Dreaming of FI

I’d be the first to tell you I have a prob­lem. I have a con­fes­sion to make.

I’m addict­ed to the Inter­net.

Oh, Gwen” you scoff, “You’re a Mil­len­ni­al. That comes par for the course with your age group.”

But real­ly though, it’s a prob­lem.

I have many hob­bies, and every one of them is assist­ed with the inter­net. Need inspi­ra­tion for a new quilt? Inter­net. Need a pat­tern? Inter­net. Need to fig­ure out how to do a super stretchy cast on and cast off for a new knit­ted hat? Inter­net.

By far and away though, I spend the most time on my hob­by of per­son­al finance/financial independence/retiring ear­ly. This prob­a­bly isn’t a sur­prise, con­sid­er­ing I run a whole blog devot­ed to talk­ing about noth­ing but FIRE and my plans. I’m active and engaged on the Finan­cial Inde­pen­dence sub­red­dit. My phone helps me be con­nect­ed to Twit­ter every sec­ond of the day (I can nei­ther con­firm nor deny this helps me pass time while stuck in the bath­room) so I can inter­act with all of my favorite FIRE blog­gers and see what they’re talk­ing about. One of the first things I do in the morn­ing, after hit­ting the snooze but­ton and pet­ting the cat, is roll over and check to see what hap­pened while I was asleep on all of my favorite social media plat­forms.

I think things reached a break­ing point last night. I’m a very active dream­er while I sleep, and I’ve also man­aged to train my brain to do lucid dream­ing. At some point in a dream, I’ll “wake up” to the fact that I’m in a dream. Very much like Tris in the Diver­gent series (oop. Hope I didn’t spoil any­thing), minus the incred­i­bly sexy  Theo James to tell me what’s going on.

Unlike most peo­ple who can be lucid while dream­ing, I can run through a whole sto­ry line instead of just a few sec­onds. If you want to learn more about lucid dream­ing, there are tons of resources out there that both edu­cate on the con­cept and help you learn how to do it your­self.

Last night, my dream was about get­ting a very large and very unex­pect­ed inher­i­tance that imme­di­ate­ly cat­a­pult­ed me into the 1%.

A lady approached our fam­i­ly in the park­ing lot and made us sit in this tricked out fan­cy van. At first all of us were con­vinced this was a prank, but she took us to our bank and the checks cleared! The inher­i­tance I got was a one time lump sum of $3.54 mil­lion, with a recur­ring annu­al pay­ment of an addi­tion­al $1 mil­lion until I died. I have no idea how this per­son was relat­ed to me, but it was some­how through my stepdad’s side of the fam­i­ly. Was I glad my mom mar­ried him or what?

The very first thing I did was go and buy an incred­i­bly expen­sive bot­tle of wine I’d had my eye on at the local vine­yard. My next step was to quit my job the very next day. My cowork­ers were thrilled for me. Then I spent some time trav­el­ing around the US to vis­it friends, and then I trav­eled over­seas.

something like this
some­thing like this

After I came back to the US I got start­ed on build­ing the best house devot­ed to craft­ing I pos­si­bly could in the moun­tains of Col­orado. I would love to live in Col­orado due to the close prox­im­i­ty of all the var­i­ous ski resorts, which since I was ridicu­lous­ly rich I could afford sea­son tick­ets at all of them.

My dream end­ed there, but I was pleas­ant­ly sur­prised to wake up to the new ‘mem­o­ry’. I find it inter­est­ing my dream self-made so many choic­es that mir­ror what I want to do, except on a grander scale. In real life, I’d spend some time adjust­ing to my new lev­el of wealth and invest a good chunk of it to make sure I had income no mat­ter what hap­pened to the trust. I prob­a­bly also wouldn’t build a house devot­ed to craft­ing- instead I’d find a nice house and ren­o­vate it to suit my needs. It’s much cheap­er that way. I prob­a­bly wouldn’t buy sea­son tick­ets to all the ski resorts either. Maybe just one. I real­ly do like to ski.

When I retire ear­ly, I’m not going to be a super crazy spender, so it’s nice to get the “pre­tend” expe­ri­ence of spend­ing. It’s like it hap­pened, but then I wake up and check my bank account and noth­ing has changed. Well, noth­ing unex­pect­ed like a deposit to build a super fan­cy ski lodge any­ways!

Do you dream of FI? How do your dreams dif­fer from every day life?

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8 thoughts on “Dreaming of FI

  1. Even though I don’t play the lot­tery, when­ev­er the Jack­pot gets big enough to make the news head­lines, I think about what my life would be like if I won that kind of mon­ey. It usu­al­ly involves some crazy/fun vaca­tions for months at a time. Beyond that, I feel like acquir­ing a bunch of “stuff” would only bring short-term fun and then I’d have to keep track of it all! It is fun to think about though!

  2. I’ve had that mon­ey dream before too. Stu­pid dreams, too real. Then I wake up and it lit­er­al­ly takes a minute or two to con­vince me that it’s not actu­al­ly hap­pen­ing. And then I feel stu­pid.

  3. I don’t have those dreams much any more, but there was a time I did. We have reached the cusp of FI, which I have dubbed Flex­i­ble Inde­pen­dence because as long as we work a little.….we are fine. It feels great because we can now work on projects we want to work on.….and take extend­ed peri­ods of time off to trav­el. We’re half way through our 2 month road trip, and it feels great! For us, ear­ly retire­ment is about doing any­thing, not about doing noth­ing.

    You’ll get there Gwen, just keep plug­ging away. Have a great week­end!

  4. Nev­er had any FI dreams. Like Michael, I have day­dreamed about win­ning the lot­to. Lots of things I would do. Sim­i­lar to your dream, just replace the ski lodge with a trop­i­cal island and end­less beach­es. It’s fun to dream about wind­falls of mon­ey, but ulti­mate­ly I think it is more fun and more reward­ing to put in the hard work and reach the goal your­self. You appre­ci­ate it more that way. IMHO any­way.

  5. I think your dream sounds kin­da per­fect — you got the good vibes of spend­ing like a fab­u­lous­ly rich per­son, but then back in real­i­ty you still had your bank account intact. 🙂 Like when I some­times dream of heliski­ing — I get to expe­ri­ence some hap­pi­ness (even if it’s just dream hap­pi­ness) from get­ting to do this incred­i­bly expen­sive thing, but with­out actu­al­ly spend­ing the mon­ey! Haha.

    My dad told me that he dreamed about work every night for ten years after he retired, so I def­i­nite­ly won­der if I’ll do the same thing — though I hope not! But so far it seems more of my dreams are past-focused (I still have that dream every once in a while where I’m late for class at high school — and I grad­u­at­ed almost 20 years ago!) than future-focused.

    • Heliski­ing sounds hel­la-awe­some! (See what I did there?) I’d say at this point I have a healthy mix of past and future dreams, but it skews to the future. The dreams about the past I have start out true to my mem­o­ries but then I manip­u­late them into a dif­fer­ent out­come. Nev­er real­ly thought about it before so thanks for that! 🙂

  6. Ha Col­orado is a dream place! I’m def­i­nite­ly plan­ning on spend­ing a lot of time there in FI.
    Some­times I have this day dream where I win the lot­tery or the anoth­er big cash prize but then I feel guilty because I didn’t earn FI. What’s the fun of get­ting some­thing with no work? (but I’d still take it 😉 hehe)

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