Before giving up the 9-5 I often thought about how grand life would be if I was a millionaire. I could do absolutely anything I wanted whenever I wanted without a worry in the world. But as I steamrolled towards greater financial independence through saving and a different mindset, this whole notion of money being a great liberator became somewhat diluted.
I now have a level of financial independence that allows me to travel almost anywhere, anytime and without any consideration of other factors. Yet, the world isn’t all roses. Sure, it’s much better than having to roll out of bed every morning to do something that I’m not passionate about, but the question still remains, “What am I going to do now?”
A million dollars doesn’t solve this problem. In fact, I think having financial independence in many ways brings these life questions to the fore and demands that you tackle them head-on – something which isn’t necessary when burying yourself in the 9-5. The blissful ignorance of the 9-5 allows you to hide from the deeper questions about oneself. Financial independence doesn’t.
So giving up the 9-5 for a life of greater freedom makes you face up to some tough questions whether you are ready for it or not. And boy, they are tough questions to answer.
Has your escape from the 9-5 challenged your notions of what life is all about? Can you even define it?
5 replies on “If I Had a Million Dollars”
I still have some kind of belief that having lots of money will solve a lot of problems (thus making me happier). I wouldn’t be as stressed about making money from the things I want to share with the world, and be able to concentrate more on sharing them.
But I know what you mean.
I think getting to the point where you have the money that you wanted can be different to expectations because you were telling yourself, ‘I’ll be happy when…’ (to whatever degree)
But I don’t think happiness works that way. We need to be fulfilled on the way to our goals, too.
Anyway I feel incredibly rambly, so hopefully some of that made sense.
I know what you mean. The more I keep thinking about this whole situation, the more I get a real sense that happiness comes from within. And it sounds trite. Happiness comes from within! HA! But what this really means I don’t know yet.
So, it’s great to have enough money to survive day-to-day so you can focus on what you really want. I think that gives you a base from which you can pursue happiness without the stresses, as you say, of thinking about where the next dollar is going to come from. But then what? That’s where I’m at now and I don’t think a million bucks would help.
Maybe we’d all be happier if we could just hang out in big groups of likeminded souls and pursue our creative passions. I reckon that’d make me pretty happy. Maybe that’s what all these people in communes are up to. 🙂
Having bucketsloads of dosh (not speaking from experience LOL) just makes life a bit simpler not necessarily better or happier. What it does do, is give you the independence to be able to do whatever you want to do — but going off the people I know who do have it by the bucketload, all they want to do is make more bucketloads of it.
Careful what you wish for!
I catch myself reading your old entries, and reading this, well, one thing I can confirm is, I am not there yet in terms of financial independence. When I decide to take a sabbatical, my plan is simply to take a break and if I have to go back to work, then I will, but it better be for something I love.
And on Stuart’s comment – I can definitely vouch for that. I have friends and relatives who I would kill (figuratively obviously) for their financial state, and think they are better off retiring than stressing out on how to make more money.
@Miss Lai Lai – My only advice for achieving financial independence is to have a plan and write it down. It doesn’t even have to be specific. Just a direction of some sort so you don’t drift from laziness to laziness… which is something I love to do. 😀