Change In Plans

The layoff from work has forced me to take a second look at my financial and education plans. Since my employer was prepared to pay for 100% of my educational undertakings I was prepared to take on as many educational pursuits as I could handle stopping just shy of giving myself a complete mental breakdown.  Now that I have to personally pay for any classes, I need to actually weigh their value. I will need to take out loans to finish my legal education.

Luckily, my new chosen career path actually rewards people with higher student loan debts. My track is considered public service and so there are generous federal and state programs that will pay off my loans for me. If I graduated with zero debt I would not see any of those government bonuses. I expect that these programs will pay off my debt 100% over the course of 5-7 years so I needn’t budget any money from my main income to go towards debt.

I expect after graduating that I will have to work for 5-7 years to have my ~$400k I’ll need to be financially independent. That puts me at 33-35 years old.

After I reach financial independence I am not at all sure what I will do. Right now there are a few possibilities, I’m not entirely sure which ones will stay or what order they will be performed in, and I leave room for additions at any time:

1. Live aboard a sail boat and do some traveling.

2. Continue my education in engineering, theology, philosophy, physics, robotics or mathematics.

3. Bike cross country (Tried this once and made it about 1/4 of the way).

4. Some long-distance hikes.

5. Some long-distance kayak/canoeing.

6. Do a ~3-6 month RV tour of North America.

7. Get some remote property and build myself a cabin.

8. Just keep working because I love it so much.

9. Take a break from work, do some of these things, then take up a new career.

10. _________________________________

Before I quit my work there are a few things I’d like under my belt besides financial independence:

1. Helicopter/Airplane Pilot’s License.

2. Captain’s License / Some overnight sailing experience.

3. Complete basic home electrical, plumbing, welding and automotive courses.

4. __________________________________

So there we go, some pretty great plans for after the work life is over. I don’t mean to look too obsessed about life after work, I am looking forward to my career after school, probably more than most people. It isn’t that it’s all bad and I can’t wait to get past it, it’s just that, as an employee, you lack a certain amount of control and so you are somewhat robbed of the enjoyment of planning. It’s just not quite so fun to day dream about those years of compromising, following orders and attending meetings.

I should probably write down what exactly I mean by financial independence sometime.

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