I saw a video on Yahoo! Finance today while watching my stock in Apple rise almost 6% this morning. The title caught my eye because it was called “How I Retired at 30”. Of course, Yahoo put a spin on the title as they usually do, so although slightly misleading (He retired at 38, which is basically almost 40 in my books), the story still served as inspiration during a time of lack-of-inspiration for me.
The formula Mr. Money Moustache is simple. Live frugally. Save most of your paycheck. Plan your finances to be infinite (my own description of the idea that if you have a large chunk of money and only withdraw interest, you never run out of money). But it's this simplicity that has allowed him to retire at an young age, with his young family. In fact, he's 38 but I would say he and his wife look about 28, especially with a young kid (not important to the story, but still interesting).
There are a few rules he lives by, which I'll summarize below, but the Yahoo! Finance article goes over it in more detail
Step 1: Save 70% of your income
Step 2: Find a cheap location to live
Step 3: Live simply (no need to be a pauper though)
Step 4: Take control of your finances
That's basically it. Nothing real revolutionary there, but it works. It's what I do.
I mentioned that I've been less than inspired lately. The truth is that living day to day simply can be very boring, especially when you work from home. I work on my businesses, write for my blog, cook, and go to the gym. I don't do much else. It's not because I can't, but I just don't feel the need to. At the same time I feel like I should be making the most of my job from home, ‘living it up', and having some exciting stories to tell everyone about how cool it is to be self employed.
So I've been looking at sport bikes on Craigslist. I've also been looking at trucks. I've also been thinking about getting saddlebags for my current motorcycle. I bought a key chain flashlight and a pair of sunglasses the other day even though I already own both. I didn't need these things or really want them. I was just bored I guess. Long term simple living can be boring at times.
The reason I mention being so jaded with my own financial frugality is that piece on Mr. Money Moustache (MMM) really confirmed in my mind that living simply is the smart thing to do financially (for me), and I don't have to live a super-exciting-enviable lifestyle to be comfortable. It also made me start thinking of ways to spice up my financially unexciting life; maybe I need to ride my bike more or read more.
He's Done it. I can too.
Mr. Money Moustache has a nice house, has a great family, and is financially confident. It's where a lot of us wish we were. Well, he's done it, and basically given us the blueprint, so there's no real excuse why you haven't started doing it yet.
Of course, the comments on Yahoo! are as negative as ever. I wrote a story about my online business and my blog here at One More Cup of Coffee, and I got exactly 2 comments. One said I'm probably too poor to afford a house now that I spent all my money on traveling, and the other said that I have no business sense because my sandwich shop in China closed up. There are more comments on MMM's story, and many are to the tune of, “Yeah, but ….” I guess that's just how people are.
I read the article and thought, “Wow. This really does work. I'm glad someone else has achieved financial independence. Time for me to figure out what I'm doing.”
So thanks Mr. Money Moustache. I wasn't expecting to be inspired today. You can check out his blog at http://www.mrmoneymustache.com/