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Old 02-16-2021, 04:49 PM   #121
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No, not at all. I was around many people who let their corporate success drive a special level of narcissism- cars, homes and high end everything. All to impress each other. I had a FIRE buddy at work and we would talk about the risks of supporting a high dollar personal infrastructure. Only takes one tough quarter for those lifestyles to come under serious threat. Saw it happen many times. I was very surprised at the astonishment generated by my retirement announcement at age 59. A few of the high lifestyle folks had questions. They all started with “how” 🙂. All the best.
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Old 02-16-2021, 05:01 PM   #122
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FIRE success is its own reward. You have the magic ticket in your pocket. When you decide to use it, you'll be quietly recognized by everyone around you who'd love to do the same thing.

I can think of few things more respected than someone who gets to retire early from a rewarding career and live life on their own terms.
And then there are the lrft handed 'blind squirrel' dummies like me.

Investor since 1966 out of college. Slowly convinced by Bogle's Folly - still try a 'few good stocks'. It's a guy thing (maybe hormones?). Lay off at age 50 - 1993.

Un employed until the mental shift occurred thanks to this forum's fore runner and others.

Heh heh heh - Had to convince myself first.
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Old 02-16-2021, 05:24 PM   #123
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Yearning is an internal emotional state, inaccessible to others. Recognition is somewhat antithetical to the process. Try to distract the ego with other activities away from money.

Becoming a recognized expert in some rare niche can be fabulously rewarding. And you have the time to build the talent, a defensible moat!
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Old 02-16-2021, 06:09 PM   #124
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Maybe. I would like to be recognized because I would like to help other people achieve the same and that would be more likely to happen if my success was recognized.

Also, I would like to be able to talk about the ridiculous increase in my net worth this year to SOMEONE. I've never felt that way before, but it has been crazy. February to February(thereby excluding the drop from COVID) we saw a 24% gain!

Gains came as a result of savings(nearly half), market returns, stupid BTC increases(I mined it) and house value increase... so what I did isn't special.
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Old 02-16-2021, 06:48 PM   #125
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Maybe. I would like to be recognized because I would like to help other people achieve the same and that would be more likely to happen if my success was recognized.
+1. I gave a couple of retirement planning lunch 'brown bag' talks at work, because I am passionate about planning for one's future, and designing it, rather than just letting it happen. The impression that I got from folks who attended was 'jealousy' and some folks started to refer to me as a 'millionaire', although I never once mentioned the amount accumulated, except by inference with regards to the 4% rule.

I now live in a gated community, and in a decent house with a pool. Nothing too extravagant. But my wife doesn't want me posting any photos online, which is probably wise. I just wish I could buy a Ferrari without attracting the wrong type of attention. I grew up as a 'nerd' in a rural area, and I was able to leave the area, get a solid education, decent jobs, and become financially and professionally successful, despite not being a good-looking athlete (I must have some self-image issues). Many of my high school class mates still live in the same small town, and struggle to get by financially.

In the end, no, I don't want 'to be recognized' for FIRE success, but it would be nice to be able to share it without causing jealousy. I only have a few retired friends who have known for 5+ years about my plans who seem truly happy for us. Even my father doesn't really understand me wanting/being able to RE at 55.
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Old 02-16-2021, 09:18 PM   #126
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I yearn for recognition occasionally. This is when I and my opinions are disregarded and someone with the "flash" is treated with awe and respect. I have had that happen at work, in professional meetings and at church.
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Old 02-17-2021, 06:22 AM   #127
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I disagree that a lot of people live w “an illusion” of wealth. If they have a 3-5mm house, send all 3 kids to private school when the live in the best school district, and have several summer homes, they probably really are wealthy. You’d be surprised how many really wealthy people there are.
True to a certain extent and we know many as well.

But as you may know, there's a difference between 'rich' and 'wealth'. DW worked with a lot of the types you mention; $1MM+ annual income. The day before payday, they'd be bumming $50 off of her because their ATM was empty and their overdraft was shut off.

When the lay-offs came, more than half of them had to sell the house(s), boat, drop club memberships and..."we decided to downsize".

We winter in Fort Lauderdale. After 40 years, you get a feel for the place and my observation of our neighbors is "a third are truly (super) wealthy, a third are swimming like hell to stay above water and a third are outright crooks with no intention of ever paying for anything"
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Old 02-17-2021, 07:15 AM   #128
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+1. I gave a couple of retirement planning lunch 'brown bag' talks at work, because I am passionate about planning for one's future, and designing it, rather than just letting it happen. The impression that I got from folks who attended was 'jealousy' and some folks started to refer to me as a 'millionaire', although I never once mentioned the amount accumulated, except by inference with regards to the 4% rule.
Well, you tried and got it out of your system. Based on occupation I think I would have faced a similar reaction. I think most would prefer to believe that if only they made more money they could/would save and invest. Lbym and delayed gratification is the key.
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Old 02-17-2021, 07:45 AM   #129
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I like the way Motley Fool looks at nominal appreciation. They measure performance relative to a benchmark by subtracting it, then they suggest subtracting about an additional 6% for base rate cost of capital/taxes/expenses/churn. What is left is your outperformance (or lack thereof).

The big problem in an elite money printing environment is finding the goalposts. Reality disappears when everyone uses digital fiat. Of course, that's why empires do it. Are they real returns? To what extent? No one knows, because it becomes unknowable. The truth still exists, but its devilish difficult to state with any certainty. And may not be revealed until the dust settles... which might be decades from now.
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Old 02-17-2021, 10:36 AM   #130
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"Imnontrad" who posted above said it well. I feel the same. In my last job I worked for two bosses who seemed to think that because they made more money than the rest of us that they were smarter. So Many people with larger salaries fool themselves and others stand by and foolishly admire them as both aspire to live as large as their salaries will allow thinking that this makes them rich somehow. Then they look down on those who live rather frugal, plainly and/or modestly as if we are peasants. I think the fact that I quietly accomplished fairly early retirement on such modest means caused them to sit up and recognize, though they'll never do it outright. I never shared my investing habits with them because they never valued my wisdom or opinion on anything. I recognize myself for it, but as far as others, only others like people here that know what it takes can really appreciate the enormity of the accomplishment. Family and friends will recognize and be glad if they love and appreciate us.
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Old 02-17-2021, 11:10 AM   #131
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I put on socks this morning, and realizing there was a hole in one, turned it around so the hole is on top.
I can get another 6 months out of that sock...
When my Dad's sweaters developed holes in the elbows, he would put them on back-to-front and continue wearing them. He would never wear those ones out though - just at home. He did have some standards!
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Old 02-17-2021, 01:59 PM   #132
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When my Dad's sweaters developed holes in the elbows, he would put them on back-to-front and continue wearing them. He would never wear those ones out though - just at home. He did have some standards!

Hell, just cut off the sleeves and go for the sweater-vest look. I have a few long-sleeve flannel shirts that, when the elbows wore out, I just cut off the sleeves and went for that "Larry the Cable Guy" look.

I'll confess, I have a couple pairs of socks that I just turned around, when they got holes in the heels. And if I'm wearing boots, where you can't see my leg, I've even mis-matched socks.
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Old 02-17-2021, 02:17 PM   #133
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When my Dad's sweaters developed holes in the elbows, he would put them on back-to-front and continue wearing them. He would never wear those ones out though - just at home. He did have some standards!
I find that cheap sweatshirts (well nothing is cheap anymore) are longer lasting than sweaters as sweaters are knitted and can get caught on something and unravel. I have a closet row of sweatshirts I constantly wear in winter months, some of which are 20 years old.

I have one sweatshirt that I bought in 1973 (Yale one, hand painted bulldog on the front) that is still wearable, but the sleeve ends are frayed.
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Old 02-17-2021, 02:47 PM   #134
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+1. I gave a couple of retirement planning lunch 'brown bag' talks at work, because I am passionate about planning for one's future, and designing it, rather than just letting it happen. The impression that I got from folks who attended was 'jealousy' and some folks started to refer to me as a 'millionaire', although I never once mentioned the amount accumulated, except by inference with regards to the 4% rule.

I now live in a gated community, and in a decent house with a pool. Nothing too extravagant. But my wife doesn't want me posting any photos online, which is probably wise. I just wish I could buy a Ferrari without attracting the wrong type of attention. I grew up as a 'nerd' in a rural area, and I was able to leave the area, get a solid education, decent jobs, and become financially and professionally successful, despite not being a good-looking athlete (I must have some self-image issues). Many of my high school class mates still live in the same small town, and struggle to get by financially.

In the end, no, I don't want 'to be recognized' for FIRE success, but it would be nice to be able to share it without causing jealousy. I only have a few retired friends who have known for 5+ years about my plans who seem truly happy for us. Even my father doesn't really understand me wanting/being able to RE at 55.
Jesus noticed the same thing you experienced as relayed in Mark 6:4 “A prophet is not without honor except in his own country, among his own relatives, and in his own house.”

Heh, heh, welcome to the club! Folks you know will always remember that time you (fill in the blank) (For me, it was dropping a wash tub of expensive lab glassware as the big boss walked in - Looking at my name badge he chuckled "HMMMMmmmm. Ko'olau. That aught to be easy to remember.") YMMV
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Old 02-17-2021, 04:50 PM   #135
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I yearn for recognition occasionally. This is when I and my opinions are disregarded and someone with the "flash" is treated with awe and respect. I have had that happen at work, in professional meetings and at church.
I have the same issue at family outings....my brother is flashy with cars/house and is deemed more successful. I am viewed not as successful because I don't show off.

My wife has a friend who was very dismissive my real estate advice (even though I own 3 rental properties) since I don't look like I am successful.

It bothers me sometimes.
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Old 02-17-2021, 06:12 PM   #136
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This reminds me of Lt. Columbo as played by Peter Faulk. The clever murderer's initial impression is usually that Columbo isn't very sharp because of his unconventional nature.
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Old 02-18-2021, 02:00 AM   #137
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This reminds me of Lt. Columbo as played by Peter Faulk. The clever murderer's initial impression is usually that Columbo isn't very sharp because of his unconventional nature.
I guess Columbo should remind us to use our apparent weaknesses as a strength. Stealth wealth is still the best. YMMV
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Old 02-19-2021, 01:18 PM   #138
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I do not understand this recognition issue. If anything we prefer to stay under the radar. The very last thing we want is for our relatives and others to know our financial situation.

We feel enough satisfaction with being financially independent, retired, debt free, and able to travel where we want for as long and as often as we want (pre covid).

For us the rest is noise level. We do not need recognition nor do we need our egos stroked.
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Old 02-19-2021, 02:13 PM   #139
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I was the same way in my w*rking years. I would do what was expected of me, but that was about it. I did a good job, but snubbed any kind of recognition...it has never been my style. As my best friend says, "I strive for mediocrity"

It reminds me of a couple of my Dad's friends. Friend "A" was highly accomplished and did some pretty awesome things in life. He was an editor for a large newspaper, an elected state representative and owned a successful restaurant in Germany after his time in the military. Never mind the several year sabbatical he took where he traveled all over the US, Mexico and South America where he met and married an AA flight attendant. When he passed away, his obituary was nothing more than a legal announcement...two sentences if I recall. Friend "B" lead a successful professional but otherwise unremarkable life. He worked for mega corp for 20 years, became a head hunter and retired at 65 years old. He did nothing in retirement and died at 72 of cancer. His obit was THOUSANDS of words that read like a Linkedin profile...it was honestly one of the saddest things I have ever read.

Yes, a bit of a ramble, but just an example of how folks live their lives and what seems to be important.
I like a good ramble.
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Old 02-19-2021, 02:21 PM   #140
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I do not understand this recognition issue. If anything we prefer to stay under the radar. The very last thing we want is for our relatives and others to know our financial situation.

We feel enough satisfaction with being financially independent, retired, debt free, and able to travel where we want for as long and as often as we want (pre covid).

For us the rest is noise level. We do not need recognition nor do we need our egos stroked.
As mentioned, I don't have an issue with not being recognized for FIRE success - if anything, quite the opposite (aka stealth wealth.) Having said that, I understand those who get their strokes from their competency at FIRE. I took a course at w*rk called "C*reer Anchors." The premise is that every person has a reason for w*rking. It could be as simple as needing money to fund their lifestyle (heh, heh, IIRC they called that c*reer anchor "Lifestyle.") But there are several other c*reer anchors such as "Pure Challenge" (I had a boss like that). There is "Service to Others" (like a nurse or clergyman.) Then there is "Technical Competence." Such folks get their "strokes" by being recognized as competent at whatever they do at w*rk. You might be a good programer or a good cook or good waiter, etc. It doesn't matter. SO why NOT a good FIRE practitioner? I understand this one as Technical Competence was my top career anchor (close second was Lifestyle.)

Still, it hasn't carried over to my everyday practice of FIRE. In actual fact, I admit to NOT being all that good at it. I have no great expertise in investing nor in predicting markets or having the most money here at FI Forum. I'm a good saver and LBYM. That's about it. Not a total failure, but just "average" and nothing to brag about - or get my strokes from. Still, I DO understand that some would be quite eager to be recognized for their FIRE abilities. I would never denigrate their desires though I might caution them to share sparingly for self preservation reasons. YMMV
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