Welcome to today’s topic: 

FIRE Movement Retirement (The 9-5 Job Slavery Antidote)

“FIRE Movement Retirement (The 9-5 Job Slavery Antidote)”

Our modern generation has made our standard of living too expensive. Looking back 50 years ago, life is so simple and the cost of living is weigh far below than the numbers we see today.

Back then, most of the households have only one source of income – a typical employment income solely from the husband and the wife is normally the one taking care of the children.

Fast forward today, most of the households have 2 active sources of income- both husbands and wives are working while the children are in the day institution or school.

Having two sources of active income comes with a lot of advantages and disadvantages in our daily lives. Let’s note some of them below.

Advantage and disadvantage of our modern lifestyle

One of the advantages of having higher household income (husband and wife working actively) is that – now, you can afford to buy “a lot” of things like:

  • a bigger house
  • a summer house
  • more than one car
  • different kinds of subscriptions – newspaper, Netflix, cellphone, etc.
  • more expensive digital gadgets
  • and the list can go on…

A lot of those things are really nice to have but in reality, the basic necessities lie far behind those things that we work or strive for.

On the other hand, one of the disadvantages of working 8-10 hours a day or 40-50 hours a week is the time itself.

Using 200 hours or more a month at your workplace can create pressure in your daily lives especially when you just got started building a little family.

However, since having established that high cost of living weighs back before starting a family, you can’t just stop working. Otherwise, you can lose “a lot” of the things that you “are used” to be having as your “normal” daily life, such as a big house.

So, keeping you working a lot of hours a month for the reason for sustaining your expensive lifestyle is what we called today the of the 9-5 job slavery.

Myths About the 9-5 Job Slavery

The following myths are the things you’ll likely hear from the people who keep working for the job they don’t even love.

Some of them are completely wrong and lies. Some of them are half true.  And some of them are just alibis but in reality, they really want to escape from this rat race.

  • My company prioritizes people before money
  • Climbing the corporate ladder will make me rich
  • My job is stable and secure
  • Diversity is a victory for everyone
  • Things will get better when I get promoted
  • My 9–5 job will teach me valuable skills
  • Other people’s salaries are none of my business
  • Starting a business is a huge risk
  • My company’s leaders are smart, honest, hardworking people
  • If I work hard, I’ll be rewarded accordingly

Can You See Time Freedom In Your Day? 

Just for fun, let’s breakdown all the time that we need or recommended to be using within 24 hours and see how poisonous it is to have 9-5 job slavery.

Please don’t get me wrong. If you love your job and it gives you a lot of freedom, then don’t ever consider it as a poison.

Okay, let’s start…

(1) You need 8 hours of sleep

(2) You use 2 hours and 30 minutes before you go to work (minus 1 hour and 10 minutes without the kids). 

  • Brush your teeth 3 minutes
  • Take a bath for 10 minutes (average)
  • Dress and make up for 8 minutes (women)
  • Prepare breakfast for the whole family 20 minutes 
  • Waking up and helping your kids get dress and ready to school 30 minutes.
  • Eat breakfast 20 minutes (recommended for good digestion)
  • Pack lunch for kids and/or for yourself for 10 minutes
  • Send kids to school or day institution = 20 minutes including driving 
  • Drive to work 30 minutes incl. walking from the parking to your workplace

(3) You have to work 8 hours including lunch time.

(4) You use 3 hours and 30 minutes after work (minus 1 hour + 20 minutes without kids)

  • Drive back to school incl. walking to the parking lot for 30 minutes
  • Fetch the kids and drive back home for 20 minutes 
  • Cook Dinner for 30 minutes quick food
  • Eat dinner for 20 minutes 
  • Washing dishes 30 minutes including tiding up in the kitchen
  • Putting the kids into bed including bathing and reading books 1 hour
  • Evening tea for 15 minutes.
  • Brush your teeth for 3 minutes.
  • Remove makeup for 2 minutes.

Ok, let’s do the summary math and find out how many hours left out of the basic activities in a day.

  • Sleep = 8 hours
  • Activities before work = 2 hours and 30 minutes
  • Work = 8 hours
  • Activities after work = 3 hours and 30 minutes

Total: 22 hours 

Now, do you have 2 hours of freedom? Nope, not yet, there’s more.

  • Exercise (recommended at least 30 minutes a day)
  • Tiding up in the house in an ordinary day let’s say just 30 minutes.

What more? 

  • What if you use more than 8 minutes dressing up and putting makeup in the morning?
  • What if you use more than 10 minutes in the shower?
  • What if you use more than 30 minutes drive to work?
  • What if you need to work overtime? 
  • What if you use more than 30 minutes in cooking?
  • What if your kids can’t sleep right away and need your attention?
  • What if one of your kids get sick?
  • What if your kids have extra curriculum activities after school hours?
  • What if you want to watch a movie, read a book or something else before you go to bed?
  • And the list can go on…

Guess what? Can you see something that’s missing on that typical 24 hours/day?

You need to pee and poo too! lol. I don’t know how much time you use for that. I’d rather not to talk about it. That’s private (wink).

Seriously, if you already are “poisoned” with going to the job that you don’t even love, then the FIRE concept could be your antidote.  

Let’s see why and how…

The FIRE Movement Retirement

Today, there are people or a group of people who are living frugally and strictly follow the FIRE concept. FIRE stands for Financial Independence Retire Early.


This movement is originated in the US and now gaining a lot of attention and popularity on media across the globe – especially on the first countries which have likely the same high standard and high cost of living.

FIRE movement followers are aiming to retire before the age of 60s and some are also aiming a retirement age at 30. And mind you, there are already numerous followers who have reached these goals of early retirement with a frugal lifestyle in different ages.

If you have heard about FIRE and the extremely early retirement, then you probably heard a lot of critics about.

Nevertheless, if you are reading this you are probably looking for your way out of that 9-5 slavery system.

Does FIRE Movement
Make Sense For You?

What are the main benefits of FIRE Lifestyle?

  • Time freedom.
  • Financial independence.
  • Early retirement.
  • Quality time with your family and friends.

What are the disadvantages of FIRE concept?

In my honest opinion, an eventual disadvantage of this concept is fairly subjective and a question of your own willingness.

If you are used to living with a lot of luxury things around you and you are not willing to adjust or to give up some or a lot of these things, then that would be the big disadvantage for you.

Will you keep two cars, a huge house, a luxury digital gadgets, and a summer house, if that would mean you have to work more than 200 hours a month?

Oh, plus the transportation time from your home to your workplace that you use.  Let’s say one hour a day, so that’s around 20 hours a month. That’s a 5-working day a week. So, if you work more than 10 hours or more than 5 days a week, your numbers would be different.

So, How Does FIRE Concept Work?

These are the basic things how FIRE concept works: 

  • Saving enough moving to sustain your lifestyle at the Safe Withdrawal Rate of 4 % plus the inflation rate.
  • Cutting expenditures.
  • Learn new things to save more money.
  • Keeping things more basic.
  • Learning new things to earn more money passively and achieve financial freedom eventually.

Related Post: 

How Much Do You Need to be Financially Independent?

As mentioned above, you need to have enough money at the safe withdrawal rate of 4% plus the inflation rate. FIRE Movement is using the Rule of 25.

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Steps In Adapting FIRE Concept

By looking, reviewing and evaluating your budget today, you can tell what exactly you need to do to start applying FIRE concept.

  1. Determine your target budget after retirement – refer to the table above.
  2. Cut down your expenses.
  3. Sell all the unnecessary things you have at home like clothes, shoes, old books, etc. and add the money to your investment account.
  4. Get rid of your debts as much as possible and as soon as possible.
  5. Most of the people sell their houses to get rid of the mortgage loan, which normally occupies the biggest part of the budget.
  6. Some people rent out their huge house and move into a much smaller place or even in an RV.
  7. If the size of your portfolio is still not enough at this point, then you have to continue working and save as much as 50-80% of your salary.
  8. Learn to invest
  9. Learn to live frugally
  10. Learn to save more
  11. Learn to earn more

There are two types of FIRE Movement: 

  • The Lean FIRE – is when you cut down all your expenses drastically and retire extremely early.
  • The Fat FIRE – is when you don’t have the intention to change your lifestyle and you just save and invest more money then retire early.

These are the key values of the FIRE concept: 

  • You don’t have to wait for your golden years to enjoy time freedom.
  • “Retired” does not mean not working or not earning at all.
  • It doesn’t matter how much you earn, it’s how much you spend.
  • Using the magic of compounding interest.
  • It requires a lot of self-control and discipline to achieve any goal.

Final Thoughts

Why do we really want to die working hard and live like a slave in our own lifestyle?

When I was a kid, my parents told me that “money is not everything”. This is very true yet very controversial. Looking around us can make us think that money controls everything.

If you don’t have money then your poor but if you have a lot of money, then you’re still poor?

Why? “poor you” – you have to work hard for the money just to pay a lot of bills. Bills that you actually have control over. It’s a total paradox. 

Money is important but it’s not everything, yes. Of course, you need money to live but in my own opinion, you only need “enough” money to enjoy financial independence and freedom.

How much is enough is solely depending on the lifestyle you want.

However, you need to ask yourself sometimes. “Do I love what I’m doing every day?”. If your answer is a clear no. Then you have to reevaluate your way of living.

Everyone deserves financial independence and freedom. Start building your assets and set yourself free from the bondage of the 9-5 job slavery.

This is the end of today’s topic “FIRE Movement Retirement (The 9-5 Job Slavery Antidote)”. I hope you have learned something from this particular matter and that it would help you to make wiser decisions for your personal finances and retirement plans.

This post aims to inspire you to take more actions in improving your personal finances. However, we highly recommend talking to your financial advisor for the actual investment plans that suit your current financial status. 

If you have any suggestion or question, please feel free to comment below. Thanks and good luck to your journey to financial freedom. 

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