Saving and investing for retirement takes discipline and sacrifice. But Sam Dogen, creator of the Financial Samurai website, points out that you also need to spend money to make money. He’s taught over 90 million readers how to invest wisely, not just financially, but in all facets of life. He joins us to discuss his Wall Street Journal bestseller, Buy This, Not That, and his lessons from more than a decade into a very early retirement.
San Dogen joins us from San Francisco.
For More on Sam Dogen
On Purpose and Meaning in Retirement
“It’s definitely a learning process because you don’t know how you will feel in retirement until you get there, until you no longer have that steady paycheck. And so for the first year, I thought ‘Ok, I want to play a lot of tennis golf and travel the world.’ So, that’s what I did. I went to 20 countries. [I] saw nine Gothic churches. But after about the fifth church, they all started looking the same. And after about eight months, I started getting really bored of this early retirement lifestyle.
So in my mind I stopped saying I’m an early retiree. I just said I’m a writer, because I wanted to spend time writing on Financial Samurai which was, and still is, my passion hobby, the thing that I love to do every single day. And I found that the ideal amount of work – purposeful work – to do is about 20 hours a week. Now if you think about it, before in the olden days, when we had to go to the office for work, maybe let’s say we’re there for 9 hours. We would spend maybe three or four hours doing, at least for me, deep work and then three or four hours of so-so work, and then one to two hours of lunch – and then just water cooler and chitchat. And so, I felt that if I could do deep work before my family woke up it would provide me enough meaning and purpose. And then after that, I could spend time playing tennis, softball and spend time with family. And so that is what I learned over the years: that you have to find a really meaningful thing to do post your day job, because that journey is what is most rewarding. Having a goal and working towards it every single day, seeing progress in whatever you’re doing. That is what brings so much purpose after retirement.”
“The fear in your head is often worse than reality. If I could rewind time twenty-five years, I would say Sam, invite more people out to drinks, lunch and dinner. Ask that person. You just never know what might happen. The fear in your head is greater than the reality, because at the end of the day, you can just start over and try again if you fail. But just keep on failing because eventually you’re going to find your success.”
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About Retirement Wisdom
Planning for retirement goes well beyond your 401k or IRA. How will you invest your time after your full-time working years?
You’ll need another portfolio.
I help people create an active multipurpose retirement, with the right mix of interests, activities and pursuits to invest your time wisely. And for many, like me, it includes a new version of work – redefined on your own terms.
Schedule a call to see if a 1-on-1 coaching program or a small group Designing Your New Life program can give you an edge in your next chapter.
Visit retirementwisdom.com for tools and resources to help you retire smarter.
About Your Host
Joe is the author of Win the Retirement Game: How to Outsmart the 9 Forces Trying to Steal Your Joy.
Intro and Outro voiceovers by Ross Huguet.