Posted by Tim Stobbs on June 18, 2010
Perhaps a bit of back story is required before I tell you this tale. I just might be the only blogger out there who’s mother didn’t read his blog since the very beginning. In fact she didn’t really know the address until just the last month and I’ve been writing this blog since Nov 2006. I was a little overly self conscious about my dream to retire early so I was in the habit of just not mentioning it to family and friends. In fact other than my wife, I’m not sure if anyone I know personally has read this blog until the last few months when I’ve finally been comfortable enough to let family and friends know I write this blog.
This lead to an interesting observation the other day from a friend who read the blog for the first time and and thought it was great (That included Dave and Robert’s posts – so way to go guys!). He had commented that the blog had made him think. When I asked what he was referring to, he mentioned that he hadn’t considered early retirement himself all that realistically until reading the blog.
I admit that comment made me very proud of this blog. Why? Because if nothing else I want people to question the status quo in their lives. We all too often just settle for the way things are rather than consider what thing could be. People wonder is there more to life than this? The answer is yes.
Life can be just about anything you can imagine or dream up, if you want it bad enough. I won’t lie to you and say getting to my dream will be easy, it hasn’t been so far. I’ve spent a lot of time looking at what I do and asking why? Why do I spend this or why do I think that? So as a result I don’t just write about numbers and savings tips, I also try to touch on the ‘why’ of things.
The ‘why’ isn’t always easy to explain and it may have no appeal to you on a given subject. The end point isn’t for you to agree with the why, but rather enable you to find your own why. Why do I buy all this stuff? Do I even like it or need it? Would I rather be spending the money on something else? The answer might hold the key for you on turning your dreams to reality.
The bare bones of personal finance is easy: spend much less than you earn, use the rest to first pay off debt and then save. Plan for things to go wrong and be thankful when they turn out better. Practice delayed gratification and invest in items that will reduce your ongoing costs but don’t buy stuff you don’t need or really want. Learn about your own investments and assume everyone really is out to get your money. The rest is just knowing the ‘why’ of things. So just practice what my son is doing right now: keep asking why until you get it.
So today try turning a dream into reality. Ask yourself and others for the ‘impossible’, you might just end up getting it. You won’t know until you ask.