Six years ago, I was unintentionally jobless. My severance package had run out, I hadn’t found another suitable job, and my emergency fund was all but drained. It took awhile, but I turned it around — and now, I’m semi-retired, working on my own terms and own timeline, and traveling the world. Let me tell you how.
I like to run for exercise. Running can be done just about anywhere, it doesn’t require equipment, I can do it solo, and there’s no special ability required (I just adjust my pace accordingly). In fact, I've ran five half-marathons (none of them very fast, mind you). When I train, I work on improving my physical endurance, my speed, AND my mental fortitude. These three mindset shifts have revolutionized my running performance AND, interestingly enough, my financial well-being.
I was 15 years old when I got my first job working at Panera Bread for $5.25 an hour. Like most people, I’ve been working ever since, without so much as a few weeks off or a few months between jobs — until my “great resignation” at age 36. I’ve worked at coffee shops, restaurants, big box retailers, golf courses… and then post-college, in two TV newsrooms and a few big corporate organizations. Sometimes, I worked side gigs and temp jobs simultaneously with my salaried job, to the tune of 60-70 hours a week, just to pay the bills or get ahead. (Damn, those days were rough.) Then, I quit. I took a chance on myself and my future: to grow and monetize this blog, publish a memoir about my journey, and THOROUGHLY ENJOY MY LIFE. I call this Julie’s Financial Independence Recreational Employment (my take on FI/RE)! Hereby, these are 7 confessions of a corporate job escapee... who's never been happier (spoiler alert).
I have another 30-day, full-time-traveler, nomad-in-Europe spending update for you! I spent most of my second month of my stint in Europe in the Balkans and Mediterranean, so you'd think my mini-retirement spending would be lower than western Europe, buuuuuuut... I had a couple bills come due and a few "splurges," like my 7-day sailing trip in Turkey. So, in days 31-60 in Europe, I spent (and please excuse me while I mentally cringe)...
After I quit my job, transitioning from an earner to a spender was not emotionally easy for me… but this is how I adjusted, and now, I'm at peace with it.
I may WANT to work again, should my choices dictate. But probably, definitely, not in the way that a lot of people work — because they have to, because they're trapped in a debt cycle, because the lifestyle they've chosen comes with a never-ending financial responsibility, because they care about status and appearances and bigger and better and more. Not me.
Hola mis amigos, I am back with another spending recap for my THIRD month living in Mexico after quitting my job and taking an early (temporary) retirement to travel!! Damn, time flies! My January spending was just a bit inflated since I had some immigration and vehicle import costs and a 6-month policy for Mexican [...]
Before you say, "I’m one of those people who will never get ahead, who will never be able to save, who will never be able to not work"... in 2017, I had no job, a car I owed on, a $1,350 house payment on a house full of stuff I never used, peanuts in my 401K, and only $1,500 in cash. That was my situation, and I made changes. You can too.
How am I able to do what I’m doing — quit my job at age 36 to travel the world? Critics call it privilege, and I’m not denying certain benefits I’ve had, but I want to get real for a second. There’s privilege, there’s luck, and there’s choice, and the differences are distinct.
As you all know if you’re reading this blog, 2021 was my first full year of full-time nomadic living. And since there are a lot of you who tell me, “Julie, I wish I could do what you’re doing!” and cite cost as a factor, I want to bare my actual spending to you so you can: - See what I chose to spend money on and compare to your own spending - See where you could cut or make adjustments - See where you could share costs with a friend or partner and how that could significantly affect the numbers - See how I plan to cut in 2022, since as of mid-December 2021 I don’t have a job and will be in Mexico starting January. Read on...
My worst financial mistake ever was not shopping. Not new cars. Not salon and spa outings. Not extravagant vacations. My worst financial mistake ever was SAVING... when I could've been INVESTING. - Confessions of a former shopaholic and reformed current minimalist/full-time nomad
Take two people who make the same income: one of them saves 50% of their salary and lives simply. The other saves nothing; their salary funds their lifestyle of cars, renovations, luxury trips, expensive brunches and nights out. Who is wealthier?
“Experiences over possessions.” Idealistic, perhaps. But controversial, no. Most people would agree with this mantra. But would they live it?
International travel does not need to be expensive or out of reach. It’s about choices. These are the choices I made, which freed up hundreds of dollars in disposable income per month.
I’m not a financial expert, nor can I predict the future. But I knew that I had significant equity and I had a willing buyer. Combine that with motive (excitement and eagerness for change) and opportunity (remote employment)... and it was an easy decision to sell my home of 7 years and become a full-time nomad.
As I see many of my friends, acquaintances, and connections getting laid off, taking mandated furloughs, or receiving pay cuts, I just wanted to leave this here: Your employment status does not define you, and your salary does not equal your value. What does define you? A willingness to embrace change and adapt. Generosity of time, heart and spirit. Persistence and determination. A desire for personal growth and betterment. Humility. Appreciation for the gifts you do have in life. Because, this:
2020 is upon us, and like every other self-respecting, emotionally-evolved millennial, I’m reflecting on 2019 and all its milestones, memories, and blessings.
Two years ago I was filing for unemployment and down to my last $1,500. Well, I turned things around by re-shuffling where my money was going, making full use of my assets, and prioritizing experiences over possessions.
As I look back on the last year, I feel fortunate to have adopted these three principles, now so wholly ingrained in my thinking that they might as well be a part of me.