The second you finish reading the title, you are probably thinking “Of course YES. What a stupid question.” But I urge you to think about it a little longer and stay with me by reading on.
An gigantic number of MoneyNing readers have the dream of early retirement (myself included!). We want to pursue our hobbies, relax, and stop hearing the boss utter the words “Why are you late today?”. Some of us even have spreadsheets that map out our retirement plan and a detailed schedule of when our dreams will come true. On the worksheet are statistics such as our current net worth, projected return on capital and how much we would have 5, 10, 15, …, 30 years from now. If we are on track for early retirement, this whole process brings us a big smile. The spreadsheet gives us hope, and repeatedly looking over the details gives us motivation to work towards our goal.
Everyone dreams about reaching their $1 million (or $2, $3,$ 5 million, $12 million dollar retirement) goal and retiring early one day. But let’s say you finally reach your mark. Do you think you would retire if you are just 45 years young?
There are so many people with lots of money who are still grinding the daily work, and I always wonder why they did it ever since I was in my teens. Back then, I thought I just weren’t as ambitious as them and left it at that. Now though, I’m not sure if I would retire either. I work hard at growing my business, and that provides a huge motivation for me to wake up every morning. Though managing every moving part can be stressful at times, the occasional thank you and success story you send me through email is more than enough to compensate for the stress. And let’s not forget, the money always helps too.
Here’s another example that seem to support my theory too – people’s wedding. I bet lots of you had a dream of a romantic wedding since childhood with the perfect spouse, falling in love and starting that “happily ever after” life together. Yet, when that magical day finally came, real life issues probably seemed a bit more pressing than you remember in your dream. You likely had to choose between the $30,000 wedding or a down payment for your home (or maybe it was the car). Many of you can probably afford to pay for the wedding, but did you fulfill your dream and or did you choose something else?
Dreams might not be meant for anyone to fulfill. Having them may just be a way for us to create hope, a necessary ingredient to be happy.
Editor's Note: I've begun tracking my assets through Personal Capital. I'm only using the free service so far and I no longer have to log into all the different accounts just to pull the numbers. And with a single screen showing all my assets, it's much easier to figure out when I need to rebalance or where I stand on the path to financial independence. They developed this pretty nifty 401K Fee Analyzer that will show you whether you are paying too much in fees, as well as an Investment Checkup tool to help determine whether your asset allocation fits your risk profile. The platform literally takes a few minutes to sign up and it's free to use by following this link here. For those trying to build wealth, Personal Capital is worth a look.
- E*TRADE IRA - Official Site