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December 19, 2016

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It is almost impossible to consider retiring early in life unless you have tons of hobbies, interests, high-energy life-style and a tendency not to get bored with doing the same thing.

It is proven by a NY PhD researcher that people who retire early actually live longer, but the world is moving SO FAST that unless one creates a purpose in life that is truly something that will last a long time, or that one will be able to reinvent themselves over and over, every 3-5 years, it will lead to a time when they will go back to 'working', and the definition working could be something like Mother Teresa or a Red Cross job or a rich Bill Gates is doing or just being purposeful to someone else. If not for something purposeful like that it would make life very immensly boring, and this is coming from someone that has tried many times to retire at 35, 40, 45, 50, and now 55, but have NOT been able to pull the plug.

At 3:48AM, I am just plugging away doing what I feel like doing, just to go back to work at 830AM to do something for a corporation, and then get back to writing, reading, from 6PM to 3AM (a bit late today)!. Good luck with your struggles, motivations, enjoyment, and finding your niches in life.

@Kenny --

Would you consider writing a post for me? Your retirement attempts sound very interesting!

I've started to line up my plans for retirement and they include road trips every Summer to all of the national parks. In winter, I will pursue my hobbies and volunteer activities with education centric orgs.

Uncommon perhaps but far from 'impossible'; just go to early-retirement.org to meet people who are doing it.

I may be a rare case where financial independence actually prolonged my career. When I finished school I hired into a megacorp and quickly found that kind of work did not suit me, so I started a mad dash towards early retirement. I reached 33x annual expenses back in my mid-30s but stayed on as my work environment improved. I finally tried early retirement just shy of my 50th birthday, but I ran out of stuff to occupy all the free time after only three weeks. At the same time my previous employer decided they couldn't lose me, so they created a package of changes to my location, schedule, and most importantly gave me total control over my work content to bring me back in.

I didn't think it would make much difference, but I was bored anyway so I gave it a try, and four years later I'd say it has made all the difference in the world. I never imagined working as a middle-aged engineer could actually be this much fun. I guess my message is you don't need to retire to benefit from financial independence.

It won't be impossible to retire in your 30's and 40's but you need to start developing retirement strategy that could span 40 years or more. You may need to start saving 80% or more annual income each year towards retirement. For that you need to start stretching your budget and imagining the life you want to live after you retire.

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