So here’s something interesting – I haven’t made any real money for the past 6 months! And even wilder – I haven’t even noticed it much lately??! It’s the first time since I started working that I don’t have a “salary”, thereby officially entering me into the status of WifeFI:
“Financially Independent, enabled by my wife who still works 😂”
I do make some money consulting each month, as well as some extra change typing away my thoughts here (and that’s literally all it is these days, as it turns out when you nix most of your ads you don’t get paid! lol), but by and large my income is inconsequential compared to my wife’s which is currently paying all the bills right now.
It’s an interesting place to be. I’m not very motivated to chase money for some reason, but I’m also not satisfied just laying around and doing nothing either… Hence – why I’m back here at the blog! But even more surprisingly – I haven’t really missed my paychecks since the Motley Fool gave me the boot earlier this year, which was no small amount at $10,000+ mo.
How a guy can go from obsessing over money to not even noticing he hasn’t got paid in a while is beyond me… Though to be honest it actually makes me feel kinda proud of myself! :) It means I’m no longer a slave to the green as I once was, nor am I using up the bulk of my time chasing it all the time. I’m much more focused on *life* now and just “being”, and while I still have to pay attention to money of course, it’s no longer the top priority it once was.
I think “peace” is the right word for it. Financial peace.
And it was right around the $400k mark when I first really started noticing this… Enough to feel secure and pay all the bills, but also still able to have a little extra for fun and flexibility. With each additional $100k just adding to the foundation and making money less and less important over time. (Or I should say, not as “life changing” – I still very much LIKE having money, lol, but it doesn’t drastically change my life anymore)
I should also note that this comes from a super privileged white dude who’s had fortune and luck on his side the entire time :) Sure I’ve worked my a$$ off over the years and proud of what I’ve built, but I’ve also had a leg up throughout it and need to keep reminding myself to appreciate it all which I oftentimes fail at more than I care to admit…
Still, I never saw this stage coming!
It actually marks the 6th one since starting the journey:
- 1995-2008: I was a SINK (Single Income, No Kids)
- 2008 – 2010: We were DINKs (Dual Income, No Kids)
- 2010 – 2013: Then SINKs (Single Income, No Kids)
- 2013 – 2016: Then the hairiest – SIKs! (Single Income, Kids)
- 2016 – 2022: Then back to the good life, DIKs (Double Income, Kids)
- 2022 – present: And now WIFEFI (Wife Enabled Financial Independence)
Such drastic stages over the years. With the best ones outside of a $hit sandwich, haha… Those middle SIK years there were pretty rough for a while!! When a perfect storm of events hit, and completely sucked our savings from $94,000 down to a paltry $3,000 in three short years… It was pretty embarrassing as a money blogger, but of course we continued to share it all in the name of transparency! 👊
Then the wife jumped back into the workforce after a 5+ year hiatus (she went back to school to get her Masters and PhD) and we were once again back to smooth sailing… Which is just one of the half dozen reasons she continues to work: she wants to use all those hard-earned degrees!, she genuinely enjoys what she does, the job is STABLE (a government one, which helps counter balance my very much non-solid one, haha…), and then of course there’s the benefits like retirement funds and pensions (remember those?) as well as a fantastic health insurance plan.
So don’t think this is just me taking advantage of her! Which I am still a little, of course – who doesn’t want a Sugar Mama?! – but in reality it’s her not wanting to join me in the dark side yet, as well as reaping the rewards after years of hustling ;)
Yet another benefit of paying attention to all this stuff!! So one day you don’t have to!
It’ll be interesting to see what happens from here (do I go back and get a “job” later after missing money??? Do I go the opposite way and cut *everything* out to free up even more time? Do I forever remain Wife-Fi’d?) but as it stands today, I’m at peace… Another new life experience under the belt!
What financial stage are you currently in? Are you content with it?
Your fiscally sexy friend,
PS: Here are some other (totally made up) financial stages I’ve hit over the years as well… Maybe you too? ;)
- BOB — “Baller On a Budget!”
- SEXPLOY — “Sexy & Unemployed”
- FIGMY$HIT— “Finally Got My $hit Together!”
- MOHO — “Money Hoarder”
- HUN — “Hustler Unleashed”
- ISNOB — “Indexer Snob”
- PX3U — “Proud Penny Picker Upper”
- FRUCLASSITY — “Frugal and Classy”
- FULLTRASH — “Full Timer Rocking a Side Hustle”
- FREEDLER — “Freedom Lover”
- MILLIONAIRING — “Millionaire In Training”
- DIVFROD — “Divorced From Debt!”
- SFL — “Spreadsheets For Life”
- CAFLOK— “Cash Flow King”
- STARFROTBONWEH — “Started From The Bottom Now We Here”
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We’re in the DINKs stage, although we didn’t meet until ages 30 & 35 (married at 31 & 36), so while we’re doing all right, we’re not rolling in the dough. We’re also not high income earners. I have $29k left on student loans (though if Biden’s plan goes through that will drop to $9k), from a high of about $70k. I’m looking forward to those being gone so we can start saving more towards retirement and other goals. I do find I sometimes forget about it being payday and it’s nice to be in that place rather than waiting anxiously for the check to hit so I can pay bills.
Not freaking out every payday is HUGE – and even better if it comes and goes and you don’t even notice it :) Means you’re def. on the right track – well done 👍
I know where you’re coming from. I think I stopped grinding for money once we paid our house off. Now, I question whether I think something will be fulfilling and peaceful before concerning myself with how much money it will bring in. I’m also much more protective of my mental and physical health, so it’s harder to justify spending alot of time on a project or adding more stress to my days (I have 4 kids!). Not sure how you’d classify us, but my husband and I live on my 9-5 income and we also have 2 rental properties. (We sold 2 of our rentals earlier this year to make our lives more peaceful and less stressful, lol). MILK, maybe?? Multiple Income Lots of Kids?? Hahaha!!
MILK!! Love that, hahaha… What a beautiful place to be :) And you are so right on the mental/health stuff… yet another great perk of getting this money stuff down!
I’m gonna make this my goal now lol, I know people in this position but you made the best phase out of it! Your not he only one J, and you said it best it’s not taking advantage of her income, you’ve built up a lot on your own and together, and she has the option to join you if she wants. TicToc Life is in a similar position, where Chris doesn’t work but consults here and there and Jenny works part time.
You deserve this, don’t sell yourself short!
Thanks man :) I do tend to downplay/forget a lot of it since it’s been so many years now (15!), so I appreciate the reminder man… Good looking out 👊
Your wife must really be career motivated to get two college degrees, one of which is a Ph.D., and work with three rambunctious boys. Is she a scientist? I have one daughter who is a Ph.D. botanist and is very career oriented and a daughter who’s dream it was to be a mom. She was lucky and got twins.
Sounds like you have two happy daughters! The one thing we *don’t* have around here with our household PACKED full of boys, haha… No one will tell me the secret in making them, I don’t know why?!!! 😂
(And nope – she’s not a scientist.)
Making them may have something to do with budgets, because, you know, Budgets Are Sexy.
Anyway, sons or daughters, it’s all fantastic when they are healthy and energetic and are making their way in the world.
amen to that 🙏
I may have been WifeFI for about 15 years now. I’ve still made money in that time, just smaller amounts, nothing close to getting $10k paychecks from Motley Fool – LOL.
I know that I’d miss that much income, but given what you went through (and maybe still going through to some degree) it puts it all in a new perspective.
Getting sick def. added to my appreciation of life… I can’t tell you how much i enjoy eating and drinking stuff again now!! A bit *too* much by the look at my belly, lol, but gosh- just the ability to chew and swallow again is one of the best (and often taken for granted) things in life.
hahaha I love these. WifeFI is the goal! Lately I’ve been a SINK SHIP: Single Income No Kids Somewhat Happy Investing Poorly.
HAH! Crypto tends to do that to us ;)
Hi J: don’t forget the value you contribute by saving the cost of child care for 3 boys! Muy expensive!
Is there a HUEFI category? I’m Husband Enabled FI. I retired for the third and last time at 68; husband is younger and still working. We paid our house off last year and have comfortable savings, but he likes his co-workers and seems not in a hurry to retire. I enjoy the time to try new recipes/cook at home, and of course he enjoys eating all the experiments!
Peace to All,
Sounds like everyone’s winning over there!! so cool you retired not once, but THREE TIMES too lol.. A lady in demand :)