Second Generation FI: A Life Without Light Bulbs and Inflection Points
One thing I love about the FI blogosphere (Podcastosphere?) are the founder stories. Each and every blogger has a unique and enduring story about how they stumbled into this madness we affectionately call financial independence . Usually there is a tale of profound struggle and suffering, followed by a light bulb moment.
In that moment, the meaning of life (and finances) crystallizes. This is the mother of all inflection points. The rise then becomes meteoric. Debts are paid in full, salaries are optimized, and net worth soars into the stratosphere.
The writing of a blog is almost an afterthought. The hard work has already been done.
These stories are the backbone of our community. They are the middle finger that we flip to the everyday drudgery of the fiscally incompetent life style. Look here world, you can do it differently! Join us.
Our insular evolution protects us, but also shields us from the very real and hedonistic lifestyle practiced by the grand majority of our peers. And when we become insular, the more introspective wonders, have we gone to far? Are we megalomaniac frugalites, spurning the milk and honey of life?
Are we screwing up our kids?
An oft asked question by the DIKs (Double income/kids) and the SIKs (Single income/kids), and the NIKs (No income/kids). (Ok, I just wanted an excuse to type DIKs and pretend I was being serious).
The answer of course is no, you are not screwing up your kids.
How do I know? Well, I’m second generation FI. That’s right. I don’t have a founder story. I grew up with two middle to upper class parents who never struggled with finances. I wanted for nothing, had no loans, and pretty much never felt the pinch of insufficient funds.
Spoiled? Well, not exactly. My parents adhered to most of the principles that we espouse in our community, and I learned much about economics at a young age. In fact, second generation FI kids look something like this:
-We learn early to maximize our salary by doing jobs we enjoy and succeeding
-We save much more than we spend
-We buy things of value
-We develop side hustles like real estate
-We own businesses
-We invest in the stock market
-We save aggressively for retirement
-We live under our means
I’m second generation FI. I don’t have a founder story. I don’t have a light bulb moment or an inflection point.
Or, to put it another way, my childhood was replete with countless light bulb moments and inflection points.