40 Is the New 60

8


Well, it’s really happening. I’m about to cross over the 40-year-old threshold and that means my life is at its glorious midway point. It’s causing me to think quite hard about things – where I came from, where I’m at, and where I want to be. Heck, I’m even starting to wonder How Many Summers I Have Left?

In some ways, it feels like parts of my life are just starting.

  • Career – I’m less than 6 years out of training.
  • Family – My wife and I have two very young children.
  • Blog – I just started this blog one year ago.

However, my perceptions of a long, happy life and career have changed quite dramatically over the last several years. Up until recently, I just lived life accepting the notion that people work and grind until they’re 65, then ride off into the sunset in retirement. I had accepted the notion that you were supposed to just accumulate the biggest nest egg that you could until you retire, then try to live out the rest of your years without spending it all before you die.

Well, like I mentioned, things have changed. I’ve become somewhat obsessed with the notion of gradual retirement. In fact, I’ve already started cutting back on work. I no longer want to wait until I’m 65 to truly enjoy most of life. I don’t want to miss out on my children growing up in order to squirrel away as many nuts as possible.

When I started this blog, I wanted to be financially independent and “retired” on paper by the time I’m 45. (Hopefully, it’ll happen sooner.) I don’t want to be 25 years away from retirement, I want to be 5 years away from retirement.

This is all about choice. I want the option to live life and my career the way I want, on my own terms as much as possible. The best way, in my opinion, is to set myself up financially by building up as many streams of income as possible. The goal is for as many of them to be sources of passive income as possible. I want medicine to be a hobby, something that I do because I’m passionate about, and I plan on doing it for quite a while.

40 Is the New 60

40 is the new 60. 5 years to retirement and financial independence. I’m trying my best to make it happen.

Has anyone else’s notion of retirement changed recently? When do you want to retire or be financially independent and what are you doing about it?

8 COMMENTS

  1. It took me a few reads of the title to understand what you did there 🙂

    Certainly, the FIRE movement has changed how I view retirement. I don’t plan on retiring in my 40s, but I certainly plan to be financially independent before the age of 60.

    -WSP

  2. Great post.

    I’m going to echo WSP’s sentiment. The FIRE community has definitely shifted my perspective of retirement, money, time, frugality, and optimizing for happiness. Since I currently enjoy my work, I don’t see myself retiring in my 40s, but it’d be a great option to have if things change and my work enjoyment/satisfaction decreases.

    I’m on course to be financially independent in my 40s, but I’ll probably actually retire in my 50s. I imagine myself following your lead and doing a phased out gradual retirement. But in the mean time, I want to do multiple mini-retirements in between because I like the idea of really living in the moment and maximizing fun / happiness now while I’m still young. 🙂

    • Honestly, I see myself working my day job as long as I can take care of my patients effectively. There’s definitely some value in working – keeps the mind sharp, ability to help people, sense of accomplishment, etc. What does a mini-retirement look like?

      • I equate mini-retirements to long vacations. I know most people would consider a mini-retirement at least 6 months or at least a “gap year”, but this is not feasible in medicine.

        I get about 9 weeks of paid vacation, so I intend to use them by taking three 3-week long trips throughout the year. Maybe I shouldn’t be misleading by calling my trips “mini-retirements” 😉

  3. This is something I’ve been thinking about a lot lately. On one side of things, I could go all out and get to FIRE asap, say within 10 years. On the other hand, I could cut back now and take the slow and steady approach, and be FI at age 65. I’m starting to think that something in the middle may be best. Work hard for a few years to until I reach a comfortable percentage of my FI number, then cut back and coast until older retirement age. I see some benefits by staying in the game, it gives me something to do (I enjoy my work and there’s nothing I want to do but can’t while still working), it gives time for compounding to do its thing, and it provides peace of mind to have regular income which can pay for some luxuries, travel, healthcare, and can be a hedge against poor market returns.

  4. Let’s see … in my case….I started around age 30. Had over 1M at 35-36 or so. FI by age 45.
    Since then I work because I want to. Over the last couple years I’ve been cutting back on responsibilities and things I don’t like doing. Still looking at part-time/semi-retirement rather than full stop retirement. Things change over time including environment, energy level, interests, health, etc. so it is great to be FI ASAP. Then you have options to fit your own life choices. Love the title of this blog post!

LEAVE A REPLY