Tuesday, 30 December 2014

What’s this blog about ?

I consider myself very fortunate.

I have a lovely wife and two beautiful kids. We are healthy and have basically everything we need. For the past 18 years I’ve enjoyed a great career working both in my home country and abroad. Before that, during my first 20 years I had a happy childhood and a good education. Now I find myself at the crossroads again, closing one life chapter and soon to open the next….
When I started my career all those years ago, I had a clear goal in mind which was to retire by the age of 35. In those days and with all my youthful confidence, I was adamant that work is merely a means to an end. No matter what you might say in the interview to get the job, the honest truth is that you are only there for the pay check. Come the future day when I have enough money to no longer need that pay check, I would just as soon be on the beach, golf course, etc.
Some 18 years later, it’s with a measure of pride that I am now reaching this goal. Despite being 3 years late versus the target, I won’t beat myself up too much since it’s also 27 years earlier than the standard retirement age.
There are some big changes and exciting times ahead for us. I recently gave notice to finish up my job, and we are planning to relocate to our hometown in the coming months to settle down near our families and spend more time with my wife and kids.
With this brief introduction out the way, let me now come to the question : What’s this blog about ?
My first idea is to reflect on the transition in life phases from “working” to “financial freedom” (FF). I see quite a few blogs about the journey to FF, and also by those who have achieved FF, but not so many at the point of transition. Logically it should be a happy time, but as with all major life changes I guess there will be some bumps in the path too. I look forward to reflecting on the experience here.
Secondly, I am starting to consider future projects/hobbies/pursuits for the next phase, and one area I have in mind is financial planning/advice. I’ve always had a keen interest in the world of money and lately I’m eager to pursue activities that directly help others and give something back. This blog is a way for me to explore further on this and test the water.
Thirdly, I have benefitted a lot over the years from the experience and kind advice of friends and colleagues. As I said at the outset, I feel very fortunate and hope through this blog I can in some small way return the favour. Please understand that I’m not an expert and in fact do not have any formal qualification in this field. I will be the first to admit that I have made many mistakes along the way too. But in the end I am reaching my goal and so at least in a practical sense, I hope this blog might benefit like-minded people who are working towards their own FF.
Further to the above three points, here are some additional intentions :

This blog is ….
This blog is not ….
Financial advice (please read the disclaimer)
Revealing the secrets to get rich quick
Anonymous (or Private from my perspective)
Explaining the basics of finance / investment

Thank you for reading this blog. I hope you find it useful and appreciate any comments. As today is 30th December I’m sure many of you are pondering resolutions for 2015 and the years ahead. I wish you every success in pursuing your goals and most importantly to enjoy the journey along the way – FFA.


  1. Hello, potm from MMM here, just clicked through to your blog from the forums. Have read this first post and will continue with the rest when I have time.
    Your story is interesting to me because I am similar now to what you were when you were younger, trying to accumulate wealth as fast as possible.

    I would love to hear more about your journey to FF, not this the finances but also how your perspective and priorities changed through the years.

    1. Hi potm ! Thanks for your comment and good to get to know you. As discussed was pleasure reading your MMM journal and I will be very keen to watch your continuing progress towards FF in the coming years :) Keep in touch!

  2. An australian version of MMM, just what I have been looking for :)

    I have subscribed.

    1. Hi Boz , haha, I doubt I can come anywhere close to MMM, he's a bit of a legend. Anyway will do my best to share what I think is of value from my experiences and hope it can help some others out there..... thanks for subscribing, i'm planning a few more posts in the coming weeks. Work is a bit more cruisy nowadays, only 15.5 days to go but who is counting :)

  3. Mate - we are very much on the same page. Like you, I'm an expat (been working OS for 12 years). Like you, I've stated to change my way of thinking re retirement and like you, I'll be heading home soon (in 18 months) to retire early with a young family.

    I'll be reading regularly to see how you go transition to retirement and transitioning back to OZ. After so long out of the country I'm wondering what challenges we will face and how we will overcome them. I'm currently grappling with taxation issues and how to set up our finances for the move back to OZ and would welcome a post by you on this issue *hint hint* :)

    So, please keep writing - I really enjoy your writing style! It's very open and honest. I'm writing about this period of transition as well - but really just doing it for myself and to share with the kids when they are older.

    I look forward to learning more about your journey!

  4. Hi MrRW, thanks for stopping by and I much appreciate your feedback and encouragement. It's great to hear from someone in the same boat.

    I've noted your hint regarding tax. It is something I grapple with too, and will aim for a future post to share on this. I intend to focus on the investment side of things once I complete a few more posts to round out my basic thinking on Financial Freedom...

    We are also wondering about the upcoming adjustment which will surely take time. Occasionally we think we might get bored/disappointed and want to head OS again after a year or two. But actually I'm quietly confident it will work out and be very worthwhile in the end. After living abroad so many years and in pleasant cities too, I always felt Australia is just a great place overall and we always planned to return someday....

    If you are keen to share your writing, you'd be most welcome to post something on here.... A guest post would be a welcome interlude to my monologue ! But I fully understand if it's personal writing and not for wider audience.

    Looking forward to more comments from you :)

  5. Hi Financially Free Australia, I just found out that you had added me to your blogroll, thank you! I think we have much in common and look forward to reading more of your posts.

  6. Hi TPI, thanks for your comment. I found your site a useful resource and very well structured. All the best and look forward to more comments from you!