Is the FIRE Movement about Entrepreneurial Independence

Is the FIRE Movement about Entrepreneurial Independence

ūüĎčūüŹĺ, Sanjay and Natasha here, Let talk about making money, baby, let's talk about retirement, baby, or we could talk about the¬†FIRE MOVEMENT.¬†The¬†FIRE¬†philosophy is that we should live and invest as little and as effectively as possible while still enjoying financial freedom. In short, we would say that we should "retire" before working. Early retirement in our 30s means cutting our expenses where possible and building wealth through savings and investments to build future assets. Doing these practices will allow us to retire at a younger age, where most others are starting to face the reality of not being able to retire. We don't think many people realize how much of our lives are dominated by 9‚Äď5 jobs.

What started as a way to get through the day has evolved into a lifestyle of constant struggle, sacrifice, and self-improvement:

  • Providing context where none existed
  • Giving advice where none was needed
  • Breaking news that couldn't be shared with our peers in quiet rooms

In doing so, we built a community around entrepreneurs wanting to grow their own FIRE, which then blossomed into an online community of like-minded side hustlers to learn from one another's perspectives on building wealth.

FIRE¬†is the most extreme manifestation of a freedom-oriented philosophy we've found: the freedom to pursue your financial dreams ‚Äď free from the constraints of work, school, or family obligations.¬†FIRE¬†represents freedom from the over-qualification and dissatisfaction with routine life.¬†FIRE mindset¬†has no place for mediocrity or conformist viewpoints ‚Äď as long as you can demonstrate your ability to develop yourself personally and professionally through a disciplined lifestyle, you will be welcomed aboard as a member of the tribe.

But FIRE stays relevant because it's less about ending the day on top than creating a life with more challenges. What will challenge us? Excitement? Setbacks? Sure, you'll get tired of hearing about your financial freedom, but at least you'll be excited about the next adventure!  FIRE will never cease to be relevant simply because its tenets are timeless. Today's generation will grow up with a different perspective on life and love, and FIRE will continue to help them get closer to their original goals.

Who wouldn't want a billion dollars, no strings attached? We all dream of having that kind of money, but the reality is that very few people will ever get what they desired. The very idea of multi-billionaire status is considered unattainable by most ordinary people, including FIRE pursuers. Are you saving for retirement? Forget about it. Are they renting instead of buying a home? More of us are always looking at cheaper options, so it makes sense that many would underestimate the overall financial burden associated with FIRE. 

FIRE¬†is for people who will invest their life in the direction of building something ‚Äďanything. Again interestingly, I found that the demographic skews heavily towards millennial men. But, as with everything in life and for the¬†FIRE¬†life, there is a flip side to the coin. The flip side is persistence.¬†¬†

We're in a moment when the concept of "entire life (well-being)" is becoming more normalized, and the idea of a "complete lifestyle" is more attainable to some. This new typical belief will lead to a movement toward complete retirement. 

If you want to pursue a wild and crazy lifestyle, of course, you will have to do without some of the comforts found in current society. We've been contemplating for some time now if it is even possible to be both wildly successful at a young age and pursue an extremely successful lifestyle. The reality is that successful young adults often find it challenging to juggle both geniuses and nomad lifestyles. Therein lays the rub; however,¬†FIRE¬†is (and always has been) about the opportunity, not success. FIRE is (and always will be) about systematical disruption; it is entrepreneurship through non-conformity. Based on our research (see¬†FIRE¬†community), it follows that younger¬†FIRE¬†seekers (i.e., '20-30s) often opt for 3 yrs. travel ‚Äď> being a nomad

This trend started years ago when people realized they could satisfy their need for freedom ‚Äď independence from stressful jobs, financial obligations, and the other stuff that comes with¬†FIRE¬†‚Äď by taking their time and building wealth slowly. Those still wanting freedom to needing time to get to know themselves.

The¬†F.I. mindset¬†emphasizes positive¬†financial habits¬†and wealth building. The purists believe¬†FIRE¬†should include a minimum amount of savings ‚Äď whatever that amount might be this time of year ‚Äď and a mindset that includes investing in yourself. The¬†F.I.¬†crowd has long accepted that¬†F.I.¬†isn't for everyone.¬†F.I.¬†was born out of a desire to demonstrate that change could be both exhilarating and discomfiting for those pulled in one direction while putting off parts of life that might be taken for granted by others. It's also critical for entrepreneurs to recognize that some decisions need to be made to the starting point of a marathon, not one that's been planned out ahead of time.¬†

What we learned from the FIRE movement

There are many discussions around the benefits of living beyond our means. But those that discuss living frugally and freely go beyond just a choice of living an ethical life and creating a more sustainable or earth-friendly way of life. Frugality is not just about saving and investing less; other tools and techniques for life can be as rewarding and fulfilling.

  1. Spend less
  2. Invest for your future self
  3. Create multiple streams of income 

5 Side hustles business ideas inspired by FIRE

We're coaching like-minded entrepreneurs on how to get more stuff. Active income or passive? Either way, more of something is better than less. It gets you out of the business of just trying to get by and lets you focus on the things that are worth your time, expertise, and creativity. 

Content Creator

We believe there are many ways to monetize a personal brand. One way would be to bring in content from others on the same path as you (regardless of whether you're currently monetizing it). Then you could build out your brand by making content around that topic. There are many ways that you can go about helping others onboard to the FIRE movement by creating content on multiple topics you're passionate about, such as houseplants or cooking.

Freelancer or Work

Learning new skills can pay big bucks. This is especially true if you know that specific skill (or skill set) is likely to earn you a high income in the future. (Example: Starting a car washing business as you get your feet wet will give you immense financial freedom in retirement.) As mentioned above, most jobs don't pay, and software development jobs, but most get better over time, even if you start at the bottom. So if you have skills that are in Demand fast and are within your current profession, it may be worth following your dreams to achieve true financial freedom or near-absolute wealth in retirement.

E-commerce Dropshipping Side Hustle

Dropshipping¬†solves a massive problem for small businesses. Those who want to start taking orders for limited items‚ÄĒyogi wear, yoga clothes, coffee beans‚ÄĒdon't have the capital or expertise to do so.¬†Dropshipping¬†is relatively easy to set up and offers a streamlined process for orders. Typically, suppliers will ship the first batch of a product once the order has been made, and orders can ship as soon as 24 hours after an order is made. While there are many costs associated with being a¬†Dropshipping¬†store, including inventory and shipping costs for products, it can pay for itself many times over in faster sales as your store scales up.

Print-on-Demand Side Hustle

Print-on-Demand (POD) is one of the fastest-growing business models today. It's an excellent solution for designers and artists who need to start selling their very own designs without the need for printing and logistics. Artists and designers who work for Print-on-Demand can take their designs wherever they go, online or on social media. They can offer their designs for purchase and immediately start selling them. Print-on-Demand can help an artist build a following or land an elusive gig. It's easy to set up and enables you to dictate the order in which your designs are printed - it's not like having to print hundreds of designs for a single product and then trying to find the right one for your brand.

Digital Downloads

The second area of growth comes from creating content on your blog or virtual storefront that generates traffic to your online store. You can create infographics to increase website downloads and videos to give your products more exposure on social media. You can create courses to teach online skills or blogs with tips and tricks for improving productivity. Find ways to make your business more user-friendly. Turn existing content into blog posts, videos, ebooks, training manuals, and much more. 

Conclusion 

FIRE has been around for a while, spreading globally over time among those who feel that the existing financial system leaves them behind and betters no one. But why did it take so long? And what will a modified version of FIRE be like?

Whether you plan to start a new life or want to spend more time with loved ones, retirement is a state of mind, not necessarily an abrupt end to working life. It's not just about winding down your career - although that's an essential part of it - but also about creating a better future. Sure, retirement will be much hard work. But it's something you can figure out how to accomplish, one piece at a time.

LET'S GET SH*T DONE, TOGETHER!

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