“Going deep”

Whenever we’re with friends or new acquaintances and the conversation is getting a little bit stale/whiney/gossipy/surface level, I have a habit of bringing out my secret weapon: a list of questions I’ve collated from various websites and resources, which are intended to both reactivate the chat and “go deep” at the same time. I don’t even bother with segues like “Hmmm, well, speaking of death…”: I just pull out my phone and shriek, “Hey! I have a bunch of questions that are really fun to answer – Tim Ferriss uses…

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Internet commenters in “not entirely supportive” shocker

Despite generally being a grumpy and sceptical so-and-so, I couldn’t help having my heart slightly warmed by a story I read this week. If you have a moral objection to the Daily Mail, don’t click this link and I’ll summarise instead. In short, a young couple from the UK had a baby. They’d saved up, so during the mother’s maternity leave they could go backpacking – with the baby – around Australia, New Zealand and Asia. Good for them, right? Nope, apparently not! Here’s a selection of some of the…

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Create for yourself first

If we take “financial independence” to mean “being able to do whatever you want without money being a concern”, then the equation is very simple: You’re financially independent as soon as your monthly passive income from assets exceeds the monthly cost of doing whatever you want. This is the essential logic of the early retirement movement: save like crazy to buy assets, then quit once the expected return of those assets gives you enough to live on. It means the money you need to live keeps automatically rolling in, whether…

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A better path to early retirement

Over the last year, I’ve started reading a lot of “early retirement” blogs: a category that has an oversupply issue in common with digital nomad blogs, but also a common desire to look at the normal way of doing things and say “sod that for a lark”. The gist of the standard early retirement method is this: instead of saving 10% of what you earn, aim for 50% or more. Invest it in the stock market, and in 10–15 years you’ll have accumulated enough that you can live off the…

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On being different

“Robbie, where do you want your ashes to be scattered when you die?” “Well I’ll be dead by that point, so it doesn’t matter. You choose.” “You must have somewhere you’d like them to be scattered? A favourite place? Somewhere meaningful?” “OK. Bangkok.” “Oooh! Why Bangkok? Because you love it there?” “Yeah, I do. But I’ll be dead, so I don’t really care. If you’re still alive, though, you’ll get a nice holiday out of it.” “But also because you love it there too, right? I don’t want you to…

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