BY: MATTHEW CHIN
Getting a post-secondary education, accumulating debt and working from your early twenties to late 60s is a great deal if you love your job, but more often than not, people are unhappy with their careers.
In America, about two thirds of workers are unhappy with their job, according to Forbes. That means the vast majority of people go to work miserable every day. That’s 30 plus years of perpetual stress—sounds like a waste of time, and eventually, a waste of a life.
The obvious answer might be to quit your job and follow your dreams—but realistically, it isn’t always that simple
The more practical answer for those who are unhappy with their job is to work until you are 30. An approximate decade of sacrifice and hard work to earn enough to retire really early.
All over the world people who are reaching their 30s are ditching their suit and briefcase, and retiring to live their lives unchained to the daily grind. These mavericks aren’t crazy, or irresponsible. They are the complete opposite. They have followed a formula to freedom by walking the working path. Here are some ways that can help you retire at 30.
Imagine yourself retired at 30.
It’s best to have an image of what retirement means to you before you start working. This will help you understand what you are working toward. How you will spend your time, what you would like to accomplish, and where you would like to go all help to solidify the choice to retire.
Put it on paper and create a bucket list at 20. Keep adding to the list until you get to 30 and it’s time to fulfill your goals. Having a strong picture of what you want to accomplish will keep you focused and relaxed.
Work your ass off.
If you aren’t sitting on inheritance or a secret goldmine, you are still able to retire early. It just means you are going to have to work hard. For the decade between 20 and 30, this means a consistent 30 to 40+ hour work week to earn enough of a “money nest” to safely sit on for the rest of your life.
Become extremely conscious with expenses.
At least 75 per cent of the income you earn should be saved, according to Next Avenue. The key is to budget so you can finish school debt free, while working to further a career. The three main areas of consumption are home, transportation, and food. In America, those three expenditures result in 64.1 per cent of an entire life’s spending, according to BLS.
Retiring at 30 sadly does not involve living in a mansion, but in a small, affordable home with a relatively low cost of living. Switching from eating at restaurants to making your own meals can be both cheaper and healthier. Biking or commuting to places reduces annual costs as insurances and leases on cars add up. Cutting the amount of coffee or cigarettes consumed will lead to massive savings down the road as well.
With the remaining 75 per cent of your money, investing is one of the ways to keep an income that grows throughout your retirement. You can invest relatively safely using mutual funds or in companies you think would guarantee a return.
Embrace a frugal lifestyle.
Be conscious with everything you buy, meaning that you only buy things when they need to be replaced. Early retirees follow a different lifestyle and their choices are better for both their budget, and their health. One woman ditched the consumerist lifestyle almost completely, shopping only once every 14 months and ditching makeup altogether, according to Vox. Being frugal does not mean sacrificing your dreams. Many people who retire at 30 travel around the world. They are just smarter with their money and where they spend it.
Do something you love and get paid.
According to CBS, 23 per cent of retirees still earn money. Retiring is relative to the individual and with an estimated 50 years of freedom, it’s best to pursue your passion. Most of the time your passion can lead to a stream of income too. Whether you blog about your adventures, write a book, or make art, these hobbies can still make a decent buck.
Retiring at 30 may not be for everyone, but by working hard, long term planning, being smart with money, and adopting a lifestyle that costs very little to maintain, you can live comfortably without grinding away for the rest of your life.