You can have hundreds of reasons for an early retirement. Among other reasons one or more of the following situations in your life might make you long for an early retirement:
- My work-life balance is horrible. In fact my friend (cousin, uncle etc.) died young due to the stress/long hours, I don’t want to end up like him! What you really need is a slower paced job, not an early retirement!
- Have a job, but I cannot tolerate - my job/office politics/co-workers/boss! Well this one is slightly tricky – all jobs/relationships come with an element of discomfort at some point or the other. Your best way forward is to grin and bear it or move on to some other job for some temporary relief, not an early retirement!
- I need time for my round the world travel – or volunteering/ hobbies/ studies etc – and I cannot do this with my job! Well, of course you can! You can find ways to work around the constraints and demands of your job. These may not happen as often as you wish or on the days you want to, but it can still be done along with your job. Perhaps all you need is a ‘sabbatical’, not an early retirement!
- In spite of my rich experience, I am not getting the jobs/promotions that I really want/deserve. Hmm … this is happening often nowadays, thanks to the economic crisis. This one hurts – as one of the biggest benefit of a job is the sense of ‘fulfilment’ it brings and if your job makes you feel inadequate, you do have a strong reason to get frustrated. I would still discourage an early retirement in this case. This can be solved in at least two different ways – Firstly by some expectation re-setting (consciously accepting the new reality) or Secondly by looking for an alternate job or business opportunity.
Often, a wish for an early retirement is nothing more than an expression of dissatisfaction with status-quo. Dealing with this dissatisfaction might be a better strategy, than retiring early.
There may be hundreds of reasons you can give for an early retirement, however, there is only one reason for you not to retire early – Inflation! A steady income with work/business is the easiest inflation hedge you can build.
Am I against early retirement? Hell, No! All I am trying to say is – early retirement is not easy, its probably not necessary and if taken, it must be done only for the right reason!