Efficient Investing: Key to Financial Independence

This is the magic of compounding returns. You might want to be on one of the upper lines, wouldn't you?

This is the magic of compounding returns. You might want to be on one of the upper lines, wouldn’t you?

The downshifting equation and your way to financial freedom is as follows:

Passive returns + Income from Job = Spending + Savings

Thus your way to increasing independence from the grind in the job-tread-mill has two main components:

  • Efficient Spending
  • and efficient investing.

Spending control in the form of frugal living decreases your actual need for money (right side of the equation) and gives you more room for high savings in the beginning of your downshifting journey.

Later on, passive returns will increase steadily and the need for savings will reduce once you have a meaningful stash accumulated. As frugal living will obviously continue, poof!, the need for income from a job will reduce accordingly!

And this is what we want.

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Merry Christmas – and how to handle the “gift question”?

How to have a nice christmas without surrendering to consumerism?

How to have a nice christmas without surrendering to consumerism?

A very quick Christmas post, before heading off for family business.

Topic is obvious: Presents!

It maybe a bit late now, but an ongoing discussion among all wanting to life more frugal is:

How do we handle Christmas presents?!

On the one side the idea behind a present is certainly a positive one, on the other side, todays culture forces many people into a blind flush of consumerism which is quite opposed to the christmas time idea to concentrate on the important things in life.

Thus, a good christmas / festive season should concentrate on the important aspects. Those are:

  • Spending time together with loved ones
  • Calm down a bit from the constant level of stress a stimulation of today’s world
  • Please those that you love, and also strangers and others around you
  • Creat a positive and feel-good atmosphere
  • Think of the not so fortunate people in the world (!)

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People telling they’d miss their job? What a bullshit.

Midwinter fire at lake Schliersee. Entrance 0 EUR. Now what is better - being here or in the office?

Midwinter fire at lake Schliersee. Entrance 0 EUR. Now what is better – being here or in the office?

The recent weeks was a busy time at work. There was plenty to do, “challenges” to be met, hurdles to be overcome and victories to win. In fact it was a state that many people would call “having fun at work”.

And, even for a skeptical person (especially when it comes to employed work) as Woodpecker is, I admit there were quite many days in a row where I looked forward getting to the office in the morning.

This is great and it should be like that.

However, one should not confuse “having fun at work” with “having a really good time”.

Some people might come up to you and tell you outright they’d love their work. They’d never share your downshifting or early retirement ideas, because, hey, without a job, something would be missing in life, wouldn’t it?

I say: No, nothing would be missing. Continue reading

Long live Europe!

The castle of Kufstein, part of the European miracle.

The castle of Kufstein, part of the European miracle.

This weekend plus two days off from extra hours (who would ever opt for getting them paid out if he can have additional free time for it?!?), was good for a spontaneous four-day trip of the Woodpeckers clan to the Bavarian mountains.

Staying at a nice basic apartment close to lake Schliersee for about 40 EUR per night, we had a fantastic and not too unfrugal time.

Luck was with us, the first snow of the year fell plentiful only one day earlier, it was crisp cold and clear, sun was shining the whole time.
Thus nature abundantly granted us with all its beauty and free wonders. A nights walk through the snow, a hike up to a mountain hut with a 5 km sledge ride back, snow-ball fights, half a day in the local steam bath and all the other stuff you wouldn’t want to miss when being out with your kinds on a winter day.

However, as much as I could talk on and on about the fun and good feelings nature provides to our lives, this is not my topic today.

My topic today is Europe. Continue reading