The typical person has a job that they do every day for a paycheck that seems unfulfilling, boring, stressful, and usually involves a lot of long hours for little recognition. It takes away from family, hobbies, travel, and other enjoyable activities. Life in a 5X5 cubicle is commonly a very sedentary experience with tight deadlines and little time to poke your head up to breathe. Coffee breaks are filled with donuts and other sugary treats. Waistlines grow, health declines, and life fulfillment suffers. You go home feeling tired and have to cook food, take care of kids and eventually go to bed to do it all over again. Your sleep is wrecked, you’re tired, possibly depressed.
What is the point? Do you really need the latest BMW and the 3000 sq. foot house on a hill? Do these things really matter if all your time is spent in a cube? Do they bring any type of happiness or are they just more things to take your time away from what you really want to be doing? This all feels like a trap that is difficult to escape. The trap is set when you have so many bills and obligations that you set yourself up for life long misery.
According to this Gallup poll, 31.5% of employees are engaged in their jobs. I find myself growing more tired of it the longer i am in the workforce. I’d rather be writing this blog or wearing a Darth Vader suit in the streets of Portland. Below are some ways to get out of the grind.
1. Passive income
Find what you are passionate about and see if there is a way to monetize it. If you can’t monetize your passion, find a way to replace your job with passive income so you have time for your passions. Here is a link to a site with many options to make money without the 9-5 job. They will very likely involve a lot of hard work to get going, but once you do the checks should start coming in. There is no such thing as easy money without work unless you inherit it. I’d recommend getting this going while working until you have enough passive income to replace your income or a lower level of income that is sufficient to pursue your dreams.
2. Stop wasteful spending
We are a consumerist society that just has to spend every last dime of their paycheck and live to that standard, and many times beyond with debt. These actions tend to enslave you. As I mentioned, you don’t need the latest model car when a 5 year old car may be in like-new condition and 2/3 the cost. Take time to really dig into every expense you have and see if you can reduce it. A big example I know of is cable TV. With netflix, hulu and other streaming sites, I can watch shows nearly commercial free and do not need cable. I don’t have to be up to the latest episode of anything and quite frankly, too much TV can keep you from your passions as well. Eliminating the cable bill is huge.
Do you rent? If so you may likely be paying someone else to get rich. Flip the coin on that and buy a rental property with multiple units, live in one and have the other units pay your rent. The term I have heard used for this activity is “house hacking”. I plan to take this step as soon as I have my down payment. The great thing is you can use an FHA loan if you are living in it, so you can have a lower down payment. With lower rent, you won’t need as much income. See this article from biggerpockets.com if you aren intersted in learning more about house hacking.
Tell us about your own experiences in the comments, we would love to hear from you!