How to Be a Minimalist and Become Wealthy

Find Your Why to Be a Minimalist

You can’t consume your way to happiness

Pete Adeney, (Mr Money Mustache)

That is mine why. 

This is a huge relief since I don’t have anything to chase anymore.

I know that my happiness can’t be bought, traveled to, or attained by doing some shopping.

Happiness for me is training and hanging out with friends and family. Things that are super cheap or even free. 

Minimalism makes room for me to do more of that stuff and less boring maintenance of things I don’t enjoy. 

But that is mine why. 

You need to find yours. 

This is what I hear people say about their why on minimalism: 

  • “I like to live clutter-free”
  • “I want to be financially independent”
  • “I want to be environmental”
  • “I want to worry less”
  • “ I want to have time for the important stuff”

How to Simplify Your Life

Throwing out that broken pencil at the bottom of your messy drawer is a good thing to do. 

But it won’t be the most effective thing we can do if we want to simplify our lives. 

We need to see the big picture.

Five major things will make the whole difference. 

These things are:

  • Your home/Stuff.
  • Transport
  • Food
  • Housing
  • Your thoughts

Minimizing in these areas will make all the difference. 

Forget about the “100 things challenge”. 

Simplifying is a relative thing. Don’t compare yourself to anyone. 

What seems simple for you, might feel like a huge burden for me. 

And vices versa. 

In all of these categories, there is a hierarchy. 

And going down that ladder can be a huge relief for you.

In the following sections, I will show the hierarchy.

The higher numbers are the maximalist way of doing things, and the lower numbers are the more simple way of doing things. 

Going a single step down in every category can be a game-changer in your life. 

The Law of Diminishing Returns

When you read the hierarchies and start to sweat about that you are at the top of every category. 

Then we can define you more as a maximalist. 

You are in for a treat if that is the case. 

Going from being a maximalist to a mindful consumer can have a huge impact on your wellbeing and financials. 

While going from being a minimalist to an extreme minimalist can have benefits, but not as big as you are in the higher end of the minimalist hierarchy. 

Being an extreme minimalist without a bike or furniture can have benefits, but it will start to become more like a spiritual religion rather than making life easier.

And can harm your social life since many of your friends and family won’t understand you. 

Transport

We need to commute. There is no way around it.

Here is the hierarchy of transportation: 

  1. Walking.
  2. Biking.
  3. Public Transportation.
  4. Car with no loan
  5. Car with a loan. 

Walking is in the more extreme way of being a minimalist. It will take a good amount of time compared to biking. But you won’t have to buy and maintain a bike. And we will probably burn the same amount of calories walking compared to cycling since it takes times longer to walk the same distance as biking. You will only save a couple of hundred dollars by walking instead of biking. A second-hand bike cost close to nothing, and maintenance is close to nothing. 

A bike is one of the best inventions made to mankind. Since I’m not owning a car, this is the step that I’m in. I can’t think of any other form of transportation that will give you the same benefits as biking. This is going to be a life long form of transportation for me.

Public transportation is something that I will use if I have more than a 20 km commute. It is still cheap compared to having a car. And I really enjoy riding a train. Biking will still be my main form of transportation, even for +100 km trips. But the train is a perfect luxury of not biking. 

Having a car with no loan can be a go-to for many people. I will go as long as I can without owning a car. Whenever I do need one I will rent from a friend or a service like GoMore. Buying a car with no loan is the best way to go if you want to own one. Finding a 10-year-old car that you can pay for cash is doable. 

Buying a car with a loan is a decision I have never understood. The average American car loan payment is about 550 $/month. That money could compound into 105.000 $ in ten years if you invested that money instead. Going from this step to just having a car with no loan can be 100.000 $ in savings. 

Food

Just like transportation, we need to eat. No discussion about that. 

Eating can be a bit more hybrid than transportation. 

I would hate a life where I couldn’t feast once and a while. 

But we can do it way simpler than we normally would. 

Here is the hierarchy of eating: 

  1. Omad
  2. 16/8
  3. No restriction
  4. No restriction + Dining out
  5. No restriction and only dining out. 

OMAD or “One Meal a Day” is having all of your food in one sitting. OMAD is part of a new trend called intermittent fasting. And many scientific papers show that we can be better off eating less regularly. This form of intermittent fasting is the more extreme one. But can save you tons of time, money, and maybe a couple of kilos on your ribs. 

16/8 is another way of intermittent fasting. 16/8 refers to eating and fasting “windows”. So you will eat for 8 hours and fast for 16. This is the equivalent of only having two meals. It can be lunch and dinner, or breakfast and lunch. I often skip breakfast myself. But if I’m sleeping with my friends or parents and they feel like having breakfast, then I will join along.

No restrictions mean what it says. You eat whatever and whenever you want. Three meals a day, and snacking in between. At this step, you can save a good deal of money since you won’t be eating out. 

No restrictions and dining out a couple of times each week is what most people do. It can save you a ton of money by not eating out for a whole month. And if you do it, let it be a 10 $ pizza. Eating out twice a week can easily cost you 75 $/week. Which is not equivalent to the car payment, but it’s close.

No Restrictions and only dining out is pretty rare. But I do know some people where cooking can be a monthly thing. They will eat the majority of their food at work, and after a long day and a good salary they won’t feel like cooking themselves and that is where they grab some sushi. Eating out every day can easily cost you 150 $/week. 

Housing

Housing is without a doubt the biggest expense we all have to face. It can either serve you or be the biggest pain in the ass. 

There are several ways we can be creative. 

We can either ditch the mortgage by living in a Tiny House/boat or a cheap vacation house. 

Or we can buy an apartment/house that is bigger than our needs and rent out some rooms, or a part of the house and make the house expenses way less or even free. 

If we can live for free we will cut our biggest expense (rent) and we will be able to save and invest that money instead which really can accelerate your financial independence journey. 

Here is the hierarchy of housing:

  1. Living for free (House Hacking)
  2. Living mortgage-free (Tiny house, Boat)
  3. 15-year mortgage
  4. Having 35-50 m2 per person
  5. Having +50 m2 per person

Living for free (or even making money) is not that complicated. You will buy a place where there is enough room for you to rent some out. It is difficult to do in downtown Copenhagen but can be done without too much hassle in the suburbs. The key is to find a place where your mortgage won’t be too high so the rent from your tenants can cover it. It can also be done with Airbnb. 

Living mortgage-free often requires being a bit creative. This can scare many people from doing this. It can be done in a less creative way where you just pay the mortgage as fast as possible. Another way of going mortgage-free is to build a Tiny house, or living in a boat. This will cost the fraction of buying a house or an apartment, but will still cost you some money. Since a Tiny house requires some land, and a boat requires a harbor. They will more than likely cost less than rent in an apartment. 

Having a 15-year mortgage will probably mean that you have bought less than what you could. The main interest of the bank is that you buy the most expensive place that you can afford. Going for a 15-year mortgage instead of a 30 year is a kind of sweet spot between going the more extreme way of paying it in five years or less. It will probably cost the same as the 30-year mortgage, but you won’t have the payments for 30 years which is a big advantage. 

Having 35-50 m2 per person in a household is what many would consider “normal”. If you are a family of four and living in a 200 m2 house you have more than enough space. Pay attention to “enough”. The bigger the house the bigger bills and maintenance you will have. If you are in this category, you should consider downsizing your place. 

Having 50+ m2 per person is to me outrageous. Construction is one of the biggest sinners in our global crisis. Building new concrete homes where we have more than 50 m2 per person is nothing but ridiculous. No one needs that much space. The most environmental buildings we can build are the ones that DON’T build. And if everybody thinks they need more than 50 m2 per person in their house, there won’t be room for all of us. 

Becoming Wealthy is Inevitable as a Minimalist

If thou wilt make a man happy, add not unto his riches but take away from his desires

Epicurus

The moment that you start striving for less you will get ahead. 

It’s a counterintuitive thought. When we keep chasing all of the material desires we have, we will realize that this is a never-ending circle.

When we fulfill a desire, a new one comes up.

And it will never stop until the day we think we have “enough” in our lives.   

If you get a normal full-time salary and start striving for less you will inevitably be wealthier. 

Not just in financial but also psychological.

That has been the biggest reward for me. 

If you are at level five in all of the categories and you go to level four you will save at least 1000 $/month. Which can compound into 205.000 $ in ten years. 

Wouldn’t that be life-changing? 

How to Become Wealthy

To make our money work for us we need to invest. 

Investing has never been easier than it is today.

We can invest in a ton of different things. 

But the easiest will be to invest in a global stock index fund you invest in every single month.

Holding it through thick and thin. 

You can download my step-by-step guide on how I (and many others) do their investing. 

It takes ten minutes to set up, and you can spend as little as 30 minutes a year checking it. 

You will actually be better off if you don’t peak at it all the time (like I do). 

Why Living On a Boat Is One Of The Cheapest (and Awesome) Way To Live

Last month I did my biggest purchase in years. It might even be my most expensive purchase ever.

I bought a boat. 

The book I named this blog after (hint: its Walden), made a huge impression on me. The part of building a small cabin and living in the woods was super appealing to me. But I must be honest. I like water more than the woods.

But buying a boat has always been scary for me. Boats are expensive and need constant repair. But. If you buy a small boat, it’s easier to fix things. And they not just cheaper. They are WAY cheaper.

Spare parts on boats cost exponential more as they increase in size. And smaller boats just need fewer spare parts. So there is not too often something to fix.

Hedonic Adaptation on Boats

I don’t have a toilet onboard. That will scare a lot of people because they don’t know where to take a shit. People I have onboard are often relieved when I tell them how often they break and it is not fun to fix a toilet in +2m waves and there is shit all over the floor.

To be honest. It is sort of nice just to take a shit in the ocean. And when you do get back to an ordinary toilet. You will appreciate much more than you normally would. Essential stuff as cooking becomes a bit of a project. But I like that. It involves everyone on the boat.

Living on a boat is the highest highs and lowest lows. That is what I love about it. What we are taking for granted in our normal lives becomes a huge luxury. Having a fridge packed with delicious foods is not something we truly enjoy. But when you have been on a boat for a couple of weeks. That is a huge luxury. But it is also nice to come back to the boat where everything is super simple.

The Economy

There are several reasons why a small boat is preferable to a big boat.

  • Cheaper to buy
  • Easier to sell
  • Doesn’t drop in price
  • Cheap maintenance
  • Easier and cheaper to find a harbor
  • Cheap Insurance

This the breakdown of what I have bought my boat for.

The cost of the boat was 29.000 DKK.

Then I needed to buy some miscellaneous stuff like tools, life jackets, and similar. That costs me 2.000 DKK. 

As a rule of thumb. It will cost you 20 % of the purchasing price in maintenance. Which will be 6.000 DKK. That is a pretty high number. Basic maintenance will cost me no more than 2000 DKK. But if I keep it for years I must eventually buy a new motor, sails, and similar. And each of that item is in the “pricey” end of about 6-7000 DKK.

A base harbor place is super cheap when you have a small boat. My boat has received a spot in Ærøskøbing at the moment. And a spot in that harbor costs 3000 DKK annually. That is utilities included. I know that in Copenhagen it is around 4000 DKK annually. So just let’s go with an average of about 3500 DKK. 

The insurance as shall have by law. Comes at the ridiculous price of 240 DKK annually. Which I gladly pay.

To Sum It Up

  • Cost of the boat = 29.000 DKK
  • Miscellaneous stuff = 2.000 DKK
  • Maintenance = 5.000 DKK
  • Harbour fee = 3.000 DKK
  • Insurance = 240 DKK
  • Total = 39.240 DKK

The price of buying a ready sailboat will be about 40.000 DKK. It could probably be done cheaper. But this boat was a bargain at that price. Someday I will be selling it again. The cost of the boat and miscellaneous shopping is money I will get back again.

So the annual cost of having a boat is only:

  • Maintenance
  • Harbour fee
  • Insurance

Which is = 8.240 DKK annual or 686 DKK/month.

My Monthly Finances the Apartment

Is something like this.

  • Rent 3300 DKK
  • Insurance 300 DKK
  • Utilities 300 DKK

Total = 3.900 DKK 

Living in a small boat compared to living in a really cheap Copenhagen apartment is almost 6:1. 

For months of rent in the apartment, I can live the whole summer on my boat. What about winter? Living on a small boat is probably not for everyone. And I might think that it won’t be for me either in the cold Danish winter months.

That is why I’m thinking of the perfect mix of living on a boat in the summer. And having a vacation house (sommerhus) during the winter. Renting out a vacation house in Denmark has a lot of tax benefits. And I would get the best rate when the weather is best here in Denmark. But that doesn’t matter. That is where I prefer to be on a boat. So I could rent out the vacation house during the summer. And living in it myself for free during the winter. And in 20 years-ish I would have a vacation house that has been paid off by the tourist.

Another thing I’m considering is to sail the boat to the Mediterranean sea. I love every single country down there and the sailing season is just much longer (and probably) nicer because of the warmer weather. During the winters I could put the boat on land and go home to Denmark to earn some money and hang out with friends and family.

Coast FIRE and Living On a Boat

If you read this at 20 something years I would really encourage you to live on a boat for a short period of your life. It is filled with adventures, and you will save a lot of money which can compound into a fortune.

If we compare living on a boat and living in a cheap apartment. With my finances as an example.

Living on a boat costs 700 DKK/Month

Living in cheap apartment costs 3.900 DKK/Month

You will save 3.200 DKK/month or 38.400 DKK/year. 

If you are 25 years old and you invest those 38.400 DKK, they could compound into:

626.358 DKK when you are 65 years old with a 7 % ROI.

So go ahead, live on a small boat, while you are working a year or two. Sail out in the evenings with some of your friends with some pizza onboard. Dump the anchor in and have a blast.

You will get an enormous amount of street credit from your friends and it is a perfect spot for a date as well.

Do that for two years and I have made you rich.

Blog Sponsor

A fellow danish money blogger is this post sponsor. His name is John, and he writes in danish about hands-on money-saving tips and other money/finance related stuff at vilebo.dk

My Kakeibo Experiment, Part Three (Final)

My Kakeibo Experiment, Part One

My Kakeibo Experiment, Part Two

I did this experiment because I read in Your Money or Your Life that you could cut your expenses at least 20 % by keeping note of every cent that goes in and out of your life.

So I wanted to do a three months experiment to see if that claim was true.

Spending

In May I had the following spending in the four categories:

Category 1 (Necessities) = 2.425 DKK (231 $)

Category 2 (Wants) = 1.874 DKK (134 $)

Category 3 (Unforeseen) = 0 DKK

Category 4 (Investing) = 30.000 DKK

Total spending = 4.299 DKK (432 $)

The Averages

Average amount pr. transaction = 195 DKK (24 $)

Average amount pr. day = 139 DKK (14 $)

Average transaction/day = 0,7

The Comparison

Catapril 2020march 2020may 2020% Improvement
1571315522425136
278898991874321
35584500GREAT
40030000GREAT
Total1416029014299228
april 20′march 20′may 20′% Improvement
Amount pr. trans186161195-5
Amount pr. day45697139228
Transactions/day2,450,60,7250

To Summarize

Did I improve more than 20 %??

Oh yes, I did! 

From my worst month (April) to the previous month I improved 228 % on average. And I improved 321 % in category 2 which is the “Wants” category I would like to have close to zero spendings in.

Go ahead and try it yourself. Let me know if you can improve at least 20 % as well!

Blog Sponsor

A fellow danish money blogger is this post sponsor. His name is John, and he writes in danish about hands-on money-saving tips and other money/finance related stuff at vilebo.dk

Minimalism and Quarantine. Weekend Reads

Being back in Denmark isn’t that bad at all. The weather is super awesome, and I’m on the countryside on an island called Langeland (I call it Long Island).

There is a lot time to read and binge watch inspiring movies.

Here are some handpicked articles and videos I have enjoyed the last couple of days I would like to share with you.

Articles and Videos

25 Things to Do with Your Family While Stuck at HomeBecoming Minimalist, by Joshua Becker. One of the most awesome minimalist bloggers. He has written a profound article about what to do with your family in this funny time.

No, You Didn’t Just Lose Half Of Your Retirement SavingsMr Money Mustache, by Pete Adeney. The godfather of the FIRE movement has written a good article on why have lost any money in the recent stock market crash.

How To Live A Mortgage Free LifeThriving Willow, by Peter. Tiny house builder, Peter. Has an older post how to live a mortgage free life. He is about to write a guest article here on Wannabe Walden. So stay tuned.

Index Funds The MovieIFA. IFA is an Index Fund provider and have made a 12 step movie series. But if you are a nerd like me, you can watch the entire thing in their documentary.

How LITTLE Money Do We Need In Order To Become Financial Independent?

25 Times Your Annual Spending is A Lot of Money

Let’s be honest. If you are reading this as 20 something years old, and you have just started to make some money. GOOD FOR YOU! You are better off than many other people.

But not everybody is that lucky. Some might just get all these “FIRE information” when they are 30, 40 well maybe even 50+ years old.

Nobody told them they could do what they REALLY wanted if they just saved and invested some money.

BUT! Even if you are stoked about the idea of chasing FIRE, and you are 25 years old. If you are a diligent saver and save 60 % of your income. It will still take you 12 years of working, saving and investing. (7 % annual return)

If you start when you are 25 years old, it means that you will be 37 years old when you have reached your goal of 25 times your annual spending.

That is not bad at all.

But you would still have wasted a lot of time being at a soul-sucking job you don’t like.

Psssst… My Little Secret You Can’t Tell Anyone

I got several new friends by being a part of this FIRE community. And many of them are super badass. The ones that are probably the coolest are the following:

Jacob Lund Fisker

Pernille Wahlgren 

Pete Adeney (Don’t know him personally)

They do differ a bit from each other.

When you meet Pernille she seems to have a very normal/glamorous life with expensive vacations with the entire family. And Jacob is a bit more extreme and is spending less than 10.000 $/year with no kids. Pete Adeney has one kid, he does own a couple of cars but prefers to bike around.

But the thing they have in common is that they have all reached financial independence by having a normal job.

Said in another way. They all have more than 25 times their annual spending saved and invested.

But they have another thing in common. 

And here is my “secret”. 

Not any of them touches the principal of their portfolio. 

Yep, that’s right.

All of them have some sort of new business or job, that covers their expenses. None of them uses the money they have in the portfolio. It is more like a nice cushion if they didn’t feel like making an income.

But FIRE is not about not working. It is about doing stuff you like more, and you decide how many hours you feel like doing it.

So why should you save up 25 times (or more) of your annual spending? To “retire”, but never touch that principal.

Why don’t we just save up 2-5 times our annual spending? Do a bit of work, which is nice. Go for a couple of mini-retirements. And let compound interest do the rest of the work?

Do We Even Need 25 Times Our Annual Spending?

“How much money you would like to retire with??”

It is often the question we hear when we talk about personal finance. But it is the wrong angle to ask the question.

How LITTLE money can we retire with is the right way to ask that question.

The “25 times-your-annual-spending-rule” is based on the thought that we never want to run out of money. And why is that?

What if the day we hit the graveyard, that will be the same day that our accounts are empty. If that is the case. We could change our goal.

The average danish person is going to be 81 years old. 

So if we want to hit the graveyard with no money. AND we don’t want to have an income from when we are 65 years old. (Which is almost impossible because we have the public retirement funds)

That means we only need to have 16 times our annual spending saved and invested. Because we have only have 16 more years to live.

Even with 16 times our annual spending, and a conservative allocation of 50 % bonds and 50 % global stocks (because we are old and worried about stock market crashes). You only have a 5 % chance of running out of money.*

At the bottom 10th percentile you still end up on the graveyard with 2 times your annual spending to your name.*

And we are more than likely to end up with MORE money than when we started our retirement as 65 years old.

You can have as little as 10 times your annual spending in a 100 % global stock portfolio and STILL only have a 45 % chance of running out of money.

And remember the goal was to have an empty account when we were about to die.

Early Retirement 2.0

So how LITTLE money do we need to retire early?

This graph will show you how much you need to have saved and invested to hit 16 times your annual spending at age 65.

The assumptions are the following:

  • We spend 25.000 $/year (175.000 DKK) (That is what Pete Adeney is spending, which is not too extreme.)
  • We invest in a 100 % global stock portfolio

Or we can put it another way.

How many times our annual spending do we need according to our age, to hit 16 times our annual spending at age 65.

So if you read this at 40 years old. And you would like to spend 15.000 $/year when you are 65 years old.

You are going to be perfectly fine if you have 51.000 $ saved and invested.

From that point, you can just earn what you are spending. Which is probably something you can earn by working part-time or work for a couple of months each year.

Or!

Just continue working, stashing up way more cash than you would ever need.

At the moment I have about 75.000 $ (520.000 DKK) invested, which is about 4-5 times my annual spending. If I just leave that money till I’m 65 years old they will probably compound* into something like 640.000 $ (4.400.000 DKK). (After inflation)

Which is more like 36 times my annual spending.

In that case, I will be 65 years old, but I have money for the next 36 years, without relying on interest there is more than inflation.

So take it easy!

You probably have way more money in your portfolio than you need to!

*www.portfoliovisualizer.com

Got Questions? Write Me!

I would always like to hear from you.

No matter what you have to say!

Write me at:

Loui@wannabewalden.com

Video Interview for Pernille Wahlgren

One of the awesome things of chasing FIRE is that I get to meet a lot of awesome people. One of them is Pernille Wahlgren, who is one of the most badass financial independent woman I know.

She asked me if I wanted to do an interview for her online course.

Here is a teaser for the 20 minute long interview on her online course. (Unfortunately it is in danish).

You can check her out at: pernillewahlgren.dk

Going Outside of the Tribe

The more I look around, the more I realize that we might be on of the biggest tribe animals on this planet. Going outside of the tribe, and being a lonely wolf, can be scary.

Being a part of a tribe was a good thing back in 10.000 BC. Because the only thing we were worrying about was the following:

  1. Will it kill me?
  2. Can I eat it?
  3. Can I fuck it?

Our brains still has this way of thinking. That’s why we end up following the tribe. Because it will be easier to kill, eat and raise a child if we are in a tribe out in the nature, trying to survive.

Things Happens Outside of the Tribe

The thing is. If we follow a tribe, our lives will end up like the tribe. Which would be awesome if we daily feared for our lives. The tribe would have our backs.

But in a modern society, where tigers are locked up in cages at the local zoo, our meal is just around the corner and the kid is at the kindergarten. There is no reason to be a in tribe.

The modern (average) tribe will do the following:

  1. Get an education
  2. Have some student debt
  3. Work from 9-5 for 50 years
  4. Have some kids they don’t have time for
  5. Eat +3 meals a day, and be overweight
  6. Get divorced

And the tribe do so, because that is how we define a prosperous life.

If we step outside of this tribe, new windows will open. But the entire tribe will tell you how the tiger is going to kill when we are on our own. Because that is how our brain works.

How I Step Outside of the Tribe

Here are 4 things I do, which is “unusual” for the tribe.

Not Having a Mobile

I have never been more present social than I’m right now. And that’s because I don’t have a mobile.

The thing is. The people who are closest to me, is getting more and more pissed about me not having a mobile. Because they can’t contact me when they feel like it. They do not pay attention to how I devote 100 % of my time to them, whenever I’m with them.

That is called Loss Aversion.

Loss aversion is the fact we find it more painful to lose 100 $, than the joy of finding 200 $.

People are hardly noticing me not looking at my mobile every 10-15 minutes, but are super pissed about that one minute every 14 days that they can’t get in contact with me.

And that is why “the tribe” is keep telling me to get a mobile.

Eating 1-2 Meals a Day

Eating is a very social thing. Whenever I tell people that I’m not having lunch today, they are about to fall down from the chair.

If we say that we spend around 45 minutes prepping, eating and cleaning after each meal. We then devote 2 hours 15 minutes consuming calories each day.

Eating less frequent is one of the most awesome habits I do and has several benefits:

  • Saving time = more productivity
  • Saving money
  • Eating healthier
  • Eat as much as I like
  • Drinking more water
  • Clearer skin
  • Staying healthy and lean

Saving + 50 % of My Income

When I tell people about me chasing FIRE. People often understand it. But will never try to do it themselves.

I’m still trying to figure out what they are fearing. The conclusion so far is that people is so scared of stepping outside of the tribe. Just the thought of “losing” money in the stock market, is enough for them to stay in the comfort zone, and not leaving (just for period) a job they don’t feel like.

And they focus more on the “Spending less” than they focus on the “Do what you want” part of the equation. Which again is a Loss Aversion thing.

My mind can’t grasp the idea of people showing up at a job for 50 years if they could do whatever they felt like. If we could cherry pick activities without worrying about our finances, I can’t imagine that we would live the way we do now.

Don’t get me wrong. I don’t think that people will do well sitting in hammock. But the solution is not how we are living our lives now.

Minimalism

The ambition of not wanting to own stuff is still super weird to many people.

It seems like there is an equivalent of how many things we have and how happy/successful we are.

Which is not my reality.

I believe in presence and empathy, which can be done for free without gifts or other stuff.

Why Consuming Less is More Important Than Politics

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.

School Project Video On FIRE

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

The Video

They told me they got an A for the this project.

Unfortunately it is in danish with no subtitles.


7 Benefits of Not Having a Mobile

https://www.dbphoto.dk/

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.

SPOILER ALERT!

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.

5) JOMO

We all know the term FOMO.

Fear

Of

Missing

Out

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!