What do you do for a living?
Today we bring you an awesome guest post from RJ, a fellow blogger at Saving For A Living. He and his wife have only 4 months, 1 week, and 5 days left before they reach FI (Financial Independence); and only a couple years left before they RE (Retire Early)!
Without further ado….
What do you do for a living?
When you think of it “what do you do for a living?” is essentially like asking “what do you do for money?”. It’s become a pretty standard and acceptable question in our society and is almost one of the first few questions you ask a person you meet (after how’s the weather and how about these gas prices…).
Today I’ll discuss this very question and how we’ve had to and will have to deal with it once we quit our jobs.
In the past year, my wife and I have been sharing our plans with more and more people. The fact that we plan on leaving the big city and moving to a small town. The plan to be mortgage free and not work 9-5 and spend way more time with our kids and doing the things we love.
Then I get these: “But how will you keep your current job?”, “What will you do for a living?” or “How will you make enough money to live?”. And then sometimes, “Won’t you be bored?”.
I know that what we are doing appears really strange to most people but it can’t feel any more normal to us. I can explain our plan in detail and sometimes people still assume we will keep working in our industries but on a part time basis.
The plan, if all goes well would be to not work in our current industries. Our current jobs are not something we are passionate about. We are good at it and make good incomes doing what we do but it’s not something we love doing, or even like doing.
Through this process we’ve also realized that our ambitions are far greater than what we can accomplish by working for someone else.
I think this questions stems from the fact that most people draw so much of their identity in their profession (i.e. Accountant, Insurance Professional) and people just assume that we will want to hold on to that identity. As if we value some sort career status. The short answer is we don’t…
This wasn’t always the case. Ten years ago this type of question would sound perfectly logical to me. Whatever changes I would adopt in my life, I could not imagine not having a career or a job to be proud of.
It was part of my identity. I wanted to be known as a successful career man. I wanted to climb the corporate ladder and be a President or a CEO one day.
So what changed my goals? It sounds cliché to say that my kids changed my life but I can’t think of any other reason. When my son was born, a switch went off in my head. All of a sudden, I just didn’t see a future as a Vice-President or Director or President of anything…
I thought about this for a long time and I came to realize that all I wanted to be known for was being a father and a husband. If I looked back on my life when I’m 90, and was known as an amazing dad and husband, I would have lived the exact life I wanted.
So in essence, the job/career/position didn’t matter in my life equation anymore… other than a way to make money to accomplish the greater life goal.
I think having amazing parents obviously helped in shaping my new perspective. My parents both worked extremely hard their entire life in traditional jobs. But they definitely won’t be known for their careers when they’re 90. Their greatest accomplishment and greatest contribution to the world was raising 4 outstanding members of society.
My Ideal Full Time Job
I’m always daydreaming of what my ideal full time job would be. What will I do everyday with all my time once I quit my job? I anticipate that it will start by getting up at the same time as we normally do (around 6AM) but that will probably be the only thing that stays the same.
Once we’re up we won’t be in a rush to all get ready, eat quickly, get the kids dressed
up when they are really cranky. Then stuffing them in the car to make it to daycare/work on time…
I will get up and enjoy a peaceful and quiet cup of coffee while I journal and plan what amazing things I would like to accomplish during that day. Then when the kids wake up, my “job” (that I love) starts.
I will make the whole family a great breakfast, eat with them and we will discuss what is on the itinerary for today. Most of my day will be dedicated to giving them 10x more one-on-one attention.
I will also make an even greater effort to come up with ways to make my wife’s day the best, every single day.
So…What do you do for a living?
So what do I say when people ask “what are you going to do for a living?” or once we are FI and people ask “what do you do for a living?”. I thought of saying something like “we are property managers, or we are entrepreneurs…”. But the more I think about it, I don’t like those answers.
When I face that exact question, I will answer, “I’m a father and a husband for a living…, and if you have a few minutes I’ll gladly explain how we make money. I can share how much of it we actually need to live an extremely happy life. But it’s not the quick 2 second answer you’re used to receiving…”
Afterwards I will direct them to check out all the amazing FI blogs out there so they may also be awakened to this amazing idea.
RJ and his wife D are on a journey to become full time parents. He and his wife have only 4 months, 1 week, and 5 days left before they reach FI (Financial Independence); and only a couple years left before they RE (Retire Early)! Their goal is to quit working full time and spend the majority of their time raising their kids. Their blog Saving For A Living shares the steps they are taking to get there as well as provides very useful tips and advice to create your own plan. Make sure you pay their blog a visit. Thanks
What about you guys? When do you plan to reach FI/RE? What do you do currently? And what will you be telling people when they ask what you do for a living once you FIRE?
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