As I've stated before, "it seems more likely that you can become financially independent by literally spending less than you earn than you can by winning the lottery".
And that is exactly how I'd like to introduce myself.
As it says in my footer: Retire-at-40 is a personal finance journey of a regular guy, with a regular job doing regular things. I earn well though I've never been a saver. Then I started getting serious at the start of September 2008 and in just over a month I know my life has drastically changed.
I can see myself spending less. I can see myself saving more. I can see myself working less. And I can see myself enjoying my life more. In fact, all of these things are already happening. Why? Because they lead me to my goals and they make me worry less.
The Long Slow Road to Financial Independence
It didn't take me long to figure out that it was a long road from starting work to stopping it completely. My initial problem though was that I never did anything about it. Until now. My journey on the road to Financial Independence has well and truly started with a bang. The changes in my life are already great and I have a nice shiny new blog to boot.
You'll notice along the way that I use certain phrases over others. Take for example the phrase "The Road to Financial Independence". I like it, it makes sense to me so I use it. Now consider the phrase "The Road to Wealth" or "The Road to Riches". I don't use these because I don't like them. They promise too much and deliver almost nothing. "The Long Slow Road to Financial Independence" may seem a lot less razzmatazz (almost boring) than those other phrases but then, if you know me, you'll understand that I like to be realistic and I like to understate things. And I also like to be sensible too.
Which leads me on to another phrase "sensible spending and saving". I like it. It makes me happy.
Both of these phrase describe how I'm undertaking this journey. There are no quick solutions. There is no point hanging out for a lottery win. Just a plain and simple way of life, of decluttering, of making things last, of creating things and of being sensible.
Promise less, deliver more!
Even though I'm still new to this game, I've already realised that anyone can do what I'm doing. I know this because I used to spend up every month. I wasn't living paycheck to paycheck but I would usually spend what I earnt.
By promising myself that I can be a saver, I can be frugal and I can invest wisely, I have realised that my future looks a lot more rosy now than it did just a month ago.
I've always been sensible with my money and sometimes clever but now I'm learning even more tricks of the trade. For example, the way the Simple Dollar is creating a Savings Ladder (with fixed term investments) is pretty intelligent. It's almost one of the best posts I've read since reading a number of Personal Finance blogs.
I just wish I were that clever. Except, I don't have to be. You see, I'm just a regular guy. Instead, I just inform myself of the things other people are doing and in doing so I hope that I can make my money work for me rather than me having to work for my money. Makes sense doesn't it?
I realise this post has been a slightly roundabout way of an introduction but I wanted to give you illustrations rather than just plain facts. Illustrations how you can also do the same as I am. Even today, I was told by a friend that they "were not that type of person" to do what I shall be doing.
I just asked "Well, have you tried?"
The answer was "No".
All I can say to that is to take your first step on the long slow road to financial independence. I promise you, it will interesting, fulfilling, happy and hopefully rewarding.