Dinner Party Reject
Jillian Johnsrud
by Jillian Johnsrud
8M ago
(From my June email newsletter. If you ever wondered what it’s like to get an email from me.)  I’ve never been invited to a dinner party twice. At least, that used to be true. I think people who know me now assume I’m joking or exaggerating. Meeting new people, I appear warm, interested, and personable. I seem like a person who would make a fine dinner party guest. But I assure you I was not for many years. I was bad at something. And now I’m better at it. Not amazing, but better. At the risk of sounding conceited, I’m within the acceptable average as a dinner party guest. This week I had ..read more
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5 Different Options
Jillian Johnsrud
by Jillian Johnsrud
9M ago
“Should I take this new job offer, or should I stay at this job I don’t like?” my client was stuck in a mental holding pattern between these two options. And no matter how much she mulled over the choice, clarity was elusive.  It’s a common challenge I see with people trying to make big life choices. Here are the two options; what should I do? I always start by asking, “What are the other options?” The question is met with a pause and a bit of confusion. There seem to be only two options.  Option A or Option B. Door number one or door number two. In reality, in any situation, there a ..read more
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Financial Independence Happiness Chart
Jillian Johnsrud
by Jillian Johnsrud
1y ago
Just before my 33rd birthday, we informed all our friends, family, and coworkers that we would be taking a year off. It wasn’t our first mini-retirement, but it would be our longest with both of us away from the 9-5. Plus, we were about to welcome a baby, which would put our kid count at five. The general consensus was that people with five kids keep jobs, not quit jobs. So there was a good amount of confusion around our choice. Often we think about retirement as an age, but turning 65 doesn’t guarantee that you are financially prepared to retire. You might qualify for Medicare or be able to s ..read more
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Prepare for the Unexpected Mini-Retirement
Jillian Johnsrud
by Jillian Johnsrud
1y ago
In my 20’s, I was let go from a job. Kinda. Or I… a little bit left. My position was being combined with another position, one I had no interest in nor the skill set to tackle. Either way, I was unexpectedly unemployed. It’s a situation most people find themselves in at one point or another. And as typical, it was stressful and a bit sad. Bumming around the house, applying for jobs, trying to get caught up on housework but generally feeling uninspired.  That could have been the whole situation for me. Except this concept of mini-retirements had been swirling around in my head for so long ..read more
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In the Waiting
Jillian Johnsrud
by Jillian Johnsrud
1y ago
I have a theory that people mostly buy lottery tickets for the waiting. That’s where the magic really is. From the time to buy your ticket until the numbers are drawn, you wait. You dream about what you might do or change if you are suddenly a billionaire. The buying isn’t so much fun. The numbers being drawn is quickly anticlimactic. But those few days waiting in between, your mind can run wild.  I’m currently waiting.  We don’t often talk about the waiting. We postpone sharing until we have the end result. But most of us will wait for that news that could reshape our life at one po ..read more
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Five Big Reasons to Retire Often
Jillian Johnsrud
by Jillian Johnsrud
1y ago
My family and I are a month into an 8-month-long road trip. While logging a lot of steps, a lot of drive time, and watching my kids play in the ocean, I’ve been thinking about all the amazing benefits of taking a mini-retirement. Here are five of the big reasons I’ve taken 10+ mini-retirements and the most common reasons my clients take time away from the 9-5.    1. Get Caught Up So many of us feel like we are behind. Especially on everything that isn’t urgent but is important. Between work, family, and commitments, some things sit on the to-do list….indefinitely. All these things ac ..read more
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Stumbling Block for Change
Jillian Johnsrud
by Jillian Johnsrud
1y ago
We are in the process of transforming into full-blown snowbirds. It’s admittedly an odd life choice for people with five school-aged kids. And truthfully, a rather complicated choice. It’s definitely not an easy path forward. Living in a house and having kids in public school is a simpler choice.  So why go through all the hassle?  It’s the best option for my mental health. For starters, I get terrible seasonal depression. The shorter days and cold weather have never been my favorite, but where we live also is extremely cloudy in the winter, like nuclear fallout, cloudy. Like, I’m no ..read more
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The Roads Not Taken
Jillian Johnsrud
by Jillian Johnsrud
1y ago
“What’s an opportunity or pursuit that you passed on earlier in life, but if the opportunity came again, you would consider taking it?”  This is a question I contemplated a lot during our last three-month road trip. And this year, while I’m working a max of 8 hours a week, I’m still considering.  The Roads Not Taken Our lives are full of roads not taken. Paths diverged, and we made a choice. One choice pulled us farther away from the other choice. Maybe you have regrets. But most likely, you don’t. The choices we made brought us to where we are now.  The mistake is thinking that ..read more
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How to Avoid Early Retirement Failure
Jillian Johnsrud
by Jillian Johnsrud
1y ago
While life might be like a box of chocolates, I’d say it’s more like a garden box. We each have a specific and finite amount of time and space to grow what matters to us. There is often a work plant, a family one, friends, hobbies, or interests. At any point in time, each plant shares this finite resource of time, energy, and focus.  This is an analogy I use a lot with clients who are aiming for financial independence, want to take a mini-retirement, or retire early. The trouble with those goals is that the work plant can start to overwhelm the other plants. It can become invasive, crowdi ..read more
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Get Started Investing
Jillian Johnsrud
by Jillian Johnsrud
1y ago
Getting started investing can feel overwhelming. Investing for retirement can seem impossible. You might need one to two million dollars to retire comfortably. When you hardly ever have an extra few thousand, a million dollars seems like a made-up, laughable number.  The power of compound interest is truly mind-boggling! In reality, you don’t have to save a million dollars to get a million dollars. “Come, again?” you might say. With enough time on your side, your money + compound interest will do 90% of the saving for you.   Dollars, invested well, are hard-working little guys a ..read more
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