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Nearly achieving goals
Old 10-12-2010, 10:52 PM   #1
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Nearly achieving goals

Last year I tried to climb Borah Peak, the highest point in my home state of Idaho. I got to within about 1,000 feet of the summit and was turned back by lightning storms.

This year, I adjusted my plans to improve my odds of success, and I was able to make it to the top.

I found myself with a strange indifference when I was within about 200 feet of the summit. Why? Because I knew I was going to make it to my goal.

I am 41 and am similarly getting that same indifferent feeling with regard to FI. Why? I think it is because, barring my death or absolute financial cataclysm, I will reach FI. Maybe in 25 months if things go surprisingly well. In about 58 months if things go as they have been going. Maybe longer if I lose my job or something, but almost certainly by age 50. Which is still pretty dang early anyhow.

Maybe I won't make it to FI at all, but the point is it seems to me like I most probably will, and with that opinion in my head, the appeal of reaching for the goal sort of fades.

Not burned out particularly, don't mind my job too much, health is reasonably good, not really looking for advice, just wanted to write that thought out.

2Cor521
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Old 10-13-2010, 11:17 AM   #2
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Interesting, 2Cor. My DH has experienced the same thing when we've attained goals that took a long time to achieve. A let-down feeling, even. I try to convince him he needs to make new goals, but the funk lasts a long time.
I think this is quite common. I know that when I finally graduated college a few months ago, thus making it possible for me to use my CFP after five years of working for it, I felt oddly deflated once the party feeling went away.
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Old 10-13-2010, 11:20 AM   #3
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I think we (perhaps men in particular?) are wired for the hunt, not the kill.
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Old 10-13-2010, 11:32 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rich_in_Tampa View Post
I think we (perhaps men in particular?) are wired for the hunt, not the kill.
This is an interesting observation.

I don't know if it has anything to do with sex, or perhaps just affluence. I used to hunt, and when I was young shooting the birds was the focus. At times I even stayed in the field long enough that the birds were heat degraded. Later, whether birds or larger game I was very attentive to getting the meat home and dressed in good shape, so it would make quality meals. If my wife or some helper had done this, I possibly would have not been so focused on meat preservation, but I don't know.

I know that in gardening, it tended to be me that made sure that the produce got timely picked, frozen or whatever, although she was quite good at canning and making specialty products, once I had got it in and cleaned.

I think my focus has always been on net profit, and it isn't complete until it on the table, or in the freezer, or in the bank.

I had zero let-down when I retired, although at times for other reasons I feel that I aborted mission too soon, or perhaps was on the wrong mission.

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Old 10-13-2010, 11:47 AM   #5
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Originally Posted by SecondCor521 View Post
I found myself with a strange indifference when I was within about 200 feet of the summit. Why? Because I knew I was going to make it to my goal.
I am 41 and am similarly getting that same indifferent feeling with regard to FI. Why? I think it is because, barring my death or absolute financial cataclysm, I will reach FI.
Screw the excitement; boring is good.

If the storm clouds had started gathering when you were still 195 feet short of your goal, I bet you would have become quite interested in the survivability proposition of raising your elevation by another 195 feet.

I think the process of achieving FI should also be boring. After the last couple years of excitement, here's to an even greater amount of boredom throughout the next 25-58 months.

I don't think you'll be bored by the prospect of figuring out what you're going to do all day. It might seem boring to an observer, but I don't think that you'll find it boring.
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Old 10-13-2010, 11:54 AM   #6
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Originally Posted by SecondCor521 View Post
Last year I tried to climb Borah Peak, the highest point in my home state of Idaho. I got to within about 1,000 feet of the summit and was turned back by lightning storms.

This year, I adjusted my plans to improve my odds of success, and I was able to make it to the top.

I found myself with a strange indifference when I was within about 200 feet of the summit. Why? Because I knew I was going to make it to my goal.

I am 41 and am similarly getting that same indifferent feeling with regard to FI. Why? I think it is because, barring my death or absolute financial cataclysm, I will reach FI. Maybe in 25 months if things go surprisingly well. In about 58 months if things go as they have been going. Maybe longer if I lose my job or something, but almost certainly by age 50. Which is still pretty dang early anyhow.

Maybe I won't make it to FI at all, but the point is it seems to me like I most probably will, and with that opinion in my head, the appeal of reaching for the goal sort of fades.

Not burned out particularly, don't mind my job too much, health is reasonably good, not really looking for advice, just wanted to write that thought out.

2Cor521
You know, I've been feeling like that recently too. We're a little less than 5 years away from our hoped-for FIRE date, and on track enough that it seems realistic to start planning that next phase of our lives. Obviously, a lot can happen in 5 years, so no guarantees, but before there was the excitement of "This seems crazy, but I think it might actually be possible." That felt sort of like winning the lottery. And I still think that if things go according to plan, we will feel like we won the lottery. But now that it seems reachable, it doesn't even always seem like a big goal any more, just something matter-of-fact.
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