Early Retirement And Quitting Your Job

Take this job and shove it!  Don’t we all dream of the day we can go into our boss and say those words?  Isn’t that why we’re all feverishly working our butts off?  Mr. Money Monster and I have an early retirement goal of 2021.  But the thing is, I don’t hate my day job.  In fact, I kinda like what I do.  At least, I like most aspects of my job.

Mad Money Pup watching dad pull into the driveway

Mad Money Pup pondering quitting

Why Quit The 9-5?

Really?  Is that a real question, Mrs. Money Monster?  Why yes, yes it is.  Ever see Jurassic Park?  The Original.  Another silly question, I know.  Remember Dr. Malcolm saying something like…’you were so preoccupied with whether or not you could, you didn’t stop to think if you should’.  Okay, okay, before this post gets too heavy, all I’m saying is that, for myself, I’m not so sure I will be turning in my resignation when we hit our FIRE goal in 2021.

I Like Options

I like options.  No, scratch that.  I love options!  I think taking the have to out of work makes it much more enjoyable.  Knowing I could drive into my job each day not actually needing to be there, makes a world of difference in my attitude.

Mr. Money Monster quit his teaching job about 10 years ago to focus on film.  He has worked his butt off and he’s been successful.  He will never quit doing what he is doing because it is his passion.  And he gets paid a tidy sum to do it.  I also enjoy what I’m doing.  However, my income is the Steady Eddy income with benefits.  That makes my job feel forced, even though I mostly love what I do.

What I really want out of our early retirement plan is The Option.  I want The Option to continue working, or not.  I want to be able to drive into work knowing full well that I could quit at a moment’s notice.  All of my friends and family (including Mr. Money Monster…see above) will still be working between the hours of 9-5 each day, Mini Monster is in school, and my job pays really well and offers great benefits.  My thought process…just because I could quit, doesn’t mean I should quit. – Inspired by Dr. Malcolm (duh)

THE TALK

Unfortunately, my day job was becoming more and more burdened with tasks and projects that I didn’t want to participate in.  Every few weeks I have the pleasure of a private meeting with my boss.  The purpose of said meeting is to discuss the status of my work, upcoming projects, and career aspirations.  Now for quite some time I have known what I really want to do at my job.  What I really want to do is described in my job title (hint: think scientist).  However, what I end up doing is my routine work, along with a plethora of anxiety-producing projects that I never asked for but just landed in my lap from upper management.

Wedding = Security

Wedding = Security

This week’s meeting was different from other meetings.  I felt good with what I wanted to present.  I felt like I finally had the courage to say exactly how I have been feeling for a long time.  Maybe getting married had something to do with my seemingly new found confidence, but I’m fairly confident, marriage or not, that the recent solidification our financial plan helped.

I FINALLY had the courage to tell my boss that I no longer wanted to manage special projects.  I was happy doing my routine work.  I have an undergraduate and graduate degree in my field to perform my routine work.  I also pointed out that I didn’t get a degree in business because I didn’t want to manage projects.  I could feel the stress lift with each word that passed through my lips.

My boss seemed agreeable and we both came to the conclusion that I would offer consultation to others managing projects and that any new “opportunities” would be offered to other people in the department.  Can you say PERFECT?  Let me also add that I have worked in this field for 15 years and at this facility for the last 10.  Needless to say, I have a few ideal employee credits stacked in my favor.  I’m not worried about losing my job over this request.

Living in the moment on a winter hike

Living in the moment on a winter hike

That conversation has allowed me to actually FEEL us getting closer and closer to financial independence.  It also allowed me to exercise a bit of the freedom that comes along with it.  It was a liberating experience, to say the least.  It was also a reminder to live in each moment and that getting there is half the fun, and the only reward is not just turning in your resignation.

Will I Stay Or Will I Go

I have come to the conclusion that I really like what I do (minus those pesky special projects) to earn a living.  I love my industry, I love my co-workers, and I love feeling like my work makes a difference in the world.  I’m not saying I won’t ever turn in my notice, I’m just saying it’s probably not going to be the first thing I do in 2021.

What Do You Plan To Do When You Hit Your Savings Goal?

Mad Money Cat NOT loving his photo opp

Mad Money Cat NOT loving his photo opp

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Lisa is the creator and resident writer at Mad Money Monster. She's a mother, scientist, and financial guru on a mission to save Generation X from working until they die!

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21 comments… add one
  • Claudia @ Two Cup House Nov 15, 2015, 9:28 pm

    I’m with you. I seek options. Downsizing, paying off debt and saving for future investments are all activities we’re working on to increase the number of options we have available to us in the future. I enjoy what I do, but I want the option to move to something greater if/when the time comes.

    • Mad Money Monster Nov 16, 2015, 6:01 am

      I LOVE the idea of options! Since I actually like my work my goal, right now, is to free up most of my income for investments and leisure. I want to enjoy my life. I also want to enjoy having the disposable income to share. 🙂

    • Mad Money Monster Nov 16, 2015, 6:03 am

      I LOVE the idea of options. Since I actually like my work, my goal, right now, is to free up most of my income for investments and leisure. The point of having plenty of money is to enjoy your life and share it. 🙂 That’s my vision, anyway.

  • our next life Nov 13, 2015, 5:40 pm

    That’s pretty awesome that you like your job enough to consider sticking around after you hit your magic number! We will not feel so conflicted. 🙂 We actually like our jobs, but the pressure and stress of them is just too much, and we will be peacing out just as soon as we possibly can! I know some people say they feel conflicted when the time comes, but I don’t see that being an issue for us.

    • Mad Money Monster Nov 14, 2015, 9:42 am

      I’m excited to share on your peace out journey! I think my conflict comes from inertia. I’m also able to use my passion degree in my field…so that also keeps me tethered. And, it’s the Golden Ticket (or handcuffs). Great pay, great bennies, great people. More than quitting, I want the option 🙂

  • Maggie Nov 13, 2015, 11:11 am

    We’re all about options! We change exactly what we plan to do once we hit our numbers nearly weekly! But isn’t that exciting?! But we’re also all about enjoying the journey. And it sounds like the conversation you had with your boss has given you more ability to enjoy the road you’re on. Excellent work.

    • Mad Money Monster Nov 13, 2015, 12:20 pm

      Thank you! That conversation truly was the first piece in me feeling the difference our financial journey is making in my life NOW. Slowly but surely the tide is turning. It feels great 🙂

      I’m sure I’ll probably change my mind about the contination of my current job after we hit our FIRE goals but, for now, it’s nice to know I’ll have options.

  • MrFireStation Nov 13, 2015, 9:21 am

    It sounds like you meeting with your boss was a real first step toward financial & life independence. Having the option to check-out in 2021 will free up your thinking about your job, what you must-do, and what you like to do. Congratulations!

    • Mad Money Monster Nov 13, 2015, 12:12 pm

      Thank you! It really was the first real benefit I could feel (a powerful thing) that had radiated from our fire goal. I’m sure I might change my mind about working for my current employer after we reach our goal. But for now, I’m leaving myself open to the option 🙂

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