I think it’s always good to stay flexible and try to understand the opportunity cost of our decisions. Especially, with long-term goals. That’s why I often think about the disadvantages of FI and wether or not they are strong enough to make me rethink this objective.
Optimizing to work my whole life
I always thought about my professional career with the perspective that I would work until 67 (at least). Very long-term.
Over a period of several decades, the impact is made by career potential rather than the salary of your next position. So I optimized for future potential.
I worked abroad, I got a Master’s, etc. I even tried to start my own business for a few months.
At the same time that I was trying to be an entrepreneur, the FI concept crossed my path. And the more I thought about it and discussed it with Mrs. Lyn, the more aligned we were on financial independence.
The opportunity in London
At that moment I had an offer to work on a project in London and I jumped on it. For the first time, I made a decision about my career giving more weight to the present than to the future potential.
From a professional perspective, this project does not contribute to my profile as much as my previous job. In this position I don’t have many opportunities for career progression, it is not allowing me to learn many new things and it will not make my CV stronger. What it has done though is remove a lot of uncertainty regarding our finances. Now I earn a salary every month, unlike when I was an entrepreneur.
On a personal level, this stability means that we can project numbers again. We are able to put figures in our Excel, even if only until my project is finished. We felt in control again and it gave us a big push on our way to financial independence.
However, I can’t help thinking that maybe I´m putting a burden on “my future me” just to have stability in the present.
The return to Spain
If everything goes as planned, Mrs. Lyn will return to Spain at approximately the same time that my project in London ends. So I have to make a decision again: do I look for a stable salary or something riskier and more exciting?
I really like the startup world, I like having different personal projects, working in dynamic environments … the opposite of the corporate world. But the corporate worls is what I know. And the startup world is very unstable and does not pay very well (although the potential is bigger). So maybe it is worth to pursue this once I’m FI.
On the other hand, I’m researching a concept called “portfolio career”. I think it can be a good balance between salary and interesting projects. Of course I’m able to even consider this possibility because Mrs. Lyn has a very stable job that would balance our risk.
What would you do? Have you ever been in a similar situation? Do you have any advice?