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Re: Bogle's Rule of 72
Old 11-23-2004, 08:06 AM   #21
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Re: Bogle's Rule of 72

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Too many people allow events drive their lives instead of controlling the events.

arrete
Never a truer statement has been uttered. Not to get too far afield of the "technical" subject matter of this forum, but perhaps if people were more "calculating" in terms of planning their lives, they would encounter less negative stress, and have time for more positive stress.

My girlfriend told me the other day that I needed to put a very clear financial plan together for both the long and short term, so that I could feel comfortable spending money on things that would make my life easier/happier (e.g., a nice long vacation since I haven't taken one in 4-5 years), rather than constantly worrying about whether I've fully prepared financially myself for various contingencies (e.g., layoffs, medical issues, etc...). The fact that I'm not spending money on things that would make my life easier/happier is affecting us as a couple, since the accompanying stress bleeds over into our personal time together.

Anyone have suggestions?
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Re: Bogle's Rule of 72
Old 11-23-2004, 10:05 AM   #22
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Re: Bogle's Rule of 72

Jay,
Definitely the girlfriend has a real point here-- you have to loosen up and live a little now.

The image I have is of someone very young trying to get to FI and saying that they will get there a little faster by never taking a vacation and saving all that extra time and money.

Ludicrous -- really. The human being isn't designed for all work and no play. And if by sheer force of will you are able to pull it off, you are likely to find yourself washed up into ER as an empty husk: financially ready, but friendless, dull and possibly in very poor health. Depression would just be the start -- alienation and misanthropy would be real risks.

ER is about loving life and trying to enjoy it to the max. That doesn't start the day you finally hit 'your Number'. It starts today.

You may have lots of good ways to have fun and a rich enjoyable life without spending a lot of money -- that is a good thing! So I am not saying the girlfriend is right if she is urging you to have a really expensive vacation -- you could blow lots of money and be miserable. But you need to take vacations and mini-vacations and make time for her and for yourself all along the way.

By urging you to make a budget, she may me trying to use your language and M.O. -- "if it isn't in the budget it isn't going to happen" -- to tell you that you need to make time for yourself and for her and that sometimes that will mean spending a bit of money.

What about camping in a state park? Kayaking on a nearby lake or river? Watching a minor league baseball game? Going on a winery tour. All are pretty cheap and let you have some quality time together. I don't know what you and she would like to do, but you'd better find something.

Good Luck!

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Re: Bogle's Rule of 72
Old 11-23-2004, 10:40 AM   #23
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Re: Bogle's Rule of 72

Both of you are definitely right on target with your advice. I went into "defense mode" during the dot-bomb era and the following two years (e.g., 2001-2004) and haven't been able to break the habit of saving.

I just turned 34 and have been working at a "mega" law firm for the past four and a half years. During that time, I busted my tail to make partner, which has required a substantial time commitment (i.e. 60 hours a week in the office, week-in-week-out normally, with occasional 100 hour weeks), along with extracurricular professional activities. Unfortunately, I recently found out that despite my sacrifices (and having allowed the firm to make approximately $1,500,000 in profit off of my back), I'm not going to make it, and have been given a few months to find a new job (this is how it works in mega law firms, and I could start a whole thread explaining why). Needless to say, I'm a bit depressed, and have been driven even further into "defense mode".

With all that said, I recently had lunch with a lawyer I used to work with at a much smaller firm (a 7-lawyer firm), and he mentioned that he was planning on going out on his own and would be interested in forming a firm with me. At first I was a bit wary based upon the risks, but have come around over the past couple of days into thinking that it might actually be a pretty good idea. I'd make decent coin as a "base" (thereby giving me a safety net) and get a percentage of the fees generated by the clients I bring into the firm. With the money I've already saved over the past four years, I'm probably protected enough financially to take the risk.

Once I make a career decision (or find another job), I'm planning on taking the girlfriend on a long vacation. The vacation will likely give me perspective on my workaholic lifestyle, and help me prioritize what's important to me.
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Re: Bogle's Rule of 72
Old 11-23-2004, 11:30 AM   #24
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Re: Bogle's Rule of 72

Jay, I am sorry that the mega firm didn't work out. I never liked the model they use and IMHO your better off not selling your whole life to THE FIRM.

Boutique practices can be nice. Very small firms seem to work best when they are highly specialized. Also consider midsize firms with cultures that appeal to you.

Balance is everything.
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Re: Bogle's Rule of 72
Old 11-23-2004, 11:37 AM   #25
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Re: Bogle's Rule of 72

Quote:

My girlfriend told me the other day that I needed to put a very clear financial plan together for both the long and short term, so that I could feel comfortable spending money on things that would make my life easier/happier (e.g., a nice long vacation since I haven't taken one in 4-5 years), rather than constantly worrying about whether I've fully prepared financially myself for various contingencies (e.g., layoffs, medical issues, etc...). *The fact that I'm not spending money on things that would make my life easier/happier is affecting us as a couple, since the accompanying stress bleeds over into our personal time together.

Anyone have suggestions?
I agree with the others and gf.

As hard as you have been working, you gotta earmark some fun money. If a little fun money can prevent a "quarter/mid-life crisis" you may look at it as an investment.

Don't go overboard, but you also gotta remember to enjoy life. Tomorrow is not promised. Take care.
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Re: Bogle's Rule of 72
Old 11-23-2004, 12:18 PM   #26
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Re: Bogle's Rule of 72

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Jay, *I am sorry that the mega firm didn't work out. *I never liked the model they use and IMHO your better off not selling your whole life to THE FIRM. *

Boutique practices can be nice. *Very small firms seem to work best when they are highly specialized. *Also consider midsize firms with cultures that appeal to you.

Balance is everything.
Perhaps we should start a new thread if this discussion is going to continue, rather than continue to go OT on the Rule of 72.

My sincere thanks to all of you for your comments. I will most assuredly reevaluate my priorities in the very near future. In fact, NOT making partner may turn out to be the best thing that ever happened to me. :
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Re: Bogle's Rule of 72
Old 11-23-2004, 02:14 PM   #27
 
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Re: Bogle's Rule of 72

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Once I make a career decision (or find another job), I'm planning on taking the girlfriend on a long vacation. The vacation will likely give me perspective on my workaholic lifestyle, and help me prioritize what's important to me.
Jay,

You don't need a long vacation. What you and the girlfriend need is a few shorter vacations. A week will do wonders and you should do one now before you start the business. Will be easier than the first year or two starting the business.

And yes I agree that this will probably be the best thing that happend to you 8)
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A different perspective.
Old 11-24-2004, 10:24 AM   #28
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A different perspective.

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My girlfriend told me the other day that I needed to put a very clear financial plan together for both the long and short term
Maybe first you need to put together a very clear girlfriend plan together for both the long & short term?

Hopefully it won't come down to a life-partner ultimatum of having to choose between your new lawyer and your girlfriend.
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