Draft 2: liberty within 12 years

I had a conversation a couple of weeks ago with one of my more frugal friends. We used to live together and she was my saving grace when I needed someone to help me manage my finances. Let’s call her Sasha. Sasha lived in the smallest room in our 3 bed house, paying less rent and owning the least amount of stuff. She shops at Lidl – she swears by their cheap organic produce – and cooks a lot of her meals at home. She spends only on what matters to her – food, relationships, craft beer and travel – and buys good quality clothes and shoes in order to get durability and long wear out of them. She shops for deals and has a decent source of passive income. In our conversation, she revealed me that for the last 2 and a half years, she’s been putting away 50% of her salary in her pension.

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Keeping up with Yoko*

*Which is not her real name

In the personal finance blogosphere, there is a general derision for any desire to keep up with the Joneses. We are encouraged to chart a different path, embrace different choices and follow the road less travelled. I’ve also recently read an article, possibly from the Our Next Life blog, about how this conversely sets a different kind of target. FIRE enthusiasts are keeping up with a different kind of Joneses (perhaps we should call them the Smiths who seem an altogether more frugal sort). This morning I saw a Facebook post. My friend Yoko is coming back to London after months of travelling. And it got me thinking. Whilst I might eschew living like most people, I definitely want to live like Yoko.

amsterdam-bikes-on-bridge

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January tracking & goals update

Yay, the longest month of the year has ended. We get paid before Christmas day in December. That, coupled with January’s 5 weeks, always meant that it was a broke week to ten days at the back-end of the month traditionally.Last year, I had already borrowed money from at least one source by this point. In light of all the depressing news in the world right now, I’ll cling onto this positive. I could have gone on a couple more weeks into February without being paid.  Continue reading