The other day we had a election for a new government in Denmark.
And I’m really pleased about the result.
It turns out that we get a new socialist government, which I think is good because they are the ones who focus most on the environment.
I voted for a party called Alternativet because they focus the most on the environment. Sadly they didn’t do to well.
Politics is Bullocks
Don’t get me wrong. I feel very privileged living in a society where I have the opportunity to vote in a democratic election. The alternative to a democratic system is often fatal.
But often I find politics hypocritical. Especial when it is about the environment.
Politicians and electors often say/vote something, and still have their airplane ticket to Thailand in their drawer.
And yes – I have three airplane trips planned this year. Which I don’t feel good about. In a couple of weeks I’m going to Italy, and I will go by train if it is possible.
Action > Politics
If you are concerned about the environment, how we act is way more important than what we are voting.
I think that everybody should vote, but voting doesn’t make a person an environmentalist. Action does.
If you however hate immigrants and want them out of the country, you can’t just start to throw people out because you feel like it. Then you have to vote. (But please don’t vote for people who hate immigrants).
But it is different about the environment.
$1 Spent = C02 Emissions
I don’t care how people spent their money. But if we spent less than we earn, we would be more environmental than if we would have spent all of our money.
I could go out and spent almost 3 times as many money as I’m currently doing. But I’m choosing not to in order to be environmental and financial independent.
Fortunately there is a direct correlation between being environmental and trying to cut back on our spending.
The picture below is from a presentation I made for the school I’m currently at.
% Change since last month: -0,9 % (- 7.000 DKK / – 1000 $)
So What The F*** Happen This Month
Last salary just checked in
Extending my sailor school
(Almost) No work until September 2020
It is now three month since I got fired from my job. Which means that I’m official on my mini retirement.
With no income, these monthly updates might end up being a bit different. I won’t have no additional money to save and invest. But I do have a cash reserve I can use.
What Can I Do With No Money?
I will focus on two things in this period where I don’t make any additional money.
I’m going to throw money in my portfolio whenever it is lower than the previous month. So if my portfolio is 107.5000 $ and it drops to 106.000 $, I will buy for 1.500 $ in order to get the value up to the previous high.
Second I can focus on my spending. If I spend less than what I currently do, I can bring my “Years Worth of Annual Expense” down. Which has been fluctuating a bit too much lately.
Nothing But Sailing
The next 16 months I’m going to do nothing but sailing.
I have just extended my stay here at the school because I got an offer I couldn’t refuse. That means I will go here all the way up to the point where I go to Indonesia and the Philippines to sail.
I do have to do some work. But it is three weeks here at the school as a sailing instructor for people who have never sailed before. And I really don’t see that as work. More like a better way for me to improve as a skipper.
I will go to these following places during this mini retirement:
But only spending 7.000 $/year and seem pretty extreme for many people.
But instead of focusing to much on hitting that magical number of having 25 times our annual spending (aka. the 4 % rule).
We could scale that down to something more “risky”. And take a mini retirement, and maybe work one day a week while we are having blast.
Not Going Anywhere
Even if we are responsible with our spending and saves 50 % of our salary. We are more likely to not go anywhere.
While we can’t travel to happiness it doesn’t make to much sense of staying at a job we hate in order to hit a certain number. By saying that our lives is going to be significant better when are able to “retire”, is the exact same things as believing that our new Iphone is going to make a great jump in our wellbeing.
It’s nice to have a lot of money, but you know, you don’t want to keep it around forever. I prefer buying things. Otherwise, it’s a little like saving sex for your old age.
Don’t get me wrong. Don’t go out and buy a lot of stupid stuff.
But I dream about sailing around the world. And I’m not going to wait till I finally can check of that “25 times my annual spending” tick box.
Waiting Too Long
If you start at age 22 to save and invest 50 % of your income, you are still going to be 35 or more years before you hit that 25 your annual spending mark.
If you are total happy about your current situation. Then just stay in the grind.
But if we dislike it. Then settle for less than 25 times your annual spending and find another job, start to study again or start a business.
% Change since last month: 3,7 % (+ 26.000 DKK / + 3900 $)
So What The F*** Happen This Month
Savings rate is back to something that seems normal
Years worth of annual expense is up again
Rolling savings rate has gone up 4%
Two Months of Mini Retirement
I’m two months into my mini retirement.
The first month went by with having a good time in Copenhagen.
Having a good time equals:
Seeing friends and family
Drinking (too much) beers
Renovating my dad’s (and my boat)
Doing some brazilian jiu jitsu
One Month of Folk High School
The first month of being at this new school where I would like to improve my sailing skills is gone.
And boy, there is a lot of impressions by being here.
I have already improved my sailing a lot by being here. Everything I know about sailing is something my dad has taught me. My dad is an awesome teacher, but I enjoy learning stuff from other people too. (I have already learned my dad something)
I do feel a bit old though. A lot of the people on this school is between 18-21 years. Which I feared would be an issue for me. Since I’m 28. Everybody is super nice, but I do get tired of playing beer pong third weekend in a row.
Even though I would like to sail more than we do at the moment. I would encourage everyone to try a folk high school (especially for foreigners). It is an awesome opportunity to gain a new skills fast, in a super cosy way where you meet many awesome people.
I pay 6000 DKK/month (900 $) for being here. Which is cheaper than if I just had my regular life back in Copenhagen. I have become a better sailor, awesome and organic food is cooked for us three times a day. And we do not have to do the dishes. It is a huge luxury to be here.
For a month ago I said yes to participate in two young boys school project about financial independence.
I said yes, because I know how important the youth is.
In every single rowing club I know, the future success of the clubs determines on how big (and good) of a youth department they have.
All of the rowing clubs who neglect the young ones, is slowly digging their own graves. As time past by, there will only be grumpy old men back at the club. And that is not to appealing to anyone (sorry old men).
FIRE and Kids
Sometimes I feel frustrated about that I never got introduced to FIRE as kid. I’m quite sure that I would have been mature enough to see the benefits of that lifestyle, and probably be financial independent at my current age.
That’s why I would like to give my knowledge about FIRE to as many kids as I can.
They should know from very early age that we are able to shape the life we want, and not what society expect from us.
And that the road to happiness is not filled with mindless consuming.
I told the two boys that I was willing to come a make a presentation about FIRE on their school if they wanted to.
If you read this as a kid, and think it would be fun for your school to hear about FIRE. I’m willing to come and tell about it. For free.
Feel free to contact me on: Loui@wannabewalden.com
I haven’t had a mobile for the last month. It happen by an “accident”.
For a month ago I got fired from my job. And when had to have a phone for my work, I decided to ditch my private one.
The last day I had to deliver the phone back.
So there I was. Without a phone.
A bit shocked about being fired from my job, I didn’t feel like going to town to shop for a new phone. I just wanted to take a some days off, relax a bit, and then shop for new phone.
A couple of days into my “I-have-no-phone-at-the-moment” life, I started to enjoy feeling unconnected.
From days, to weeks to now a month without a phone, I have no desire of rushing into buying a new phone anytime soon.
Here is the list of things I enjoy the most of not having a phone.
There is one thing I hate by not having a phone.
1) Being More Present
This might be a obvious one.
But by not having a phone, and being with somebody. I force myself to interact with the person on a deeper level than what I normal would. If this person starts to bore me, it is the easiest thing to grab my phone, and start scrolling.
I have started to notice that some of my friends can take up their phone and start scrolling for a couple of minutes in the middle of our conversation. Which is so ignoring!
The most scariest thing is that I’m 100 % certain that I have done that way too often myself.
2) Less Stress
I could feel a vibrating item in my pocket for weeks after I got rid of my phone. But I had no vibrating item in my pocket.
It was like 5 % of my unconscious mind was alert about my phone.
That “alertness” is gone after a month of not having a phone.
3) Reaching Out More
When was the last time you asked someone:
“Excuse me, what time is it??”
The only wrist watch I have had for years, has been a heart rate watch I used for my rowing training. And I kept breaking them. So the last time I broke the watch, I didn’t feel like turning it in for a new one. Just like the mobile, days without a watch turned into weeks, and then months. And now I just like not having a wrist watch.
That means I constantly ask people what the time is.
And that act alone, has made me talk with 10+ people I wouldn’t have.
4) No Stress About Battery
The feeling of plugging an almost dead phone into the charger is so satisfying.
But why is it satisfying?
Because we have stressed about that we need to find a charger soon, because the world is coming to an end if I don’t have my precious phone.
We all know the term FOMO.
I started to enjoy a new one.
Joy of missing out.
There is direct correlation of me being surprised about my friends telling me stuff they have been doing. And me not having a phone.
I spent less than 10 minutes a week now on instagram, which would be my main source of my friends “gossip”.
When I don’t get this gossip, and just don’t know what my friends are up to. Except if I meet with them. Which is an awesome feeling.
6) Doing Nothing
I have completely forgot the feeling about being bored.
The last time I remember being bored was back when I was a kid.
Sitting down, maybe waiting for the train and doing absolutely nothing.
Is super nice!
7) Saves Me Money
No need to think about cell phone deals.
Or worry about breaking the screen.
My Main Problem of Not Having a Phone
As the avid reader knows. I will be spending the next 3 months on a school where I’m going to sail, and just have a good time.
The “Just-have-a-good-time” part often involves beer.
And the only payment the bar accepts is through an app.
Not having a phone, means that I currently have no apps. So I can’t pay for my beers! Which is a pain in the ass!
Which is catastrophic to some of the parameters I use.
I didn’t manage to save anything because I have signed up for a sailing folk high school. Where I’m going to stay for the next 3 months.
Yes – I did manage to go from 102.600 $ to 104.300 $ without doing anything. This can still amaze me.
My rolling savings rate from February 2016 to this date went from:
58 % to 51 %.
YIKES! It dropped 7 % because I had one month without saving.
And my years worth of annual expenses dropped from:
6.42 to 4.87.
YIKES YIKES YIKES!
Last month I would be able to live almost 7 years from now. And this month I’m only able to live 5 years from this date. (Including my leverage)
BECAUSE OF ONE MONTH!
While it does bother me a. I probably won’t have expenses like this in the future. So it doesn’t make to much sense to include a month like this in my calculations. But I will. It gives me some motivation to save more.
The Reason Why I’m Deleveraging
As the avid reader might knows. I’m not going one but two mini retirements. Said in another way. In 2019 and 2020 I’m going to take 13 months off from work.
First I’m going to a folk high school to sail and have a good time.
And then I’m going to Indonesia and the Philippines to sail again.
This means that I won’t make any money for a couple of months.
Worrying about my leverage while I’m cruising on some of the most exotic oceans in the world, is one of the last things I want to do. If I had the guts, it could probably make sense in the long run (20+ years from now) to leverage more now. But I’m prioritizing peace of mind higher than my portfolio at this stage.
I’m going to keep the leverage I have now. But I will be investing normal, and this means my stock allocation will go up, while my leverage will stay at 200.000 DKK.
So my 2019 and 2020 is going to be way different than I initially thought it would be.
I do not have one, but two mini retirements in sight.
The decisions I have made is with super mixed emotions. On one hand I look so much forward to do it, on the other hand I see all of the “downsides” and potential “risks” of doing so.
From April 2019 and until September 2020 I’m going to take a year off from work.
I have never done anything like this. I started rowing when I was 19 years old (I’m 28 years today). So the last 10 years of my life has been all about competitive rowing, and some work. There has not been much time off during my adult decade. I have been travelling a lot with rowing, and I feel very privileged that I have had all of those experiences.
But compared to how my other friends have been travelling. My travelling has been a bit more boring. It is not unusual that a rowing season has between 60-100 days of traveling. But often we would go to some places that we had been before. And the places always involved a big lake. We would stay at this lake for the entire trip, with a weekly half day off, to do some sightseeing.
So even if we got to a place for the first time, it was pretty much the usual stuff.
Sometimes we had a cross country skiing camp which I loved! It was different and fun. But it was not every year we went on that camp. And boy it was a tough camp.
1# Mini Retirement
This was not at all planed.
As the avid reader knows, I work in the construction sector. I make construction models on large buildings, and go on site to make sure that they have made it as I have drawn. The thing is. Working in construction sector is a volatile job. Sometimes there is too much work, and other times there ain’t so much. This means it is not unusual to get fired semi often. Which happen to me about three weeks ago. This is my very first time experiencing it as a building constructor, but I have tried it several times as a mason.
The “luxury” of getting fired as a building constructor is that I have three months of salary where I can do whatever I want. As a mason I had two days. Yikes!
The three months of salary has made room for my first mini retirement.
Which is a three months sailing course on a folk high school*.
So from april to start july you will find me at Oure folk high school. Cruising in ships, training my ass off, drinking some beers, see if I can find a brazilian jiu jitsu gym and just have an awesome time.
2# Mini Retirement
2# retirement is not that “Mini”.
This retirement is the reason why I will go on the first one.
I have applied for a “job” to become captain on a 50 feet sailing boat cruising around in the Philippines and Indonesia. Which I got.
It is close to be a volunteering “job”. But as I see it, it is more like a 10 month free vacation.
In november 2019 I will go to Sorong in Indonesia. From there I will board the boat “Orbit” as a guest. There will be another captain from november to february. What I will be doing in that period is to dive everyday. I have to get 100 dives in order to become a dive instructor. Which is a must as crew of the boat. And then the captain will teach me all of the things that he knows about the boat.
In february 2020 we will get the boat out of the water in the Philippines. Renovate it. And the captain will go home, and I will board the boat as the new captain.
I will have three sets of guest from february 2020 to september 2020.
My first retirement is about 10 days from now. And I can slightly feel some worries luring around the corner.
Too Old For a Folk High School?
I’m 28 years now, and I don’t know why. But I really dread that if I end up with a punch of kids in their late teenage years. I know it sounds silly but that’s a concern that suddenly came to my mind.
Goodbye Olympic Dreams
This is one of major worries. Whenever you say yes to something, you also say no to another thing. And by sailing so much. I’m not going to be a part of the team for the Olympic qualifications. The truth is that I got kicked off the national team in november 2018. But I have tried that before and worked my way back again. But as the Olympics come closer, the window of getting back in the boat is getting smaller and smaller. So it becomes harder and harder for me to claim a seat in a boat.
I have not completely retired myself from competitive rowing. I could see myself aiming for the 2024 Olympics if I felt like doing so. But it is with mixed emotions that I have decided to say yes for another great opportunity.
Do I Enjoy Sailing That Much?
This is also a ridiculous thing to “worry” about. Because I do love sailing. But I have never been away more than a couple of weeks with my dad, sister and stepmom. This time I’m going to be away for almost a year, with about 5 x 10 different people I do not know, on tiny boat. Problems will occur. And there will be people I like more than others. This time I will be the one dealing with the problems and not my dad. (He is the captain whenever we sail together)
No Income For 10 Months
When I go for my second retirement. I won’t have any income. It is not going to cost me anything either. But my contributions to my investment account is going to be about 120.000 DKK (18.000 $) less than if I just would have worked.
What If a Recession Occurs?
Recessions are a really good buying opportunity. What if I end up buying all the way to the top, to then go away for 10 months and not buying while the markets is on sale? That would be kind of ignoring.
999 out of 1000 Worries
The thing is with worries. Almost none of them is going to happen. And the ones that do happen, is not going to be as bad as we thought they would be.
So no need to worry.
However, My Former Boss is the Shit
The other day my old boss reached out to me because he heard that I got fired from my job. He has now started his own business and has become 40 employees in less than two years.
He wanted me on board.
He is the best boss ever, so I would love to go work for him again. But I told him about all of my sailing plans. And he completely understood why I wanted to do it.
He is a former Olympic sailor and is still an avid sailor, winning all sorts of World Championships and similar.
He would do his very best to see if he had some work for me between my two “retirements” and if I did a great job during those months. He couldn’t see why there shouldn’t be a job for me when I come back from the trip in September 2020.