The Paradox of Financial Independence
Financial Independence means that one is independent of finances. Finances do not control our life. We do. However, within the financial independence community, that’s all anyone talks about: money.
We do not want finances to dictate our lives, but on the path to FI, we let our finances dictate how we live.
Oftentimes we forget that there is more to life than managing our finances. What’s your why of becoming financially independent, or free from money? Do you want to start a passion project? Never work again? Travel the world? Spend more time with family and friends?
Along the path of financial independence, one needs to have purpose driven savings, such as saving up to never work again, taking a leap and creating your own business, traveling the world, etc.
Are you retiring to something? Or retiring from something?
I believe one needs to be retiring to something. Once financial independence is reached, will you be sitting on a beach drinking margaritas all day? That sounds nice and all but what does that do to one’s mental psyche? If you don’t use your brain, you’ll lose it. Why not focus on a new business idea and it won’t matter if you fail because you don’t need the money? You’re independent from money. Can you even call it a failure if you learned something from it?
Travel the globe and experience culture. Talk to people along the way and see how they live. Trade stories. Learn a new language. Doesn’t all of that seem more interesting than being tied down to money?
Ask yourself if you are living to work or working to live. Which describes your motivation?
The paradox of financial independence is how much individuals obsess over money, yet we want to be financially independent, or free from money.
L and I decided to create Life For The Better in part because we love the FIRE community and what it stands for – or as I like to call it, FIOR: Financially Independent Optional Retirement. Retirement should be optional to each individual, whether they want to continue working or stop altogether. After all, personal finance is personal.
We also created Life For The Better because there is a lot of talk about money and finances but not a lot is talked about when it comes to purpose after hitting FI and how to live a better life all around. Whether living a better life means meditating more, living simply, embracing minimalism, doing random acts of kindness, or reading a good book (amongst many other goals), we hope to inspire you to not be so focused on money, but rather the freedom money brings.
Having money isn’t the end goal – freedom is. Money is simply a tool to help you achieve freedom.
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