Wednesday, September 22, 2010

How I did it!

Well if you are wondering how I was able to afford my trip, its very simple. I was (still am) paying for 2 condos and a car at the time. I was already renting one condo. 3 days before my trip, a friend rented the condo I was staying in. That worked out well too. As for the car, I left it in my parents. Obviously, the rent money was not enough but it helped. As for the rest, I emptied my retirement account. I have no regrets and would do it again if given the chance but i understand that it might not be for everyone. Here's how I justified it

Bullet points that really struck me while reading the 4 hour workweek
  • Saving for retirement is a fools errand mini-retirement is the way to go - I always had a feeling that 401ks, IRAs will be well short by the time i reached retirement age but i played the game. It was attractive to contribute as much as you can because not only does your employer match it, it saved you on taxes. Its practically free money! I finally decided to do the math.What I found was that even in the best circumstances, it don't work! I would probably end up working to make ends meet by that time.  Even if I that nest egg grows to a million which is wishful thinking at best, 35 years from now, how much is a million really worth? that is if they don't increase the retirement age! The math simply don't work and since annual tax deferral is capped, even if you contribute the max, there is no way this will work for you! Suze Ormon says that your employer contribution is practically free money!! Baloney! it is not free as it robs you of the most important asset you have - TIME! other than the tax incentives, I don't see any benefits to it!

    On an even sadder note social security will probably not be there either! Life is too short to wait and suffer a miserable existence!
  • You can live like a king and it don't cost that much - This is the best part and I can attest to this. I experienced this first hand! Book says if you are willing to travel, you can make your money more valuable. Make the exchange rates work for you!
  • You can always come back - I am back and found a new job. I get paid less but I work less and I enjoy it more. When I calculate relative income vs. absolute income, the difference is not that much after all. I am more relaxed and to me, that is worth more. To be quite honest, I didnt want to come back.  I wanted to get out there more but I have to pay my bills. Ill be back out there - its just a matter of time.
  • Be Happy - its not about the money! we all heard that expression money does not buy happiness and i found that to be true first hand. I have seen people in extreme poverty, yet they still have a very positive outlook in life. That was weird for me at first. These people had no idea if they were going to eat that day yet they are happy with their families and friends! Then I remember miserable and stressed co-workers (i was once myself) - talk about fucked up priorities!! No Worries! Be Happy! 
  • Ownership vs. Experience - experience is really what you want. This was a hard concept for me to understand at first. While in the Philippines, I stayed in a 3 story house with 6 rooms in a gated community (with security guards and all) with a maid and an on-call driver. Owning the house was not what I want because it would tie me down. Renting it made much more sense and its more affordable. I experienced living like a king without much of the expenses of being a king! Experience vs. Ownership!
So I did it! What's weird is that somehow, someway, I know I am going to make it. I truly believe that somehow, I will find my MUSE. I can't quite explain it, maybe its wishful thinking, maybe it's not - I really don't know but I truly believe that I am going to make this work! I just wish that it to be sooner than later!

"fity"cent would say "GET RICH OR DIE TRYING" mine would be "LIVE RICH OR DIE TRYING"!

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