Are you where you thought you'd be at this age Part 2
I posted part one the other day, I pretty much said that when I was younger I didn't really think about where I would be at certain milestone ages, that I've never really thought in those terms.
I've been thinking about that post and something clicked about the idea which is that actually I have intentionally lived the opposite of expecting something by 40 or 50 or whatever.
A big focus for why I have done a lot of the things I've done was because I specifically have never known what the future me would want to do. I did things when I was younger in terms of living below our means, way below but not like FIRE people, and I have always exercised vigorously.
The word I like in this context is optionality. Getting into your 40's or 50's with a little money in the bank and retaining your ability to do physically challenging things sets you up to do whatever totally unexpected thing the 25 year old version of you couldn't possibly foresee.
If you're still in your 20's or 30's, I know you've heard it before but, time goes quickly. It is very difficult at 25 to understand what 50 is but it will be here for you soon. Do your future self a favor and give that future you the choice to do whatever they want. You give that gift by taking care of your finances and your health.
At 56, my future got here a while ago. We have enough saved that if I wanted to give up my day job for something that didn't pay anywhere near as much we could do it. I have retained the ability by virtue of habits to still be able to work hard for a long time, to bend down and pick up heavy things, to do pretty much anything. Don't laugh at the bend down line, I am well past the age where people start to lose that ability.
If you're in your 50's already but haven't done these things yet, it's not too late. The body is very forgiving and where 50's are a prime earnings decade, work on how to put more away to give yourself more optionality in your 60's.
Even if you have no idea what you want your 40's or 50's to be, I can tell you first hand that both decades can be great when you have physical and financial optionality and I am pretty sure I will be able to say the same thing about my 60's when they come around.