Two big changes to work and life

There have been two big developments in the world which I believe are game changers to how you should live your life and manage your finances. Well, at least for me personally.

Work is a thing you do, not a place you go

In the early years, humans were nomadic hunter gatherers. Then we developed into producing agriculture, and we all needed to be in one place to work the fields. More recently it was factories, and then came offices and the networking benefits of cities. With the invention of the internet, and the ability to connect with anyone around the world at a click of a mouse; this has turned our society full circle.

An increasing number have chosen to once again become nomadic. We can now essentially pick where we would like to live from a lifestyle perspective and still provide high quality work. I therefore intend to slowly travel the world, spending months and years in different locations to enrich my life.

The deferred life plan is a mistake

In my view, the traditional retirement model of working for 40 years and then retiring at 65, is dead. I can’t quite comprehend why people put off lifelong dreams until a time when they will be in a worse state of health, if death doesn’t come first. The time to do the things you would like to in life is today – tomorrow may not come.

Care is required here, however.

From a financial perspective, you need to be prudent and plan to live to 100 years of age, but from a lifestyle perspective, it’s important to live a little more in the here and now. My own intention is to never retire in the traditional sense. I will retire when I drop dead. However, what I have done and will continue to do so, is take frequent extended breaks, spreading out my ‘retirement’ over my whole life.

From a young age, I have always held a burning, insatiable desire to see the world. Given the world’s present level of prosperity, openness, and technological advancement; I am fortunate enough to incorporate some form of work/travel balance into my life.

It is for these reasons that I am slightly nomadic while providing comprehensive financial planning services, writing books, developing helpful educational content for the public, and providing research and reporting services to fellow financial services professionals around the world.

While I consider England my home, I no longer spend very much time there and don’t expect to for a good few years yet.

On the surface, it would appear irresponsible. My Facebook feed probably looks like i’m on permanent holiday, yet this is misleading. I continue to work hard, study, research, write, create and build. I also continue to save and invest for my old age, as even though I don’t intend to retire, i’m wise enough to know that our health will inevitably force us to do so at some point in time.

As an aside, and admittedly this is a very young man thing to say, but I sincerely hope that death gets me before severe ill health and care homes rear their ugly head.

Even if I choose to continue working in some capacity long past traditional retirement ages, I would like it to be a personal choice, rather than a necessity for survival.

It’s clearly far better to have financial independence, than to not – even if you don’t need to use it.

As Picasso once said, “I’d like to live as a poor man, but with lots of money.

I aim to live my life in such a way.

Living for today. Investing for tomorrow.

By Mark Underdown

Financial Coach, Small Acorn Money

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