Day One


Today is day one. The first day of a journey. Today I will enter the office and begin the resignation process. After a decade in corporate America I’m now retiring, with plans to spend the rest of my life serving others.

People may be curious about how this developed. The short answer is I’ve been blessed to reach a point where returns on stock investments made during the last decade now far exceed my living expenses. Even when allowing for market scenarios such as a major economic downturn, or life events such as having a family, it’s reasonable to conclude that if I stop taking a salary, my investments will still provide more income than would be necessary for living.

Given this opportunity, I’ve decided to leave the company in order to devote my time, talent and energy to helping others. The Bible says “To whom much has been given, much will be required.” I’ve been given more than I ever would’ve imagined (or asked for), and find myself stewarding more than I ever expect to need. To give back in meaningful ways is my sincere and earnest desire, and the journey can’t start soon enough.

Currently I am thinking through how to make the most of this opportunity. As a starting point there are several volunteer organizations where I’d like to give more of my time. Over the long run, I hope this site will develop into a platform that surfaces new ideas and new approaches to helping others. (Your suggestions are always welcome) 🙂

In the meantime this will be a place where I write about my financial story, my experiences serving others (e.g. “Life”), and my views on investing (e.g. “The Market”). If one day I can say with certainty that I have truly helped or inspired someone, then that will be bigger than anything I’ve accomplished in life so far.

Lastly it wouldn’t be a “retirement” without a bucket list, so here are my goals as I write on day one:

“Work Hard”

  • Dive into volunteering. There are a handful of local organizations where I’d like to take on additional responsibilities, and several more I’m eager to engage for the first time.
  • Think of creative ways to pay it forward. As a social experiment, one day I’d like to walk across the entire city with the goal of picking up 300 pieces of litter. Or spend several hours at the airport helping people carry luggage. Or visit touristy locations in search of people who need directions, and actually have time to walk with them.
  • Become a financial coach. I’d like to share the saving and investing strategies that have benefited me with as many people as possible (pro bono).
  • Write. Since youth, books have been a passion of mine, and writing was one of the things that came naturally. I’m hoping to return to writing in earnest in the coming years, including publishing some of the poems, short stories and novels I’ve tried to write (sparingly) while working full-time.
  • Share my faith. I’d like to be more honest and open about how a personal relationship with Jesus has changed my life. Often I’ve felt pressure to keep quiet about my faith in professional and social environments, and had fears about what people would think if they knew I believed the Bible is true. But if even one person is able to experience what I’ve found in Jesus, then sharing about faith will be worth it.

“Play Hard”

  • Read 100 books a year. For years I’ve carried a book with me everywhere I go, and I managed to read 70 while working full-time in 2017.
  • Ditto for films, where I’ve always sought artistic and professional inspiration.
  • Exercise every day of the week.
  • Live in another city (for one month each year). I think there would be something special to be gleaned from picking one new place, spending a full month there, and letting the local people and culture influence me. Hoping this will be beneficial for my writing dreams as well.

— Jan 3, 2018

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