This website is focused on business, money and personal development. It is targeted at people like you, ambitious entrepreneurs, business owners and professionals looking to develop and grow alongside their respective organisations. Maybe you’re in a career and looking to start your own business or side hustle. Wherever you are, whatever you’re doing, I hope to bring value to you on your journey. We’re going to cover a lot of ground and to be honest what the site becomes will be dictated by you, the reader. If nothing else, it’ll be a wonderful collection of thoughts to look back on in the coming years as I move into my own early retirement.
I’m Connor and I retire in 2022, aged 40! I’ve followed the principals of FIRE (Financial Independence Retire Early) since 2013, creating financial stability for myself and my family. I’ve been in business for nearly 2 decades and have helped thousands of business owners to launch, grow and develop their businesses. My business was successfully acquired in 2020 and I now hope to help people develop their own path to wealth through business and investments.
It would founder you out there
If you’re not from Northern Ireland or a Derry Girls fan, this turn of phrase may be new to you. For the purpose of this blog, foundered is a reference to being cold and the eternal semi-winter/always wet country that is, Northern Ireland. There’s a double entendre also in that I was the founder of the business that set me forth on the journey towards financial independence.
This site will cover all the experiences and learning I’ve gained in my career, both the positives and negatives. It’ll focus on the accumulation, the growth of wealth through saving and investing, to ensure you can be financially secure in your own future.
Here’s to you, because you’re awesome for being here.
Live well, retire in your 30s, 40s or 50s
The focus of this blog is not just to show the steps to be able to retire early, but rather to focus on enjoying the journey and be ready for whatever comes next, both mentally and physically.
It can be all too easy to forgo the lattes, the holidays and live a somewhat miserly life. I know this, because thats how this journey started. But an unwavering focus should also allow you the flexibility to enjoy each and every step on the path to financial independence.
Take action – understand your finances
As an entrepreneur taking action likely comes as second nature to you. You understand that a decision must be made, you make it and you live with the consequences, good or bad. Business, fitness, finances and relationships are all similar in that regard. If you don’t take action, nothing happens. Throughout these posts, there’ll be some small and some large actionable tips. Some you’ll be able to complete in a minute. Others may take years, but each will be a step forward towards your goal. And if you’ve no goals right now, that’s going to change in future posts.
It doesn’t matter if you earn £30,000 or £300,000 a year. If you spend too much you will never be able to retire. Today, tomorrow and the rest of this month, I want you to be aware of your spending. Track it, just as you would calories if you were trying to lose weight. We can’t manage what we can’t measure. Becoming aware of and understanding where your money goes, will help you make much more informed decisions in the future.
Open your banking app, download this months transactions and import them into a google sheet. I want you to start understanding each outgoing transaction and its relationship to your finances. Mark one of the following notes against each transaction
Reduce – this may be a fixed cost such as your mortgage. We know that right now it can’t be eliminated, but we’ll use knowledge and planning to reduce this cost over time. It may be a car payment and we’ll go over that at a later date.
Eliminate – Do you really really need Netflix, Sky, Apple TV and Prime accounts all at the one time? I’ll save you the hard work. The answer is no! Firstly how do you get the time to watch them all and secondly, with the sum of the above costing well in excess of £100 a month, the opportunity cost of this money across a lifetime is huge.
Discretionary – If you work hard, you should be entitled to frivolously spend your hard earned money. Over time you’ll likely want to eliminate or reduce that spending, but let’s take baby steps. For now, if you like a Soy Cinnamon Latte, who am I to dissuade you from your caffeine fix. We’ll chat later about the opportunity cost of every penny spent versus invested. That shift in understanding, putting your money back to work for you is one of the biggest factors in becoming financially free.
And that’s it for today. Just understand where your money comes from and where it goes. This little first step is the precursor to much bigger things. With the above information and a focus on early retirement, you will automatically start to make better decisions when it comes to your finances. You’ll also get a very clear picture of your cost of living on any given month or across a year. We explore why this is so important to early retirement in our popular post – How to Retire Early in your 40s.
“If you will live like no one else now, later you can live like no one else.”Dave Ramsey
Consider this statement for a second. By taking control of your finances and planning for the future, you may need to make changes to your spending habits now. In doing so, however, you will be able to do the things others can’t in the future. The earlier in life you begin to realise this, the better shape your finances should be in later years.
Thank you for reading this site, I hope you find it useful and that the information provided helps you with your own financial independence journey. If you’ve any questions, suggestions or recommendations, please do get in touch via the contact form. Alternatively, you can always connect directly via Twitter.