My oh my, how time flies. It’s Leisure Freak’s Fourth Anniversary sharing all of my early retirement tips and experiences. Just when I think I have experienced all I can from this little trip I get unexpected surprises. There is always something fun and new to learn, changes in the way things are done, changes in the way I feel about things, and a lot of nonsense to deal with. I do find it all fascinating and at the same time I’m reminded how easy it is to get sucked into things I would really rather not have in my early retired leisure freak lifestyle.
I started Leisure Freak because I wanted to learn how to create and administer a website. I also wanted to share my passion for early retirement, how I did it, and my twist on what I see as a realistic definition of retirement. With that I have learned a lot and continue to learn and experience new things associated to this online ride.
This past year brought some new opportunities for Leisure Freak. I was approached to enter into a Content Syndication agreement of which I accepted with The Dynamic Wealth Report. They share some of my posts with their readers. I appreciate them for reaching out to me and our relationship has been very positive.
I continue to support other bloggers and freelance writers by posting their contributed articles.
Leisure Freaks site traffic continues to slowly grow even as I find I’m spending less time trying to grow it. That’s because my interests keep expanding and there is only so much time in the day.
Life Imitating Seinfeld
Sometimes things happen and it mirrors a Seinfeld TV episode. The first time it happened to me I didn’t see it happening until I was a day or so into it. It started off slowly with an interesting proposal about the Leisure Freak site that I hadn’t contemplated before. It was an unsolicited offer from a media company to buy Leisure Freak.
At first I was intrigued by the idea. They offered a price and asked if I would be interested. I explained that I hadn’t thought about it before and needed to think about it. They sent me their terms and conditions for the sale and I asked that they give me a couple of days to get back to them. I then went through everything they sent and researched the company.
How this Intersects with a Seinfeld episode
While on a hike the next day with my bride it hit me. As part of the conditions they gain full control of all content as their property. Although Leisure Freak offers the early retirement strategies I used to pull it off, there is also a lot of personal stories and experiences. I laughed and thought this is just like when Kramer sold his life stories to Peterman for his autobiography in the Seinfeld, Van Buren Boys episode. It later catches up to Kramer when Elaine tells him he can’t tell his life stories to his buddies anymore because they now belong to Peterman. He eventually has to beg to get them back.
I declined the offer. Some weeks later there was another unsolicited offer from a different media company. I didn’t need time to think about it and I declined their offer. I can’t say that I would never consider a like-deal in the future but now I have at least thought about what that would take.
The Constant Opportunity For Ego To Get In The Way
There are a lot of things I can do and do very well. But a lot of them are things that I really don’t care to do anymore. However, I always keep an open mind and love having the option to pursue opportunities I really want to experience or learn more about. There are always other less desired opportunities that challenge my ego. There’s the recruiter contacts with semi-interesting opportunities where ego says I can easily do that and bank big bucks. I have no problem tamping ego down for that. But over the past year something new started coming to elevate ego into my leisure freak lifestyle.
Don’t take yourself so seriously, it’s just life
As far as I am concerned ego loves us to take ourselves seriously and project that to the world. The ego challenging experiences that started was my being asked for interviews to be posted on popular personal finance related websites under the condition I reveal my full name and bio. I am flattered when approached and at first ego had the upper hand in my thinking. Who doesn’t want online name recognition? Well, in the game of retire early and often that I enjoy playing, this guy doesn’t!
I do see the value in self promotion to be successful. But I had to ask myself what it is I want in my early retirement freedom lifestyle. Would doing this be about that or simply succumbing to ego? Taming ego isn’t that hard if you have a purpose, goals, and a plan to stick to. I would rather always keep my options open for opportunities. Having a recruiter or hiring manager search my name and see that I am Leisure Freak Tommy talking about living life on my terms, employment liberation, being picky about what I do and for whom I do it would limit my opportunities. Face it, the overlords of paid opportunity prefer desperate employees. Employees willing do whatever they want them to do over someone who is financially independent and able to leverage work for pay in their favor.
I initially let ego control the conversation in my head when the first interview opportunity came. But then I soon concluded that online recognition for personal finance or notoriety associated to my full name isn’t aligned with my early retirement lifestyle goals nor is it required to meet them. I have happily and kindly declined.
I could go on and on talking about the past year’s Leisure Freak ride. Going forward I do plan on writing at least a couple of new posts each month where I try to share something useful to anyone interested in early retirement, working in retirement, and the way retirement can mess with your mind after decades of employment conditioning.
I do want to thank my readers for stopping by Leisure Freak. I also give a big thank you to those who share their well-wishes and insightful thoughts in post comments and email contact. Leisure Freak’s Fourth Anniversary would have not happened without your support.