Author Topic: #mustachianHardship  (Read 4813 times)


  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
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« on: March 02, 2015, 09:45:15 AM »
Ok, so this is kind of like a first-world problem - partly tongue-in-cheek, but also serious.

I found MMM in November last year and realized that I was born to be mustachian and I didn't even know it.  Within two weeks of discovering I had totally revamped my wasteful spending.  My wife is fully on board too.  We are 32 and 30 and have a clear path to retirement in 46 months from now.
We've got good jobs and steady predictable cash flows.  We've reduced our monthly expenses to average $1,400/month over the last three months - that's everything except property tax and health insurance.

My question here is, now that I'm more or less on autopilot.... What do I do now?  I already have most skills I need during retirement.  All of my recreation is already free.   

How did the folks that are currently FIRE'd spend their last years/months of work?  I'm using the months to closely track my spending so I can confidently predict how my expenses in retirement will look, but aside from that, I don't know how to optimize my time.

I don't want to squander any opportunities that I might be overlooking.

Is there anything that FIRE'd folks wish they had done during their last years before freedom??



  • Bristles
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Re: #mustachianHardship
« Reply #1 on: March 02, 2015, 11:23:08 AM »
Following, and I envy you - 46 months, wow!


  • Handlebar Stache
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Re: #mustachianHardship
« Reply #2 on: March 02, 2015, 11:32:20 AM »
You should prolly read:'close-to-the-goal'/

I'd just say try to enjoy the next 48 months immensely.  I didn't focus on "now" when I was getting close, I had my blinders on and the last 6 months or so were miserable because of it.  Choose to be happy.


  • Stubble
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Re: #mustachianHardship
« Reply #3 on: March 02, 2015, 01:24:24 PM »
I'm not FIRE yet (and it will take between 5 and 10 years for me to be) but I struggle with this.  I got very excited when I learned about MMM and adopted the principles but kept (keep!) obsessively checking the forums, other ER forums, Mad Fientist, etc looking for the next edge, the next thing to optimize.

What I've realized, is I've DONE IT.  I'm good.  Just have to execute the plan now.  So, I'm switching my focus to living closer to being early retired and starting to do the things I want to do more.  More bike riding, more exercise, more computer gaming.  Whatever.  I want to use my limited time now to do the things I enjoy since I've built a system that will ensure everything else goes to plan and purchases my freedom.  That is a better use of my free time then trying to figure out how to retire even earlier.


  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
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Re: #mustachianHardship
« Reply #4 on: March 02, 2015, 02:35:26 PM »
Yes, agree that choosing to be happy is paramount.  I guess my point is that working does have some advantages and offerings that I may not have access to once I retire.

For example, when I retire and I decide "aw dang it turns out I love kayaking, I wish I would have worked for 3 extra weeks so that I can have kayaks for my wife and I, rather than going without or having to find a low income partte job for 3 months!"


"Wish I would have pursued adopting a child, which my employer offers financial assistance for, rather than having to bear the entire cost myself now"

Or again...

"I should have gotten my teeth fixed up before retiring"...


Does that make sense?  Now that you are retired, what advantages of being professionally employed do you look back on and wish you could have taken advantage of the opportunities?


  • Pencil Stache
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Re: #mustachianHardship
« Reply #5 on: March 02, 2015, 02:47:19 PM »
I'd say teeth are a very good point. I am in my last three years of work and have put teeth high on the list. DH and I both need crown work and I even need one root canal  (ack!)

I've struggled with a severe back issue the last two years and finally jumped through ALL the hoops to have fusion done. I certainly don't need an irrepairable lumbar disk causing me misery three years from now. Luckily I was an operable case, many back issues are not operable.

I like your plan of getting any toys you might want "now". You have time to research and carefully select the perfect kayak. I am not sure if you can currently work overtime but now is certainly a great time to get those lifelong discretionaly toys so they will not stress you out in retirement.

Because I am getting close to my FIRE time, I am looking at any classes, education needs I have, because I feel I will be challenged to justify this type of spending in retirement. We have rentals and will still work for ourselves post my FIRE date (DH is already FIREd) so I am thinking of a last certification for my job that will suit me well in retirement and might earn some extra $$$ in a pinch as needed.

I think that's it: healthcare, hobby "things" and education...

Grats on getting so close to FIRE. I find it difficult to keep working when my calculators/simulators say I can pull the trigger now. I have a few more key acquisitions to finish first. 2 more rental properties and I will be DONE for sure! DH wants to have that extra cushion and we built those into the plan. I knew we would hit our number before then but now that it is here, Its tough!

Retired To Win

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Re: #mustachianHardship
« Reply #6 on: March 17, 2015, 09:54:56 PM »
Make sure you are doing more than just retiring from a job.  Find something meaningful/rewarding to retire to.  Start setting that up now, so you'll hit the ground running when you FIRE.


  • Stubble
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Re: #mustachianHardship
« Reply #7 on: March 18, 2015, 11:11:37 AM »
Make sure you are doing more than just retiring from a job.  Find something meaningful/rewarding to retire to.  Start setting that up now, so you'll hit the ground running when you FIRE.

+1. If you don't have anything to fill your free time with now then what's the point of ER. It's ok though; you've been very career focused but you've got the next 4 years to get some great hobbies going.


  • Stubble
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Re: #mustachianHardship
« Reply #8 on: March 18, 2015, 12:53:31 PM »
When we originally started on this path (I'm 36 and wife is 34), I was thinking about 18-24 months (this was last August).  My wife seemed a bit discouraged so we looked at all the pieces of this again, re-ran the numbers, took some drastic steps and determined that we could do it in 12 months.  It has been pretty much been an all-consuming balls to the wall effort with more NW increase in eight months than probably in the last four years combined.  I would have liked the extra time and perhaps the slower pace, but definitely don't regret the super aggressive tack we took either.  We're still on track to pull the plug by this August and we're putting our DC house up for sale this week  If you're thinking 46 months out, pace yourself, make smart decisions and enjoy the ride into FIRE.


  • Stubble
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Re: #mustachianHardship
« Reply #9 on: March 18, 2015, 08:44:31 PM »
RNewson, respect for having such a fine tuned plan.
Agree with the other posters here and the linked thread had great advice too.
We are early in our FIRE plan, but once we hit our number we don't plan to stop cold turkey. I would like to ease back to 4 days a week, then 3, then 2, and eventually stop. This will probably take a few years of weaning down from the 60hr weeks that are my norm. I have similar concerns, and think that as more time becomes available, more hobbies and interests will creep in to fill that time. Like quitting smoking or alcohol, the cold turkey approach works for some, and steady reductions for others.
I love my job though, and it allows such a draw down of involvement quite easily.

Is it possible to cut back to a half time job for a year whilst you learn how to retire early?