to be there at least a year before I eventually seek new oppurtunities. I bike to work in the summer, but that’s not possible with all the snow now. Wish I could use my bike to work every day as well 🙂
      Where are you at your FI-journey? Do you have a blog too?

  2. Hello fellow FI-seeker!
    I’m from across the pond, and I’m on a similar journey as you 😉

    I’ve recently been asking myself some of the same questions that you raise in this post. I so agree with “running away from something”, rather than “running towards something”. I think this is a process that is going to take time…
    Right now, my only “goal” is to accumulate enough money to give myself some future options. I honestly don’t want to be doing what I’m doing right now, for 10-15 more years. My problem is, if I quit today and needed to find a new job/career (I would need to, as I don’t have enough money NOT to), I really don’t know what I would be gunning for…So I stick it out. In the corporate world. Hating every new day a little more than yesterday 😛
    I am greatful for being where I am though (decent job, decent career, decent home, decent family), so I try to remind myself of that every day! 😛

    Good luck on your journey!

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