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What's your motivation to do things if you don't need to make money.

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WowVisible

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I've been thinking about this alot lately because I'm now at the point where I truly think that I have enough. But I'm not 100% certain yet. And it's also not as much as people may think. I know that is weird to say, but as you get older, you actually need less and less money. It's an odd place to be in, where your motivation for doing things ever since you were a teenager suddenly disappears.

I made this post in July 2020 (HOT TOPIC - How would you spend $1 million dollars and get no sellable value from it?). As you can see, this idea of spending money and having enough has been on my mind for a while now.

Then, someone recommended this book to me a month ago, (BOOK - Book discussion: Die With Zero) and it basically reinforced what I had already been thinking.

Getting back to how much is enough. That's a tough question. I'm going to be 50 this year and if I estimate that I'll live till 90, that's 40 more years of spending money. However, let's do some math here. If I had $4M, I could spend $100k a year. Many of you may think that $100k a year is not enough. However, if you factor in investments, real estate appreciating, rent increases, it's pretty clear that one could spend alot more than $100k a year and still have a substantial amount at age 90. So in reality, I could probably spend $150k a year on $4M. Now let's assume that I had $6M. Well now it's truly a no brainer. I mean $200k a year for the next 40 years with no living expense?

Now imagine if I continue to work 5 years. During this time I will increase my net worth and then have only 35 years to go. So now my yearly spend number increases to $250k-$300k? It's sort of going in the wrong direction. This is why I'm pondering all this right now. Just before I turn 50, and not 55 or 60.

So where is this going? Well, the funny thing is that alot of the things I have wanted to do was money motivated. And without the money part, I wonder if I still want to do them.

For example, I've always wanted to buy land and build tiny homes on them. Buy why did I want to do this? Well, the building part was cool and the finished product is cool too. But the last part is where you put them on Airbnb and make $200/night x 350 nights = $70,000. Multiply that by 5 tiny homes and you got $350,000/yr coming in. Again the dream was money based. What else would I do with them? Leave them empty? Sell them?

So I'm wondering if I should still but land and build Airbnb tiny homes, IF I don't care about what they can bring in. What is the purpose of this project then? Is it a hobby that I'd do regardless of monetary consequences? That's a question I haven't answered yet.

People tell me, you should buy bitcoin... but why?
You should buy XXX stock, but why?
You should buy real estate in XXX, but why?

Why should I if there is no money motivation?

This past week me and @snowbank went around Sedona looking at lots and new construction. I am trying to look at things without a money lens, but it is so hard. When you stand on a lot that is asking $300k. You look at the beautiful views. But then you ask, how much does it cost to build, how much does the next house over sell for? Then you do the calculations in your head. Hmmm, if I buy this and build this, it will be worth this and I can sell it for this. But should any of that really matter if you want a house of your dreams on this lot?

I guess I'm trying to get to the point where I don't make decisions based on money. And I don't mean I waste money. But the potential profits or future value of things really shouldn't come into play anymore, if I truly have enough net worth today.

I'm curious to know so I ask @MJ DeMarco, what is the purpose of your day trading? Is it a fun game you play? Is it something you do to keep your mind sharp? I assume that the day trading returns are a small percentage of your net worth/cash flow?

Interested to hear everyone's thoughts.
For me, I won't stop making money because my purpose is clear that I want to help more people. In this world money is an instrument. Right now, I allocated 20% of my net income for Giving activities. I recommend focusing on helping others. You can build a foundation if you want. It's self-rewarding!

I highly recommend reading this book. I believe this will definitely answer your questions.
give and take.jpg
 
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biophase

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For me, I won't stop making money because my purpose is clear that I want to help more people. In this world money is an instrument. Right now, I allocated 20% of my net income for Giving activities. I recommend focusing on helping others. You can build a foundation if you want. It's self-rewarding!
My company does give alot as part of its business model. In the weeks since I've made this post, I've come up with a couple ideas on making companies that actually make no money. But the company itself would provide a certain goods or service at a great price.

To me, I would rather do that, than just "give" money away. For example, what if you started a grocery store than aimed for $0 profit and in doing so, all of your food in it was lower priced than others? That would save local people money every day. It would be spreading the "giving" around.
 

biophase

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I've been thinking about this alot lately because I'm now at the point where I truly think that I have enough. But I'm not 100% certain yet. And it's also not as much as people may think. I know that is weird to say, but as you get older, you actually need less and less money. It's an odd place to be in, where your motivation for doing things ever since you were a teenager suddenly disappears.

I made this post in July 2020 (HOT TOPIC - How would you spend $1 million dollars and get no sellable value from it?). As you can see, this idea of spending money and having enough has been on my mind for a while now.

Then, someone recommended this book to me a month ago, (BOOK - Book discussion: Die With Zero) and it basically reinforced what I had already been thinking.

Getting back to how much is enough. That's a tough question. I'm going to be 50 this year and if I estimate that I'll live till 90, that's 40 more years of spending money. However, let's do some math here. If I had $4M, I could spend $100k a year. Many of you may think that $100k a year is not enough. However, if you factor in investments, real estate appreciating, rent increases, it's pretty clear that one could spend alot more than $100k a year and still have a substantial amount at age 90. So in reality, I could probably spend $150k a year on $4M. Now let's assume that I had $6M. Well now it's truly a no brainer. I mean $200k a year for the next 40 years with no living expense?

Now imagine if I continue to work 5 years. During this time I will increase my net worth and then have only 35 years to go. So now my yearly spend number increases to $250k-$300k? It's sort of going in the wrong direction. This is why I'm pondering all this right now. Just before I turn 50, and not 55 or 60.

So where is this going? Well, the funny thing is that alot of the things I have wanted to do was money motivated. And without the money part, I wonder if I still want to do them.

For example, I've always wanted to buy land and build tiny homes on them. Buy why did I want to do this? Well, the building part was cool and the finished product is cool too. But the last part is where you put them on Airbnb and make $200/night x 350 nights = $70,000. Multiply that by 5 tiny homes and you got $350,000/yr coming in. Again the dream was money based. What else would I do with them? Leave them empty? Sell them?

So I'm wondering if I should still but land and build Airbnb tiny homes, IF I don't care about what they can bring in. What is the purpose of this project then? Is it a hobby that I'd do regardless of monetary consequences? That's a question I haven't answered yet.

People tell me, you should buy bitcoin... but why?
You should buy XXX stock, but why?
You should buy real estate in XXX, but why?

Why should I if there is no money motivation?

This past week me and @snowbank went around Sedona looking at lots and new construction. I am trying to look at things without a money lens, but it is so hard. When you stand on a lot that is asking $300k. You look at the beautiful views. But then you ask, how much does it cost to build, how much does the next house over sell for? Then you do the calculations in your head. Hmmm, if I buy this and build this, it will be worth this and I can sell it for this. But should any of that really matter if you want a house of your dreams on this lot?

I guess I'm trying to get to the point where I don't make decisions based on money. And I don't mean I waste money. But the potential profits or future value of things really shouldn't come into play anymore, if I truly have enough net worth today.

I'm curious to know so I ask @MJ DeMarco, what is the purpose of your day trading? Is it a fun game you play? Is it something you do to keep your mind sharp? I assume that the day trading returns are a small percentage of your net worth/cash flow?

Interested to hear everyone's thoughts.

So I'm bumping this thread because it is a year later and I honestly don't have any new answers. This past year was great for me in terms of money. Ecommerce business valuations went to 3.5x to 6-7x. In addition, purchasing a home in Las Vegas turned out to be a great move, as real estate prices increased like crazy there. That meant my net worth jumped by a shit ton. So when I wrote this thread last year, I already thought I had enough money, but now I have way more.

My dog passed away recently so I've been even less motivated to do anything. She would be the reason that I had to wake up to let her out and feed her. She would be the reason I had to go on walks everyday. But now I am waking up later and later, like 10am, 11am. I just don't have anything that I need to do.

I fostered 2 8 week old puppies a few months ago, and that made me wake up at 6am everyday and they were a handful to take care of all day. I liked the work and responsibility but was very happy to see them get adopted after 2 weeks. I will be getting 2 new foster dogs in a few weeks. I think the dogs keep me from being a lazy bum.

IMG_0160.jpg

Self analyzing myself, I think that I've always been a high level thinker and very motivated to getting things done but I've always needed a goal or reward. And the goal of getting things done has always been... to make money... so I can buy shiny things or make my life and retirement is easier. Well, now I'm here in basically retirement and my life is easy. Maybe it's too easy. With Doordash, Amazon and Instacart I never have to leave my home. I leave to go to the gym and more recently, to play pickleball (that's the sign of official retirement based on the average age of people at the courts LOL).

I sometimes feel like my brain is bored. No complex problems to solve. No challenges. And when I come up with a challenge to myself, I think ahead on how much work it would take and decide against it. For example, let's say the challenge is to build a house on a lot. I think about dealing with contractors and permits, etc... and then I don't want to do it. In the past, the challenge was fun because there was a pot of gold at the end that I cared about. Now it's like playing a game with no score that never ends.
 

WJK

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So I'm bumping this thread because it is a year later and I honestly don't have any new answers. This past year was great for me in terms of money. Ecommerce business valuations went to 3.5x to 6-7x. In addition, purchasing a home in Las Vegas turned out to be a great move, as real estate prices increased like crazy there. That meant my net worth jumped by a shit ton. So when I wrote this thread last year, I already thought I had enough money, but now I have way more.

My dog passed away recently so I've been even less motivated to do anything. She would be the reason that I had to wake up to let her out and feed her. She would be the reason I had to go on walks everyday. But now I am waking up later and later, like 10am, 11am. I just don't have anything that I need to do.

I fostered 2 8 week old puppies a few months ago, and that made me wake up at 6am everyday and they were a handful to take care of all day. I liked the work and responsibility but was very happy to see them get adopted after 2 weeks. I will be getting 2 new foster dogs in a few weeks. I think the dogs keep me from being a lazy bum.

View attachment 41666

Self analyzing myself, I think that I've always been a high level thinker and very motivated to getting things done but I've always needed a goal or reward. And the goal of getting things done has always been... to make money... so I can buy shiny things or make my life and retirement is easier. Well, now I'm here in basically retirement and my life is easy. Maybe it's too easy. With Doordash, Amazon and Instacart I never have to leave my home. I leave to go to the gym and more recently, to play pickleball (that's the sign of official retirement based on the average age of people at the courts LOL).

I sometimes feel like my brain is bored. No complex problems to solve. No challenges. And when I come up with a challenge to myself, I think ahead on how much work it would take and decide against it. For example, let's say the challenge is to build a house on a lot. I think about dealing with contractors and permits, etc... and then I don't want to do it. In the past, the challenge was fun because there was a pot of gold at the end that I cared about. Now it's like playing a game with no score that never ends.
I tried retiring 19 years ago. I wasn't good at it. So, I spent the last 19 years marking stuff off of my goal list. I ran out of stuff on that list in 2020. Like you, I finished climbing my Mount Olympus. Now we each must answer that question I've been asking everyone -- What do you do after you climb your Mount Olympus?

Do you scale another mountain -- you don't need to. Do you rest of your laurels? It's boring. Do you retreat to the couch and your fridge? That's NOT much fun.

I'm not sure what the answer is. I'm starting another side gig and taking care of my core business. What is your answer?
 
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Fox

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So I'm bumping this thread because it is a year later and I honestly don't have any new answers. This past year was great for me in terms of money. Ecommerce business valuations went to 3.5x to 6-7x. In addition, purchasing a home in Las Vegas turned out to be a great move, as real estate prices increased like crazy there. That meant my net worth jumped by a shit ton. So when I wrote this thread last year, I already thought I had enough money, but now I have way more.

My dog passed away recently so I've been even less motivated to do anything. She would be the reason that I had to wake up to let her out and feed her. She would be the reason I had to go on walks everyday. But now I am waking up later and later, like 10am, 11am. I just don't have anything that I need to do.

I fostered 2 8 week old puppies a few months ago, and that made me wake up at 6am everyday and they were a handful to take care of all day. I liked the work and responsibility but was very happy to see them get adopted after 2 weeks. I will be getting 2 new foster dogs in a few weeks. I think the dogs keep me from being a lazy bum.

View attachment 41666

Self analyzing myself, I think that I've always been a high level thinker and very motivated to getting things done but I've always needed a goal or reward. And the goal of getting things done has always been... to make money... so I can buy shiny things or make my life and retirement is easier. Well, now I'm here in basically retirement and my life is easy. Maybe it's too easy. With Doordash, Amazon and Instacart I never have to leave my home. I leave to go to the gym and more recently, to play pickleball (that's the sign of official retirement based on the average age of people at the courts LOL).

I sometimes feel like my brain is bored. No complex problems to solve. No challenges. And when I come up with a challenge to myself, I think ahead on how much work it would take and decide against it. For example, let's say the challenge is to build a house on a lot. I think about dealing with contractors and permits, etc... and then I don't want to do it. In the past, the challenge was fun because there was a pot of gold at the end that I cared about. Now it's like playing a game with no score that never ends.

Sorry to hear about your dog.

How are you with hobbies?
Do you have any interest in something like learning to box or learning a new language?

I know you have mentioned hiking and mountain biking before - do those push you to do more?
 

MaxT

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Your topic is very interesting, thank you very much. For my part, it's for the money I'm not going to hide it but to realize my parents' dream above all: to have a beautiful house on the beach to spend their retirement there. I invest as much as possible on my side, and I really like my business and what I have built, even if there are ups and downs sometimes. I think that above all you have to listen to your instincts, and go for what makes you happy above all. If the quest for money no longer interests you, why continue? If you have a lot of side, have fun and enjoy life. Good luck to you in what you undertake. Maxime
 

MTF

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@biophase I'm sorry to hear about your dog.

So I'm bumping this thread because it is a year later and I honestly don't have any new answers.

A year later and I can still relate to that but have a different take on it as my spiritual "search" got me nowhere since last year. This included 257 days in a row of 1-hour meditation a day. They say self-introspection like this would help but it didn't work in my case. So I can't recommend that.

But now I am waking up later and later, like 10am, 11am. I just don't have anything that I need to do.

I generally feel better when I wake up early, even if I don't have anything to do. Perhaps set an alarm clock for early morning just to get up early. I find that sleeping late only exacerbates laziness (regardless of what you'll do after you get up).

Well, now I'm here in basically retirement and my life is easy. Maybe it's too easy.

I recently read this book: Amazon.com and found it very interesting. I think you'd find it valuable, too.

The guy basically says the same thing (his life was too easy), only he wasn't financially-independent when he started exposing himself to more discomfort in life.

I can attest to the power of discomfort (that's why I wrote a full thread on it). As strange as it sounds, it does increase my level of well-being. A couple of months ago I started learning how to freedive and while it's very challenging and scary to me, it's also very stimulating.

I always feel better after a freediving session. Perhaps it's also because while freediving with a partner is safe, you're still balancing a little on the edge (can't NOT think about death when you're holding your breath 20 meters underwater).

I recently got back to martial arts (krav maga, but also want to try BJJ). Each workout, while super demanding, is also very satisfying precisely because of the challenge.

I was rucking yesterday with a 12 kg kettlebell when a crazy snow storm started. It actually put a smile on my face even though I was cold and wet and lightning bolts struck around me.

I have many more such examples. Semi-voluntary hardships (I don't mean terrible things happening to you but voluntary discomfort) make you feel more alive and stimulated.

I sometimes feel like my brain is bored. No complex problems to solve. No challenges. And when I come up with a challenge to myself, I think ahead on how much work it would take and decide against it. For example, let's say the challenge is to build a house on a lot. I think about dealing with contractors and permits, etc... and then I don't want to do it. In the past, the challenge was fun because there was a pot of gold at the end that I cared about. Now it's like playing a game with no score that never ends.

Perhaps you'll find this video by Alex Hormozi useful:

View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ahslH-8qoFY


Description for more context:

What's the point of working if you are already super-wealthy? Well, it turns out that there are a few reasons why work is my goal and in this video, I’ll tell you why I choose to continue working after making a fortune, and why you should too!

Or maybe you won't relate to it (I don't know). He seems to be very work-focused for the sake of work but he also does mention that retirement destroyed his mental health so there's that. Also, philanthropy seems to be his driving force (he genuinely wants people to get rich and helps most for free).

Other things I'll look into (note that I'm also answering my own questions, I don't know the right answers since I'm struggling with this as well):
  • new "contribution" projects - perhaps the ones you currently have don't fulfill you as much as something else would.
  • optimizing your health/fitness - these usually work both on your physical and mental health whether you like it or not.
  • learning a difficult skill - and I mean something really difficult for you personally. If you're naturally skilled at, say, sports, but suck at singing, then perhaps try learning how to sing.
  • volunteer in a high stakes situation - become an emergency first responder, firefighter, mountain rescue, etc.
  • strip away all comforts and distractions - spend a month in a simple hut in the wilderness.
Also, one more thing to add: I have days when NONE of the above inspires me. It all feels like bullshit we engage in so that we can temporarily forget we're going to die anyway and NOTHING (not even the greatest philanthropic achievements) will make any lasting difference (how many people are remembered more than for a few generations at most?).

Ultimately, perhaps that's the secret. Understand and assimilate that life is ultimately meaningless and it's only sensible to enjoy it since it feels better than not enjoying it.
 
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MTF

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Your topic is very interesting, thank you very much. For my part, it's for the money I'm not going to hide it but to realize my parents' dream above all: to have a beautiful house on the beach to spend their retirement there. I invest as much as possible on my side, and I really like my business and what I have built, even if there are ups and downs sometimes. I think that above all you have to listen to your instincts, and go for what makes you happy above all. If the quest for money no longer interests you, why continue? If you have a lot of side, have fun and enjoy life. Good luck to you in what you undertake. Maxime

I did that (minus the beach). I'm extremely grateful I could make my parents' dream come true and I can see they're much happier. But the truth is that once your main dream is taken care of, you're back to feeling empty. This is what @WJK posted a couple of posts before yours.

I was VERY driven when I was working to make money to help them retire in the countryside. I was joking that once I made it happen I could die and it would be fine. And while it sounds morbid, there's still some truth to that. I feel like I've served my purpose.

My own dreams don't inspire me that much. For example, I'd like to have a nice house in a tropical country but I can't find in myself even 1/10 of the energy I had when I was broke working to afford land and build a house for my parents.
 

MaxT

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It's nice that you did this for your parents.
Nothing appeals to you anymore?
Don't fancy anything in particular?
Or you already have everything you just want, and there's no need for more ;)
 

biophase

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I tried retiring 19 years ago. I wasn't good at it. So, I spent the last 19 years marking stuff off of my goal list. I ran out of stuff on that list in 2020. Like you, I finished climbing my Mount Olympus. Now we each must answer that question I've been asking everyone -- What do you do after you climb your Mount Olympus?

Do you scale another mountain -- you don't need to. Do you rest of your laurels? It's boring. Do you retreat to the couch and your fridge? That's NOT much fun.

I'm not sure what the answer is. I'm starting another side gig and taking care of my core business. What is your answer?
I think that is my current problem. I do not have an answer. I believe that I would like to start another business. However, the purpose of this business cannot be to make money. So I’m looking for another purpose to start a business now. However my future thinking me is thinking that it is too much work and I am unmotivated to start it because of this.
 
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biophase

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Sorry to hear about your dog.

How are you with hobbies?
Do you have any interest in something like learning to box or learning a new language?

I know you have mentioned hiking and mountain biking before - do those push you to do more?
I just don’t have any interest in starting a new hobby. Or even learning something just to learn it. One thing I really do love is fish tanks and Koi ponds. However, because I don’t live in any of my homes for all 12 months I cannot take care of anything like this.

With mountain biking, I have taken lessons in and pushing to become a better rider. However it’s also physically dangerous to learn new skills. So I’m hesitant to go all out as I don’t want to get injured.

Also one reason why I seem to make/bump this post during winter time is because I tend to not have this feeling that I am bored during the summers because I am living in Colorado.

I don’t get the same sensation of mountain biking during the winter time here in Phoenix or Sedona. I really feel like Colorado summers is where I feel most at home.

As for hiking, I have climbed Mount Kilimanjaro twice now. A couple of my friends want to climb it this year and I told them that I would go again with them. But secretly I feel like I would quit on the final day and not make it to the top because I’ve done it before. The final day is the hardest day, and when I think about it, it makes me not want to go and do it again. It is about 16 hours of hiking.

I used to want to go to Everest base camp. That is 17 days of hiking. But honestly now that kind of achievement just doesn’t motivate me anymore.
 

biophase

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Your topic is very interesting, thank you very much. For my part, it's for the money I'm not going to hide it but to realize my parents' dream above all: to have a beautiful house on the beach to spend their retirement there.
Yes, those were my goals also. But I’ve reached them, so I am searching for what is meaningful afterwards.

I think that above all you have to listen to your instincts, and go for what makes you happy above all. If the quest for money no longer interests you, why continue?
 

biophase

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I generally feel better when I wake up early, even if I don't have anything to do. Perhaps set an alarm clock for early morning just to get up early. I find that sleeping late only exacerbates laziness (regardless of what you'll do after you get up).

I recently read this book: Amazon.com and found it very interesting. I think you'd find it valuable, too.
Thanks I’ll check out the book.

I’ve been waking up earlier, but mainly because I’ve been sleeping earlier. Still no reason to get out of bed. Lol

Side note, because I intermittent fast and don’t eat breakfast, it makes it much easier to stay in bed. I think in the past when I was working out and trying to get enough protein in daily, I had to make sure I got my breakfast in which forced me to get up early, else I wouldn’t have been hungry for lunch.

The guy basically says the same thing (his life was too easy), only he wasn't financially-independent when he started exposing himself to more discomfort in life.

I can attest to the power of discomfort (that's why I wrote a full thread on it). As strange as it sounds, it does increase my level of well-being. A couple of months ago I started learning how to freedive and while it's very challenging and scary to me, it's also very stimulating.
I think my main issue now is that I kind of don’t want to expose myself to any more discomfort. I think that’s the feeling of content. But I am also asking myself why.

Let’s say I want to climb mount Everest. My next question is why do I want to climb mount Everest? Is it really because I want to do it? Is it because I want to post the accomplishment on social media? Is it because I am bored and just want something challenging to do? Usually when I ask myself this question I don’t have a very good answer to the why.
Perhaps you'll find this video by Alex Hormozi useful:

View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ahslH-8qoFY

Thanks. That was a good video and I did relate to it. I do understand that we are fulfilled by hard work. However I don’t agree that it’s just hard work alone is fulfilling. I believe that the hard work needs to lead somewhere. At least that might be my limiting belief.

Interesting thing is that the first comment on that video is somebody that I know that sold his business two years ago.

I need to give him a call because I see he is going through the same issues as I am.
 
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Making money just to buy shit for yourself or have some cool experiences is something you get out of your system when you go from a normal person to being wealthy.

Now it’s time to actually do something that matters.

Just making some cash and being comfortable is so easy and low-level. You gotta think bigger, otherwise you’ll just get depressed. Think of all the fun you had building something that mattered to you.
 

MTF

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Side note, because I intermittent fast and don’t eat breakfast, it makes it much easier to stay in bed. I think in the past when I was working out and trying to get enough protein in daily, I had to make sure I got my breakfast in which forced me to get up early, else I wouldn’t have been hungry for lunch.

That's interesting. I've been doing IF for over a decade and it never really affected this part of my life. I simply start the day earlier than everyone else (I love peaceful mornings) and then finish it early, too (nothing good happens at night anyway lol).

I think my main issue now is that I kind of don’t want to expose myself to any more discomfort. I think that’s the feeling of content. But I am also asking myself why.

I get it. I was in the same phase (I mentioned this in my thread on discomfort). And ultimately it led me to less contentment, not more.

Let’s say I want to climb mount Everest. My next question is why do I want to climb mount Everest? Is it really because I want to do it? Is it because I want to post the accomplishment on social media? Is it because I am bored and just want something challenging to do? Usually when I ask myself this question I don’t have a very good answer to the why.

These are valid questions. For me the answer is that it doesn't matter as long as you don't do it to show off. Just do it because you feel like doing it (or because you're afraid of doing it).

Thanks. That was a good video and I did relate to it. I do understand that we are fulfilled by hard work. However I don’t agree that it’s just hard work alone is fulfilling. I believe that the hard work needs to lead somewhere. At least that might be my limiting belief.

I think that for him it's the purpose of helping people grow as entrepreneurs, not just hard work in itself (I don't think he'd enjoy digging holes all day long).

Interesting thing is that the first comment on that video is somebody that I know that sold his business two years ago.

I need to give him a call because I see he is going through the same issues as I am.

Wow that's crazy. Could you later post what he shared (if he gives you permission)?
 

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It's nice that you did this for your parents.
Nothing appeals to you anymore?
Don't fancy anything in particular?
Or you already have everything you just want, and there's no need for more ;)

It's not that nothing appeals to me. It's that nothing appeals to me so much to care deeply to make it happen. I do certain things because I enjoy doing them and/or because they're challenging or otherwise have a positive impact on my life (like working out).

But for example with my biggest "dream" right now (living in a nice house in a tropical country) I know that in the end getting that will probably not change my life much. I think that at some point of financial independence (or any other big achievement) you just realize that the outcome is never as life-changing and happiness-inducing as people think. Like Alex Hormozi said, when you get to the top of the mountain you realize that there's nothing there.
 
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I am not personally rich yet and certainly still after money (and value!) but, I totally get the boredom y'all are talking about.

Maybe it's because we're going on 2+ years of pandemic, with less fun overall for the whole population.

I feel a bit depressed about losing age 24 to 26 to this stuff. I mean, I still did some fun things, but nothing like what we were all doing before.

upbeat edit: To answer the titular question - the goal is to make an impact and leave a legacy.

You only get one life, so why not see how far you can take it?
 
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WJK

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I think that is my current problem. I do not have an answer. I believe that I would like to start another business. However, the purpose of this business cannot be to make money. So I’m looking for another purpose to start a business now. However my future thinking me is thinking that it is too much work and I am unmotivated to start it because of this.
My new business is to help the little guy in my community. I live in rural Alaska. We have a lot of people who live in "dry cabins". They have no running water. Or no septic tank. No indoor plumbing. Or no good driveway for our "break-up" season when everything is muddy. I getting my mortgage broker's license so I can make small loans on their properties so they can get their well, or septic tank, or do some grading. They are bottom 1/3 of the market who are not served. No one wants to make these small loans because the paperwork and rules are draconian.

And it's worse than that. If they don't have a septic tank, the electric company won't supply them with a meter and electrical service. If they are native, they must have all the electrical and plumbing run inside their cabin before the native corporation will give them the grant to dig a well. Other services are dependent on these needed improvements.

I grew up part of my childhood in the Ozark Mountains in Missouri. My dad's people are hillbillies. We were just getting electrical services in our area for many of the people. Many didn't have indoor plumbing. We had party lines when we had phone services rather than dial phones. It was before a lot of infrastructures that we needed.

Here I am, with people in my community in a similar situation with their utility needs. People say to just use wind or solar power. Neither reliably work here during our winters -- if they work at all. I want to help these people by making small, secured loans ($5,000 to $20,000) to give these people an option. I know almost all of the contractors in my area. So, I'm getting set up for this coming summer. I'm saving money to loan out when I get it set up -- my concern is having deep enough pockets. I've taken the required class and passed the Federal exam. I'm setting up an LLC and the IT stuff to support the new business. I must go through a credit check, background check, asset check, obtaining a surety bond, and a bunch of other steps to get the licenses for myself and my new company. It's creating a small non-depository bank. It's a real pain to get it set up. Yes, it will take time -- maybe years -- to bring it into profitability. It's going to take a lot of small loans to equal just one FHA, VA, or conventional loan that most mortgage brokers make and sell on the secondary market.
 

MJ DeMarco

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I'm currently in a similar situation, but not so much questioning the "what next" portion of the problem.

I'm extremely happy and probably at peace more than I've been in the last ten years.

I find that our motivations appear to be rooted in a desire to "find" happiness, as if happiness is something to be achieved, acquired, or found. Happiness cannot come from external sources, it must come from within. The external sources can enhance happiness, sure, but ultimately lasting happiness must come from the inside.

For me as I enter the last third of my life I'm looking to be less focused on money and external validations -- for me, I just want to be grateful for every moment that I can live how I want, and do work how I want. Gratitude is a big part of this happiness equation. The ability to make a difference in the world is profoundly rewarding, even though I rarely get to see the actual results of that difference.

It's a question that few address ... after you climb Mt. Olympus, what do you do next? After you've driven your dream car, lived in your dream house, and have the money to eat when/where you want, what's next?

Ultimately the answer might expose your true purpose in life.

Kenric perhaps for you it might be a charitable organization that rescues dogs, but does so with some type of new spin. Bring your extensive business experience and put a BIG SPIN on an industry that is rife with stagnation and no innovation. I think something that inspires a purpose beyond our selfish reasons might lead you to a more fulfilling existence.

I leave to go to the gym and more recently, to play pickleball

You got a game when you come back, we converted our basketball court into a pickleball court, it definitely is a much better workout (for us old geezers) and not so hard on the ankles. The BB court wasn't getting a lot of use as playing one-on-one with my wife was about as challenging as arm-wrestling an ant.
 
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Andy Black

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In case you're thinking of doing some nonprofit to help dogs @biophase ... be aware that nonprofits can get a Google grant of up to $10k/mth ad spend on Google. A client we run these ads for is a charity that helps other charities run better. That's quite an impact.

 

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It's not that nothing appeals to me. It's that nothing appeals to mIte so much to care deeply to make it happen. I do certain things because I enjoy doing them and/or because they're challenging or otherwise have a positive impact on my life (like working out).

But for example with my biggest "dream" right now (living in a nice house in a tropical country) I know that in the end getting that will probably not change my life much. I think that at some point of financial independence (or any other big achievement) you just realize that the outcome is never as life-changing and happiness-inducing as people think. Like Alex Hormozi said, when you get to the top of the mountain you realize that there's nothing there.
A lot of things that I thought that I wanted have fallen flat in these couple of years. He's right. There's nothing there.

Like you, I thought I wanted to go live in a warm climate. I was thinking about the Caribbean Islands. So, I got a friend to go with me on a cheap cruise with a lot of stops (before the pandemic). Each stop, I hired a cab or a service to give us a tour of how the "real" people lived outside of the resort areas. It was dismal. Their towns and cities looked like the Border towns in Mexico. They have no fresh water aquifers to draw on. They have no reliable infrastructures. They run their electrical grids on diesel generators. (The only place that I like at all was Puerto Rico.) I was dreaming about wandering down to one of those shops (like in the movies) with the little tables for my tea in the mornings. I was thinking of clean beaches and endless vacation time. Naught!

I thought when I got the big commercial loans paid off that balloons were going to fall from the ceiling and people were going to shower me with confetti. Wrong. I paid off one in the spring of 2020. Nothing happened. I finally called the bank since their lobby was closed (due to the virus) and they hadn't even gotten in touch with me. A chippy young man answered the phone. I gave him the loan # and asked for my paperwork. He said, "That loan isn't paid off." Startled, I ask what I owed. "Zero," was his reply. I explained that it sounded like it was paid off to me. "But, you did it all wrong!" he exclaimed. Come to find out, they wanted a $75 transfer fee before they would release the reconveyance paperwork. Oh, I didn't call them before I paid it off online and they expected me to call. So, then I waited 2 months for the paperwork. We were going to make and copy of that pile of papers and have a mortgage-burning party. We were going to barbeque some steaks. The paperwork came. It was one piece of paper -- not enough to even toast a marshmallow. No, these days they don't give back that stack that you signed to get the loan. And the bank treats you like a bad guy for paying off their loan.

I thought when I marked all those items off of my to-do list that my life was going to totally change -- like flicking a light switch. Wrong again. My daily route just went on day after day. I got up every morning, opened my Laundromat for the day, and I went to my office. My construction meeting went on every day. The paperwork and bookkeeping stacked up like usual. The phone call continued from tenants and prospects. Literally, nothing major in my life changed. I found that I don't want to buy anything major. I just don't want more stuff. I chose not to build a new house. We're fixing up the place we have and that's enough of a disruption. I don't really want to travel right now with the Covid thing out there. And I have traveled a lot in the past. I can't think of anywhere I really want to go bad enough to put up with all the travel problems. I can't get out and play in our snow right now. I recently had ACL (knee surgery to replace the tendon) and my doctor has restricted my activities for this winter season. So, I'm doubling down on my current projects and starting my new side gig. My husband and I are creating a deeper relationship. Our kids are doing wonderfully. And life is going on...
 
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doster.zach

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Ultimately, it comes down to security. With poor health insurance, a 6 week stay in the hospital would cost millions, so for me, I have no false sense of "too much" --- too much for personal trinkets maybe, but not too much when it comes for contingency planning.
Do you still worry about a 6 week stay after reading Die With Zero? Health insurance will take care of it if you have the right policies right? Otherwise if I'm going to die in the hospital, is it worth mortgaging years of youth for a few more weeks of old and not much else.

Perhaps you'll find this video by Alex Hormozi useful:
Love this guy's content. Seem's genuine and I think his opinions on how much labels and mindset on what you think of yourself and what is possible is really refreshing.
 

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Get in the flow of something and learn what it's like to be that thing. See if it flows, see if it makes you move, see if it makes you laugh, see if it makes you cry, see if it makes you think up a thousand other ideas, see if you hate it. But flow with a thing.

Learn to dance. Make art. Create music. Learn yoga. Get into acrobatics. Learn foraging and get lost in the woods with friends. Sit by a fire and share stories with people. Volunteer as a youth sports coach. Create a backyard lab and experiment on fun ideas with a local group of kids.

The options are endless. Do a thing, for no reason other than the thing. If you reach the "sigh, now what", then try something else. Laugh more. Let loose.

One way to think about it: maybe you can't be another thing because the things you are have limited your perspective. For example: If you're Biophase the occasional mountain biker that can't keep a fish tank because he's always moving and resorts to the most convenient of solutions to maintain a certain pace of being, you can't be the biophase that can spend all day throwing a frisbee just to see how far he can throw it. (btw I'm not knocking on you, I have deep respect and simply using this concoction of words to illustrate my point).

Maybe you're biophase the guy that takes his puppies all around the nation on the most exciting trails, just to show them the world and see how excited they get to climb up a new hill. Maybe you're biophase the guy that took up surfing just to see if he could beat the biggest wave on a 1-on-1 challenge with nature. The man that roadtripped around the nation on the hunt for hidden caves and yet to be discovered organisms exhibiting unconventional biological properties. The philanthropist ex-pat multi-millionaire that wakes up to teach young boys and girls how to think for themselves. Maybe an artist, inspired by geometry and nature, playing with new materials and building concepts to render beautiful and efficient living structures.

Maybe in this case, you can let go of something, so you can make room to become something else.
 

BizyDad

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I kind of don’t want to expose myself to any more discomfort.
This comment fills me with a large degree of empathy and sadness.

You don't have to be financially set to feel this. I think a lot of people get to this point.

On the one hand, I think this is a normal human reaction. On the other hand, it also sounds like a person that's just kind of given up.

Which reminds me of the line from Shawshank Redemption.

"Get busy living, or get busy dying".

It's the choice that everyone faces. Every day.

I'm sad because this sounds like you're on the wrong side of the equation. Even if you aren't actually, it sounds like at least part of you is.

But in some ways, this thread might be the most powerful I've seen on the forum.

No one can give you the answers you seek, but I'll pray you find them.
 
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Kak

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This one is simple. I need to be everything I can be. Anything short of my very best brings me more dissatisfaction than satisfaction.

I don’t know how I missed this thread, but alas, this is a big one for me. I have not, and don’t ever plan to, make the decision to be LESS than I’m capable of. That’s a BIG decision.

I also hated the book “Die With Zero,” thought it was a pile of hot garbage for an entrepreneur. It implies the limitation that work=money. A 1:1 exchange. I can kind of understand it for a job person… Basically the importance of time. Yeah yeah. Beyond that, it sucked. “Experience bucket dividends,” lol, GMAFB. My richest day will be the day I die… I’ll enjoy playing with my wealth more if it’s accumulating faster than I can spend it. I also enjoy accumulating it in the first place.
 
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@Kak - I am 100% with you. My days start with a zero. And then I climb. Today I woke up at 4:30am and got going!

I am not poor, nor do I have f-u money either. But if I wanted to, I probably could retire in luxury. Still I cannot relate to what @biophase you are sharing. (Sorry about your dog, sad moment for anyone). It sounds like money was the purpose of working hard and now waking up. It's a mental state situation. If I had more money, I'd have a much larger business, even more employees and I'd love it.

This quote comes to mind:
"Look at a day when you are supremely satisfied at the end. It’s not a day when you lounge around doing nothing; it’s a day you’ve had everything to do and you’ve done it." - Margaret Thatcher

@MTF and I exchanged many posts on Goggins or not to Goggins. Ironically, for business success we need downtime to think clearly. I make the most money when my brain is sharp. And that comes from doing less or "letting go". It can be a bit confusing, but my point is that you don't have to be Goggins 24/7. Yet lounging around contemplating the meaning of life and doing nothing is not for me. I can't imagine that life bringing me anything but unhappiness.

Suggestions? None. I don't think anyone who feels like that needs or wants to read something on the forum on "do this" or "do that". It's all BS. How you feel is in your head. You didn't always feel that way, so you know the answer... you may not like it, but it is what it is... such is life.

Lastly, I remember a book called Flow, read it many years ago. It had an impact on me because it resonated with what I experienced.

-->
“The best moments in our lives, are not the passive, receptive, relaxing times—although such experiences can also be enjoyable, if we have worked hard to attain them. The best moments usually occur when a person’s body or mind is stretched to its limits in a voluntary effort to accomplish something difficult and worthwhile.

Optimal experience is thus something that we make happen. For a child, it could be placing with trembling fingers the last block on a tower she has built, higher than any she has built so far; for a swimmer, it could be trying to beat his own record; for a violinist, mastering an intricate musical passage. For each person there are thousands of opportunities, challenges to expand ourselves.”
― Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi, Flow: The Psychology of Optimal Experience
 

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Great question. I appreciate you posting about it as this topic has been on my mind for a long time.

And just to be clear, I'm dealing with the same problem. I'm not judging you at all in this post.

Also, I apologize if my post is a little scatterbrained as it's a big topic to tackle and I'm still developing an understanding of it.

First, I wanted to quote Michael A. Singer:

Why would I get out of bed if I'm already happy? Because love wants to express itself. Enthusiasm wants to create and do something. Now you're not acting out of need, pain, problems. You're acting out of joy, beauty. You're driven by a whole another choice.

According to him, this state can be achieved only if we let go of all preferences (if we surrender). If the world needs to unfold according to your likes/dislikes, then you'll be busy manipulating the world and never actually interacting with it as it is. It'll be all self-serving, not serving the world as it is.

For example, imagine you pass a homeless person and give them money. They don't even acknowledge you. Next time you pass a homeless person, will you still give them money or decide it's not worth it? If it's the latter, it means you're giving money as a transaction ("here's 5 bucks, now make me feel good I helped you"). You're not acting out of your higher self (love/joy/enthusiasm/contribution) but out of your lower self (expecting the homeless person to make you feel better which is manipulative and disrespectful).

One of the fundamental concepts of what Michael A. Singer is teaching is letting go of your preferences (likes/dislikes, wants/things you want to avoid) which are built when you create patterns called "samskaras". These samskaras are created when you can't handle the situation unfolding in front of you. For example (another quote):

I'm driving behind a car that's driving slow. My mind is noticing and causing me a hard time. What good is that? The answer is: zero. You're getting aggravated, uptight, you're not enjoying your drive, you're being negative about the person in front of you, etc. In three weeks when you see a similar car you'll avoid it again. You created a samskara. Then you see the person of a certain gender, age, race, and you create a prejudice. You just made the situation make you worse. How about we use this moment as a learning experience? As a trial? I'm gonna use this experience to not do this. I'm going to use this experience to let go of whatever is inside of me that's causing my mind to think like that.

So in this example you can condition yourself to feel anger each time you see, say, a red convertible because THESE DICKHEADS ALWAYS CUT ME OFF. Based on what happened in the past, now you avoid every red convertible and hate every owner of such a car. You create a new reality in which every red convertible is out to get you.

I don't want to go too deep into it as I'm nearing 100 pages of notes of Singer's teachings. It all relates to each other, explaining all the concepts in great detail. But the example above is a good simple explanation of creating patterns and how they affect our life.

In your case, you're conditioned to enjoy the act of creation (in the area of business/investments) only if it stimulates the stuff you've stored inside you, namely, making money.

You created a pattern in which you want to act only if you can get something specific back. If you couldn't make money on your Airbnb tiny homes idea, you don't want to do it. You made it conditional. You live in a reality in which it makes sense to contribute only if you can make money, even if you don't need it. In other words, you're only happy to create something if the world unfolds according to your preferences.

I have no idea when and how you created this conditioning, but for me it was probably out of growing up in a relatively poor household with a lot of uncertainty. As a kid, I couldn't handle it. I saw my parents struggling financially and I decided that the only reason to do anything is to make money as this solves the most pressing problems. This is why I still crave security which I believe money will give me. Note that it doesn't matter how much money you make. Because of this stored pattern from childhood you ALWAYS need more. The solution isn't the outer world, but changing the inner world (letting go of this pattern).

Michael A. Singer prescribes noticing this resistance and letting it go. It's good that you're asking yourself this question because you're becoming aware that something doesn't make sense here. If you can observe this urge and not let it dictate your life, you can start freeing yourself of it.

In the example of the red convertible, each time you now see one and start feeling angry, you observe the feeling but don't act on it. Eventually, you'll retrain yourself and start seeing red convertibles as something neutral, in the same way, as, say, white SUVs are to you now.

So coming back to that first quote, if you get rid of your patterns, you're going to act out of love, contribution and enthusiasm, without any expectations or conditions. You want to act on your Airbnb tiny homes idea because it'll be fun and it'll contribute positively to other people. You DON'T do it under the condition that it makes x amount of money. You start serving the world which is infinitely more satisfying than trying to get something out of it.

I like to compare it to being in a relationship. If you feel lonely single, you CAN'T have a good relationship. The reason is that you'll look for another person (the outer world) to solve a problem you have inside (feeling lonely). The relationship you'll have, no matter how great it'll make you feel initially, is NOT the solution because it'll be conditional ("as long as you make me feel not lonely, I enjoy the relationship").

One more quote:

I'm looking for something or looking to avoid something - then I can't interact with you. I'm interacting with me. My consciousness is buried in me. And I'm going to look at you in relation to me. Are you giving me what I want? Are you being the way I want? Are you making sure you're not giving me what I don't want?

While you have it inside of you (the blockages), you cannot be you. You have to be it. It's owning you.

The spiritual path is about liberation. You free yourself from these patterns inside of you, therefore you free yourself to be okay. You free yourself to be open all the time. You free yourself to enjoy the moment that's unfolding in front of you instead of defining the moment that has to be unfolding in front of you for you to enjoy it.


This is what essentially we're dealing with now when we look at business. We're owned by the pattern that a business needs to give us x money back, even if we no longer need it. We aren't free to just do what is fun and would contribute to the world. We're prisoners to our own conditioning.

So what's the solution? The solution is to let go of this pattern. Obviously this is easier said than done. We've spent our entire lives conditioned to believe that business needs to be all about money. But look at guys like Elon Musk or Richard Branson. I'd venture to say that neither of them create new businesses to get anything out of it.

Elon Musk wants to solve big problems (you can argue he's in it for the challenge but I think he just wants to contribute) and Richard Branson starts new businesses when he sees industries where customer experience sucks (so he's all about creating a positive change).

I read biographies of both of these guys and what's interesting is that neither of them, even when they were young, seemed to be motivated by money. They were both in it for pretty much the same reasons they are today. So perhaps they didn't build patterns around this specific area of life?

So I think that a good exercise is to be aware and let go each time you feel resistance to the idea of building something without getting a (determined by you) amount of money from it. Slowly, you can get rid of this blockage and start acting out of pure motives rather than have a transactional approach.

And maybe you'll discover you don't want to do it anymore—and that's fine as well. Nobody says you have to keep building businesses or investing just because you've been doing it all your life.

As an everyday example of how to let go, I was recently in a barbershop with some incredible art on the walls. I asked the owner about it and it turned out she actually created the pieces. I was blown away. This was SPECTACULAR work.

In my head, I was like "Why the hell are you working in a barbershop if you have such a talent? Why don't you become a professional artist?" But I didn't tell her that. It was my problem, based on the patterns I have.

For her, art is something fun she often does with her friends. She told me they meet up every week and just chill out as they create art. I still find it hard to believe that people do this just for fun, without any expectation or financial motives. But this is a great example of how everyone can teach us something. She approaches art from a very pure place. She doesn't have any patterns stored related to art.

Meanwhile, I don't want to write any more books if I can't make money off them. And to be honest, I would do very little creative work without proper compensation. And here we're back to the work of letting go. Until I fully let go of it, I'll continue looking at the world in a distorted, self-serving, and ultimately not really satisfying way - all because of what I have stored in my head.

This is why I'm retired at the moment. I don't think it's a good idea to keep investing money, time, and effort into something I delude myself will give me something I should find in myself.

Dude, what a incredible content.

I had a similar feeling from a while ago. I remember thinking about the time when I was little and spend hours interacting or learning something just from pure joy and how I can not do it anymore because I keep feeling how I'm wasting my time doing something "pointless", "without a good value".

You guys helped me to identify and better diagnose this issue.
 
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biophase

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My new business is to help the little guy in my community.
I have thought about something similar. Since my passion is helping dogs, I've thought about starting a really cheap doggy daycare, or a company that builds dog houses that makes no profit.

The problem is that I don't want to start another business. I think much of this comes from already knowing how much work and effort goes into starting a business. For sure, my next business needs to start with me hiring people. I just don't want to do the day to day stuff any more. It's just not exciting for me.

Honestly, what still excites me is buying houses, remodeling them, furnishing them and then short term renting them. I spend alot of my day browsing real estate listings. But I can buy only 1-2 houses a year, so it doesn't take up much time at all.
 

biophase

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I'm currently in a similar situation, but not so much questioning the "what next" portion of the problem.

I'm extremely happy and probably at peace more than I've been in the last ten years.

I find that our motivations appear to be rooted in a desire to "find" happiness, as if happiness is something to be achieved, acquired, or found. Happiness cannot come from external sources, it must come from within. The external sources can enhance happiness, sure, but ultimately lasting happiness must come from the inside.

For me as I enter the last third of my life I'm looking to be less focused on money and external validations -- for me, I just want to be grateful for every moment that I can live how I want, and do work how I want. Gratitude is a big part of this happiness equation. The ability to make a difference in the world is profoundly rewarding, even though I rarely get to see the actual results of that difference.

It's a question that few address ... after you climb Mt. Olympus, what do you do next? After you've driven your dream car, lived in your dream house, and have the money to eat when/where you want, what's next?

Ultimately the answer might expose your true purpose in life.

Kenric perhaps for you it might be a charitable organization that rescues dogs, but does so with some type of new spin. Bring your extensive business experience and put a BIG SPIN on an industry that is rife with stagnation and no innovation. I think something that inspires a purpose beyond our selfish reasons might lead you to a more fulfilling existence.

You got a game when you come back, we converted our basketball court into a pickleball court, it definitely is a much better workout (for us old geezers) and not so hard on the ankles. The BB court wasn't getting a lot of use as playing one-on-one with my wife was about as challenging as arm-wrestling an ant.
I don't think that I'm unhappy. I am very grateful for what I have and how my life is going. I think most people would love to be in the situation that I'm in. And I'm not asking this question from the side of unhappiness. I'm more asking it from the side of 'yeah I've accomplished my goals' now what?

Many people here and alot of my friends have told me, just start another business with a purpose, like your current one. Right now, that's just not what I want to do. Maybe when I get that ah ha moment and that idea pops into my head I'll be 100% all in again.

I think there's also the future me that I see myself traveling the world. Going abroad for 3-4 months at a time. This part of me is what shuts down the idea of starting an animal sanctuary or a dog rescue. Or anything where it would involve taking care of animals. I know myself, and if I started something like this, I would never be able to travel. At least until I've hired enough help. But even then, it would be hard to leave the animals for an extended period of time.

MJ, you know I was kind of happy with my new Vegas home until I saw yours. Now, all I think about is how to get a house with an indoor basketball court. I've been looking at homes on larger lots for that sole purpose. I even contacted my HOA to see what the building height limit is on my current home! LOL
 
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