The book pictured I picked up at the recent Write Canada 2014 writer’s conference in Guelph, Ont., the third time in five years I attended that event.
Joyce Li is a project manager and motivational speaker, originally from Hong Kong, now living with her family in Brampton, Ont. Reimagine Your Retirement is published by Word Alive Press, and is what you might expect from a publisher focused on spiritual writing. Li’s perspective on Retirement is not at all the traditional “full stop retirement” we think of when we see the ads from the banks and fund companies.
Instead, she views Retirement as a sort of spiritual/vocational halfway house between one’s working years and eternity. This is not dissimilar to my own view of Findependence or Semi Retirement. In fact, she credits Rick Warren’s The Purpose Driven Life for inspiring her almost a decade ago: she gave six family members copies of Warren’s book, with personalized inscriptions.
Are you haunted by “nagging dreams”?
Li spends time a good chunk of time talking about ”nagging dreams “ that have yet to come true. And who among us does not harbour dreams we’ve not yet been able to manifest in this harsh workaday world and its seeming financial constraints? Li doesn’t make light of the financial side of retirement but seeks a way to reconcile it. And she’s not shy about confessing her own youthful dreams of becoming either a movie star or a pop star.
Spiced liberally with biblical quotes, Li is all about planning: plan the work, work the plan.
In the opening chapters, she reminds us the concept of retirement was non existent in biblical times and throughout most of history. And whether retirement is voluntary, involuntary, or delayed, Li doesn’t shy away from the financial side of it. One reality is that “Retirement requires financial support for an unknown time.”
And did you know the bible has at least 250 verses that discuss money? Interestingly, she says the Bible has “no direct reference to retirement or retirement planning,” except for one passage in Numbers 8:23-26. (“at the age of 50, they must retire from their regular service and work no longer.”)
While she acknowledges that some plan never to retire, some will partially do so, and some will fully retire to disengage from the workworld altogether, Li’s personal orientation seems strongly oriented to reinvention or reimagination, as the book’s title suggests. This may entail going back to school, or embarking on a brand new vocation.
The book will find few readers among atheists and agnostics, but will be thought provoking for those who see a spiritual dimension to life, no matter what particular religious affiliation.
A book for writing in
I wouldn’t suggest obtaining a library or ebook version of this book, as Li provides plenty of blanks she encourages one to fill in, with multiple exercises to put self discovery and concrete planning into practice. She’s all about discovering one’s skills, life gifts, spiritual gifts and passions, then encapsuating what you’re discovered into a personal mission statement that will chart your 20 to 30 years of a reimagined retirement. She’s a strong believer in the power of visualization, which of course is exactly what I suggest in my own book: drawing a line in the sand and declaring it your Findependence Day, even if it turns out ultimately to be a moving target.
My latest Financial Independence blog at MoneySense.ca can be found under the above title here.
For convenience, here is the text, with a few minor tweaks at the end:
Despite the steady flow of retirement savings crisis headlines in recent years, it seems many Canadian couples haven’t even discussed the topic with their significant others, let alone started a savings regime.
Last week, RBC reported that 68% of not-yet-retired Canadians 50 or older who participated in its annual retirement poll have yet to discuss their post-career lives with their partners. Eighty-six per cent are reluctant to discuss health issues, 81% don’t want to raise the topic of what happens if one of them dies sooner than anticipated and two-thirds haven’t discussed what they will do together in retirement. And astonishingly, only 36% have discussed how to finance retirement and where they would live once it occurred.
Retirement preparedness is no better in the United States. Thirty per cent of American workers have less than US$1,000 in savings and investments while three-in-four have less than US$30,000 saved in their retirement accounts, according to data from 2012. Similar to what RBC found, 56% of Americans have not tried to calculate how much they need for retirement. Little wonder the average expected retirement age in that country has risen from 60 in the mid-1990s to 67 today. In other words, many will merely wait for social security to kick in. As it stands, 35% of Americans over 65 rely entirely on social security for their income and 40% of U.S. baby boomers plan to work until they die, according to a 2010 AARP survey.
It’s clear that couples on both sides of the border can do better to prepare for their post-career lives and the first step is talking about it. Do you plan to work part-time or launch your own entrepreneurial venture once you leave your day job? Does your partner hope for the same?
Mark Venning recommends those 55+ plan for extended longevity, not the traditional full-stop retirement. Canadians can now expect to live to almost 82, versus just 57 in 1921, according to the most recent figures from Statistics Canada.
One Alternative to Saving: Early “Six-Feet-Under”
Imagine the daunting prospect of “retiring” at 60 or soon after and having to live another 40 years without a paycheque? As The National Post recently noted, some gerontologists are suggesting Canadians could expect to live to 120 in the near future. Now there’s a scary thought experiment: living 60 years without a paycheque!
The way I see it, those of you without a solid savings plan are either going to have to work a very long time into old age or hope for “Freedom Six Feet Under” before you run out of money. To the people who have saved only $1,000 or $30,000, just how long do you expect that money to last? If this is you, perhaps you should take up skydiving, stop exercising, start smoking and eat nothing but junk food.
Either that, or show this blog to your spouse and start having a serious chat about what your joint retirement looks like. And I can tell you from where I currently sit, it can look great, but only if you get serious about it.
As noted last week in my MoneySense Financial Independence blog, I intend to write a series of posts on the mass migration of almost-retired baby boomers moving from large corporations to free agency.
I recently attended a full-day workshop on this topic put on by Mark Venning of ChangeRangers.com. Venning knows well of what he speaks: He has spent more than a decade and a half working with mature (55+ generally) clients who have migrated from corporate employment to self-employment. A big part of his perspective is extended life expectancy and longevity: he prepares clients to continue working at some level well into their 60s, 70s and even 80s. The slogan on his business card and website is Envision the Promise of Longevity.
Claiming your place at the fire
As I argued on the MoneySense blog, 40 years is a long time to go without a paycheque, which is how long someone leaving the paid workforce might have to plan for if they leave paid employment in their early 60s. Add the type of extended longevity that Venning and others envisage (I’m thinking of Lee Anne Davies and her Agenomics blog, or Moses Znaimer of Zoomer Media), and “retired” boomers need to start preparing for this next great stage of their lives. There are of course many books on this topic: we looked at one last week and another I’m currently reading on my Kindle is Claiming Your Place at the Fire: Living the Second Half of Your Life on Purpose.
Leaving the Corporate Womb
But back to Mark Venning and Change Rangers. I can’t possibly summarize his content in a short blog but suffice it to say that in this economy there are many talented people who are either voluntarily or involuntarily being motivated to consider alternatives to employment in large corporations. One is self-employment, an option that “more and more people 50+ are exploring,” he says.
Compared to 50 years ago, these mature people are in better physical condition, so can expect an extended lifetime. “They’re living longer than they typically used to so they have to plan for a longer period of time,” he told me in an interview, “This is why the word ‘Retirement’ doesn’t work for me. It’s about longevity planning. My core message is plan for your longevity, not for retirement.”
A Portfolio Career
As I see it, there are at least three ways to go when you decide to set up your own shop. One, you may see this as an opportunity to test out clients (and them you) with a view to possible full-time reemployment down the road. Second, you may decide such a “portfolio career” is a more attractive route at this stage of life: when you think about it, a single “job” means just a single client, which is less secure than having several clients. And of course, you don’t have a traditional “boss,” although being your own boss has challenges of its own. And third, while many choose to start such enterprises tentatively as a one-person shop working from a home office, there’s always the possibility of growing the enterprise down the road so that one day you are an emploYER, rather than an emploYEE. And that in turn offers the potential to sell a business.
Free Agent Nation and other books
As I warned, this blog doesn’t even begin to scratch the surface but for now, I’ll leave you with a few book suggestions from a list Venning hands out. One I just read on the Kindle is Dan Pink’s Free Agent Nation: The Future of Working for Yourself. Another I’ve just begun is Peter Block’s Flawless Consulting: a Guide to Getting Your Expertise Used. And a third I’ve put on hold at the library is Alan Weiss’s Value-Based Fees: How to Charge and Get What You’re Worth.
As my parallel Financial Independence blog at MoneySense.ca shows here, there are degrees of financial independence. For one-stop-shopping purposes for users of this site, I’ve included the blog below:
Degrees of Financial Independence
In researching the web for content clarifying the differences between Retirement and Financial Independence, I came across this May 8, 2014 post by J.D. Roth, of the Get Rich Slowly site.
In his “coming to terms” post, Roth finds the traditional word Retirement carries too much baggage, so he prefers the term I also like: Financial Independence. That’s a fairly common stance among the semi-retired and early retirees who write about this topic: the only difference is few have (as yet) adopted my contraction of Financial Independence: Findependence. The reason I invented that term is that I felt if we are to have a catchy popular alternative to the word Retirement, it should be shorter than the two-word seven-syllable mouthful called Financial Independence. Retirement is one word and three syllables; Findependence is also one word and has only four syllables.
A continuum of financial freedom
But whatever the term you prefer, it’s important to realize there are degrees of Findependence/Retirement, or a continuum. This is a point Roth makes in the article flagged above. He talks about four types of retirement: the traditional full-stop version that begins (usually) at age 65, Early Retirement (launched usually in one’s mid 50s or early 60s, although there is a genre of Extreme Early Retirement that supposedly begins in one’s 20s or 30s). And finally there’s the concept of multiple Mini-Retirements championed by Tim Ferriss in The 4-Hour Workweek, and which I blogged on earlier this summer.
If you reframe the Retirement discussion as being about Findependence, it’s also possible to describe a similar continuum, just as it’s possible to describe different degrees of financial freedom. Roth notes we all begin life completely dependent on our parents, including financially. At some point, children leave the nest but will depend on an employer and/or financial institutions. Once free of consumer debt, a greater degree of financial freedom is achieved, and this freedom expands once you own a home free and clear: which is why I say the foundation of Financial Independence is a paid-for home. At that point, you are no longer paying a mortgage or paying rent to a landlord, although of course you will still have to pay municipal property taxes and if you’re a condo owner you may be on the hook for ongoing maintenance fees. Beyond that, you’ll still need external sources of income for heating, hydro, roof repairs and all the other expenses that home owners incur. And finally, true Findependence arrives (I call this Findependence Day), when enough money is coming in from multiple passive sources of income (Pensions, investments, etc.) that you no longer need to rely soley on income derived from the single source called an “employer.”
Cadillac vs Chevy retirements
But even then, there’s low-level Findependence and high-level Findependence. You may have saved enough not to have to go to work five days a week but may not be so flush that you can eat in fancy restaurants and travel the world 365 days a year. Most people on the Findependence continuum will be somewhere between the latter luxury Findependence and a barebones one that requires eating in most days and restricting exotic travel to a few weeks a year. If the latter, it’s perfectly logical to continue to work on projects or part-time to fund a few more luxuries and the occasional mega-trip.
The illustration is from the cover of Stephen Pollan’s 2003 book, Second Acts, which I got from the local library. (Frugality guerrillas may like my tip here: download a free sample from Kindle, read the intro, then place a hold on the web site of your local library. This way you get a bit of instant gratification, but you also save money.)
Sidebars of famous Second Acts
One of the nice features of this book is dozens of sidebars where the authors (Mark Levine is also credited) highlights such famous second acts as Ray Kroc, Jimmy Carter, Paul Gauguin, Ronald Reagan, J.K. Rowling and many more.
Pollan himself has had a major second act as a life coach, following a stressful corporate career which ended with the good news that he had tuberculosis. Yes, good news, because the alternative diagnosis was lung cancer.
A focus of the book is written exercises designed to help readers uncover the life of their dreams, putting that dream into words, developing a “second act mindset” and identifying the blockages (or “closed doors”) that prevented actualizing dreams during the long “first act” so many have settled for.
Chief among the doors that have to be pushed open are age and money. Many convince themselves they are “too old” to embark on a second act, or that they require staggering sums of money to pull it off. Another concern is often “duration.” If the prelude to a second act is going back to school or otherwise paying your dues in a profession like acting, then the number of years it will take to make the transition can weigh on those who are already approaching their golden years.
In some cases, we are own worst enemies: for some, fear of success prevents people from pursuing their dreams, for others it’s the opposite: fear of failure. Sometimes, we convince ourselves that we can’t proceed without the consent of close family members. Pollan and Levine also devote a chapter to physical health and appearance, urging readers to do whatever it takes to realize their dreams: if that means losing 50 pounds, then get out there and diet and exercise; if it takes cosmetic surgery to enter a field that puts a premium on youth and beauty, then do it.
As noted by Richard Eisenberg at Forbes.com (here) and NextAvenue.org, I recently made my personal “Declaration of Findependence.” As he noted, July 4th seems to be as good a day to make such a declaration as any other.
It’s been about six weeks since my Findependence became official, although as I confessed to Richard, the timing wasn’t 100% what I would have chosen. As things are working out, however, I actually have a head start on my most recently amended Findependence Day: which I’d planned for next April, when I turn 62 and start to draw modest pensions from my 19 years at the Financial Post and a few shorter-lived corporate gigs.
A moving line in the sand
There’s a scene in the book (both Canadian and US editions) where I talk about the power of “drawing a line in the sand” about your Findependence Day. I do, however, note that it often turns out to be a moving target. External circumstances are as apt to move the date forward as backward.
If stock markets are doing well, as they are now, you can move the date ahead in time. As I told Forbes.com, I viewed my April purchase of a new Camry Hybrid car as an exercise in “rebalancing.” Pictured is the old Volvo S70 it replaced, and which was featured once in an article I wrote for the National Post. Taking some profits on stocks and paying cash for a new car puts a solid tangible asset at your disposal: and I’ve found it a very pleasant and useful addition to my Findependent life, however fond I was of the old Volvo.
Another way your Findependence Day can be moved forward is if circumstances at work change. These days, the economy is such that if a major corporate restructuring occurs or a new boss comes in to leave their mark, your financial independence may arrive sooner than you think, and perhaps slightly scaled down from a higher level of Findependence down the road.
But that’s the whole point of Findependence and having a reserve emergency fund: you hope for the best but prepare for the worst. As long as you’re debt-free and your investment and pension income exceeds your income from salaried employment, you’re ready for whatever the corporate world will throw at you.
The ultimate boss is yourself
As for what Findependence has been like in practice, in truth it very much resembles the four-year period I spent as a freelance technology writer in the 1980s. The commute is a lot better although lacking a “buffer zone” to read in or listen to audio books, news or music. You still have to discipline yourself to put in the morning’s “two hours of real work,” as per the earlier blog here on the four-day. And of course, you have to promise yourself to do the same for the two-hour “afternoon shift.”
During the first six weeks, my daughter — now in Ireland — was around the house observing the transition. I joked about what it was like having an unemployed bum hanging about the house. She was having none of it. “You’re self-employed, Dad,” she reminded me. End of conversation.
Next time (on July 1st and in time for July 4th), we’ll look at how to declare YOUR Findependence Day.
Last time, we looked at the concept of The 4-Hour Workweek, which is also the title of a book by Timothy Ferris.
How realistic is the 4-hour workweek, which Ferriss equates to the mobile lifestyles of what he terms the “New Rich,”? Well if you’re semi retired, four hours a week of productive work is four hours more a week productivity than the traditional full-stop retirement.
Precursor to 4-hour week from the 1950s
What I find curious about Ferriss’s four-hour a week concept is that it resembles in some respects a much older strategy called the four-hour day. In the 1950s, William J. Reilly wrote a book called How to Make Your Living in Four Hours a Day (without feeling guilty about it). (Harper & Bros. NY 1955). Note the subtitle!
I wrote about this a few times in my old Wealthy Boomer column in the Financial Post prior to joining MoneySense, including one in June 1997. In fact, most of my time in the paid workforce has used some variant of the four-hour day. Ironically, the person who flagged me to Reilly’s book in the first place was a former boss and still friend, Norman Evans, who took the photo of me in last week’s post. Even though he was my employer at the time, and presumably seeking maximum productivity from me, he was serious about me using the four-hour day.
Two two-hour stints focused on what you’re really paid for
The idea of the four-hour day is that very highly creative people like composers, novelists or even high-level executives, really have only four or five hours of high-level mental daily energy to perform the tasks they have to do. As any office cubicle dweller can tell you, very few people do a high-energy 8 hour day for every hour they’re on the job. For senior managers and creative types, what’s important is the high-level brain power being expended: not the amount of time one’s bum adheres to an office chair.
So it’s important, whether you’re a salesperson, executive, artist, musician or writer to spend at least two hours of the workday morning doing the work you’re really paid for: making cold calls or closing deals if you’re in sales, writing articles if you’re a writer, writing a symphony if you’re a composer, etc.
Having done your two-hour morning stint, you’re free to spend two hours over lunch networking, learning or exercising, as long as you promise yourself to spend at least two hours in the afternoon doing the work you’re really paid to do. In the case of former boss Norman, he often espoused using the two-hour interregnum between the two two-hour work stints for “killing two birds with one stone” concepts like walking meetings.
A corporate compromise: a 4-hour day tucked inside an 8-hour day
As an example, imagine your morning shift of “real work” is between 10 am and noon, and the afternoon shift between 2 and 4 pm involves being back at the desk making sales calls, editing or writing, budgeting or whatever. Note that this leaves an hour first thing for doing things like reading the paper, checking email or social media, and the same at the end of the day. Even when I was a newspaper columnist, I practiced a version of this. As an editor, it was trickier. Because at a large corporation like Rogers there are many meetings and interruptions, with staff continually poking their heads in for impromptu meetings.
True, my official hours at MoneySense were more like 9 am to 6 pm, with a one-hour commute tacked on both ends, but within that nine hours was an inner core of two hours in the morning and two hours in the afternoon.
The 4-hour workweek more aligned with Findependence
Admittedly, the 4-hour Work WEEK espoused by Ferriss is a quantum leap of difference: he’s really pushing the envelope with a four-hour workweek. If it works, I’ll revisit his strategy in future versions of this blog but right now, I’m inclined to view findependence as more compatible with a 4-hour work WEEK, and the four-hour DAY as more compatible with salaried corporate employment: even if it’s the variant I describe that requires being there physically at the start and end of the normal office 9-to-5 day.
The Mexican fisherman: working to live or vice versa?
Before closing, I should note that our friend the Mexican fisherman also makes an appearance in Ferriss’s book. This was of course the subject of my current Financial Independence column in the new Summer issue of MoneySense. As I noted there, the Mexican fisherman story is all over the internet and I wrote the piece before I even read Ferriss’s book, but it does indicate the general theme of living in the present, and the folly of forever “slaving and saving” today for the mirage of a single one-time-and-forever “Retirement” in the far-off future. (All on the assumption that employers, pension managers, financial markets, health, spouses and family cooperate.)
As John Lennon famously wrote in what turned out to be his final album, “Life is what happens to you while you’re busy making other plans.” I can relate to that, especially this summer, but also firmly believe that if Life hands you an unexpected “Plan B,” the B stands for Better!, as best-selling spiritual author Joyce Meyer argues in her book, You Can Begin Again.
Next time, we’ll also look at the notion of “Second Acts.”
Here’s a new concept I’d not considered until I started reading the book pictured in the adjacent photo. Last time, we talked about semi-retirement and sabbaticcals but you might want to add the term “mini-retirement” to all these concepts that (in my view) touch on financial independence.
In his book, The 4-hour Workweek, Timothy Ferriss floats the idea of periodic mini-retirements spread over a lifetime. So instead of the traditional route so many of us take – which he dubs “slave/save/retire” — Ferriss likes to work in two-month stints, then “retire” for blocks of a month or so (sometimes longer).
Death of Vacations?
Now you might argue that the traditional two-week annual vacation squeezed between 48 to 50 weeks of working is a mini retirement, or more accurately, a “Micro retirement.” But of course the very fact of you having a return ticket means a micro retirement is no retirement at all.
Even as he declares the birth of Mini-Retirements, Ferriss announces the “death of vacations.” He discovered mini-vacations after being “miserable and overworked” early in 2004. He originally planned to relax for a month in Central America but, seeing as he had only purchased a one-way ticket, extended his stay for three months and ultimately 15 months. Thus came the insight that semi-retiring baby boomers may well want to embrace: “Why not take the usual 20-30-year retirement, and redistribute it throughout life instead of saving it all for the end?”
An end, I might add, that might not be as hale and hearty as mini-retirements taken earlier. As I say in my book, the goal is to enjoy Findependence “while you’re still young enough to enjoy it.”
Alternating waves of activity and leisure
The flipside of the mini-retirement strategy is that it also means those practicing it – many of them the oncoming wave of retiring baby boomers – will actually continue to work: as I said last time, probably well into one’s 70s, health permitting.
The difference is that this will be accomplished in alternating waves of activity and leisure. This actually also corresponds to my confession a week ago that I had a few early false alarms on my own Findependence Day. Now that I’m refining the concept, I realize that you can have multiple Findependence Days, each associated with separate and finite “Mini-Retirements.” Now that the World Cup has begun, I’m hoping to have one this summer.
Embracing the Mobile Lifestyle
A big ingredient in Ferriss’s approach is the mobile lifestyle, which is implied by the book’s subtitle: “Escape 9-5, Live Anywhere and Join the New Rich.” It’s harder for salaried 9-to-5ers to embrace this lifestyle, since it’s more suited to self-employment and a web-based mobile device culture. But even for what Ferriss terms “cubicle dwellers” there are ways to pull it off if you can negotiate it with your boss.
Next time, we’ll look at the idea of the four-hour work DAY for employees: a precursor to the four-hour work WEEK.
I’m addressing this edition of the blog to MoneySense readers, who may have learned of this web site’s existence because of a gracious mention in the editor’s note of the new Summer issue of MoneySense, penned by Duncan Hood, who both preceded and followed me in the position of editor-in-chief.
The above picture, taken this morning, you could call “View from the Editor-at-Large’s chair.”
As Duncan implies at the end of his editorial, it turns out my personal Findependence Day (or Financial Independence Day) was May 20, 2014, my last day as a full-time employee at Rogers Publishing. The concept of Findependence and Findependence Day can be found in chapter one of the financial novel of the same name, and which is the chief focus of this blog and website. The introductory chapter is free and you can find it by clicking on the Preview tab of this site, or here.
At one point in the book, I say that the day after Findependence Day may be just like the one before it, except that from this moment on you work because you want to, not because you have to. Right now, I neither have to nor want to, so I’m declaring this summer a sabbatical. After 35 consecutive years in journalism, with never more than two weeks off in a row, it’s a long-awaited chance to do a lot of reading and thinking and exploring new opportunities.
Is Semi-Retirement the best of all worlds?
Some of the books I’ve been reading are What Color is Your Parachute? For Retirement; Mitch Anthony’s The New Retirementality; Ian Taylor’s Are you ready for Semi-Retirement? and others I’ll mention in future posts. I believe most baby boomers have a lot of life ahead of them and this 61-year old (a 1953 model, as one friend puts it) intends to be fully engaged in writing, editing, speaking, blogging, book authorship, social media, reviewing books, consulting and other activities, probably until well past 70. Once they’re findependent many boomers will still want to be actively mixing a work lifestyle with a bit more leisure and learning: See The Three Boxes of Life, a book I read decades ago. Unless you’re completely burned out by a stressful career, many of us will be in “go-go” mode for the early to mid 60s. This may become “slow-go” as you pass 65 and ultimately “No-go,” which might occur as one enters true old age and are disabled or suffering early signs of dementia: or forced to take care of a partner in that condition.
As corporate full-time salaried jobs go, the editorship of MoneySense was hard to beat. So I doubt I’ll even try to replace it: instead, I’ll probably choose to implement a “portfolio career,” the chief elements of which I mention above. Of course, if another perfect job arrived, I’d certainly consider it!
Unpacking the three boxes of life
Back to the three boxes of life. It used to be that Box One was education, devoted 100% to learning. Then you graduated into Box Two: Full-time Work. Probably most readers of MoneySense are familiar with this box, which even in my case has dragged out fully half of the biblically allotted three score and ten. Then Box Three was the traditional Retirement, with 100% leisure, typically occurring at age 65 with a gold watch and the fruits of long service in a Defined Benefit pension plan.
Now what about the timing of your Findependence Day? As a later chapter of the book explains, this can be a moving target and moved forward or backward, depending on financial markets or outside forces beyond your control. You may even have a false alarm or two in declaring exactly when your Findependence actually arrives.
I joke that my liberation in May actually constituted my “third annual Findependence Day.” The first almost occurred when I thought I was going to take a buyout package from the Financial Post. The second was a year ago, when I turned 60 and published the US edition of the book, and celebrated both milestones with what I claimed was “the world’s first Findependence Day party.” (Hey, since I coined the term, I should be able to make that claim!)
Several MoneySense writers attended that event but as I noted at the time in a blog titled “The Day After Findependence Day,” it was a bit of an anticlimax. The following Monday I went back to the office at the Rogers Campus and continued to edit the magazine, content to declare that (as the book says), I was now “working because I want to, not because I have to.”
And I did want to at the time. But I also reasoned that by turning 60, if I no longer enjoyed it I could now collect CPP plus a few modest corporate pensions if I really wanted to. I explained this in the Financial Independence column I wrote in the 15th anniversary issue of MoneySense, which was the last one that I was involved with from the start of the publishing cycle right to the end.
This blog is now column-length itself so I’d better draw it to a close. Up until now, the books and blogs looked at the concept of Findependence Day as something looming in the future. From here on in, I’ll be describing the twists and turns of the actual experience. It’s a bit like the difference between eating food and merely watching someone eat.
I hope to update this blog most Fridays, assuming the spirit moves me and I’m not on some travel adventure to fill up the “Leisure” component of semi-retirement. If you need to reach me, just email email@example.com, or reach out at Linked In or Twitter, where I post as @jonchevreau.
My first interview since the title change:
P.S. Just as I was finishing this blog, I learned of a half-hour podcast with a young blogger with whom I chatted last Sunday. I’ll devote a whole blog to this when I get the chance but in the meantime, this blog (which is also transcribed) constitutes my first media interview since stepping down from MoneySense.