The myth of “Early Retirement” – A real life case study !

POSTED BY Jagoinvestor ON June 5, 2017 COMMENTS (123)

This article is a guest post by one of our readers Vikram Agarwal, who wanted to share his experience on the concept of “Early Retirement”. Vikram was generous enough to share his story and some of the real-life things which will make you think hard about this concept. Like Vikram, if you feel you can write on jagoinvestor, please click here

Over to Vikram.

Most of my friends in my friend circle in late 30’s ask me one question – “How much money I should have now, so that I don’t have to work anymore while maintaining a decent standard throughout of my life, with all the future expenses taken in to account?”

They want to ‘Retire Early’

early retirement

In fact, I also used to be an ardent follower of the concept of ‘Early Retirement’ but now have realized that the concept is more like a mirage, which does not exist in reality and once you reach there, it vanishes.

Moreover – in my view, it is quite dangerous for an individual to run after this concept. In my opinion, you achieve retirement either ‘NOW’ or ‘NEVER’ irrespective of your current level of income or financial state.

Early Retirement is a state of mind

It is a state of mind, rather than a stage achieved. The moment you achieve early retirement as per the physical criteria set by you five years ago taking inflation, life expectancy and all major and minor expenses in your monthly calculations, by the time you achieve retirement as per your old financial definition, all those things become sub-normal or default.

Your mind will have another definition that looks normal for you in today’s context for example for future kids’ education, your house quality, the type of car you own, facilities you desire and all other such expenses.

My personal example

For example, five years before, owing a 2 BHK house in the newly developed area with Marti Dzire hatchback car and with the kids going in a decent school used to be a life I wished for and I had done calculation for the amount required to maintain the same standard throughout rest of my life without working.

And that was ‘Early Retirement’ according to me and as per standard definition.

great future illusion

But, now it seems owing a 3BHK house (one extra room for parents or for guests) in a good location of a metro city, a nice Honda sedan and a ‘good’ school for kids throughout their education duration is ‘Normal’ for me. Now it’s the standard, I would like to maintain before retirement and after retirement.

My next target!

My new “target” might be owing to a villa or bungalow, and a nice SUV and kids in the ‘best’ school of the area. And once I achieve it, I think it will become a new normal with time.

The next level

And who knows, a car for wife will be a standard I will look for in the future, as I will not be able to manage all the household activities on my own and an extra car becomes a necessity. (I did all my retirement planning calculations with taking decent return on investment as 10% which is quite modest in the long term, so as not to fall in the trap of exuberant returns which might be temporary and actual return might spoil all your calculation.)

Even with a slight increase in any of the above ‘wish’ list (like the possibility of sending you kids abroad for his or her graduation) will push you back in time and you will not be able to achieve you ‘wished’ retirement any time and this carrot and stick game continues.

When your desires convert to your “needs”

You would not know when your ‘desires’ got converted into your ‘needs’. And now it looks like there is a meaning in the sayings of wise old man that “There is enough in this world for one’s needs and not for one’s desires”. I can sense the truthfulness in these lines with some financial literacy and practical experiences.

Greed Desires

If at all early retirement could mean anything for a ‘disciplined’ guy is thru’ a windfall gain from lottery or legacy, otherwise if one tries to achieve early retirement from normal gradual process where mind and hard work is involved, his thinking mind will quickly adapt to current situation and will turn the old desired standards in to ‘Normal’ or ‘Below Standard’ life in today’s’ terms.

The word ‘discipline’ need stress here because there is an old saying that irrespective of the size of the pot, if kept isolated all the water will drain out eventually if not refilled on time and only a disciplined life can control this drainage process and can prolong it (Read, why we are overspending these days by Manish)

Or you can become a hermit in deep forest, secluded from this physical world and concepts of ‘Future Expenses’, ‘Inflation’ become meaningless for you, one can think of early retirement stage.

early retirement myth

But, I guess this is practically impossible and this article is not intended for those who might be thinking of this stage as one of their future possibilities.

Story of my seniors – Real-life case

I personally know two of my seniors who after working at very senior positions in the company left their jobs as they thought they had enough money to sustain the rest of their lives and tried to follow new pastures in future life.

But, eventually, they had to join back in their respective jobs in order to meet their monthly bills and continue with their other passions in life.

It is human psychology to get adapted to the current situation and at present it looks like achievable calculations on paper and unreal confidence of being satisfied in case you achieve current target, but in reality it does not happen and by your own nature and human being’s reason of existence, you will always be pushed to work.

Basic foundation of human existence is WORKING

This wish of ‘ Not working’ one day will take you away from ‘Karma Yoga’ which is the basic foundation of human being’s existence. Even in GITA, it is mentioned that all of us have to work one way or other and this is the law of life.

I remember a recent discussion with a prominent businessman in my home town. He told me that he used to ‘struggle’ a lot to book rooms in his locality for any private family functions for his guests they had to ‘adjust’ sometimes as per hotel terms and conditions.

Now, he has built his own guest house and no need to be ‘dependent’ on the hotels any more for bookings, etc. and I was thinking that if this rich man thinks booking rooms in 5 star hotels as per their terms and conditions is a compromise in life, what independence could mean for him ?

Don’t buy anything less than a BMW

A few years ago I was having a discussion with one of my friends and in his views, having something below Mercedes or BMW is a compromise as all other brands do not give importance to safety standards and life is precious more than anything else.

At that time owing a Honda city and maintaining it was the kind of life I wanted to live for all early retirement calculations and now since I can afford Honda City easily, I have a choice, either to keep working to be able to buy Mercedes or BMW one day or put my life always at risk while driving mass-produced cars!

We can retire the day we are BORN

On second thought, I achieved financial freedom years back, the moment I had enough money to be able to afford public transport all through my life. In fact, to take it to one extreme side, we have the potential to retire the day we born and it is only afterward that we enter into the working force in this world, fall into the financial trap and again want to get rid of it.

This wish of ‘Not working one day’ can make you lazy, averse to work and afraid of accepting challenges as in your thought process you are always after something else and it is quite natural that you will not focus on the very basic aspect of life you want to get rid of one day.

Here is a great answer which deals with this issue on quora thread

don’t want to work

These days a lot of people think of retirement at an early stage, some talk about retirement in the late ’30s or early ’40s and there are various articles circulating around to tell how to achieve it.

But, this kind of thinking pattern in today’s youth is preventing them from acquiring skills which can help them in their current job profile and make it interesting.

Story of my father

My father achieved his financial freedom just after his retirement and both of his sons are well settled and living a decent life and he does not have any liability in his life, yet he is always focused on ‘working life’ and whenever he gets any chance of making money with guest lectures etc., he always looks forward to it and that’s what he says is the secret of his healthy life.

Had he focused on early retirement, this ‘fire’ or ‘energy’ inside him would have subsided quite early and he could have attracted many lifestyles related diseases like blood pressure and diabetes etc, which is happening these days even to the young generation.

So, one should not focus on achieving early retirement any time but should think of living a simple, satisfied, and an exemplary life and realize that the ‘Work’ is the only thing that matters in life and for this you need continuous practice for sound physical and mental health to keep your body fit and energetic and let other things come on its own without worrying about it.

Watch this TED video which talks about an experiment of living a simple life in a tiny home.

It is a good idea and in fact a necessity to have the habit of saving and investing, but the idea should come from the need to meet future expenses and not to achieve early retirement.

So what should be your plan in life?

The financial goal in one’s life should be to have sufficient inflation-adjusted funds for all major expenses in the future like owing a house, Kids education funds, children’s marriage funds, emergency funds, and retirement funds in present terms and all funds invested properly.

At large, one can think of a ‘stage’ where he or she will not be worried about ‘Net savings’ from the income and can live a life one desires with his current income from job or business and even If he/she spends all of the earnings he should not be worried financially.

The more one earns, the more facilities one can desire and his current lifestyle will remain in accordance with his income levels and this is what I call real ‘Financial Freedom’.

That is an inherent assumption here that the rise in expenses (with inflation) will be taken care of by salary increments/ job changes or business expansions and for there is no other alternative but to ‘Work’.

What do you think about Early Retirement?

So let us know what you feel about this concept and my points regarding it? Do you agree with them? Is there any point where you can add?

Would you like to share your own story in the comments section and how you have dealt with the concept of early retirement? We would like to thank Vikram for his contribution on this subject on this blog.

Also, if you feel you can write on jagoinvestor and contribute, please click here

123 replies on this article “The myth of “Early Retirement” – A real life case study !”

  1. rajesh KUMAR says:

    very informative article. so helpful. such a wonderful blog. thanks for sharing this post. keep sharing.

    1. Jagoinvestor says:

      Thanks for your comment rajesh KUMAR .. Please keep sharing your views like this..


  2. investor says:

    the article tells the balance to have between living life and planning retirement.thanks manish.

    1. Jagoinvestor Admin says:

      Hi investor
      Thanks for sharing your point of view

  3. I am now 67 and I just cannot understand the early retirement talk. That would be the worst case for me, because I see a work as a priviledge for myself ( I am an entrepreneur). The work for me is a meaning of life, not a punishment. So I will go on working as long as I can, the target is now 80!

    1. But not everyone is enjoying the work they are doing !

  4. Kritesh says:

    Once again. Amazing post. I have been following Jago Investor for a long time and the blog posts here are just astonishing.
    I also do not believe in early retirement. If you are passionate about the work that you do, then you will not want to retire. However, I do believe in mini-retirements. Like a one month trip every few months. This can help in increasing your efficiency, alongside enjoying this wonderful life. Thanks again for sharing this post.

    1. Thanks for sharing your views on this topic. I love the idea of mini retirements !

  5. PRADEEP KUMAR says:

    Sorry but I disagree with you because the meaning of early retirement for many people is not about to simply left their and sit at home doing nothing, for them, it is about pursuing their passions and doing what they love to do.Most of the people don’t like their jobs so they want to retire early and want to enjoy the life the way they want and there are many ways to it.for this you have to know the concept of passive income. and for your kind information, many people are successfully achieving that.

    1. I guess author is not saying in article that early retirement is about sitting at home and doing nothing . Where exactly are you reading that !

  6. Ramesh says:

    Very nice post. Really helpful

    1. Jagoinvestor Admin says:

      Thanks for your comment Ramesh

  7. Anand kumar says:

    nice article…….

    1. Jagoinvestor Admin says:

      Thanks for your comment Anand kumar

  8. SureshKumar says:

    Every one of us having different definition for “Early retirement”. In my dictionary it will be the day I can get a guaranteed regular monthly income equal or higher to my salary from my investments which I had earning through my current job.

    Also It does mean that everybody is going to sit home idle after early retirement, it is a misconception. Everybody is sacrificing some thing in current job (stress, excess travel, away from home, less time for family etc.,) and they want a relief from that.

    In short early retirement is a change over of “work for money” to “work for happiness/satisfaction”

    1. Hey SureshKumar

      Thanks for sharing your experience with all of us. It was a great learning.


      Hey SureshKumar

      Thanks for sharing your experience with all of us. It was a great learning.


    2. Hi SureshKumar

      Thanks for your sharing your valuable comment on this topic. Please keep sharing your views in future also


  9. Priyank says:

    I must say that comments and the discussions in comment sections unfold the term “Early Retirement” in a better way than the article itself.
    I myself have been a strong contender of early retirement. For me, early retirement is not stop working at all. There are compulsions in life which one has to oblige and work to meet them. Deep down the heart, you know that you wanted to do something else, you also know that to meet your current financial obligations (home loan emi, children education, marriage etc) you cannot stop what you are currently doing and start doing what you want. Because what you want to do may not earn you so much to support your financial obligations, this may not be true in some cases.
    That’s when planning to retire from current job and accumulate a corpus to support your financial obligations start taking place. So that when you start your alternative job, you are still well provided for. For this planning, you will have to apply your due diligence to segregate the “wants” from the needs. Start saving and investing – that’s the mantra.

    I wish good luck to all the early retirees!! May I also retire early 🙂


    1. Jagoinvestor Admin says:

      Thanks for your comment Priyank

    2. Ashutosh says:

      Hi priyank,

      Can’t agree more. One fine day at office cafeteria. I overheard a conversation among some collegues about 2 bhk property worth some 70 lacs. And the guy said “iske baad car ka number hai”. Instantly he had few among them suggesting make and model. Then one popped up “home loan saves tax also”. So like you said people are buying for social pressure. In 30s you think of home and car just because of peer pressure, to feel the part of the successful crowd.
      When we all know deep in our heart this peer pressure consumption is useless. Lets pray that better financial sence prevails in our mindsets.

  10. Manu Vikram Singh says:

    I believe, the current generation in their late 20s to 40s are the ones who will have to support both their parents & their off-springs but our next generation will not be supporting us in our old-age. The concept of duty towards parents would have weakened much more under the burden of lifestyle, gadgets, cars & competition. It is imperative to work longer for our generation to secure (at least financially) a better old-age & throw this concept of Early Retirement Completely out of our mind.

    1. Hi Manu Vikram Singh

      Thanks for your sharing your valuable comment on this topic. Please keep sharing your views in future also


  11. Anand J says:

    it is okay to read another point of view, other’s experiences.

    Whatever good take it else leave it. Don’t criticise if it is not for you.

  12. Nagarethinam V R says:

    The confusion start from the word retirement as we have our own age long , traditional thinking of retirement means not doing anything.

    Dear Manish could you coin a proper term, instead of early retirement,

    Because here the early retirement means doing their passion,leaving the job without risking their loved one’s future and well being.

    1. Will mostly write an article rather than coining a term 🙂

  13. Thanks for this article.this is real truth of our society for retirement like in early age.

    1. Thanks for your comment digitalworldupdates

  14. Anurag Gupta says:

    Thanks Vikram for an interesting read and laying bare your experiences around early retirement. It really encapsulates well the games the mind and the social interactions play. The early retirement really seems a myth to me now – if the goal is to not work anymore. However to have a financial buffer to follow your dreams seems to strike a cord.

    1. Thanks for your comment Anurag Gupta

  15. Adarsh says:

    I strongly disagree with the views presented in this article.
    The idea of early retirement is not to be lazy and to lose the focus of life. Neither the purpose of work is just to compete with others due to peer or social pressure.
    I too dream of retiring early with enough inflation adjusted retirement fund. So that I can get into organic farming which I dream. I am sure I won’t get lifestyle related diseases or the fire inside me will go off because I chose to do farming in a countryside because I can afford it then because I work my ass off today to build that retirement fund and not to buy that shining BMW.
    I am highly disappointed by the shallowness of this article from this great platform.

    1. Adarsh

      Thanks for your views on this topic. While the article is different from your views, I think author is not against the early retirement, but why many people look at early retirement in a wrong manner.


    2. vikram.iitk says:


      I started with a assumption about the meaning of ‘Early Retirement’ and its general sense ( that you are not making money from your current job or business) and does not mean that you should work for shining car or to please you boss. You can still be in a satisfying job and work for the sake working. I am happy to know that once your retirement fund is in place, you will still be ‘working’ on organic farming and that was the idea of the article.


  16. anil says:

    After reading the article I was pondering on few points as below:

    1) The concept of work is important, but working in an uninspiring and rote 9 to 5 may kill you early than the lack of it.
    Yes, it would be advisable to work/chose to work in the field of our interests, but given the scenario of unemployment, you are bound for work to meet ends meet.
    2) The above is the main reason many contemplate early retirement by making a few bucks with lots of sacrifice and get an opportunity to invest time on their own life, as you know YOLO is the new normal
    3) If one can take time/ break from current working for few days/weeks for leisure then the people may restrain from early retirement. But the current profile of many people is early to work and late to bed (or even worse sleeping in daylight for working on after hours)
    4) Nowadays many younger folks are pursuing education which are in vogue producing limited occupations (engineers, doctors, teachers). So this mismatch only makes things worse to pursue the profession which matches our passion. So it may be advisable for enterprising people to think of taking a BREAK from their current profession ( for few years) and pursue their passions with the early retirement funds OR accept whatever life throws at them if they fail to succeed on their ambitions. Guys born with silver spoons never mind their profession/education/trades they just need to carryon unless they are pretty determined to pursue their passion than their profession
    5) The concept of work is only functional when there is FLOW, the flow which we feel in tune with all our energies. The kind of flow when people can equate play/fun/in the zone with work.

    So it is vital to chose your education/profession/area of work in the direction of your inner interests, skills and passions. On the Skill part there are exceptions like actors/producers and their next generations can pursue their ancestors since they are born with golden spoons.

    1. You have put some very good points Anil

      Really makes people think a lot 🙂

      1. anil says:


    2. Anjan says:

      The situation in India could have been a lot better if the companies weren’t so hell bent on maintaining ridiculous profit margins by making their employees work like donkeys for 15 hours a day with total disregard to work-life balance. They forget that human beings are not machines and our productivity cannot scale linearly with more numbers of hours spent in office. Obviously when exposed to such an environment, it only takes a few years to get burnt out and you start thinking of early retirement at any cost because you know deep down inside that you won’t last long at this rate.

      Heck people can’t even take a sabbatical in India. If you have even a 1 month gap in employment, employers start asking all sorts of questions and they spare no effort in lowballing you when it comes to salary negotiations. I mean can’t a guy take a couple of months break after working continuously for 4 or 5 years? What kind of sick twisted world do we live in? How are people supposed to follow their passions when faced with such odds?

    3. Rajan Jee says:

      Early retirement is fraught with uncertainty and listlessness. It all depends how much one needs to take their lives forward. A Maruti 800 too goes from Point A to Point B, so does a Merc. So would DTC bus or a auto. Which one a person chooses depends on what they want or get out of life. Would it really matter? A boy of 17, topper in CBSE became a Jain monk. Is that a life’s goal? Maybe… because it enables him to find what he seeks. How many want to do that? Opulence, frugality and purposefulness are to be weighed in consonance with each other.

  17. Anjan says:

    This article was clearly written by a materialistic person for all the materialistic people in the world. Sounds like a good fit for most of my materialistic IT colleagues. It does not take a rocket scientist to figure out that lifestyle inflation is one of the biggest threats to all early retirement plans. If you constantly upgrade your lifestyle to match your rising income over the years, you will never reach your retirement goals.

    A bigger home, a better neighborhood in the city, a luxury car, more expensive gadgets, the best school for your kids – these are “wants”, not “needs”. You are saying these are normal human desires while branding to rest of us as “hermits” who do not subscribe to your definition of “needs” and are happy with our simple frugal lifestyle. No sir, just because you have fallen victim to the rat race of competing against the Joneses, it doesn’t make the rest of us hermits.

    Some of us actually have the mental fortitude to not fall for peer pressure. Just because my friend or next door neighbor is driving an Audi doesn’t mean I too need to drive one. I am perfectly happy travelling by public transport. Just because my next door neighbor lives in a huge condo, doesn’t mean I should sell my small home and buy a big house in the middle of the city which will take 30 years to pay back. Being contend with what you have irrespective of what you earn is a great quality to have. Just take me as an example. My earnings has increased by leaps and bounds over the years but I still I have had zero lifestyle changes. I still live life exactly the same way as I did in college days with no regrets.

    Early Retirement does not mean you stop working. This is a big misconception. Early Retirement is akin to Financial Independence. You take Early Retirement when you no longer work for money and can survive without having to work a day in your life. But most early retirees don’t stop working, they rather invest their time in doing something more innovative and purposeful with their lives. When you no longer have that axe hanging over your head, you can do much more amazing things in life. If you feel like being stuck in your office cubicle all your life and taking orders from your “boss” and think it is what you were born to do, then go ahead and keep running on that rat wheel, nobody’s stopping you but please don’t preach to us.

    You have quoted a few conversations with your materialistic friends and are trying to pass it off as wisdom and general consensus in this article. If I started listening to every Tom, Dick and Harry….I don’t know where I would have ended up in life.

    Honestly, this is a rubbish article. Manish, please vet your guest writers for quality instead of allowing anyone to publish anything. You as an entrepreneur who risked a great deal in life to follow your dreams and reach where you are today should know better what I’m talking about.

    1. Thanks for your comment Anjan. I respect your views.

      I wonder if the post is really rubbish, then why are so many people in comment section not saying that?

      Anjan, a lot of time has gone into this post. The author had contacted me on 22nd May with the following following summary of article

      “The concept of Financial Independence ( so that you won’t have to work) is more like a mirage which does not exist in real life as the human mind and thinking adapts to the current situation quite easily and all the ‘ achieved’ targets becomes quite ‘ normal’ or ‘ Sub Standards’ and you sets new targets and this pushes you back a few years towards Financial Independence. In fact, The idea of financial independence may make you lazy and averse to work and challenges which is quite contrary to the principles laid in ‘ GITA’ which is ‘ Karam Yoge’ as there is no other alternative in life but to ‘ Work’. You are financially independent either NOW or NEVER irrespective of your financial health today. It is a state of mind and not a financial stage. I achieved financial independence now as per the standards set 5 years ago, taking all into account like ROI, the kind of life I wish to live, Inflation etc. , but I can not stop working now as I have new targets and standards as per my ‘ thinking mind’s’ wish list which seems quite normal to me.”

      Then I asked him to write the article, we added some pictures and edited it back. I made sure that I do not push my own views on author writing and let it be original and whatever he wants to share, as this blog is not a place of dictatorship but like a democracy (but controlled by me) where we are open to new thinking and ideas and views without judging them or marking them as rubbish.

      The author is into a full time job and does not have enough time, but had agree to write a long post. He has worked well and contributed in his own capacity to this blog. So few man hours have done into this, I think marking it as “rubbish” was a little bit over judging.

      When you say something is RUBBISH, its a very strong word. It means a lot. It takes away all the effort put by someone in a second. While you may disagree and feel its not aligned to your views, I personally think there was a better way of saying that. I think author (anyone) deserve a better appreciation.

      By reading your comment, if there might be others who want to share their own ideas , they will be very scared to write things openly. Infact, by reading your comment, even I am a little scared if I should write what I really feel, or I should write what many people of this blog will consider “right” or “logical” .

      Dont we have space or freedom to write things which might be totally against others thought process? Even stupid things?

      I will wait to see how many more people feel this is a rubbish article, I am sure if its really a rubbish article, more and more people will join you and share the same thought.

      Just thought of putting my thoughts on your comment. Nothing against you or anyone. You are a great contributor to this blog and you put your comments many a times on various articles, which is really needed. I appreciate your contribution as a reader.


      1. Mohit Goyal says:

        AS much as I too disagree with what has been said in the article, I’d still refrain from using the word RUBBISH here.

        Life is all about perspectives and opinions. There are no rights or wrongs really…

        Just like the author, I too have had tendencies to compare my lifestyle with those who are driving a better car/ living in better houses. It didn’t make me a jealous/ hate all creep. I see nothing wrong in the article from that perspective.

        If someone disagrees with the article, one can put forth their argument in a polite, non-offensive way; appreciating other person’s opinion and not trashing it just to get attention.

        1. Glad to know that Mohit Goyal ..

      2. Anjan says:

        I know rubbish is a strong word but I justified why I said that in my post. Let’s not take things in too negative a light. The comments section can be a place of great debate, so we shouldn’t be afraid to post opposing points of view. I just felt it was wrong how he generalized and stereotyped everyone into one group by saying that we are all slaves to our desires and if we are not, we are essentially hermits. Perhaps the author has never seen non-materialistic people in his life.

        As to how many people think it’s a rubbish article, I don’t know but I just said what I felt. I know most people probably won’t say anything against the article because of “follow the herd” mentality that is so common and which eventually forces them to compete with the Joneses, a problem which the author himself probably suffers from. I mean just to draw an analogy, why do you think people spend obscene amounts of money behind weddings to make others happy? You already know the answer.

        I like most of your articles because they are sensible and grounded to reality. I know you didn’t write this article and hence not blaming you.

        1. Ok Anjan

          Point well taken. I think we both are now clear of our perspective.

          Keep sharing your views


    2. Bhushan says:

      I fully agree with Anjan that this is really a flawed article. Basically need or thought of Early retirement comes from the fact that one is not happy in the Jobs that we have full of stress and against our beliefs and hobbies.

      So in order to gain that we should be ready to give up needless desires like BMW cars etc. Early retirement is more about being satisfied with a decent level of lifestyle and taking care of major goals like children education etc. Running behind material things is what brings misery. Good luck to the Author who wants to keep living this life.
      I would rather be a fit guy able to run 20 kms at age of 50 rather than be a fat guy with heart problems sitting in a BMW.

      Each to his own

      1. But sir, The author also does not want a BMW . It was a quote from other person.

        It would be great, if you can point out the snippets which are flawed in the article, so that more discussion can happen on that point. Can you copy paste some para from article which you think is flawed ?


      2. Anjan says:

        Ha ha your last line is pure gold. I practically live my life with the same philosophy. Running is one of my biggest passions and the endurance that I have built up over the years through rigorous training is a badge of honor that I wear proudly on my sleeve. I also do cycling a lot.

        I prefer being fit anyday than driving around in a nice car with a pot belly like 90% of the office goers today who become a slob by the time they turn 30. Health is wealth afterall.

    3. vikram.iitk says:

      Hi Anjan.

      It seems you totally misunderstood my article, the spirit of it and were quite critical of it. Let me have a change to explain the misunderstandings:

      1) The author is not at all materialistic. If that is so, than any person reading this article, commenting on it is also materialistic as for this one need some gadget ( laptop, computer, smartphone) and internet connection.

      2) I never say you should copy others and sell your car/house and buy new one with loan etc. to match their standard. But, one should look at his or her current standard and do calculations to see that if he can maintain it throughout his rest of life without earnings( from his current job) and this what I call a myth, and not a real thing to follow as that ‘ standard’ itself is variable as per time dependent events, situation and understanding and there is no other alternative but to work and earn.

      3) Also, I don’t know why people jump on the conclusion that if one is having a BMW, he will have a pot belly along with other diseases. If your current income allows, there is no harm in owing an BMW and maintain your health at the same time. I never said you should achieve anything in your life at the cost of your health.

      4) Sometimes, we wish to maintain our college life standards, but once you get married you see the real picture of life and all the related expenses.

      5) My idea was to convey a general message about the wish ‘ non working and non earning life’ . If you love your current job or business you will not like to retire and continue working till you are given chances and you will be working throughout the end, and in other case if you do not like your current job or business and is not passionate about it, you will not be able to retire financially any time even after 58 years of age and in this competitive world you need skills and passion about your job and to have good salary in hand, and you will keep on working till 58 even in this case. So, in both situations there is no other way but to’ work and earn’ till you turn 58. The only difference is , in the first case you accumulate your retirement fund early.

      6) You also need to know that the outward looking extravagant life may not be a wish but a necessity. Sometimes, there are lot many things at stake that you can not compromise on safety and security and insurance companies do make sure you follow those standards to give you heavy cover and we think that is extravagant and wishfully compromised life.

      7) And for wedding parties, my idea of spending comes from the fact that you have attended lavish parties, you should pay back to society ( if you can afford) and they desire the same standard of food and party which you have tasted before, otherwise if you don’t like it, you don’t go in their parties and you don’t feel the need to throw lavish wedding party then. Sometimes, it is not to showoff, but to satisfy your inner self.

      8) And the last one, not every one who is doing a job is in a rat race and stressed out and not passionate about it ( the kind of misconception people carry for a ‘ job’ profile) . Yes, when you are working you loose some kind of independence and that is that you want to get rid of sometime and wish for early retirement and this is the misconception I wanted to remove that anyways you will have to ‘work to earn’ and you will not be independent in true sense till you die. If one is not happy with his current job profile, he should come to a job or profile which is more satisfying so that he can continue to work without compromising on health etc and live a more satisfying ‘working’ life.

    4. vikram.iitk says:

      Hi Anjan

      Not only lifestyle inflation,but it seems normal inflation also affects a lot. In my calculations I used 7 % as inflation rate till the life expediency of 75 years ( which is quite reasonable as all of us agree that our monthly expenses get double in 10 years)


  18. Himanshu Agrawal says:

    Finest article I read till date for retirement. This article reverberates my thought process too. One should keep on working till God allow one’s to work. Don’t stop your hands by yourself. One must keep on earning irrespective of less/more money as keep on working is much more important than financials itself.

    1. Thanks for your comment Himanshu

  19. Mohit Goyal says:

    even though i agree with most of the article, i still beg to differentiate a bit here.
    the idea of “early retirement” to most people is to attain financial independence OR a passive income equal/more than their active income. This ‘mental comfort’ cushions them to not chase an active income, but doesn’t imply that they stop working. if anything i hail such people as ‘achievers’ and ‘focussed’ individuals who had the courage to eliminate ‘financial equation’ out of their working years to come.

    my own story – i am 34, decent income, good invested corpus than my yearly income (almost 6-times) and hoping to achieve financial independence/ early retirement by 40. Then i have huge ambitions for myself thereafter, but money won’t be a factor in it.

    1. Thanks for sharing your thoughts Mohit ..

  20. Krish says:

    This article is really misleading and probably did not come across real life genuine retirement cases.

    The article highlights the greater safety features of German luxury cars Vs mass produced cars in India. Being the once owner of these German cars, I can tell that for Indian roads it does not make sense to own these cars at all. In urban commute, one can’t travel more than 40 km/hr speed and owners of these cars would not feel any luxury because it takes 2 hours to travel 10 km distance. This is true for most of the metros including B’lore and Hyd. On the contrary, you would always feel worry that people around you including 2 & 3 wheelers have scant respect for your super luxury sedan.

    It is rare in India that salaried class owns Mercs and BMWs. Even if some of them can afford, they would feel torture rather than luxury. Most of these cars that we see on the road are owned by businessmen who takes depreciation advantage or given as perk to CEOs or Celebrities which again linked to business.

    I don’t know why retirement is taken as ‘do nothing’ or watching roof, TV and Movies only. We have to accept that there are stressful professions that includes long commute, toomuch outside travel, burning in the sun, horrible work culture, unpleasant boss, sexual harassment to women employees and so on.

    I know many senior execs who worked in Metro cities of India but hailing from small towns who took early retirement came back to establish small businesses or look after family business or accepted simple jobs or doing charity or even to take care of family agri fields.

    Even in the forced retirement case that usually happens at the age of 60, retirees are busy doing many things that included taking care of their kids investment and its related docs.

    Let me conclude with this famous quote : We don’t see the things as they are, we see them as we are

    1. Hi Krish

      Thanks for putting your thoughts, The author has clearly said in the article that early retirement does not mean not working anymore.


    2. vikram.iitk says:

      Hi Krish

      Thanks for highlighting the points of senior execs. This is what I was saying in my article. The point is those exec are still ‘ working’ and ‘ earning’ after leaving their corporate jobs and not sitting ideal ( as against many people wish of retiring , of getting independence from corporate culture and relax there after without earnings and this is what I said does not happen). My whole point is you still need to work one way or the other to ‘meet’ your current expenses and that is the way human life is designed and should be lived. The whole idea of the article was that you must know you will still need to work ( with earnings attached) even when you have sufficient funds in place irrespective of your ‘liking’ and ‘disliking’ of the work you are currently doing.


    3. Lalit says:

      The best ever comments by Kris .The article was not as good as are comments on it .The article was really a rubish writing not cocluding to any definite purpose which anybody eagerly read it but disappointed later at last.

      1. Thanks for your comment Lalit

  21. Ashok says:

    One of the best articles on “Early Retirement”. 🙂
    It came timely for me, as I have been nursing the idea for a couple of months. It gave a totally new perspective, and I understand that I need to have re-look at the whole thing.
    Btw, I do think that one must ensure some kind a continuous income even after one retires.

    1. Glad to know that Ashok

  22. Chinmoy Sur says:

    There are lot more things to do in life after achieving financial freedom. e.g. if you want work, work hard to educate your neighbours or try to make a short flim. Its generosity make you satisfied in life.

    1. Thanks for your comment Chinmoy Sur

  23. Mayank says:

    Marvelous article, especially useful when everyone is poaching you with the dream of never having to work which has many meanings; one of them is veryfigurative.

    1. Glad to know that Mayank ..

  24. Wdroid says:

    Absolute Truth about Life.

    1. Thanks for your comment Wdroid

  25. Anubhav Gupta says:

    I think retirement here is being confused by a stage of ‘no work’….whereas for most people retirement is getting rid of 9-5 routine…
    It doesn’t mean no source of active income, it means getting freedom from drudgery of the 9-5 corporate slavery.
    Continuing to add value in yourself and society by following your passion will ensure steady income abd active life.

    1. Thanks for your article Anubhav

      I think the author by “Early Retirement” means the stage of “No more working and retiring for life” . So in that context the article is written

      1. Anjan says:

        Manish, let’s be honest. You will never find anyone retiring by 35 and never working again. You have so much energy at that stage of your life. What will you do for the next 30-40 years? You cannot pass time just eating and watching TV. Early retirees always get involved in their hobbies and passions after retirement. They do work that do not pay well but satisfies them a great extent and also contributes immensely to society.

        If the author is actually targeting this people who do nothing after Early Retirement, he might as well delete this article because such people are very very rare.

        1. You are exactly saying what author is saying I guess

          That “early retirement is a myth” , dont pursue it. Its not a reality.

          Why do you say that such people are very very rare? I know personally so many people who are dreaming and working to towards retiring at 45 or 40 . We get many financial planning enquiries like that where a person is working in a big company, earning well, not very happy and wanting to to lead a retired life soon …


          1. Anjan says:

            Manish, you completely misunderstood me. There are many people who retire by 35 or 40 but there are not many people who retire that early and not do anything in life. The article is targeting the latter group which is practically non-existent.

            Early retired life doesn’t mean watching TV all day and doing nothing. It means doing the kind of work that doesn’t necessarily pay well but you love doing it. This is different from old age retirement where oldies just stop working and do nothing else all day long because they have no hobbies or passion. All of their passions have died after working for 40 years.

            1. Hmm.. Thats why the article is there. There are many who do not know what you just said in the article and are in that dream world that they will retire early (only they know what they mean by that). The author has just put his thought on telling those people that its a myth and it does not work that way (what you said) .

              I am sure many people who are working and in their 30’s and early 25’s who are not in love with what they do keep dreaming about the day they will be out of rat race and will retire. Trust me there are millions of people like that 🙂 who need to read this article which can open their mind that it they will never reach there because of various points written by the author.

              Anyways, lets not take this discussion too far .. I got your point.


        2. vikram.iitk says:

          Hi Anjan

          You are right and I wish there are people all around who should think that they should earn ‘ some’ money all the time ( and which may be low in comparison with the jobs which are less satisfactory and less fulfilling for him in particular ) and this maturity is what I want to highlight in the article.

          But, there are cases ( incuding the very self :-)) where one thinks of and tries to achieve a stage ( before 58) where you feel to live a life full of ‘independence’ and ‘freedom’ ( and not just watching TV and eating), but where you devote most of your time on Hobbies ( like sports, reading books), traveling around, social works, complete a movie making project etc. ( and the list continues), where ones is not worried about income or earnings from such hobbies and you are not lazy at the same time.

          This is what I said never happens and realized that you need to earn continuously in any profession you are in as your ‘wished’ life standard keep on shifting with time.

          I did some calculations 5 years ago ( after marriage, kids) with a ‘ particular’ standard of life to achieve early retirement to be able to devote more time on my hobbies ( assuming zero income and earnings from hobbies and other such activities) . But, now I have achieved that stage ( as per old calculations), but this does not mean that I can stop earning and devote all my time on hobbies, as my ‘current normal wished standard ‘ has changed and required more monthly earnings then the one I used in my previous calculations. So, if is a early retirement ( not the forced one, but planned one) it will not be a current wishful life and if it has to be a wishful life standard, I have not achieved early retirement yet ( and it happened two times before I gave up :-))

          So, the whole REALIZATION was that if you like your job or you do not like your job and don’t want to do a 9-5 job ( which may not satisfy you and fulfill your inner self) and want to work on your hobbies, you need to think about earnings from your hobby ( to meet your CURRENT EXPENSES, after accumulating ‘ x’ amount of retirement fund) . There will never be a stage where you might plan to accumulate a ‘ x’ amount of money before you leave you job and jump on to your hobbies ( with no expected income). It is either NOW or NEVER.


  26. devendra kumar yamdagni says:

    this is a thought provoking article. i fully agree with the author it is very very difficult to estimate inflation for rest of life and desires converts to needs and priority changes with time. so one should work as long as he can through out life. may be up to the last day of life

    1. Thanks for your comment devendra kumar yamdagni

    2. Anjan says:

      Desires converting to needs? Under what circumstance does someone’s desire to drive a Mercedes turn into a need?

      1. A desire is something which is when you are not in that particular environment. This is what I think.

        A person wanting to drive in a flashy car worth Rs 1 crore is a DESIRE. But if this same person circumstances changes and they become a movie star, its now a need, not because the person wants it. But because the environment around him/her requires it.

        Also a SUV is a desire for a couple who are 2 people. But in 5 yrs, if they have 2 kids and their parents living with them along with a pet. A big SUV might be the need.

        What do you feel about this Anjan? I dont want to know about this from you as a counter argument, but want to know how you think about this, because I am sure it would be different because we all are different people grown up with different environment and upbringing and values.


        1. Anjan says:

          Hmm interesting point of view but why do you think a movie star cannot drive an ordinary hatchback? The environment never required him to own a flashy car. The person himself made it a requirement in his own mind because he now wants to show off his wealth to the world and wants to earn respect from fans by using his property rather than his personality. True fans will not abandon a movie star just because he is down to earth and humble, they will respect him even more because they will be able to connect to him.

          About the SUV, yeah I agree with your use case if you already own a car and have outgrown it’s size due to increase in size of family. But as someone who never intends to own a car, the car itself is not a need for me.

          1. I can relate to your car example, I was also at your situation few years back, so I understand your point.

            Regarding the car example, I think I have put my views in a wrong way. I agree with you on point that most of the stars think that they are “required” to show off otherwise their fan following will not there there. I was mainly talking about them who are themselves confused on this. Not for movie stars like Rajnikant and others who have lead a simple life and still have lot of respect (which is well deserved)

            Also, many stars want to drive fancy cars and have the means to do so. I think they should do that, and not drive ordinary cars just to because it is seen as being “down to earth” . One has to be true to what they think they should really do

            Lets break this conversation now else it will keep going on, there is no end to discussions like this, lets save some for more points coming in 🙂

  27. FinancialIndiapendence says:

    Thanks for sharing your experiences with early retirement, and those of others. I disagree with the premise of your article, and let me share with you why.

    Let me start off first by trying to put a definition around the concept of early retirement, so that there isn’t confusion due to us talking about different things. For the purpose of this discussion, I would define it as “being done” with your primary “I have to do this to earn my living” job, and transitioning into something else that you don’t “have” to do, but might do because it interests you.

    I agree with you that there needs to be a purpose, a sense of achievement that keeps us going. I disagree with your assumption that “early retirement” refers to a going from full-time employment, into doing nothing. The concept of early retirement, as popularized by the likes of J.D. Roth, MMM and others refers to having enough money, i.e. financial independence, and then transitioning into doing things that you are passionate about. A thread popularized on the financialindependence forum on reddit talks about retiring to a life that you want, rather than retiring from a job. Like most things in behavioral finance, that is a powerful concept. Think about it – you should first build a life that you want to lead, earn enough money to be able to afford it, and then retire into it. Most people retire from a job, and then let boredom creep into their lives. Flip it around. Dream a perfect life. Save and invest for it. Live it in the form of your hobbies, and vacations. Retire into it when you have sufficient funds saved.

    The second disagreement that I have is on lifestyle inflation. The article seems to make a point that lifestyle inflation is inevitable. You have a 2BHK, you will want a 3BHK, and so on. Yes, you will never have enough money if your wants keep converting into your needs.

    Lifestyle inflation isn’t a problem with the concept of early retirement. This is a problem with your planning for early retirement. If your goal is to keep up with the expenses of your friends, you will never retire. To be successful at early retirement, you do have to make an effort to estimate your annual expenses, and have enough money to last through your retirement. If those expenses keep changing, the amount of money you need to retire will change.

    Early retirement isn’t a mirage. A well-planned early retirement means choosing freedom. It means pursuing your dreams, following your passions, instead of spending 1/3rd or more of your life making someone else rich. It is real.

    1. Thanks for sharing your points. I think just like you defined “Early retirement” , in the same way the author has also given his own defination of the same and then wrote his experience.

      The article is written mainly for those people who have a vague understanding of early retirement and they just pursue it without understand these find points. You seem to be matured enough to understand how complex it is and the intention was to discuss these points only with a wider group. Thanks for sharing your views on this and make it a healthy discussion !


    2. Rajnikant Gajjar says:

      Absolutely right.
      Early retirement is a necessity these days not a myth
      Early retirement isn’t a mirage. A well-planned early retirement means choosing freedom. It means pursuing your dreams, following your passions, instead of spending 1/3rd or more of your life making someone else rich. It is real.

      It is always better to have enough corpus for financial freedom or early retirement as early as possible & continue to keep a check on wishes getting converted into needs

      1. vikram.iitk says:

        Hi Rajnikant

        I agree, ‘ Early Retirement’ sometimes becomes a reality, but only when you are forced to retire for the reasons beyond your control and you have to accept it. But, the article was written with the spirit when you try to ‘plan’ your early retirement ( before 58 years of age) to live a life full of ‘Independence’ and ‘freedom’ and wish to achieve a stage where you follow your hobbies without worrying about the earnings from them for rest of your life.


    3. Anjan says:

      Brilliant comment. Completely rational and based on reality. Finally someone here who actually speaks with intelligence instead of showing herd mentality and always agreeing with the author.

    4. Bhushan says:

      I am glad you mentioned JD Roth and MMM in your comment. I think the author needs to read these blogs and then he would understand what is Early Retirement. Yes it may not be possible for all of us to do that. But yes moving away from rat race and not falling prey to this so called conversion of needs into desires (from hatchback to SUV etc.) is surely possible.

      Well most of the companies survive on converting these desires into needs and good for such companies that there are many people like the Author to boost their profit lines. And also good for people who believe in holding shares of Such companies and not actually buying those luxuries.

      1. Jagoinvestor Admin says:

        Thanks for your comment Bhushan

  28. Arul says:

    Normally I read your post fully but this one I don’t like, I don’t know why.

    1. Thanks for reading it partially also ! . Not sure why but many people are appreciating it 🙂 . May be its not written in the style you prefer !

  29. Amit mishra says:

    Very nice article, actually makes sense, however only thing that differentiates is working means volunteer work or free lancing also and we will be like empty mind a devil’s workshop if we don’t keep ourselves occupied.basically enlightens us that life is not 100 MTR race but a full marathon, we actually should keep ourselves motivated for different facets of life and retirement is just one of them, not THE THING.

    1. Hi Amit mishra

      Thanks for your sharing your valuable comment on this topic. Please keep sharing your views in future also


  30. Dr M.Chandrashekhar says:

    I do not believe in the concept that I should slog till I die. I took my Retirement at 59 years of age …thanks to OROP & 7th Pay Commission, I have a good monthly Pension…. now Iam 64 …..I have sufficient Investments going in MFs & Equities…I travel a lot both within India & abroad …I do my Walking, Yoga, Pranayam & attend Life Positive Workshops regularly….I have a good afternoon Siesta everyday ..I read a lot..also watch all good TV programmes…If I want I can work as a Doctor,, but I have done enough of it..truly speaking Iam happy & am enjoying my Life ! It is a Mind Set that one must develop. I had gone thru Post Retirement’ Blues’ for a short time initially, 5 years back but got over it quickly…….I have no regrets at ‘not working’ any more….my spouse too is very contented & never had it so good….I see some of my friends slogging so hard even now ..i dont know for what !

    1. Hey Dr M.Chandrashekhar

      Thanks for sharing your experience with all of us. It was a great learning.


    2. vikram.iitk says:

      Thanks Dr Chandrashekhar, and my pleasure that you shared your life experience and read the article.
      I am not in favour of slogging till you die but only work after retirement if your inner self is looking forward to it, otherwise there is no need. Happy to know that you took retirement at 59 and not in late 30s or early 40s.

      Vikram Agarwal

  31. Samir says:

    Money and only money plays a big role in preventing one from getting an Early Retirement. 🙂

    1. Thanks for your comment Samir

  32. Muthu says:

    Really nice article about what is retirement means.

    1. Glad to know that Muthu ..

      1. Muthu says:

        Wow… There are so much views by reading comments from many readers. Thanks for bringing this topic to bring each ones perspective.

        1. Glad to know that Muthu ..

  33. Naren says:

    Early retirement is a necessity these days not a myth. A myth would be thinking you will never lose your job that funds your monthly SIP for 30 consecutive years until retirement.

    Real-life case study: Headline news about all the 45-year old mid-level managers at TCS/Cognizant/Infosys getting laid off because their industry considers them obsolete and who probably won’t get another job at the same salary for atleast another 3-4 years. An emergency fund of just 6-months to 1 year will not help in this case. These folks have been forced to take early retirement.

    I’m a practitioner of early retirement. But after 5 years on the path I have realized some important lessons :
    1.) The typical dream of early retirement is to “sit and eat” from the retirement fund alone from age 40 to age 90 which is a span of 50 years. it is hard to pull off as life throws too many curveballs. It is possible if key variables work in your favor .. definitely not a myth as there are real-life success stories 🙂
    2.) My alternative definition of early retirement is simple : Finish saving up for retirement as early as possible ideally before you turn 40 or 45. But don’t stop working until you retire old in your 60s. Until then don’t touch the retirement fund. The earlier you finish saving up for retirement the longer you can let compounding do the work for you instead of SIPs for 30 years that depend on keeping your job year-after-year.
    3.) Once you finish saving up for retirement as early as possible, guess what: you don’t have to put aside those monthly SIPs anymore. That means you can work for a lesser salary at jobs that are more fulfilling and less stressful but fully pays for your monthly expenses supporting kids & elderly parents. most people who want to retire early simply are tired of the job stress and deep down are not averse to working if there is work-life balance.
    4.) If you ever lose your job before your old age like the TCS/Cognizant/Infosys mid-lifers: you can use a small portion of your retirement fund to fund monthly expenses for even 3-4 years while you re-skill and find another job after which you can replenish the amount you took out during the jobless period.

    I believe this middle path strikes a balance between the cheerleaders of early retirement who replace the stress of a job with the stress of money running out and the nay-sayers who by not saving atleast 50% of their income are going to be forced into early retirement anyway in their mid-40s.

    I would be happy to elaborate in a longer article with some math backing my assertion if Manish is interested.

    1. Thanks for sharing your views on this topic and enriching the conversation !

    2. Rajnikant Gajjar says:

      absolutely right.
      Early retirement is a necessity these days not a myth

    3. Muthu says:

      Hi Naren
      You have described the practical situation :-). I would like to read your longer article with facts and maths. If you publish anywhere else can you please share with me.


    4. vikram.iitk says:

      Thanks Naren

      This is exactly I want to stress upon. Once you have sufficient retirement fund in place, you can ‘work’ for more satisfying life ( if current one is not) without bothering about savings, but again the idea should be to work again, and no to think of a stage to get rid of the present job and relax ( without earnings).


    5. Anand says:

      One of the best comments by Naren..
      @Manish-Request you to allow Naren to publish that article in your blog that he has mentioned in his comment. I look forward to read that elaborated longer article

  34. ALSESA says:

    1. Build a life you want and then try to achieve FIRE. (believe me over the years ,i have had many upgrade and downgrade in my lifestyle)

    2. FIRE is for people who start focusing on their needs and stop trying to match with other’s lifestyle.

    3. Make sure your whole family is on board with your FIRE concept, that is the only way you don’t deviate from your goal.

    1. Thanks for your comment ALSESA

  35. Afzal S says:

    the whole concept of retirement / early retirement is portrayed as laziness or a day with no work, it is more about financial freedom I think. If you wish to retire as per this definition simply means that you don’t like / hate your work and you want to do something that you actually like, which can happen only and only if money works for you rather than you working for money all the time.

    1. Sir, Financial freedom is the concept you are talking about. RETIREMENT is the stage where one does not work for money, this is traditionally how it is. So I think early retirement will mean the same , just that it happened early. What you are talking is the FINANCIAL FREEDOM

      Thanks for sharing your views on this topic


  36. Vikram says:

    The writer is a bit confused – he is trying to equate ‘wishes’ with ‘needs’. You can plan for ‘needs’ and succeed in this. But no amount of money would ever be enough for ‘wishes’, which keep increasing (can we simply call it greed ???)

    1. Thanks for sharing that Vikram

      Can you share your personal experience in life about these things? Because almost everyone agrees to the fact, that something which was a WISH some years back is a NEED now ..

      I agree with the point that one can never have enough money for WISHES though !


      1. Anjan says:

        I am sorry Manish but that is simply not true and most definitely not a “fact”. A wish cannot convert into a need at any stage unless you really want it to convert. You can always trick your mind to believe that you “need” something when in reality you do not. Some do it as a means to justify their expenses to themselves.

        You might think that you can no longer do without a car but the fact is you always can make do without one as long as public transport exists. But somehow once your earning increases, you trick your mind to believe that you can no longer travel in public transport and need a car. It’s a slippery slope but that’s how it always starts.

        1. Thats exactly I am saying . We all can also live without Electricity because long back we all did :), but now we cant. Same is the case with Debit cards and credit cards and almost everything .

          The point is that humans are designed in such a way that once we move towards the ladder, it becomes very difficult (not impossible) to come down. We are talking about 9/10 people here and not that 1 person who is so mentally strong and conciously controls his mind and thought.

          Also, the article is a sharing of a personal opinion. Its unsaid rule that not many will agree to it :). Infact I myself do not agree to many things which this post says. But a blog is not to reach a “right point”, but culmination of thoughts and sharing of various ideas. I am glad you have also added yours :). Thanks for that.

          Would be great to know more about your opinion if one should run after this “early retirement” concept or not?


        2. vikram.iitk says:

          Hi Anjan

          There is a difference among things like what should happen, what happens and I just shared what actually happened. There is a certain kind of lifestyle where car, smartphone ( iPhone 4 only and not 7S) , internet connection , becomes a need for one and for car even govt. does not renew the registration after certain period of time and you need to buy a new one, something to bear when you are in ‘ real’ world. Although, people say you can survive even without food, forget about all materialistic things, but that is not the philosophical point I wanted to share.


    2. vikram.iitk says:

      Hi Vikram

      It is not greed, but the way you are living your life as destined. You can be a rich guy and working hard, but that may not mean that you are greedy ( for your own self), but yes can be greedy for a slum dweller, children going to local govt school , surviving on govt rashan, using govt hospitals and is already retired in one sense. There is no harm in living a wishful life, if you are above the levels where savings don’t bother you anymore.


  37. Manish says:

    It’s critical to think about what you’re retiring to, not just what you’re retiring from.

    1. Can you explain what does that mean !

  38. balu says:

    Nice article Manish and Vikram… few points:

    1. If you are still thinking about a bigger car and a better school after your retirement (say after 5 years from now), then you haven’t actually retired yourself but still craving to better the creature comforts.. IMO, early retirement is to be content with what I have right now.. If that contentment is not settling, then I am not psychologically retiring.

    2. In my own terms, early retirement is like pooling up enough money to take care of all the financial needs for the next 4-5 years, lets say.. and then start working on my own… Example : I badly want to become an astro/nature photographer, but ended up being a software engineer.. so I will work only till that point to ensure a ‘next 5 years are safe’, then retire from the routine jobs, start my passion and start churning up money out of it.. 3-5 years are a cool good time to establish yourself in any domain (that of ‘of your interest’, which is a big thing)… and thats all.. settle down in whatever way you want.. If you want to switch streams to a new passion, solidify the next 5 years again… Am I making any sense? I am going to retire in the new 3-5 years for sure 🙂

    1. 1. Thats the exact point author is raising, that most of the people who pursue “early retirement” never reach there because you always crave for more and more.. Its a rare fact that people are able to control that!

      2. Thanks for sharing your own way of looking at “Early retirement” .. I think each one of us have a totally different way of looking at Early retirement, hence so many comments like “I think author is wrong here .. ” 🙂


    2. vikram.iitk says:

      Hi Balu

      Thanks for your comments. When you say that ‘ To have enough money for next 5 year…’ , this is what I exactly want you not to fall in this trap and I shared my experience. These next 5 years will never come until you turn ( 58-5=53), 53 years of age. What is stopping you now from pursuing you things which you want to after 5 years ? I am sure, with a certain kind of lifestyle today you can easily survive for next 5 years and if you think that is not what you want, then as per my experience those 5 years will never come. You job may become your passion and you would like to continue forever and hence no retirement.


  39. Santanu says:

    Wonderful experienced share. I totally agree with the first point that Retirement is just a state of mind. If you love your work and happy to continue the everyday routine till die, then that’s it. I think most people understand with the retirement is to put an end to their forceful JOB or business whatever they actually don’t want to do and continue to enjoy their passion or work they actually want to do.

    1. Thanks for your comment Santanu

  40. Mayurs says:

    Nice Article.

    However I suggest to decide an age for retirement and earlier it is the better.
    I define retirement as the point where you stop working for your needs. You may still work to earn for your luxury.
    Luxury may turn in to a need but I am sure everyone has some finish line in mind.
    It is the point when your earned, saved and invested money grows to a level and starts working for you to take care of your needs rather than you working for money. Now take more risks and earn more money. Turn your luxuries into need and plan to retire again. The cycle continues .. 🙂

    1. Hi Mayurs

      Thanks for your sharing your valuable comment on this topic. Please keep sharing your views in future also


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