Retire Early Lifestyle

As explained by their website, Retire Early Lifestyle,

In 1991 Billy and Akaisha Kaderli retired at the age of 38. Now, into their 20th year of this financially independent lifestyle, they invite you to take advantage of their wisdom and experience.

They are the authors of the ebook, The Adventurer’s Guide to Early Retirement, 3rd Edition: A Common Sense Approach. I haven’t finished reading their book, but I’ve been impressed with what I’ve read so far. It’s practical, thorough, and inspiring. My only caveat would be that their experiences are those of a former high-income couple. Most people don’t have the sort of savings and investment portfolio they had at the point when they cashed in and got out of the rat race. Nevertheless, it IS possible for people starting out with less money to combine:

  • the creation of multiple passive income streams, and
  • the reduction of expenses (in other words, living below one’s means), and
  • the tips and strategies described in great detail in their book

to create a lifestyle for themselves in which they DON’T have to trade their life for money with the daily grind of a 9-to-5 job. At minimum, it’s possible to significantly reduce one’s dependence on a job.

As Sojourners, we already know we can create our own “luck.” And make our daily lives more about what we want to do, as opposed to what we have to do. Check out the resources at their site, and their recent interview with the Wall Street Journal.

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51 Responses to “Retire Early Lifestyle”

  1. Karen says:

    Food for thought is what will their “elderly years” look like. There is something to be said for having established a connection to the people you live with.

    I certainly am working towards the goal of financial independence, hence having eliminated all debt 10+ years ago (other than our mortgage), but for me personally, to be a nomad so to speak in the “Age of Turmoil” would not be attractive to me.

    With all that being said, their story does offer insight as to how to live a more independent life.

  2. Anilia says:

    thank you for this post. This is the main goal that I’ve been working on for the past few years. I have a long way to go (student loans…grrrr) but the fact that its doable – and not many people seem to realize that its a possibility (i.e. not in line with middle class thinking) – really inspires and motivates me to break away from the rat race.

  3. Brenda55 says:

    I am very familiar with Billy and Akaisha Kaderli being an early retiree myself. We go by the acronym FIRE. “FINANCIALLY INDEPENDENT RETIRED EARLY”. People from many walks of life are able to do this. I was a registered nurse and my husband was a academic and we did it. It is really about setting priorities, making a plan and sticking with it. Oh and thinking outside of the box helps a lot also.

    You may want to check out these sites http://www.early-retirement.org/forums/

    The Kenderli’s post here on occasion.

    The other site is. http://earlyretirementextreme.com/
    This guy retired in his thirties. This path is not for the faint of heart though.

    You will find excellent advice on how to live below your means, budgeting, investing and more from people who have actually FIRED or are on their way. Even in this economy people are retiring early comfortably. They had a plan and they stuck with it. It is a matter of making your money work for you.

  4. Karen,

    You said, “Food for thought is what will their “elderly years” look like. There is something to be said for having established a connection to the people you live with.”

    Indeed. I see that you caught that underlying vibe too. They explicitly mentioned this angle in the “Was It Worth It?” post at their site:

    The stress of working high pressure jobs most likely would have taken a toll on our physical health. And two decades later with the aches, pains and caution that ageing brings, would we still be as adventurous and willing to try new things in retirement? And then, there is the question of whether or not we would still be together. Many of our friends are on their second marriages, and this could possibly have happened to us as well.

    (emphasis added)

    Quiet as its kept, I would figure that after years—2 decades—of having escaped the rat race and adventuring together, they have more interests and unusual experiences in common with each other (as a couple) than they do with extraneous people. As opposed to the all to often drift away from each other that happens with many couples. It’s something to consider.

    You said, “…but for me personally, to be a nomad so to speak in the “Age of Turmoil” would not be attractive to me.”

    They have a home base of sorts. They just don’t stay there the entire year.
    ________________________________________________

    Anilia,

    You’re welcome!

    You said, “This is the main goal that I’ve been working on for the past few years. I have a long way to go (student loans…grrrr) but the fact that its doable – and not many people seem to realize that its a possibility (i.e. not in line with middle class thinking) – really inspires and motivates me to break away from the rat race.”

    It’s only been for about the last year that I seriously decided to break free from the rat race. Like many, I had daydreamed about it before, but I hadn’t mapped out a concrete action plan for getting to that place. Praise God, I’m in the process of working the action plan.

    The first step is to become financially free enough to be a “hobbyist” at work—like many of the WW are after their marriages. (Unlike most AA women who still HAVE to work even after they get married. Most married AA women can’t even afford to take off from work for a sensible amount of maternity leave. {shaking my head}) I’m sure that my perception of the job will shift once I no longer need any job. The step after that would be to save up about 1.5 to 2 years’ worth of salary, and then quit. 🙂
    _______________________________________

    Brenda55,

    Congratulations! {deep martial arts bow}

    You said, “This guy retired in his thirties. This path is not for the faint of heart though.”

    Yep, I’ve read his blog (and I’ll probably get around to ordering his book). The key word in his early retirement plan IS “extreme.” He cut his expenses back to a point that most people wouldn’t be willing to do.

    Expect Success!

    • Brenda55 says:

      “He cut his expenses back to a point that most people wouldn’t be willing to do.”

      Quite right but that sort of thinking outside of the box got him where he wanted to be. Much like we women looking outside of our race for quality mates.

      What all of the early retirees have in common is going after the life you want. You really cannot run with “mainstream” thinking to do this. It is the same for Sojourners.

      • Brenda55,

        I agree. If you want what most people don’t have, then you have to be willing to do what most people won’t do.

        I’m just speaking for myself and my own impressions of his methods. I’m not willing to cut back on my creature comforts and pleasures to the degree that he did. I fall into the “Expeditioner” category that the Sovereign Man blog host talked about in his post The 7 Expat Categories:

        EXPEDITIONER: You are a classical traveler in the mold of British merchants and explorers– you want to make the journey overseas, but you want your amenities too, complete with a triple mocha latte.

        You want to storm the plains of the Serengeti… with an armed guide. You want to see India up close and personal… then go back to your five star hotel.

        I want my hot cocoa whenever I want it . . . and my pillows fluffed up “just right” with a Hershey’s Kiss left on them . . . I don’t want to cut my own hair or give myself manicures . . . I want others to do that for me . . . I’m not into “roughing it” sorts of lifestyles. {chuckling}

        Expect Success!

    • Anilia says:

      The first step is to become financially free enough to be a “hobbyist” at work—like many of the WW are after their marriages.

      this was something I noticed a few years ago. With so many non-profits in the area, I wondered how some WW could afford to live in their upscale neighborhoods while making below-average salaries.

      • Anilia,

        Oh yeah, it’s mostly the masses of AA women who are working like dogs after they get married. Because they select the wrong type of men.

        Question: How many AA men are able and willing to support a Black woman to be a stay at home mom or to be a hobbyist-worker whose income is NOT critical to the home? Answer: Very few.

        Expect Success!

        • Karen R. says:

          You are again making the point that it is imperative that BW select quality alpha male men as husbands and providers. YOu asked “how many AA men are able and willing to support a black woman being a stay at home mom…? Not many. Even those who are able are NOT willing.

          On the other hand most of my WW friends who are highly educated haven’t seen the inside of a job since God was a baby! LOL Of my close friends, 2 who do work, their positions are below even the level of hobbyist ie. noon lunch aide at their children’s school. Maybe 7 hours per week.

          My eyes were opened to this phenomenon about 10 years ago. At the time I was a stay at home mom and I went to get a late morning cup of coffee at the Starbuck’s near my home. The “stroller brigade” of WW was in full force. It seems expected that the WMale husband provide a lifestyle that the wife is able to COMFORTABLY stay at home.

          • Hodan says:

            lol, since God was a baby…the best line ever.

            I so agree with you and its not only limited to WM and WW. Many men of color, Arabs, South Asians, Asians, heck even large #s of educated and well off African men have wives who stay @ home and expect to be kept in good standing. I’m not an advocate for that thou because my mom suffered majorly when my dad died. She was pampered from her father’s home to her husband’s home and never felt financial constraint. I was raised to be prepared for everything and always have financial safety net no matter how good my marriage is. In my grandmother’s words, your money is yours, his money also belongs to you and the children. :)-

          • MsMellody says:

            To Karen R;

            You are SO correct!! I too had my eyes opened to the phenomenon when I lived in the suburbs with my husband. THis was a period of time of about a year to a year and a half..and I was seeing ALL the differences right around me.

            When I would go to the Jewel food store when he was at work..often after about 2:30 or 3:30 pm it would ALWAYS be packed with women in a frenzy – picking up dinner items and they would often be dressed in yoga outfits, workout outfits and little jackets. I would make note of how carefree and happy they all were.

            I would see these same women so often on such a regular basis until I memorized their faces..their cars..and how just carefree they were.
            I clearly remmember making the connection that just BLEW my mind!! I realized it that this “system” of marrying and making sure these women were on the right track to marry the right men in order for them TO STAY AT HOME..and that this “staying at home” was not even argued with by the men. WHat I am trying to say is – these WW have been doing this for GENERATIONS UPON GENERATIONS and they teach and mold and teach their daughters to do the exact same thing—and MOST importantly — TO EXPECT THE EXACT SAME THING!!!

            So yes, us as AA women need to make a KEY change in our very EXPECTATIONS. Put ourselves in the venues to meet the men who will be quality loving lovable alpha males.

            The rule makers not the rule breakers!

        • KarenR.,

          You said, “On the other hand most of my WW friends who are highly educated haven’t seen the inside of a job since God was a baby! LOL Of my close friends, 2 who do work, their positions are below even the level of hobbyist ie. noon lunch aide at their children’s school. Maybe 7 hours per week.

          My eyes were opened to this phenomenon about 10 years ago. At the time I was a stay at home mom and I went to get a late morning cup of coffee at the Starbuck’s near my home. The “stroller brigade” of WW was in full force. It seems expected that the WMale husband provide a lifestyle that the wife is able to COMFORTABLY stay at home.”

          That’s right. Unlike comparable, highly-educated and married AA women, highly-educated and married WW are not beating the streets every morning going to a job. Comparable educated and married WW are living a very different sort of lifestyle than that.

          Expect Success!

  5. Oshun/Aphrodite says:

    Thank you for these resources! I will have to check all of the links out. I had always assumed that I would drop from work somewhere. I can hear the nagging voices in my head about being lazy though…

    Its nice to know there are people who think this way.

    • Oshun/Aphrodite,

      A lot of AA women “drop from work.” And with each year that passes, and the increasing levels of obesity among AA women, even more of them will die BEFORE they get to official retirement age. Oh, well.

      I’ll talk about this angle more during my reply to KimP.

      Expect Success!

    • Anilia says:

      just because you don’t work, doesn’t necessarily mean you’re lazy. The whole world is your oyster depending on your financial abilities. How would your order your day(s), if you didn’t have to be in the rat race?

  6. Valerie M says:

    One alternative that I have heard is mini-retirements. Instead of saving it all up for one big long retirement, save up or invest for a one year “sabbatical” every 5-7 years. After you’re refreshed, come back with a clear mind and start some creative work project. That is what I’d like to do, at least during my middle adult years. I know that I need to have a purpose of some sort and keep working at something I enjoy doing. I know that I will still have to work on building a business and developing income streams so I can have something to come back to.

    I also feel it is easier for me to be smarter with my finances when I know I have a “retirement” coming in 5-7 years, than to sock it all away for 25 years in the distant future (I am 23 now). If I’m realistic with myself I don’t think I could pull of the extreme retirement path, either.

    I actually don’t think people hate working, they just hate doing meaningless work. Many people actually keep working on a smaller scale during retirement, sometimes by choice.

    • Valerie M,

      A number of (mostly White) folks have “gap years” and go on sabbaticals.

      The other things is that retirement does NOT have to mean the total, absolute end of work or productivity. It’s simply the end of forced, required work. A number of early retirers that I’ve read about do volunteer work in addition to their travels.

      Expect Success!

  7. Evelyn says:

    This is definitely something I want to work toward, if only because I want to be able to dedicate as much energy and time to my future children as possible someday and enjoy life with them as I raise them, not feel like I’m working to keep and raise them. I decided when I started over in college a year ago that I would take out a full student loan for living expenses, while paying for my tuition with the money I had saved from years of working beforehand. So far I’ve been able to bank more than about half of the loan money as savings, and I’m now looking into potential side businesses I can start up and while I study. I haven’t read the book yet and have no idea if it’s in line with anything the couple give as advice, but I firmly believe you can never start planning for a comfortable future too early – or too late!

  8. KimP says:

    Retiring early (age 40 or below) has been my ultimate goal since I first entered college. I’m aiming to pay off my student loans in about 3 years (whew, God help me!) and pay for what schooling I’m taking now that isn’t covered by other sources out of pocket, no more loans!

    I’ve always thought the work hard while young, retire when old dogma was backwards. Why can’t I work hard (and play hard), but work smarter now so I can enjoy traveling, financial freedom and peace of mind in my younger and older days.

    I got a swift kick in the rear when I met one of my mom’s patients when I was about 10, and she shared how along with her husband, they saved a large sum of money to travel around the world, but a few months after she retired she was diagnosed with a crippling degenerative disease (talk about timing) and couldn’t enjoy a dime of her savings let alone leave her city.

    I’ve got a few streams of online passive income in the works and I hope to parlay those opportunities into offline income streams.

  9. palmwater says:

    Thank you for this post Khadija! Will you be doing a review of the Kaderli’s book?

    This is definitely a goal that I would like to work towards over the next 10 years after getting this post from the Sovereign Man http://www.sovereignman.com/expat/young-people-get-ready-to-grab-your-ankles/. I have no interest in having my future destroyed so that my government can clean up the mess they created!

    After reading some of Jacob Fisker’s ideas, it makes me wish that I had done things differently in my early 20s. Oh well, there’s no need to dwell on the past. I can still apply his ideas now. It’s never too late!

    Brenda55 thank you for the link to Fisker’s blog. I’m going to read more of his posts before I purchase his book.

  10. sisterlocgirl says:

    Wow. We’re 5 days into the New Year and every post is sparking new ideas/shattering old paradigms. You are definitely challenging us to get off the sofa & get to work on our collective paths. I’m buying the book right now :-).

  11. joyousnerd says:

    I’ll have to check these sites out. I’m always interested in learning more about managing money!

  12. KimP,

    You said, “I got a swift kick in the rear when I met one of my mom’s patients when I was about 10, and she shared how along with her husband, they saved a large sum of money to travel around the world, but a few months after she retired she was diagnosed with a crippling degenerative disease (talk about timing) and couldn’t enjoy a dime of her savings let alone leave her city.”

    Now, that’s real. And considering the neglect that so many AA woman are doing in terms of their health as young women (obesity and its related ailments), many of these women also WON’T get to enjoy a retirement. Either they’ll be dead before official retirement age. Or they’ll be dealing with hardcore health challenges. It’s all connected—this is what “big and beautiful,” fat-accepting women are setting themselves up for. God respects free will; and so do I—that’s their business.

    But the rest of us who are determined to live well need to understand several critical points:

    (1) The old system of retirement pensions one could count on is DEAD; and it’s not coming back.

    (2) Your health is one of your greatest assets; guard it well.

    (3) Your time is another one of your greatest assets; you can’t afford to waste too much of it on things that won’t benefit you in the long run.

    Because they don’t understand the above (or resist understanding the above facts), there will be increasing numbers of poor, sick and dead-before-their-time AA women.
    ___________________________________________________

    Palmwater,

    I haven’t decided whether I’ll do a review of their book. We’ll see.
    ____________________________________________________

    Sisterlocgirl,

    Thanks for your support! 🙂 Well, “Rwanda” and the willing denizens of Rwanda no longer have any space in my thoughts. I also don’t have any more time or interest in discussing their (chosen) “plight.” Anybody who has chosen not to get out, has basically chosen to die. That’s their business.

    I’m focused on people who are committed to living well. The Sojourners and others in the global village who are making prudent decisions in order to thrive during these turbulent times.
    ______________________________________________________

    JoyousNerd,

    There’s a lot of good stuff at those sites. {smile}

    Expect Success!

  13. Brenda55 says:

    This book:

    Work Less, Live More: The Way to Semi-Retirement

    http://www.amazon.com/Work-Less-Live-More-Semi-Retirement/dp/1413307051/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1294276853&sr=8-1

    Was written by one of the early members of the Early Retirement Board. It is a really good primer for those wanting to semi retire early which for a lot of folks is a better fit.

    • Anne1 says:

      Thanks for the book title! I work for myself and enjoy it immensely. My mind is wired to stay busy ‘creating’ so I’m more suited for semi-retirement in terms of work anywhere. I am in the Navy Reserves and I actually like it but that ONE weekend that I have military duty is a drag because it is taking time away from me. I hope this doesn’t offend or come across in a selfish way as I enjoy serving and have done so proudly for 9 years now. But I’m done at 10 years as running my own business is my calling every single day!

      As long as I’m working for myself, I have the freedom to balance in a little work, a little travel, a little volunteering, and still have enough time to enjoy everything, including my wine hobby.

      Real freedom is the freedom to do everything on my own terms. Another book that I found helpful in building up the nest egg is “Seven Years to Seven Figures” by Michael Masterson.

  14. Tasha212 says:

    Hey Khadija!

    I don’t comment as much as I used to but I still read your blog at least every other day. I especially enjoy reading posts like this one that discuss how to go about planning for a different type of life.

    I was talking to one of my close friends just a few hours ago about the need to have another stream of income so as not to be totally dependent on a job. She has been unemployed since October (she’s an attorney) and seems to only be content with waiting until she finds another job. I understand that she needs a job right now to pay her bills but I was trying to get her to understand the importance of having something to fall back on that would make money while you sleep (passive income). I told her that I was making plans to not need a job by the time I’m 40 (I’m 30 now). The thought never occurred to her to plan for an early retirement. She seems to be content like most people to go from job to job and wait for the reward at the end.

    I will definitely check out the site. I want to do a mini retirement (dreamline) a la Tim Ferris in the near future- (1-2 months long) just to test out what it would be like not to go to work everyday. Have you or anyone else here ever done that?

  15. Jarinda says:

    Honestly, I want to retire when I graduate from professional school. I like the definition of “non-forced labor” because I hate to be forced to do anything by anyone (one benefit of being homeschooled my entire life). I’ve started creating multiple streams of income and this is just another thing I can add to my strategy. I think the strategy the guy in Brenda55’s post could work for me because I do like to eat the same meals repeatedly and I don’t even mind eating cold food (lol).

  16. Karen R. says:

    Excellent resource. I had never heard of this couple before now and I will definitely check them out continuously.

    I like the idea of non forced labor/ early retirement because the whole idea reinforces FREEDOM. When I can make choices not dictated by financial concerns, I am indeed free.

    Financial freedom impacts sooooo many areas of our lives such as where we live and what we can eat. Financial constraints unfortunately are what force many BW to live in areas that aren’t safe. In addition lack of $ resources also impacts our food choices because it is more expensive to eat well and shop at Whole Foods than to go into a drive-through for a “meal” resulting in high levels of cholesterol, high blood pressure, diabetes, obesity, etc. This is really a life and death issue ultimately.

  17. Hello there, Tasha212!

    You said, “I was talking to one of my close friends just a few hours ago about the need to have another stream of income so as not to be totally dependent on a job. She has been unemployed since October (she’s an attorney) and seems to only be content with waiting until she finds another job. I understand that she needs a job right now to pay her bills but I was trying to get her to understand the importance of having something to fall back on that would make money while you sleep (passive income). I told her that I was making plans to not need a job by the time I’m 40 (I’m 30 now). The thought never occurred to her to plan for an early retirement. She seems to be content like most people to go from job to job and wait for the reward at the end.”

    The problem for most AAs (as I see it) is that our view of work has never really changed much from slavery days. All most of us know is some version of “driver man” (who cracks a whip over your head at work) and “quittin’ time.” We’re not used to assuming responsibility or control over anything. This is why—no matter how much education we get—the only thing we can think to do is look for a j-o-b that has been created by somebody else.

    Carter G. Woodson laid it all out about this passive, dependent mentality in his book from the 1930s, The Miseducation of the Negro. Elijah Muhammad also broke it down in his 1965 book Message To The Blackman:

    My people should get an education which will benefit their own people and not an education adding to the “storehouse” of their teacher. We need education, but an education which removes us from the shackles of slavery and servitude. Get an education, but not an education which leaves us in an inferior position and without a future. Get an education, but not an education that leaves us looking to the slave-master for a job. (pg. 39)

    . . . We must begin at the cradle and teach our babies that they must do something for self. They must not be like we, their fathers, who look to the slave-makers’ and slave-masters’ children for all. We must teach our children now with an enthusiasm exceeding that which our slave-masters used in having our forefathers imbed the seed of dependency within us. (pg. 57)

    This expectation of “good jobs” that most AAs have is obsolete. It’s better to learn how to create one’s own income streams while there are still a few little jobs left to serve as a semi-platform. Soon, there won’t be many jobs at all. Soon, the only thing most employers will be offering anybody will be part-time, independent contractor (to avoid having to provide benefits), and other various types of temp work.

    Large numbers of the folks who refuse to learn how to create their own income streams will have serious, long-term problems. Because things will never go back to the era of “good jobs.”

    You asked, “I want to do a mini retirement (dreamline) a la Tim Ferris in the near future- (1-2 months long) just to test out what it would be like not to go to work everyday. Have you or anyone else here ever done that?”

    No, not in my case. Other than my yearly vacation time, I’ve been on the hamster wheel since I started working full-time. I look forward to jumping off the hamster wheel.
    _____________________________________________________

    Jarinda,

    My own issue with the forced working mostly revolves around not being in control of my daily schedule or location. I don’t like working hours that are set by somebody else. And I don’t like having to report to any particular work site.

    If I was working a job that allowed me to be location-independent and to choose my own hours, I probably wouldn’t feel as put out about the situation.
    _______________________________________________

    KarenR.,

    I cheerfully agree to disagree about what AAs can “afford” to do. We have a long-observed collective habit of “buying what we want, and begging for what we need.” I notice that no matter how officially poor many AAs are, they manage to buy the expensive, NON-essential material goodies (X-boxes, blue jeans that costs over $100, all sorts of stuff) that they truly want.

    Another thing that I’ve observed is how officially poor, welfare-recipient AAs manage to move out of state to other states that offer more generous welfare benefits. Since they can figure out how to move out of state to get more welfare, they can find a way to move to another neighborhood in the same city/area.

    We find ways to do whatever we really want to do. It’s only with the things that are good for us (but not exciting or “sexy”) that AAs start to talk that “poor mouth” talk. I don’t believe it anymore. I’ve seen too many examples to the contrary where folks figured out how to scrape up the money for all sorts of meaningless, useless material goodies.

    Expect Success!

    • palmwater says:

      “This expectation of “good jobs” that most AAs have is obsolete. It’s better to learn how to create one’s own income streams while there are still a few little jobs left to serve as a semi-platform. Soon, there won’t be many jobs at all. Soon, the only thing most employers will be offering anybody will be part-time, independent contractor (to avoid having to provide benefits), and other various types of temp work.”

      -Khadija

      Exactly! This was the major problem I had in the later end of 2009-2010, jumping around doing contract work for a few months after I lost my comfy job. Companies have no loyalty to their employees. We are expendable, to increase revenue and decrease costs. The good jobs are gone!

      With the new media channels, it is a lot easier than before to create and promote your own business. You don’t have to have 20+ years of experience anymore to be an expert or consultant! I have met many WW and few BW who have a consulting business with less than 5 years of work experience.

      If you have unique skills, talents, knowledge in a niche area, you can brand yourself as an expert and create passive income streams. Many of us BW have great examples of women who have created passive income, like BWE bloggers: Khadija, Evia, Halima and Faith (new media consulting).

      I hope to provide value during the discussions about business and creating passive income. I have accumulated a lot of resources and advice.

      I also wanted to mention that although Jacob Fisker’s ideas are extreme, saving 75% of your income can be done, while still being an “Expeditioner”! This can happen if you choose the right man to be in a relationship with! While I was working full time I was taken care of by my partner (WM). I saved all of my money, and my partner never had a problem with that, because he enjoys providing for me. I was able to use that money for transformative travel. I don’t know many BM that would allow me to do that! I’m also met a few WW and an AW women who were traveling alone (transformative travel), that had their husbands supporting their travels financially.

      I may be wrong, but I think Evia mentioned that when she was married to her first husband, she was able to save and keep all of her money, while he supported them financially. One of the many benefits of finding a quality mate!

      • Palmwater,

        Thank you for your kind words; I truly appreciate it.

        Yes, you’re correct: Having a quality husband who is an effective provider makes everything a woman wants to do MUCH easier and more comfortable! 🙂

        Expect Success!

        • Brenda55 says:

          That is true but it goes with out saying that we should not take those quality men for granted. There is a reason that WM marry out and it is not only because they can but because their own women don’t always give them their due.
          Smart wives know better.

          • palmwater says:

            Brenda55 I agree that women should not take their man for-granted. Reciprocity 100% !

            We can be reciprocal, by being loving, motivating and supporting a man to achieve his goals and dreams, being his best friend and confidant, taking his parents out for coffee and lunch, keeping house, making his favourite dinners, baking treats when he has his friends over for sports games etc.

            I watched this behaviour with three of my WW housemates in university. They are all now married to the guys they dated.

            BW have many great traits to offer a good husband! No need to waste any of that on men that can’t reciprocate!

  18. Hodan says:

    Khadija: I fall into the “Expeditioner” category that the Sovereign Man blog host talked about in his post The 7 Expat Categories.

    I want my hot cocoa whenever I want it . . . and my pillows fluffed up “just right” with a Hershey’s Kiss left on them . . . I don’t want to cut my own hair or give myself manicures . . . I want others to do that for me . . . I’m not into “roughing it” sorts of lifestyles. {chuckling}”

    Hodan: lol, I will co-sign with you on this as well. I’m a creature of comfort and could not in the long run live under extreme financial constraint for some long term gain. I can rough it up in the short term, go camping for weeks, heck live in 3rd world country for a year to do my humanitarian work, but at the end of the day, I want to come back to my home town, go to my Starbucks, live in a house where I don’t have to worry about lack of clean water/electricity/heat. I feel guilty saying this, but I’m a capitalist at the end of the day and want my little luxury…and it is a luxury for the majority of the world’s populace.

    Khadija: “to create a lifestyle for themselves in which they DON’T have to trade their life for money with the daily grind of a 9-to-5 job. At minimum, it’s possible to significantly reduce one’s dependence on a job.”

    Hodan: The mentality of 9-5 job is a dying one, if I may suggest another great site that addresses this same issue and the owner who is married to a young black woman (she has a blog I love reading as well) coaches people who are seeking a career and long term financial freedom:

    http://www.illuminatedmind.net/reclaim-your-dreams

    http://www.illuminatedmind.net/2010/11/08/love-and-business-10-reasons-i-adore-working-with-my-wife/

    He says on top of the site: Don’t read if you want ordinary. love his blog, which can be helpful despite your age and financial situation.

    Khadija: I cheerfully agree to disagree about what AAs can “afford” to do. We have a long-observed collective habit of “buying what we want, and begging for what we need.” I notice that no matter how officially poor many AAs are, they manage to buy the expensive, NON-essential material goodies (X-boxes, blue jeans that costs over $100, all sorts of stuff) that they truly want.

    Hodan: Powerful words and I’m guilty of it myself. I believe before we even get to the concept of early retirement, many blacks need to comprehend and practice the concept of: Financial Literacy!

    I took a training session for work titled ‘money matter: financial literacy 101’, its basically geared towards educating and helping youth and newcomers I work with about finance, debt, credit, etc. It was an extremely resourceful 3 day workshop and at the end of it I felt it helped me more than any future client I might assist. Learning how to differentiate between what we ‘Want’ v. what we ‘Need’ will be what separates the wealthy from the employed. I read a while back how black Americans contribute up to $4 billion to the economy as consumers yearly, yet own less than 2% of the country’s asset/wealth. Granted, part of it is due to the long ugly history of racism, but there is no excuse for many of us today to live bellow sub financial condition. I often read how this musician or that athlete is broke after earning $$ millions and its all due to lack of financial management.

    • Karen says:

      Food for thought that I learned long ago from an elderly man…”It is not necessarily what you make but what you keep that counts”.

    • Hodan,

      My only quibble with the blogger you mentioned (and others in his category/age group) is that a lot of those folks sound like 20-somethings who have never HAD to work a real job for any length of time.

      Most of them sound like college kids—who are without any tangible, grown-up responsibilities such as children or a mortgage—who went straight from:

      *being subsidized by their parents
      *to building passive income while being subsidized by their parents or a grad school grant/loan
      *to being self-sufficient entrepreneurs.

      I find that their career path (such as it is) has very little relevance to a working grown-up with adult responsibilities who needs their job to finance their adult responsibilities. It’s like taking advice from high-school-age entrepreneurs. Yes, it’s relevant in terms of the actual business nitty-gritty. But the advice is coming from somebody who has had very little exposure to juggling grown-up responsibilities.

      It’s easy for a preacher to preach “live your dream” when that preacher has never had to temporarily set aside his dream to take care of a family or any other adult responsibilities.

      This potential mismatch in terms of context is something that I try to keep in mind when I do the “income streams” posts. I realize that I’m basically a yuppie talking to an audience composed of more than other yuppies.* I try to make sure that what I’m saying does NOT only apply to yuppies.

      I try to encourage people to recognize and use the talents that they have—you don’t have to have a professional license to have a valuable service you can provide for a fee. In the past, we’ve talked about thing like baking and selling cookies and cakes during the holiday seasons. I’ve mentioned The Cake Lady who comes through the hair salon I go to and sells warm slices of freshly-baked cakes. A reader mentioned the dog-walking that she’s been doing.

      *[Incidentally, I hate that term “yuppie” or “buppie,” but I’m using shorthand to quickly get to the point. In the new year, I’ve deciced to stop doing extra-careful explanations that only serve to accommodate bad-faith readers who want to play dumb.]

      Expect Success!

      • Hodan says:

        I see and agree with your assessment with Jonathan. Even though he and his wife have been financially independent for yrs and talk about health insurance cost, owning their 1st home, buying or renting a car, many of his followers are very young people from middle and upper middle class background.

        The reason I shared his link is because I’m a strong proponent of using the good in any available resources and leaving behind what is not useful or applicable to you. Case and point, those people who demonize you or other black woman bloggers who are empowering black women. My quip with them is instead of trashing people, either leave them be or take what is beneficial and leave the rest. After all Allah also tells us similar advice…..we are humans and not Infallible.
        ++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

        [Khadija speaking: Let me be precise about this:

        I’m not talking about economic class, I’m talking about life experience and life observations. Over a meaningful period of time. A period of time that’s personally meaningful to me as a consumer.

        Unless they’ve been responsible for paying their own rent in their own apartment, and taking care of themselves on their own since they were in high school—and I had a couple of high school friends who were in that unfortunate circumstance as teenagers—

        —Jonathan and his wife are simply not old enough to have been doing anything for a significant enough amount of years for me to listen much to his preaching about “Reclaiming Dreams” (which is one of his ebooks—I have this ebook and have read it because it came with the 72-Hour-Only promotion that I bought in order to get other products from some other professional bloggers). I wonder if he’s ever had to set aside any of his dreams. It doesn’t sound like it from his age.

        This isn’t an attack, which is how you seem to be defensively taking it (on his behalf). Please feel free to correct me if I’ve misinterpreted your comment. It’s quite easy to misunderstand the main thrust of written communication because of the absence of vocal, intonation, and other cues that one gets during in-person conversations.

        I do have the right as a consumer—and I’ve bought some of Jonathan’s products—to pick and choose what I feel is useful to my circumstances.

        I’m just saying that as a middle-aged adult, he and others like him don’t have enough life experience for me to take his pronouncements about the meaning of life very seriously. The world simply looks very different to most people in their 40s than it did in their teens or in their 20s. And it’s not just direct life experience I’m talking about. He simply hasn’t been alive or paying an adult-level of attention long enough to have observed certain things as a bystander.

        Now, if—like a couple of my unluckly friends in high school—he has been responsible for himself since he was in high school, that changes the equation for me. Because if that was the case, then he’s put in enough YEARS of shouldering adult-level responsibilities for him to be a true peer to other adults who’ve been shouldering adult responsibilities for more than a couple of years. It’s a matter of either having or not having paid some “life experience/observation dues.”

        You said, “Case and point, those people who demonize you or other black woman bloggers who are empowering black women. My quip with them is instead of trashing people, either leave them be or take what is beneficial and leave the rest. After all Allah also tells us similar advice…..we are humans and not Infallible.”

        Well…now that you’ve brought it up…I don’t recall you defending any of the BW bloggers who were being trashed at one particular conversation over at Christelyn’s house. Certainly not the way you’re actively jumping to Jonathan’s defense here, and trying to scold me with the Word of Allah (I could be wrong about the attempted scolding angle, but that’s what it feels like). And all because I’m not inclined to take seriously the “never get a job and live your dream” preachings from 20-somethings who fit into the category I described in my initial earlier comment about them. You’re entitled to defend him against what you feel is an attack if you wish (I’ll get to that angle later in this reply). That’s fine. None of that changes my views about his “live your dreams” preaching. Which is also fine.

        I’m just fascinated by the marked contrast between what you’re doing here for Jonathan and what you did during that other conversation.

        You know…the conversation in which you were a participant where Christelyn passively sat back and—without saying anything in response—allowed individuals to use her forum as a platform for denigrating her BW blogger colleagues. The same BW colleagues who actively helped her (out front and behind the scenes) with her NWNW campaign. Once it was brought to my attention, I found all of that quite fascinating to watch.

        Let me emphasize that this is NOT about agreement. I’m NOT looking for agreement—I’m interested in reciprocity. There were a couple of readers during that conversation who demonstrated reciprocity by noting the benefit they got from some of the BW bloggers who were being trashed. That’s all I’m talking about.

        When somebody benefits and helps ME in some way, then I don’t let anybody denigrate that person in MY presence without at least speaking the truth about how that person helped ME. That doesn’t mean that whatever criticism of the person who helped me is necessarily wrong or incorrect.

        It just means that I’m going to add my truthful, positive testimony to the conversation about that person. So that the picture being painted during that conversation of the person who helped me is full and complete. As opposed to lopsided and distorted because the benefit that person brought to me was never mentioned when they were under attack.

        Anyhoo, that’s all I’m going to say about that little episode at this point.]

  19. Hodan says:

    sorry for the multiple post, but this very resourceful article/blog about the couple that Khadija shared with us, can also teach us the importance of choosing wisely when it comes to your life partner. I believe Napoleon Hill (one of the 1st proponent of personal success, who he was born in the late 19th century) talked about in “Think and Grow Rich,” the importance of intimate partner being your best mastermind partner too.

    His life story is such an inspiration, one of my favorite quote by him is: “”What the mind of man can conceive and believe, it can achieve”!

    here is a general wiki info on him and why his book to this day is a manual for financial success:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Napoleon_Hill

  20. Karen says:

    When I decided to go into self-employment, one of my goals was to earn enough money in 9 months that would cover what I used to make as a salary employee in 12 months. With this in mind, I have been able to have each year (so far) 3 months off to do other things.

    In addition, being self-employed as given me the freedom to work my own hours (the customer is only concerned about the results) and pick and choose which projects I work on. As an example, last year I turned down a project that I knew had no chance of success.

    These small things represent freedom to me. Of course, I carry all the financial risk with regards to earning an income. Frankly, however, there are no “secure” salaried jobs anymore.

    I find that with self-employment one has to be more disciplined with expenses and savings (I have a 1 year reserve for my income in case I hit a dry spell).

    I have been self-employed ca 3+ years and was able to establish the reserve after 1.5 years. It is a matter of deciding what is important. As an example we did not take a vacation for 3 years as I was establishing my business. Those were avoided expenses that enabled me to establish part of my reserve.

    As I like to work (under my chosen conditions) and as I believe personally that as a woman, I should always have my own “safety net”, I will always work in some capacity. However, now I dictate how I work.

    Just my two cents.

  21. Nkosazana says:

    Long time reader first time commenter, I really like reading your blog even if it’s not really directed towards me 🙂

    Oh that sounds like how I’d like to live my life. But it would be kind of hard I think since I just had two babies that needs clothes, toys and all the rest.

    Maybe hubby and I could buy a house in South Africa after my babies moves out and live off our savings since college for the kids don’t cost anything here. We could do it I think since we are I guess “well-off” in the finance department.

    This don’t affect me since I’m not American, but I thought it was a bit funny since you brought up what AA can and can’t afford.

    http://www.macon.com/2010/12/16/1379464/funding-cuts-leave-many-without.html

    I really don’t know much about Americans black life, but I do know how it feels like being poor (Grew up in Durban and KwaMashu)

    And this is not what we spent our money on.

    http://media.macon.com/smedia/2010/12/15/22/20101215-221428-pic-125665235.standalone.prod_affiliate.71.jpg

    Notice the TV and the games in the background, I just thought that picture was funny 🙂

  22. Nkosazana,

    Hello there! {waving}

    That picture is crazy. On so many levels:

    (1) That woman in the picture who’s whining about not succeeding in getting somebody else to pay HER heating bill didn’t have the common sense to hide the HUGE flatscreen TV before the reporters came.

    You see, those type of “poor” AAs typically call themselves being offended when people mention all the expensive, unnecessary consumer goodies they have. They interpret anybody raising questions about their stuff as other people not wanting them to have anything or enjoy anything. NO, what others are saying is that they don’t want to PAY for these people’s stuff. Responsible people who work for a living have to buy their own stuff. So should all these “poor” AAs.

    (2) That enormous flatscreen TV shows how warped this woman’s priorities are as well as those of the ADULT relatives she mentioned. IIRC, she mentioned living with her mother and sister. How did she prioritize having a HUGE flatscreen TV knowing that she had problems with her heating bills over the years? And this points out yet another crazy facet to this situation:

    This woman has been looking to have other people pay her heating bills for YEARS. What’s up with that? I can see looking for a handout on an emergency basis. But many “poor” AAs think of welfare-type handouts as part of their annual household budget. That’s crazy.

    Usually, when—on a regular basis each winter—you can’t afford to heat your home, that’s a signal that you need to move. Either to a smaller place (which is therefore less expensive to keep heated). Or to a less expensive home/apartment so you have more money available for heating bills.

    (3) Finally, it doesn’t even get that cold in Macon, Georgia during the winters (relative to some other places, such as the US Midwest). From Wikipedia:

    Macon has a humid, subtropical climate. Summer temperatures generally peak in the mid-90 °F (32 °C)s, and the winters have lows in the mid-30 °F (−1 °C)s. The city has an average annual precipitation of 45 inches (1,100 mm).

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Macon,_Georgia#Climate

    She can’t/won’t pay her heating bills for winter temperatures in the mid-30s°F? What in the world would she do in places like Chicago where the winter temperatures often get into less than 0°F, with wind chill factors of -10°, -15°, and -20°F?

    Her type of irrational, entitlement mentality will soon have an unhappy ending as various state and federal budgets flatline, and the welfare handout money runs out.

    Expect Success!

    • YMB says:

      I think before we rush to judgment we should consider that perhaps that she needs that gigantic TV what do you think is heating the one warm room in her home?! LOL.

      All jokes aside, what a striking example of the mentality you’ve been talking about all along.

  23. burkeygw says:

    We live in Vegas and thus far have only had to turn our heat on for one week. The neighbors below have their heat on, and because heat rises, our apartment is nice and toasty. I also don’t use the dryer(my mil bought me an indoor clothes rack), and yes we’re one of those families who hand wash dishes(even though we have a dishwasher). I’ve also started doing the extreme couponing to save on groceries. Thanks for pointing that out Khadijah about certain funds running out. CeCe told me about a program that does provide for heat assistance, but I was thinking our state is facing a 5 billion dollar deficit. I have a feeling they will start cutting out those programs, with no replacement.

    • Burkeygw,

      You’re welcome! You said, “I have a feeling they will start cutting out those programs, with no replacement.”

      That’s exactly what various states are going to do…

      Expect Success!

  24. Anne1 says:

    Valerie M – “One alternative that I have heard is mini-retirements. Instead of saving it all up for one big long retirement, save up or invest for a one year “sabbatical” every 5-7 years. After you’re refreshed, come back with a clear mind and start some creative work project.”

    This was mentioned as one of the ‘secrets’ in a book I read called 9 Secrets of Women who Get Everything They Want by Kate White. The example given in the book mentioned taking one big vacation and several mini-vacations throughout the year. This is perfect compromise that works well for me as I like to travel, but also love staying put at home base.

  25. Hodan says:

    Khadija: “This isn’t an attack, which is how you seem to be defensively taking it (on his behalf). Please feel free to correct me if I’ve misinterpreted your comment. It’s quite easy to misunderstand the main thrust of written communication because of the absence of vocal, intonation, and other cues that one gets during in-person conversations.”

    Hodan: Yep, don’t know him from Adam, hence I’m not invested in his blog or personal life. All I’m saying in my own perspective, as someone who is leaving their 20s and obviously hasn’t lived long enough to accumulate much wisdom on financial matters from a local or global perspective, I take what is useful and leave the rest behind. I discovered his blog last year via ‘Black Women Deserve Better,’ and found some of his material useful.

    Khadija: I do have the right as a consumer—and I’ve bought some of Jonathan’s products—to pick and choose what I feel is useful to my circumstances.

    I’m just saying that as a middle-aged adult, he and others like him don’t have enough life experience for me to take his pronouncements about the meaning of life very seriously. The world simply looks very different to most people in their 40s than it did in their teens or in their 20s. And it’s not just direct life experience I’m talking about. He simply hasn’t been alive or paying an adult-level of attention long enough to have observed certain things as a bystander.”

    Hodan: I have no problem with your assessment, neither was I arguing over who has more experience concerning the endless resources about financial and self employment info.

    Khadija: Now, if—like a couple of my unluckly friends in high school—he has been responsible for himself since he was in high school, that changes the equation for me. Because if that was the case, then he’s put in enough YEARS of shouldering adult-level responsibilities for him to be a true peer to other adults who’ve been shouldering adult responsibilities for more than a couple of years. It’s a matter of either having or not having paid some “life experience/observation dues.”

    Hodan: I really don’t know him to answer that question. I guess I can relate to him and some others who are closer to my age. Even though he is younger, I enjoy some of the guess bloggers who are much older and more experience included in his site.

    Khadija: Well…now that you’ve brought it up…I don’t recall you defending any of the BW bloggers who were being trashed at one particular conversation over at Christelyn’s house. Certainly not the way you’re actively jumping to Jonathan’s defense here, and trying to scold me with the Word of Allah (I could be wrong about the attempted scolding angle, but that’s what it feels like). And all because I’m not inclined to take seriously the “never get a job and live your dream” preachings from 20-somethings who fit into the category I described in my initial earlier comment about them. You’re entitled to defend him against what you feel is an attack if you wish (I’ll get to that angle later in this reply). That’s fine. None of that changes my views about his “live your dreams” preaching. Which is also fine.”

    Hodan: that is news to me, I would love to know what discussion and personal attack you are pointing to. From my experience, if anyone comes on Christelyn site and tries to trash other BW bloggers, case and point Evia Moore, many of us from Neecy to myself often point out the immaturity and error of some of the posters for visiting someone else’s blog to attack another BW blogger.

    Khadija: I’m just fascinated by the marked contrast between what you’re doing here for Jonathan and what you did during that other conversation.

    Hodan: I don’t see the fascination since I don’t see you attacking Jonathan.

    Khadija: You know…the conversation in which you were a participant where Christelyn passively sat back and—without saying anything in response—allowed individuals to use her forum as a platform for denigrating her BW blogger colleagues. The same BW colleagues who actively helped her (out front and behind the scenes) with her NWNW campaign. Once it was brought to my attention, I found all of that quite fascinating to watch.

    Hodan: Now, I’m really interested in this. I try my best not to assume the worse about someone’s character and intention, so I hope you extend the same courtesy to me. But I would love to know what you are point to, because I’m truly clueless about it. Love to go back to that discussion and see where we allowed another BW blogger to be trashed and demonized.

    Khadija: When somebody benefits and helps ME in some way, then I don’t let anybody denigrate that person in MY presence without at least speaking the truth about how that person helped ME. That doesn’t mean that whatever criticism of the person who helped me is necessarily wrong or incorrect. It just means that I’m going to add my truthful, positive testimony to the conversation about that person. So that the picture being painted during that conversation of the person who helped me is full and complete. As opposed to lopsided and distorted because the benefit that person brought to me was never mentioned when they were under attack.

    Hodan: I would agree with you, hell I wouldn’t let anyone denigrate another person whether I know them or benefit from them or not. So, again, I would like to know what and where did this incident take place.

    • Hodan,

      You said, “…that is news to me, I would love to know what discussion and personal attack you are pointing to. From my experience, if anyone comes on Christelyn site and tries to trash other BW bloggers, case and point Evia Moore, many of us from Neecy to myself often point out the immaturity and error of some of the posters for visiting someone else’s blog to attack another BW blogger.”

      This conversation is the one I had in mind. And I recall thanking Neecy in particular at the time for the decency and reciprocity she (and some other readers) demonstrated during that particular conversation. I’ve heard about people being allowed to use that platform to launch attacks on Evia during another conversation at that same blog, but I hadn’t read that particular conversation. If you did as you described during that conversation, then I applaud and commend you for demonstrating decency and reciprocity.

      Bottom line: The cowardly snipers who launch their backbiting attacks while hiding behind the shield of another blog host’s forum need to find the courage to take their gripes directly to the bloggers they’re angry with.

      I only linked to the conversation above because you said that you didn’t know what conversation I was talking about. At this point, I’m done with talking about any of that—I’m not going to make any further comments about that during this conversation.

      Expect Success!

  26. YMB says:

    I don’t have much to add here except to thank everyone for the fabulous advice shared. I have a lot of reading to do!

  27. Duchy says:

    Thank you for this post and for all your other posts over the years. Long time reader since ‘muslimbushido’ and really appreciate all your advice.

    I will be 28 this year, am a medical doctor and have only been working for one and a half years but I already know that what i hate most in the world is getting up every morning to go and do a job that has been allocated to me. EVERY SINGLE DAY.

    i live in the UK and because i get bored easily I thought being a doctor will guarantee variation in your day to day activities and encouragement of extracurricular activities, but i am starting to find out that we are expected to tow a line and do a whole raft of this that a re ‘madatory’ that have nothing whatsoever to do with being a doctor, so you find your life outside work is being encroached upon.

    As a creative person this is hard to take and have started to look for alternatives. First thing will be to understand mine and the NHS’s financial situation, consider what my pension prospects will be if i keep paying into it as I am now, and what else I could do with my life that will make being a doctor in todya’s world more palatableto me in the meantime.

    So your post is absolutely timely and i thank you and all your commenter’s for your tips, links and advice.

    Duchy

  28. YMB,

    You’re welcome!
    ______________________________________________________

    Duchy,

    You’re welcome; and thank you for your ongoing support! I truly appreciate it.

    Good for you that you’re making these plans very early in your career. Over the years, I’ve increasingly had the experience that you’ve described: There are still many things about practicing law that I enjoy—I like the actual work involved. However, it’s the ever-increasing amount of tangential NONSENSE surrounding the work that has me feeling burnt out with the entire profession. So, I’ve been working to make a change and shift gears.

    Best wishes on your journey of finding a way to practice medicine that’s sustainable for you!

    Expect Success!