Many of us have a bad habit of talking about and thinking about risk in entirely the wrong way. There’s no perfectly safe way to go through life, and that’s true with our money and true with everything else, too. There’s rarely a safe option and a risky option, but instead different options with different risks. This is the story of something terrible that drove that point home for me and Mark this year.
Today we’re digging into the archives to pull out everything I think anyone pursuing early retirement should know, pulling from some of my favorite posts from the past that have been buried by dozens or even hundreds of posts since publication.
The most recent debates on health care reform have brought out a sentiment that has reared its ugly head before: the idea that health is totally within our control, and therefore anyone who’s not entirely healthy is somehow at fault. Why that’s both false and bonkers, and why it matters.
For years, I labored under the cozy illusion that there were “safe” choices in life and “risky” choices. And of course I was drawn to the ones that felt safer. Until I saw with my own eyes, in my own finances and my own life, that sometimes the safest choice of all is actually the most risky. And that realization changed everything.
Lately I’ve been making it sound like we both want to retire as soon as humanly possible, but that’s not true. I’m the one who wants out ASAP, while Mr. ONL is playing the role of the financially prudent one and trying to keep us working for one more year, as we’d always planned. But that’s not where we started — he used to be the one who wanted to quit ASAP, while I wanted to be sure we were prepared times ten. Today: the story of our retirement timing role reversal.
Today: our reasons for being optimistic about our vision for early retirement, and for making things work in spite of the inherent risks.
it’s natural to be future-focused, when you’re spending a lot of your mental energy planning for something in the future. the only problem: the future is never guaranteed.
bloggers working toward early retirement love to ponder the big questions: how will we spend our time once we’re no longer shackled to jobs we don’t love? what else will we do for fulfillment? where all will we travel? how long do we need our money to last? […]
the whole idea of early retirement of course feels like a risky proposition. but here’s the thing, to misquote the princess bride: life is risk. anyone who says differently is selling something.