I am a savings hypocrite and I am okay with it. I am a blogger and a fan of the financial freedom road. I get behind sites like Mr. Money Mustache and Physician on Fire. I am pumped for the guys who go for the Financial Independence Retirement Early (FIRE). I think it’s great and it is something I strive for, but I am a hypocrite. I am a hypocrite in my savings rate.
Savings rate hypocrite
What makes me a savings hypocrite? The fact that I do not save what other bloggers do, but want to be. I do not save 50% of my income and live on $30K a year (closer to $60K for PoF). I live on $144K a year though $60K of this has been housing costs. Something neither of the above mentioned have.
I have managed to save 10% of my pre-tax income in 2014, 33% in 2015, and 27% in 2016. This is not bad (actually when I did the calculations it made me feel better about our savings! Part of the power of tracking the numbers.), but it is not the extreme numbers of the other guys.
I am okay with being a savings hypocrite. I think by striving for a goal, we achieve. Without a goal, we are destined to fail. Even if I only get half way there and save 25% instead of 50% and retire by 50 instead of 40, that’s okay.
The road to financial freedom is different for each person. I read an article by Reza Aslan on CNN. He was discussing why he has chosen Islam as his religion and why he thinks following one religion (whatever it may be) is the easiest way to find faith.
He summed it up like this, we each dig a well to obtain water. The well may be different, but the water is the same (there are many roads to the same path in essence). Why would you dig 6 one foot wells to get water when 1 six foot well would likely be more productive.
I see this as saying, we can all discuss our paths and while MMM or PoF may have one path (and their paths even differ) mine may be a bit longer. So I can enjoy and support the idea of early retirement, but it does not mean I have to retire by 40. I can discuss financial planning and saving (both of which I do), but I am not a failure if I am not saving 50% of my income.
It should be the same for all of us. The path may vary, but as long as we are all intending on improving our financial and personal lives and take steps on the road, we will get there. How quick just depends on what we want from life.
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