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Financial Independence Retire Early (FIRE) is a trending lifestyle right now and let me just start off by saying I absolutely love the concept.

Almost nothing motivates me more than knowing that every decision I make today to save and grow my wealth will have a tremendous positive impact in the future from a wealth perspective. That being said, I think we all have to truly understand what it means to “retire” when engaging in the FIRE lifestyle.

For myself, retiring is all about having the freedom to spend the majority of my time doing something I am truly passionate about. 

If you look at people like Steve Jobs and Warren Buffet, they have spent so much time working in their companies that one would think they never retired.

The truth is, however, Steve Jobs and Warren Buffet retired a long time ago. Steve Jobs retired when he started Apple in a garage in his early 20’s and Warren retired when he discovered his love of investing.

They found their passion early on and woke up every day with a great feeling. Even though they put in more hours each week than a standard employee, they are actually retired (in my book anyway) because they love what they do. Oh, and by the way, Warren Buffet is 89 and still runs Berkshire Hathaway.

At the end of the day, life comes down to happiness. We can all grow old with millions of dollars in the bank but if we aren’t truly happy, then all that money doesn’t matter.

I am choosing the FIRE lifestyle right now because I believe time is the biggest asset we have in life and I want to spend as much of it as I can with the people I care about while continuing to generate income doing something that lights a fire within me. My passion is teaching people about entrepreneurship, finance, and happiness and ultimately building wealth.

My question to the FIRE community is, why are you choosing the FIRE lifestyle? Is your goal to sit on a beach while enjoying the sunset or do you plan to do something you are truly passionate about that goes against the traditional meaning of retiring?

I’m not saying, either way, is right or wrong, I just want to stimulate some thought into the actual meaning of retirement so we each know what we are doing this for. 

Jacob Pippenger

Author Jacob Pippenger

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