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Your Money or Your Life
Old 04-09-2018, 08:43 PM   #1
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Your Money or Your Life

Glad to see this book get some mainstream mention.

A friend gave me the book on CD and I listened to it on the 8 hour drive from his home back to mine. By the time I got home, I had decided that I would retire early. Before that, ER was only a vague notion that I had with no plan or intent behind it.

https://www.nytimes.com/2018/02/08/b...ith-money.html

From my memory, its best to skip the investment chapter. IIRC, it focused on bonds. However, later versions may have updated it.
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Old 04-09-2018, 09:42 PM   #2
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It was a long time ago, but after reading the book, it became clear. You do have a choice - Your Money or Your Life. We didn’t change drastically, but it was the beginning of reevaluating life and making necessary changes that did result in early retirement for me and DW.
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Old 04-10-2018, 07:38 AM   #3
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I haven't read the book, but this paragraph from the NYT review pretty much describes my strategy:

Quote:
“Your Money” turned out not to be a vehicle toward amassing money, as I expected. Instead, Ms. Robin encourages readers to work toward having “enough” — a quantifiable amount that would cover their needs and wants — rather than an ever-receding goal of “more.” She proposes people live more frugally, naming consumerism and its trappings as the root of many Americans’ financial challenges.
I was just thinking today, while loading the dryer, how few discussions here center around the infamous "dryer sheets" any more.

In a little over a month and a half, my "shoe string retirement" will be through its second year. I plan to post a status report at that time, and hopefully draw some others out of the woodwork who don't have multi-million-dollar portfolios to invest.
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Old 04-10-2018, 07:43 AM   #4
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That one is a classic. The thing about books is, there are a lot of good ones on saving and retirement in general, but the bottom line is , one still needs to take action. Reading a book and getting educated is a good step, but by itself isn't enough.

About 15 years ago I saw a man in a book store. I forget what real estate guru's book I had in hand. I didn't buy it. Anyways, he turns to me and he says," isn't he great, I've read every book he's ever written."

" I said, yeah, are you making any money?" He had a blank look on his face and I got no answer.
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Old 04-10-2018, 09:05 AM   #5
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Originally Posted by UnrealizedPotential View Post

About 15 years ago I saw a man in a book store. I forget what real estate guru's book I had in hand. I didn't buy it. Anyways, he turns to me and he says," isn't he great, I've read every book he's ever written."

" I said, yeah, are you making any money?" He had a blank look on his face and I got no answer.
Ouch!
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Old 04-10-2018, 11:39 AM   #6
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I have read the book and enjoyed it. I have it marked up and go back and reread it now and then. One of the more interesting concepts is that if more is always better, then you'll never have enough. That has influenced both our spending as well as our investment style.
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Old 04-10-2018, 04:34 PM   #7
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This book really didn't resonant with me but it may have been that I felt that I had already incorporated the lessons within it.
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Old 04-10-2018, 05:12 PM   #8
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Vicki Robin just came out with an updated version. It is a great book.
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Old 04-10-2018, 05:46 PM   #9
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Teacher Terry, when was the updated version released?
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Old 04-10-2018, 07:33 PM   #10
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This book was the impetus for our trek to FIRE. One of the concepts that stuck with me was "how many life hours do I have to work for ---?" It also started us on the habit of tracking our net worth on a monthly basis - something that has kept us on track many, many years.
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Old 04-10-2018, 08:00 PM   #11
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It was a long time ago, but after reading the book, it became clear. You do have a choice - Your Money or Your Life. We didnít change drastically, but it was the beginning of reevaluating life and making necessary changes that did result in early retirement for me and DW.
My husband gave me this book 25 years ago for my birthday. It was the beginning of our trek for early retirement. Mainly I just wanted both of us to have the choice to decide what work we wanted to do and to be able to take a different path at any time, should we choose. The idea that we traded our "life energy" for money always resonated with me. I've given a copy of this book away many times. I don't remember how the updated version handled the T bills issues...it was the bigger picture that impacted me the most.
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Old 04-10-2018, 08:23 PM   #12
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It's one of the two or three books that completely changed the structure of my brain, and set me on the path to freedom.

Bless you, Joe and Vicki. And, I guess, Monique?

And just so I don't seem too gushy, here are two of the standard FIRE gospels that did very little for me:

Zelinski, How to Retire Happy, Wild, and Free

Stanley, The Millionaire Next Door
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Old 04-10-2018, 08:29 PM   #13
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I read it long ago...I remember being totally confusing about the focus on bonds...The explanation on how to buy bonds was not too good, as I recall. Just 'buy bonds'; enough to create a stream of income to live off of...okay, but how? where? The details were a little sketchy for this 20-something (at the time).
Plus, having any number of children was never discussed as any sort of practical reality. ...Very cult-like to my young mind.
Another book of that era, "Voluntary Simplicity", had a greater effect on me.
Sorry for the not-so-glowing review of an admittedly classic personal finance book.
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Old 04-10-2018, 09:47 PM   #14
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Plus, having any number of children was never discussed as any sort of practical reality. ...Very cult-like to my young mind.
The Tightwad Gazette does better at the children issue. The author had 6 kids and was pretty good at keeping expenses like groceries in check.
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Old 04-14-2018, 10:43 AM   #15
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The living frugally part of the book was good, along with the bits about giving back to community (it's been decades since reading, unsure how well I remember the text.) The investing only in Treasury bonds part would be a non-starter now probably, given how low the interest rates are. Although I suppose if you could manage to save (I dunno) $7-8 million in Treasuries, you'd still be okay ...! I'd rather save a million or two in a balanced fund, and have the inflation protection of stocks; or, in truer Joe style, enough in an immediate annuity (pretty safe, that.)
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Old 04-14-2018, 12:03 PM   #16
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"Don't just do something; stand there!"
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CNBC interviewed Jack last week. He said (paraphrasing), in his 60 years of investing he's never seen a more volatile stock market. And his advice is the above quote, thank you Lawrence of Suburbia. We are standing there and holding firm.
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Old 04-14-2018, 01:17 PM   #17
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The investing focus on treasuries is, I believe, an artifact of the times in which Joe D was saving & investing. 10 year treasuries yields in the 80s were anywhere from 7% (1987) to almost 15% (1982).

10 Year Treasury Rate by Year

Best to skip the investment section.
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Old 04-14-2018, 02:30 PM   #18
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In a little over a month and a half, my "shoe string retirement" will be through its second year. I plan to post a status report at that time, and hopefully draw some others out of the woodwork who don't have multi-million-dollar portfolios to invest.
CaptTom,

I look forward to your upcoming update as you've always been one of the forum members who I identify with closely because IIRC, our financial situations are very similar. Keep it coming!

Okay, back to the book discussion. ...
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Old 04-14-2018, 04:46 PM   #19
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KB, Vicki Robin stopped in on a thread at Simple Living Forum recently to say she had updated the book.
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Old 04-14-2018, 06:38 PM   #20
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KB, Vicki Robin stopped in on a thread at Simple Living Forum recently to say she had updated the book.
Thank you. I've been looking for an update periodically, but haven't seen one in years.
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