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I did it! I am financially free and I’ve quit my 9-5 job!
It has happened a lot in a couple of months, so this post is to summarize what happened, how I got to FI, what I am doing next, how it is to be financially free, and my general thoughts about life.
I just started a new job. Why did I quit it so fast?
1th of January, I started as a department manager for a small company within the engineering field.
The pay was great. Converted to USD it was a base salary of $115,000 base salary for a 37,5-hour workweek.
Every additional hour was paid $85. And I also got a brand new car which I could use both at work and private.
So why did I quit this?
For two reasons.
Firstly, I quickly understood that this job was going to kill me slowly. Already in the first month, I clocked in at 85 hours, which highly affected my lifestyle. There was no time to work out, reading books, write, and even less time for friends and my partner.
Include commuting on top of it and the fact that I had to be available on the phone all day, it just wasn’t worth it. The tweet below may describe the situation. What good was money after all if I weren’t going to have some use for it?
The best thing money buys is control over your time.— Route 2 FI 📈 (@Route2FI) February 17, 2021
Secondly, I did the math. My stock portfolio is now sitting at $529,000 and I have another $30,000 going into my stock portfolio in April/May due to the sale of our apartment. According to the 4%-rule I’m able to spend approx. $22,5K per year from this portfolio indefinitely.
But it gets better, I’ve started earning pretty serious money from both this blog and Twitter. With that said, I don’t have to touch my stock portfolio at all and I’ll put more money into the market every month as well.
So there you have it. It just didn’t make any sense to me to work a 9-5 when I had enough money in my stock portfolio to cover my living expenses, and since I also earn online I felt more than secure to quit my job. I had enough money, but I had lost my time.
80 hours working, 10 hours commuting, 56 hours sleeping. In other words, 146 out of 168 hours was fading away from me slowly every single day.
I would probably have earned $160-180K/year doing this, but the money simply wasn’t worth it. My perspective would probably be different with a zero dollar net worth, but since I already have a huge chunk in stocks I wasn’t interested in trading away more time for things that bored me.
Working 80 hours weekly with something I love on the other hand wouldn’t bother me at all.
My Route To Financial Independence
I started my journey officially in January 2018. I put my very first $500 into the stock market.
Earlier on I’d focus mostly on paying down my mortgage at a high-speed, but when I
How Is It To Be Financially Free?
It’s a great feeling, but I have to say that it’s a weird feeling not getting that paycheck anymore.
It’s like I’ve been trained and conditioned to get a monthly salary, and now that I’ve stopped working for money I somehow feel a little unproductive to society. I know that I still am productive doing my own things, but I guess you could say I’m institutionalized.
It’s only day 1 of financial independence for me, but it’s not like I’ve completely stopped worrying about money. So why do I still worry? I should be good by now, shouldn’t I? Being financially free may not be the same for you as it is for me. I can’t go out to buy a luxury car and a private jet. However, I am free to spend my 24 hours exactly as I want because my investments are covering my expenses for the rest of my life.
But about that institutionalized-feeling, it feels like I’m not allowed to do this. It’s like I’m wired to go out there to earn money in a normal job, and now that I don’t earn money from a 9-5 anymore, I worry that I somehow may run out of money (even if I know I don’t). I know Mad Fientist had a similar experience when he got FI and quit his work and he wrote this in one of his blog posts:
“Since my last day was on a Friday, the weekend didn’t feel different than any other weekend.
It wasn’t until I woke up on Monday, August 1st that it really hit me.
And boy did it hit me.
You would have expected it to be the best morning ever but it was actually the only time in the entire first year that I freaked out about the whole thing.
I had escaped the normal life script but now I was in uncharted territory.
I was staring into the vast unknown and the immense gravity of the situation freaked me out (much more than I expected).
It’s crazy that I wasn’t mentally prepared for it, considering early retirement was something I had been thinking about and working towards for over five years.
FI was something I talked about and thought about so much that it just became this abstract concept in my mind and didn’t relate to anything in real life.
It was a long-term goal that I guess I never actually pictured achieving.
In fact, after writing and talking about it so much, the entire idea of it became condensed into two meaningless letters – FI.
So the first morning of freedom was tough because I couldn’t process it all.
Try it out for yourself right now.
Close your eyes, imagine waking up on the first day after leaving your job and think about the rest of your life.
You no longer have a normal script to follow and you hopefully have 60+ years of time to fill.
Pretty heavy, right?”
I’m more active on Twitter at the moment, if you want to see what I’m up to, follow me there: Route2FI