FI Is Just A Few Steps Away

024 | FI180 | Make a U-Turn and Choose FI

Joel & Alexis tell their story of going from a 7% savings rate to 85% then back down to 75%. A car accident motivated a wake-up that led to five-year path to FI which is pretty inspiring. I particularly love this interview because of the two different takes on the same future at the end (56:18), because I identify with a past life filled with unintentional spending (I’ve changed!), and because it inspires me to save more than spend and to spend on what I care about most.

They’re on a five-year path to FI just by making a few changes. FI is just a few steps away. (2:17)

One of the things that strikes me is how willing people are to commute hours to work and they don’t consider the cost. One of the most valuable things you have is time. (5:04)

We made it a game. Each month, we came up with one thing that we can do on our budget to reduce our spending. (6:29)

Holy cow, you don’t have to work for 60 years. The job I have now is as good as it can get in software engineering; I have a lot of autonomy, I work with great people, I have great benefits. It’s just not where I want to be. It’s not what I want to do. When the alarm goes off, I don’t want to get up. I want to be in control of my schedule and doing things that matter to me and not helping the bottom line of a big company. (11:19)

Happiness increased after spending less. (15:59)

We didn’t know how to cook well, so we were going out to eat twice a day. We needed to learn not only how to cook but to cook things we would enjoy. Going out to eat did not make us happy. Now we cook meals that we enjoy for pennies on the dollar and they’re healthier too. (17:30)

$100,000 in discretionary spending… how does that happen?! It’s about not paying attention… (19:34)

What are you running to? Take a step back and figure out what your dreams your passions and your goals actually are. Explore. Don’t graze. Be intentional. (47:44)

The story at the end paints a picture of two different futures—56:18—it’s superb and worth a listen.