Is it possible to retire early? Your Money or Your Life (2018) by Vicki Robin, with deceased coauthor Joe Dominguez says “Yes”, but expect to retire with a frugal lifestyle. You can retire early, but only if you change your definition of what “rich” and “wealth” mean to you. This book reminds readers to live into their priorities and values so they can become “masters of their own destiny.”
Our capitalist, consumerist culture is in direct opposition to this book’s concept. Be ready to question your financial behavior, have tough conversations with yourself (and family), and stop flying by the seat of your pants. Instead, start making a strategic plan for your financial future.
The first half of the book can be experienced as frustrating slow. You might even take offense to how lacking in substance it is and regret wasting your time. Skip it or trudge through because it does get better and more helpful! The life changing wisdom in the second half of the book will make up for the drudgery of the first.
This book lives in the neighborhood of publications within the “Retire Early (FIRE) movement” genre. It’s about liberating yourself from the need to work as much or at all so you can use your remaining time as you please. The key gift of Your Money or Your Life are the numerous examples and stories of people who have achieved this lifestyle. If you’re not sure how or where to start, this book gives you the vision and inspiration to aim for and why starting early matters.
Vicki Robin explains, “Breaking the link between work and money allows us to reclaim balance and sanity. Our fulfillment as human beings lies not in our jobs, but in the whole picture of our lives. In our inner sense of what life is about, our connectedness with others and our yearning for meaning and purpose.”
Your Money or Your Life is about investing in your values, building a nest egg that supports your needs, enjoying “sequential sabbaticals”, spending less money than you make, incorporating minimalism, and using treasury bonds, real estate, and index funds for smart investing.
Vicki Robin is a social innovator, TEDxSeattle speaker, and NY times best seller who lives on Whidbey Island in Washington. Learn more about her at vickirobin.com.
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