|Fuck You by Marion Peck|
But I think another reason that doesn't get much credit is that as people get older and closer to retirement they start to realize that they haven't saved as much as they would have liked for retirement. When you're 30 years old most people think they have another 30 years to go before retirement. That's as long as they have lived to that point! If I had to live my entire life again before I retired I would think I had a LOT of time to figure it out before I got there. But the years start to go by, you get busy with new house projects, or your kids always seem to need new clothes because they are growing so fast! The next thing you know you're in your mid-forties and you realize, oh crap! I need to save how much in the next 15 or so years?
Sure you might have saved some by that point, you were diligent, but a lot of financial advisors are saying that for millennials their retirement will cost them 2 million dollars! Wow! That's a lot just to write. So you start ramping up your savings as you get older because you know your future self will not be able to work forever and you need to have something saved.
Once you're in your fifties you are getting into the home stretch, you can start to actually visualize the finish line so you keep making that last push to up your savings to last you the rest of your life. Most people can cut some fat from their budget, they just don't bother trying until they start realizing they need to.
And that's the secret to early retirement. It's pretty simple. Fast forward life. Save like you're 55 years old. Save like you only have a limited amount of time to work. Look for the finish line early, don't put your head down and go with the flow, that's the way you approach a marathon. If you want to reach early financial independence then you need to push like a 4x4 race. Every year you pick it up a notch until your last leg you make that sprint for the finish.
I know that you have bills to pay and other things to save for, but so do I. So do a lot of other early retirees, it's not impossible. If leasing that new car is high on your list of priorities then go ahead and do it, but don't expect to save money very quickly with monthly payments that you could probably avoid.
What do you think? Would you fast forward life? It doesn't have to be everything, I'm not fast forwarding the health problems, I can wait for that.