It seems like only yesterday. Nervously, I pressed the ‘Publish’ button on WordPress. I had, actually, made the decision that I wanted to share my personal journey to retirement.
It was exciting to join all the other bloggers and podcasters that have continued to inspire me every day. The list is so long. Here are some, and I’m sorry if I missed any 🙂
- LateStarterFire – A late 40 something starting on my journey to Financial Independence
- Mr. Money Mustache – Financial Freedom through Badassity
- Financial Panther – personal finance, travel hacking, and making more money by side hustling
- The Retirement Manifesto – Helping People Achieve a Great Retirement
- Metalhead Money – Helping Metalheads conquer personal finance, one riff at a time
- Coach Carlson – Invest in Real Estate. Do What Matters
- The FI Show – Dedicated to financial independence, personal development and life optimization
- 2 Frugal Dudes – Personal Finance You Can Understand
- Inspired Budget – Making Saving Second Nature
- The BiggerPockets family of Podcasts and Community
If you’d like to check them out, I’m sure you’ll be inspired, educated and entertained as well!
I had discovered the FIRE (financial Independance/retire early) movement, and really wanted the option to retire early. My definition of the word “retire” has changed over the past few years. At the time, I wanted to not have to work “for the man” and truly find my passion of what I was meant to do with my life. I wanted the choice to work, to work because I WANT to, and not because I HAVE to. Now, I believe to retire is just a transition. I had heard that one should never retire FROM something. We should retire TO something. This dramatically changed the way I view retirement. I had read a book several years ago that described you should find work that is meaningful, challenging and fun!
We view our work as something to make a difference, do your best work, and the money you earn is just a byproduct of what you do. This went on to describe successful people don’t work for money. They work for results. They work for making change, providing goods and/or services that solves a problem or making peoples’ lives’ better. Then, these people earn their income as a RESULT of their smart and hard work.
I wanted to find something that gives me “the juice.” This is what Ken Coleman talks about in what gets you up in the morning. What gives you the motivation to get things done. I love Ken’s theory of we are all here for a purpose, and find the intersection of what we love to do, what we do best, and have the results of our work matter deeply to oneself. This is what Ken describes as a dream job. You can check out his Career Clarity Guide and many other resources here.
I wanted this freedom to do whatever I wanted to do. I wanted the freedom to do what gives me motivation and excitement to get up in the morning and time seems to either stand still or disappear. It’s the work where you are “in the zone” this is where you are working on something, only to look up and realize hours had past, and you didn’t even notice.
I have been fortunate to land the last few roles in my career that had fallen very close to my dream jobs. When I began working for a software company back in 2012, it was so fun and exciting that I woke up so excited to go to work everyday. I worked with the people that were amazing, and not only did I like the role, and also liked why we did what we did. I felt passionate about the vision and mission of the company and my role within the organization. The next 5 years were a blur, and this led me to my current role that is very similar. Similar in vision and mission.
I share some of this background to illustrate that one’s outlook, drive and motivation can change. I had originally looked at retire FROM the day to day, but now I look to RETIRE to pursuing my passions. Also, as a reminder, this is optional. I find my “day job” satisfying and I enjoy it. So, I want to have the option to retire from this role if I choose to.
Okay… with that background out of the way, let’s look at what one year of The Heavy Metal Money Blog has done. I have posted articles on side hustles, real estate investing, wether one should pay off their home mortgage or not. This was was fun, and has had some interesting interaction.
Over the past year, we’ve had ups and downs. The stock market and unemployment rate was going great!, then EVERYTHING hit a brick wall. A global pandemic crushed the economy, business, education and the economic outlook.
I stayed the course, and didn’t panic, as an update to my interview at LateStarterFire blog, I discussed that We will rise through the economic downturn, and continued to invest into the market. This is as is now I’m buying all these shares of stocks and funds that “on sale” and after a few months were back to where we were and continued growth. This is a long term play. I think ten, 12, or 20 years down the road.
As The Heavy Metal Money Blog now moved into it’s second year, things are going to get a bit more serious. I’ll work more diligently on SEO, and building subscribers. and increasing interaction with readers and the Personal Finance Community. I have a meeting scheduled with a digital marketing firm next week! I want to post more regularly and provide value to the readers.
I’ll look at how to actively monetize the blog to have it become a true asset in my portfolio than a liability. As the last year much of the involvement has costed me money. Hosting, education, travel and events such as FinCon, all of this was at a cost. My goal is by the end of 2021, to have the blog be cost neutral. Being able to produce enough income from the the blog to cover web hosting, and other incremental costs associated. I’m still examining a realistic and achievable goal for a three and five year plan. As i mentioned in a previous post. I’m now working my nine-year plan to reach my optional retirement age of 55. This will include The Heavy Metal Blog. I can continue to write, aggregate, inspire, and entertain those that would like to focus on personal finance…while turning it up to 11! 🙂
Thank you to all of you that continue to follow my journey, and have supported me over the past year. Horns up to many more to follow!
Congratulations on reaching the one year milestone!!! I too found that connecting with others on the same path and learning from each other to be the real benefits of blogging and sharing my story. Thank you for continuing to share your story 🙂 Wishing you another strong year ahead & that you’ll smash those blogging goals
Thanks for the mention! Congrats on the 1-year blog anniversary. It’s a labor of love that only fellow bloggers can understand!
I totally understand when you say that your definition of retirement changed over time. I think anyone that follows the FI/RE movement for a long time has a changing definition as well. For me, I thought that I wanted to do a traditional retirement early but as I started working on side hustles and projects that bring me joy (and some money!) I realized that I probably never would fully retire.
The key is to give yourself the ability to pursue the things that are important to you. When I realized that, I started focusing more on the “Financially Independent” part. As they say, “Build the life you want, then save for it!” Thanks for sharing your journey with us and congrats on the 1-year blog anniversary!!