So the original objective of this blog was to help me track my journey because not too long after setting my budget, I started to lose interest in The Journey. It’s easy to be in awe by those who have achieved FIRE, but let me tell you, The Journey is not that exciting. For me especially because I am naturally inclined to structure and a set-it and forget-it approach to most things, budgeting and personal finance being at the top of that list.
One of my early idea before the blog was tracking my assets so to speak. I thought it would motivate me. The jury is still out on that. At the very least, it accomplishes its basic function which is to track my progress. At the worst, it’s a little discouraging because progress is slow and it makes me second guess, question, and fiddle only to end up where I started.
Another point, just because I think the thought process is illuminating for those just beginning the journey. In the time since I started The Journey to now, I did re-read the prospectus that came with my 401k. Right now, I’m in a target date fund for somewhere around age 65 (so 2045?). I looked at the fees, and they charge 0.77% which by FIRE bloggers’ standards is astronomical. I was so keenly aware of this after learning more personal finance vocabulary, that I stared at the prospectus for 2 to 3 hours trying to think of a way to match the touted 0.1% fee of Vanguard customers. What I boiled it down to was picking some funds that were between 0.15% and 0.5% management fees; I chose funds in a way to match an allocation similar to 80/20 stock/bond allocation. My current target date fund was 90% stocks and as I get more set on leaving the workforce in 10 years or less, I wanted a more conservative allocation.
So the thoughts swirling around after updating my Q2 spreadsheet were leaning towards making more conservative allocations and try my hand at more active investing by choosing funds myself with focus on funds with lower fees. This was my notation in my notes for action items: