Almost all high-income professionals that I know tell me the same: they want to become rich fast so that they can retire soon.
Most of us IP lawyers earn money only when we are working. In other words, we trade our time for money.
When discussing the issue of our personal financial situation with my peers it comes out that – homes and retirements accounts set aside – the most valuable asset which they own is their own ability to work. Taken today’s low investment return rates into account, the most valuable investment that we own is the investment called “ourselves”. Example: let’s say a professional is earning 200,000 US$ per year, the corresponding capital stock to make that income from interest payments would be 10 Mio US$ big. Very few can save such a capital stock during their lifetime, working as an IP lawyer.
Here is a newspaper article about this problem: http://www.nytimes.com/2015/12/15/your-money/your-most-valuable-asset-is-yourself.html
My blog is part of the solution to account for this problem, and you can make use of it for yourself.
Find ways to compensate for the declining number of years of productivity that we have left.
In the first place, we have to increase our level of productivity as we get older.
The habit of constantly mastering new techniques and tools extends into later life. If you get this habit early, it will not be seen as a burden when you have to continue it beyond the age of 55. You don’t have to be on the cutting edge of technology. Being on the trailing edge is sufficient.
My web page www.ip-lawyer-tools.com will keep you updated on this. Subscribe here if you want to follow me, I will send you a weekly reminder email with a fresh Tip of the Week that saves you time and money
Second, we have to stay active. This is our personal responsibility and it is also easy to solve. And we can afford it. Just Google for “personal fitness trainer” and the name of your town and you will find a lot of offers. Prices for good personal fitness trainers range from US$ 60 to US$150 per 60 minutes. This is worth it. There is no easier and less time-consuming way to become active when you are older than 40 years. And there is no age limit for working out in a gym. Don’t try it without a personal trainer, you can get hurt badly.
And here is some evidence that I’m walking my talk (click on the image):
Third, find out what your calling in life is and put it to practice. I recommend abandoning the pursuit of finding happiness once and for all. I have several articles about this topic on my website, and you can start with this one: https://ip-lawyer-tools.com/the-pursuit-of-happiness-versus-a-day-job-plus-a-calling/
Fourth, life, when you are beyond a certain age, is no longer about seeking success. It is then all about seeking significance. Recognize this and, by putting this insight to practice, avoid a midlife crisis. If it worked for me it may also work for you.
Do this and you can stay active in the workforce for at least an extra decade. This will also push out the number of years of net income remaining to you. Be honest with yourself: for an IP lawyer, these added years of work are not a burden. On the contrary, these extra years will be fun.
These extra-years in the workforce are an opportunity. Retirement will not be a lure for you.