I’ve now reached financial independence (at least on paper) although I will not be retiring just yet. So not so much a case of FIRE (Financial Independence, Retire Early) as FIRS (Financial Independence, Retiring Sometime).

It was a strange moment when I realised I’d made the magic number that represented my financial freedom, a little sooner than I’d predicted. The weird thing about it was the sense of “what next” that came over me. No matter how much you’ve thought about the big day when you can explain to your boss in language of your own choosing what exactly he can do with his WENUS report, it still feels like something you’ve totally failed to prepare for. In truth I have prepared for it, at least on paper. The problem is it’s arrived a bit sooner than planned, and I’ve been caught off guard.

So what next …

  1. I’ve still got some work to do to make myself tax efficient. So I’m going to invest a little effort into organising some more SIPP and ISA contributions.
  2. I still have some ongoing family financial obligations which I wish to fulfil before retirement.
  3. My calculations are a little “back of a postcard” so my confidence level that I’ve enough is a little low. Frankly I’ve not bothered to collect the data to be totally sure. So I’ll do a dry-run for a few months by living only on the monthly budget I’ve set aside for my  financial independence. The wages I earn in this period will build a margin of safety.
  4. I need to expand on my vague “what next” plans. I need a sense of direction for my post retirement phase of life.  I need to prioritise all the things I want to do into some order and structure, otherwise I’ll wake up each day and waste my time in aimless indecision.
  5. My investing hobby will continue to take a fair amount of time, but this is how I relax so I’m happy with that!
  6. Who knows, I might start posting more updates here.
  7. Finally I feel I owe it to my loyal and dedicated team at work (back at The Firm) to complete an going major project that I’m running. So I’ll see this through before I retire, and of course it’ll good good on the CV when I’m done, although that hardly matters any more!

So that is all for this post. Thanks for reading. I’d like to hear in the comments below if you’ve experienced something like this sense of “what next” after gaining financial independence, or if you have any other comments to contribute.


2 thoughts on “FIRS

  1. I would say that some period of living the FI budget – probably about a year – is absolutely necessary. There are many people at The Firm who enjoy a pretty decent material standard of living, and I’ve come across many who talk the talk but they or their wife and kids can’t walk the walk. The fellow who introduced me to pension AVCs (SIPPs in a different guise) warmed me up to it by saying anyone who isn’t retired by 45 is a wuss.

    I didn’t manage 45, but his wife and kids weren’t prepared to do the downshift, so he’s still there, while I was a wuss but escaped at 52. ‘Tis seven years since he shared that gem with me – that’s 10% of a lifespan and even more of his adult life…

    I am now in Scotland by the side of a river cascade. This connection is blagged off someones BT wifi/FON. Although I would one day like to travel without the infernal glowing screen if I will go to Scotland in April I must follow and work with the weather 😉
    There is the beautiful liquid song of the willow warbler in the background. Tomorrow I will wake up and walk and listen to the birds. . Then I shall see where my fancy takes me; I don’t have to be back at a certain time. If the weather turns I will go south, else I will go north and see hawks and ancient sites.

    The world is plenty interesting enough. You don’t need to quench the static in your head after a while off The Man’s clock IMO 😉 But each to their own.

    I worked three years into FI, I rammed the excess wedge into AVCs, into my ISAs, obviously sharesave. I haven’t earned anything significant since 2012. Although we must allow for the fact the stock market has been on a tear since then, my networth has still slightly crept up; ie my money works harder for me than my spending…

    1. Hi Ermine

      Thanks for dropping by. In my opinion you give good advice. In my case the family are fully supportive, but their unquestioning trust only serves to make me more cautious. I’ll need to document here in due course if I’m a wuss or not!

      Also it is clear from your blog and this comment that you have the lifestyle change thing (the sense of “what next”) well under control. A fine example to us all 🙂


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