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My Unglamorous Early Retirement Lifestyle

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My Unglamorous Early Retirement LifestyleAre you suffering from FIRE envy? Do you follow early retirement bloggers and are jealous of their glorious no job lifestyle? You don’t have to worry about that at Retire by 40. It is spring break here, but we’re just staying in town for a relaxing staycation. No exotic trip for us this week. Today, I’ll share my unglamorous early retirement lifestyle and you won’t be envious any longer. I escaped the rat race, but we are still living an ordinary lifestyle. In fact, I think we live the most “normal” life out of all the FIRE bloggers I know.

Our lifestyle didn’t change much after I retired from my full time job. We live in the same home, drive the same car, go out occasionally, and travel a few weeks every year. That’s just like your life, right? That’s why I’m so relatable. 🙂 The only big difference is that I don’t have to go to work at the office anymore. That’s enough for me and I’m a lot happier these days even without a lot of other changes.

I follow other FIRE bloggers too and they all seem to have much more exciting lifestyles than us. They are homesteading, RVing, traveling, summiting mountains, building custom home, sailing the seven seas, and enjoying life in exotic locations. Actually, that sounds somewhat exhausting. We live a more normal lifestyle and it suits us just fine. Why didn’t I make a drastic lifestyle change like other FIRE bloggers? Read on…

Why we live a regular lifestyle

There are a few reasons why we haven’t made big changes in our lives. Let’s go through them one by one. I will make this short today because I’m taking most of this week off from blogging. RB40Jr is out of school and being a dad is job 1 this week. BTW, he is so happy to have a short break from school. It’s amazing how much pleasure kids derive from such a simple thing. It’s not like they’re doing much in 1st grade.

  1. Mrs. RB40 is still working. She isn’t quite ready to retire yet. We can’t make drastic changes to our lifestyle until she retires from her full time job.
  2. Our kid is in school and we love our school district. We probably will stay in this area after Mrs. RB40 retires. My family moved every few years when I was a kid and I don’t want that for our kid.
  3. We like our lifestyle. Our life is pretty damn good already. After I got rid of that pesky office job, I am at a good place in life. I didn’t need to make more changes to be happier. As for Mrs. RB40, she loathes change and surprises. She prefers to stick to the things she knows. She’s happy with her life at the moment.

So that’s why we haven’t made more changes. Once RB40Jr is off to college, I’d like to live in Thailand part time. That will give us something to look forward to. Meanwhile, we’re fine with a regular lifestyle.

My weekly schedule

So what does my early retirement life looks like? It’s actually pretty structured now that RB40Jr is in school. When I first became a SAHD/blogger, it was a lot more disorganized. It’s hard to have a schedule with a small kid at home. Anyway, here is my current schedule when school is in session.

RB40 weekly schedule

  • Family – family time, cook, meal time, hangout with kid, and leisure time.
  • Blog (red) – write, research, email, network, etc…
  • Gym – 5 times per week
  • TM – Toastmasters
  • Flex time – work, deal with rentals, chores, relax, family time, or whatever needs to be done.

Blogging time is pretty interesting. I publish a post on Monday and another on Thursday. That’s why I set aside time to work on Wednesday and Sunday nights. I need to do a final edit and work on the graphics for the post.

For spring break, all the work time during the day turns into flex time. I’m working on the blog whenever I can. That’s mostly at night. Next week, it will be back to normal schedule.

My Instagram feed

You can a better sense of my unglamorous ER lifestyle if you follow me on Instagram. Here are some recent samples.

instagram retirebyforty

  • Spring cleaning, Mrs. RB40 succumbed to her OCD tendency and made 4 soups (that’s way too much soup), blog post.
  • New Pink Grapefruit marmalade from Trader Joe’s!, homemade noodle soup with char siu pork, didn’t win Hamilton tickets 🙁
  • Blog post, ate out at The Aviary (so damn delicious), Rogue Ales sent me a sample of their new coffee & beer concoctions.

instagram retirebyforty

  • Beautiful sunrise, taco al pastor, 16 pull ups.
  • Mrs. RB40’s origami creations, cashew nut chicken, Mi Quang noodle soup at Rose VL
  • Mini book review – Sea of Rust, pizza at home, blog post.

This is pretty representative of my current lifestyle. These days, life is mostly revolving around kid, blog, gym, food, and local fun. That’s okay with me.

No need to be envious

Alright, that’s about it for today. Follow me on Instagram so you’ll have one FIRE blogger that you aren’t envious of. I cook interesting food so at least that’s fun. Check out the Gaeng Hung Lay I made on Wednesday. It’s braised pork belly curry. Need I say more?

Have a great spring break!

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Joe started Retire by 40 in 2010 to figure out how to retire early. He spent 16 years working in computer design and enjoyed the technical work immensely. However, he hated the corporate BS. He left his engineering career behind to become a stay-at-home dad/blogger at 38. At Retire by 40, Joe focuses on financial independence, early retirement, investing, saving, and passive income.

For 2018, Joe plans to diversify his passive income by investing in US heartland real estate through RealtyShares. He has 3 rental units in Portland and he believes the local market is getting overpriced.

Joe highly recommends Personal Capital for DIY investors. He logs on to Personal Capital almost daily to check his cash flow and net worth. They have many useful tools that will help every investor analyze their portfolio and plan for retirement.
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{ 88 comments… add one }
  • Ernie Zelinski March 29, 2018, 12:37 am

    You like your lifestyle. I like mine too which is just as an unglamorous early retirement lifestyle as yours. I am a night owl and enjoy staying up until 3 or 4 AM. I also like sleeping in till noon. After I shave, the first thing I do is exercise vigorously for at least an hour. Last week, when I was in Vancouver, one day I went for an intensive bicycle ride for 2.5 hours. After I shower, being a digital nomad, I head for one my favorite coffee places where I work on my laptop for an hour or two. In the evenings, I like to wine and dine with friends as I did five of the seven nights that I was in Vancouver. I also go to venues to listen to live blues music whenever I can. But I have gone on too long about my lifestyle. I remember these words by Samuel Johnson: “Sir, you have but two topics, yourself and me. I am sick of both.”

    • retirebyforty March 29, 2018, 7:05 am

      Ah.. That’s why you’re catching up with the blog at midnight.
      Wine and dine sounds good. Are there good blues venue in your area? Our only blues/jazz club closed down last year. The Blues Festival is coming soon, though. I always look forward to that every year.

  • David @iretiredyoung March 29, 2018, 12:46 am

    I recorded what I did for a whole month and I think I might be serious competition for you on the normal, not very exciting lifestyle. But, like you say, as long as we’re happy with it, what does it matter.

    Having said that, I do have my exciting plans – I wonder if they may be too exciting for me. Oh well, I guess I’ll find out in due course.

    • retirebyforty March 29, 2018, 7:10 am

      Your trip sounds really exciting. That will mess up your normal lifestyle for a while. 🙂
      I want to take a year off to go travel too, but I’m not sure if we can pull it off. We’ll figure it out.

  • Mr. Tako March 29, 2018, 1:19 am

    I donno Joe … I think my FIRE family could be a contender for “the most normal” award.

    Other than taking one big vacation a year, we’re pretty boring! Suits me fine though! 🙂

    • retirebyforty March 29, 2018, 7:11 am

      I was thinking about you when I wrote this one. Living a normal lifestyle is good when you have 2 little kids. Some bloggers take their kids on long trips, but that doesn’t sound like fun for long. Kid likes stability.

  • Lily | The Frugal Gene March 29, 2018, 1:44 am

    I did something weird and I downloaded your image of your daily schedule to my phone to examine later. Hahaha. Thank you for this specimen. I’m too sleepy right now but other people’s time management has always sparked my attention.

    I’m only a little jealous of FIRE but only if the blogger has kids and both spouses are retired and spending the day together. That’s my dream!!

    • retirebyforty March 29, 2018, 7:13 am

      Yeah, check it out. I don’t keep to it religiously. It’s just an outline. What are you doing up at 2 am?
      I think my life is pretty much perfect now. Spending more time with Mrs. RB40 everyday would deteriorate my QoL. Life is easier when you have some alone time.

      • Lily | The Frugal Gene March 30, 2018, 5:31 am

        “What are you doing up at 2 am?”
        Ahahaha, that’s why I downloaded your schedule. I am pretty sure mine is messed up 😉

    • Nishita April 24, 2018, 10:46 am

      I kind of just did the same ?saved the image

  • Accidental FIRE March 29, 2018, 2:06 am

    We know you’re fooling us Joe… we’re all waiting for the pictures of your Ferrari & swimming pool to show up on Instagram. Or is it a Porsche?

    🙂

  • Littlemissfire March 29, 2018, 2:51 am

    Ha ha I love how open and honest you are. I’m sort of retired I suppose.( Maybe it’s semi retirement?) and your life seems like mine but more organised.

    Thanks for sharing
    LMF

    • retirebyforty March 29, 2018, 7:14 am

      Semi retire is probably a better fit for me too. Semi retire by 40 just doesn’t sound like a good blog name. 😉 My life was a lot less structured when our kid was young.

  • Chris Urbaniak @ deliberatechange.ca March 29, 2018, 3:06 am

    Good morning Joe,

    That idea of grouping emails into a specific time block is a great way to keep them under control. It’s also great that you’ve set aside a specific schedule for your blogging; otherwise it could just become all-consuming and creep into all of your other time.

    Here’s a question for you, Joe: Why do you publish Mondays instead of Tuesdays, and not shift your blog work from Sunday to Monday? That would shuffle more family time to when Jr is home from school on the weekend.

    Oh, and I love the storage of board games / puzzles under the chair! We do that too 🙂

    • retirebyforty March 29, 2018, 7:32 am

      Now, I just need to work on an auto-response for email. I rarely respond to emails, but it takes so much time.
      Monday is my best traffic day. I think office workers start their week by not wanting to work. They catch up on blogs and other news. That’s what I used to do.
      I already have plenty of time with Jr. He needs to spend some time with his mom too. In the summer, it’s more flexible because we go do more stuff as a family.

      The board games and Lego.. That’s the cleanest that it’ll ever get as a SAHD. 🙂

  • caroline March 29, 2018, 3:20 am

    Hi Joe, nothing wrong with a normal unglamorous life if you are happy:) Isn’t it was this is all about…happiness?
    Have you ever thought of switching your blogging schedule to free up your Sunday afternoon when both your son and your wife are home?

    • retirebyforty March 29, 2018, 7:33 am

      Check the previous response. 🙂
      I already spend plenty of time with Jr.

  • Ms ZiYou March 29, 2018, 3:41 am

    Ha ha – I’m pretty sure the term you are looking for Joe is househusband.

    • retirebyforty March 29, 2018, 7:34 am

      And when Mrs. RB40 retires, we can be a housecouple? Or maybe just unemployed household…

  • Nicoleandmaggie March 29, 2018, 4:47 am

    When do you do chores besides cooking?

    • retirebyforty March 29, 2018, 7:34 am

      During flex time. I usually do light cleaning twice per week. Laundry occasionally. Grocery shopping sometime on the weekend. Chores are no fun.

  • Tom @ Dividends Diversify March 29, 2018, 4:50 am

    Pretty similar here. If a person lived a glamorous life style, they probably wouldn’t make it to FIRE (or wouldn’t want to) and we just don’t change are spots. Tom

    • retirebyforty March 29, 2018, 7:35 am

      Right. It’s tough to keep the same budget if you change your life drastically. Geoarbitrage would help a lot, though.

  • Dave @ Married with Money March 29, 2018, 4:56 am

    That sounds like a pretty great schedule to me. That’s pretty much what we’d be like, I think, just with the times probably shifted up a little bit. And hey if you’ve got an awesome life, why does FIRE have to change that??

  • Mr. Freaky Frugal March 29, 2018, 4:56 am

    I’m FIREd too, but my life has changed pretty significantly.

    Mrs. FF and I sold our house in the burbs and rented a small apartment in downtown Philly. It’s a new Empty Nester lifestyle!

    We are also planning an exotic trip to the UK this Spring, so I guess we’re one of those Traveling FIRE people. 🙂

    • retirebyforty March 30, 2018, 8:20 am

      That’s pretty cool. We’re going the other way soon. We have a small kid and my mom lives with us most of the year. A small apartment isn’t working out. Enjoy your travel!

  • Ms. Frugal Asian Finance March 29, 2018, 5:00 am

    Normal and boring is sometimes the best way to live life. Hubby and I LOVE stability and routines. We are not adventurous people at all.

    We like to talk about how we will travel the world and live in different countries when we retire but we don’t go out of our ways to spend big bucks on exotic trips at the moment.

    Maybe we will do that when we have more cash reserve or something hehe. I find your FIRE enjoyable rather than envious. Keep it up!

    • retirebyforty March 30, 2018, 8:23 am

      I like to have some adventures, but not too much. Mrs. RB40 prefer stability, but she’s up for travel once or twice per year. I don’t know if she’ll join me in Thailand when we really have time. She might visit for a few weeks and then come back to stay with her parents. We’ll see how it goes.

  • Pennypincher March 29, 2018, 5:30 am

    Ha,ha. Thanks for the laughs.
    I do wonder about those other bloggers-do they take tax deductions for the expenses of those high flyin’, life in the fast lane, blog related lifestyles? I always wondered.
    I LOVE coffee beer-just never know what time you should drink it-morning? not before bedtime? Who knows!
    Impressed by your structured week schedule.
    Mrs. RB40 made all those soups?? I’ll be right over!

    • retirebyforty March 30, 2018, 8:24 am

      Some of them do, but the blog would have to make good income. One blogger I know took too many deduction and got audited. The blog didn’t make enough income to justify it.
      Coffee beer was good, but a little strange. I think I like regular ale better. It was good to try once.

      • Pennypincher March 31, 2018, 5:27 am

        No expert here, but I thought you had 3 years to make a profit in a business. So deductions allowed until then, but he was probably deducting his whole lifestyle! Ha,ha.
        This was a fun, fascinating post Joe. Someone once said (I think!) Most men lead lives of quiet desperation. I see others living in the fast lane, and I like to slow down, go w/the flow, stay out of people’s line of fire and off their radar screen-ha,ha. Thank you, RB40.

  • [email protected] March 29, 2018, 5:43 am

    One of the things I appreciate most about this blog is how easy you are to relate too. Taking advantage of geo arbitrage and traveling the world sounds fun but it’s not for my family anytime soon. It’s nice to read about you being retired and living an otherwise “normal” life.

    • retirebyforty March 30, 2018, 8:25 am

      Thanks! I’d like to take advantage of geo arbitrage too, but that will have to wait until my kid goes off to college.

  • Angela @ Tread Lightly Retire Early March 29, 2018, 5:58 am

    Having a young kid / wife that still works will do that to you. Do you expect your life will change drastically once he’s older and she quits her job?

    • retirebyforty March 30, 2018, 8:26 am

      I don’t think life will change much after Mrs. RB40 retires. I’d like to take a year off to travel around the world, but then it will be back to normal life. That’s exotic, but I’m not sure if we can pull it off. We’ll see…

  • Jillian March 29, 2018, 6:52 am

    That is about our life but my husband is home too. I do a few “productive” hours, he runs some erronds. We try to go out to coffee a few times a week or do an adventure without the kids. And we work out together. Although this spring we will do a 9 week road trip. 🙂

    • retirebyforty March 30, 2018, 8:27 am

      It’s great that you have some personal time without the kids. I think we’ll be able to do that once our kid is a bit older and can stay by himself. Now, he still wants to go everywhere with us. Enjoy your trip!

  • Jim @ Route To Retire March 29, 2018, 6:55 am

    I think you’re right that because things didn’t change to much when you retired, it does make you a little more relatable. My goals have changed somewhat as I get closer to FIRE, but when I first got started down the path, all I cared about was getting to a point that I could quit my job. I envied how you kept things “unglamorous” – same life, just without the job.

    Boring is good. 🙂

    Have a great spring break!

    — Jim

    • Kailash March 29, 2018, 11:04 am

      Boring is not good, what’s the point of living? If boring is your routine your retirement will be boring. I make sure i’m having “retirement fun” now so I don’t have to wait till i have all the money and time but no energy. I’m bound to have money and time, but the best time is NOW, when you have the energy to do what you really want and not just settle for a dream retirement in which you may encounter other issues, including ailing health.

      • retirebyforty March 30, 2018, 8:37 am

        I’d say routine rather than boring. When you have kid, life is much easier with a good routine.
        I think children makes a big impact on how you see life. Traveling was a lot more exciting when I was single. Now, it’s still fun, but also kind of tough.

    • retirebyforty March 30, 2018, 8:28 am

      Thanks! I’m looking forward to reading more about your move to Panama. It sounds like a big change. 🙂

  • Adam March 29, 2018, 7:09 am

    THIS IS EXACTLY WHAT I WANT.

    My wife enjoys her job, and there’s a high possibility that when we pull the FIRE trigger in a dozen years she’ll cut back to part-time (every weekend a four-day weekend and maybe we can keep health insurance). Our neighbors and town and little craftsman house are lovely. We’re surprisingly content where we are and doing what we’re doing.

    I just would like to do it without 40 hours of my life blocked off for pursuits not my own! Thank you for providing that inspiration. It’s nice to know there are others with my ambition who are making it work.

    • retirebyforty March 30, 2018, 8:29 am

      Thanks! Part time is the way to go. You have time to do what you want and still keep a lot of the benefits.
      Good luck!

  • DocG March 29, 2018, 7:25 am

    Thanks for this. Always easier to think the grass is greener.

  • Mrs. Groovy March 29, 2018, 7:36 am

    We’re just as unglamorous. We go out basically once a day for our long walk and errands — park, post office, library, Walmart or Aldi maybe — then back home. Yes we’re building a custom home but it’s not going to be high end and there’s nothing glamorous about the process. We’ll be closer to family/friends (around 14 people at last count) which will widen our social life in that we’ll have more people to be boring with.

  • Dividend Earner March 29, 2018, 7:42 am

    Early retirement will happen after kids are done University … Just about to have one go and the next one soon after. That means Retire By 50 🙂

    Have you thought about the dent university will make? I have saved but it’s still not enough for 2 at the same time and I don’t want to dip in the retirement pocket.

    • Pennypincher March 30, 2018, 4:41 am

      May I chime in here, Dividend Earner? Start figuring out worst case/cost scenario now for your two kids. Plan on that, the highest it will cost, because there are many surprise costs too.
      When of working age, let your kids know they must help w/expenses as well. Financial Aid gives more $ when two or more are in college at the same time-bonus! Research how and where the free money-grants/scholarships come from ahead of time. Good luck! I’ll all work out. Oh, and never, ever dip into your retirment savings for college. That is your safety net!

    • retirebyforty March 30, 2018, 8:30 am

      That’s great! We’re already saving for college so I think our son will be okay. Our 529 already has over $60,000 and it still have 10+ years to grow. I think we’re in good shape. And we only have one kid. 🙂
      Good luck!

  • Steve @ familyonfire.org March 29, 2018, 7:53 am

    With 2 school age kids our life is pretty unglamorous too, it’s important to Keep the structure for them. Our house is definitely cleaner than it used to be and more home cooking is done.

    • retirebyforty March 30, 2018, 8:31 am

      Home cooking is one of the best thing about ER. I could take time to cook something new instead of rushing to make easy dinners. Home is still not that organized, though. 🙂

  • Dividend Growth Investor March 29, 2018, 8:01 am

    The low key lifestyle is definitely appealing. Who cares about glamour – being your own boss and being in control of your own schedule is the goal to strive towards.

    • retirebyforty March 30, 2018, 8:33 am

      Thanks! Having control of my schedule gives me a lot of contentment. Sure, my time is still somewhat structured, but it’s still much better than working in an office.

  • Justin March 29, 2018, 8:13 am

    I like it. 🙂 Most of our days are pretty mundane which is by design. Lounging around home, going out for a walk, eating good food, spending time with family – that’s what life is about. We enjoy a good adventure on vacation but also enjoy time around home with simple pursuits.

    • retirebyforty March 30, 2018, 8:33 am

      I’d nominate your family, but you went on a 9 week vacation to Europe last year. That’s pretty glamorous. 🙂

  • Millionaire Doc March 29, 2018, 8:32 am

    I love your schedule. Someday, I hope to have more time. Right now, between 7:30a and 6p is this thing called “day job”.

    • retirebyforty March 30, 2018, 8:34 am

      Thanks! That pesky day job really stands in the way of things. 🙂

  • LifeInFIRE March 29, 2018, 8:37 am

    Maybe the glamorous FIRE bloggers know something we don’t?
    Nobody realizes all the scheduling required in FIRE. I mean, we have to schedule the ENTIRE day, not just before 8a and after 6p. There’s a lot we have to do. My schedule has a LOT of “flex” built in to allow for “working” ie. learning. Keeping track/planning for 40/50 years takes time. However, not as much time as enjoying every day.

  • David Michael March 29, 2018, 10:55 am

    Great, down-to-earth blog article, Joe. Time is so precious whether a millionaire or not. Thanks for sharing! We all do it differently. In the end, it’s called life!

  • timeinthemarket March 29, 2018, 2:45 pm

    That’s a sweet lifestyle and probably similar to one I’d be living when I retire. I’m a simple man and want to live a simple life and generally that’s not very complicate or glamorous. People think you have to jet set and travel or something because you have all this free time but I kinda just want to sit around and write, read or go for a hike.

    • retirebyforty March 30, 2018, 8:38 am

      Right! I’m pretty happy to read, write, and relax at home. Traveling is fun, but not if you’re on the road for months.

  • Quitting Teaching March 29, 2018, 4:59 pm

    Sounds ace to me! & I am envious!

  • Michelle March 29, 2018, 6:43 pm

    This is all I’m asking for! Just more time with the fam. I don’t need the sail the seven seas or live some glamorous lifestyle–I just want my family to be together. I agree that there is no possible way to have a schedule with small children in the house. They dictate everything.
    How did you get samples from Rogue Ales? I like that brewery. Samples would make my day for sure.

    • retirebyforty March 30, 2018, 8:39 am

      I don’t know. They sent me an email and I said YES! Maybe I’m a famous blogger. 🙂

  • Financial Orchid March 29, 2018, 7:44 pm

    That’s pretty much the FIRE outline I had for myself. Basically, the kid and family would be priority, and wherever possible I’d slot in some writing because it can be scheduled. I think a lot of bloggers think that way too – as something to stay occupied even if they don’t bring in as much income yet – between the hours the kid is in school. Beats watching daytime soap opera with grandma.

    • retirebyforty March 30, 2018, 8:42 am

      You got it. If I don’t have a blog, I’m not sure what I’d be doing when our son is in school. I’d probably volunteer or something. You need to occupy your time with something you enjoy.

      • Financial Orchid March 31, 2018, 7:38 pm

        It can be a lot of idle time, but broken up time between chores and picking up the kid. My mom was always trying to hustle but between 9-12 and 1-3pm it was really hard to go make a sales call or consign clothes, or sell Avon or whatever housewives did back in the 90s. One thing’s for sure though she really wanted to bring in active income, so she ended up managing rentals and running a dayhome for tots. Master multitasker and true hustler because she couldn’t seek a solid full day of traditional employment because of me.

        I think a lot of moms had to hustle back then while balancing demands of kid, housewife, and wanting to make dough. Most Dads just had to make dough. (Baby boomer gen)

        The world is different in the millennial era now though. There are increasingly more SAHD and moms working FT in my demographic. A lot of my b-school friends are accountants and lawyers today who never took a break so have steadily worked their way up the ladder to partner positions. Now in the last leg of the child rearing age they realized they’ve outearned their husband and it just makes more financial sense for the husband to watch the kids FT.

        I think that’s kind of how this trend emerged for my age group at least from what I’ve seen.

  • GYM March 29, 2018, 8:32 pm

    I love your Instagram feed, Joe! Your food pics look delicious. I was going to post a fish and chips I made tonight on Instagram but the fish didn’t look as good as they tasted. The potato wedges looked okay though!

    Thanks for sharing your schedule- I should try and time block my time a bit more. Do you think you spent more time on the blog before it became very profitable? (e.g. right before you retired from your regular job). I am very impressed you go to the gym 5 times per week!

    • retirebyforty March 30, 2018, 8:45 am

      Thanks! I need to take better pictures of my cooking. It looks much better in real life. The curry smelled amazing. Too bad you can’t share smell on the internet yet. 🙂
      I spent more time on the blog when I started. I had to do a lot of other stuff to get the blog up and running. I used to stay up to 1 am almost everyday. It’s much better now.

  • Frankie @ Fully Franked Finance March 30, 2018, 12:05 am

    I think you’d be surprised how many people would love to have this exact lifestyle! I’m certainly a simple person that loves being close to home, and very happy with where we live and what we do day to day.

    Drastic changes by some FIREees sometimes seem more like a ‘statement’ than what people actually want to be doing, especially if many people are following your journey – have to give the fans something exciting to read about! I like your approach Joe 🙂

  • aGoodlifeMD March 30, 2018, 6:35 am

    I love how even in retirement, early retirement types still have a schedule. I would (er will?) be the same way.

    It’s all about contentment. You seem to do a fine job of avoiding the social comparisons that make us think we need more. Congrats on that, many never reach it!

    • retirebyforty March 30, 2018, 8:47 am

      I think the key is to have a lot of flex time in the schedule. That way you can do what you want. Also needs to schedule time for exercise and some work. People don’t do well with too much unstructured time. Good luck!

  • fin$avvy panda @ finsavvypanda.com March 30, 2018, 6:55 am

    Hi Joe!

    Your schedule looks great! It seems pretty chilled and laxed (and super organized). I don’t think I would need an exotic lifestyle. I think I’d get exhaustsed and bored if I did the “fun” stuff every day. I actually prefer chilled days and super fun days once every so often. I find that balance is key.
    Overall, I really like your humbling lifestyle!

    During the M-F, what do you usually do to not feel like you’re stuck at home (indoors)? I’m guessing gym is one of the times where you’d find yourself outside of your home? I was wondering how do real ft bloggers prevent themselves from feeling isolated, lonely and lost of interaction with ppl in person? Would love to hear your thoughts on that! 🙂

    As always, kudos for reaching fire at such a young age!

    • retirebyforty March 30, 2018, 8:49 am

      Yeap, gym is the time I go out. It’s tough in the winter here because Portland is so wet. In the summer, I go out with my kid in the afternoon. We go to the library, playground and such. Social interaction is a tough one. Nowadays, it’s mostly centered around the kid. I meet up with other parents and chat while our kids play. I’m an introvert so that’s enough for me. I also get social interaction through my blog and social media. Extroverts probably need more.

  • jim March 30, 2018, 12:44 pm

    So you DON”T have a yacht? 🙂

    OK I admit that I only skimmed the article.

  • MyEarly RetirementJourney March 31, 2018, 3:41 pm

    Regular life is fine by me! I just started my journey…and baby steps are hard when it seems like everyone is running free!!

  • Your life sounds alright to me … I am F.I. but not R.E. like your spouse … but live in Asia on the other side of the planet … so can see lots of cool stuff by walking outside my door … just saw a giant Buddha in an apartment complex near my bank this weekend … God Bless and Happy Easter

  • B.C. Krygowski April 1, 2018, 3:57 am

    Ahhhh! I LOVE the excel spreadsheet for your time management! Just this week I was trying to figure out how I can better manage my time – you have inspired me to make my own. THANKS.

    • retirebyforty April 2, 2018, 9:30 am

      You’re welcome! That spreadsheet is quite useful. It reminds me to go to the gym and relax more.

  • Richard April 1, 2018, 6:36 am

    Yup, there is more than one blog out there that only brags about the great lifestyle and how spendy they are now….GCC is the one that stands out the most but there are others.
    That’s what I like rb40 and I hope you don’t be like that when achieve FIRE please.

    • retirebyforty April 2, 2018, 9:29 am

      I’m envious of GCC too. They’re living it up on a very small budget. Kudos to them, but not everyone can live like that. We plan to travel too, but not forever and not as often.

  • Kenneth April 1, 2018, 9:10 pm

    Absolutely! Thanks for putting the real picture.

    I always wonder how real are those high adrenaline and YOLO images that typical I-made-enough-money-to retire-young blogger wrote about.
    To me, one of the key tenet of retirement is NOT having to go to the 9-5 job everyday and the associated nonsense that comes with it e.g. politics and profit-rules-over-everything-else policies.

    Beyond this, everything else should still be pretty much the same. You don’t have to suddenly go sky diving or Everest climbing. Of course you will probably have more time to do things and this should be a gradual process.

    Cheers!

    • retirebyforty April 2, 2018, 9:28 am

      You’re welcome! I think the YOLO thing is too much. If you’re living it up to the max now, there’s not much to look forward to. I prefer to live moderately well now and enjoy it more later. Gradual rise in happiness is best. 😉

  • TheFIminator April 6, 2018, 5:05 am

    Being on FIRE not only involves having enough money to cover your expenses but also a certain type of mindset. If you are the kind of person who is content with doing exactly what makes you happy, then FIRE life would come naturally. If you are one of those people who needs to keep the show on for the world in terms of consumerism, then it would be difficult.

    • retirebyforty April 6, 2018, 9:09 am

      You’re right about mindset. I’ve never liked pep rally and didn’t have that corporate rah rah spirit. I like to stand alone and self employment is a great fit for me. I love my ER life.

  • Mrs Smelling Freedom April 6, 2018, 11:07 pm

    I think people often forget that it is contentment they should be aiming for as the norm, not exhilaration 🙂
    Now that I’m in my forties my idea of bliss is coffee and a good book, with my kids in the background and not fighting. Lol

  • Marco Demaio April 26, 2018, 3:28 pm

    True wealth is not to drive a Ferrari, it is never to have to to work again. 😉

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