My Existential Quandary About What to Do with All My Free Time

Money is a garden

When I accidentally discovered we had already hit our FIRE number back in May 2022, I was a bit panicked. What would I actually do with all my time if I wasn’t working? Would I be bored? Would my brain atrophy? Would I become angry and resentful? 

But then in October 2022, my role was made redundant and within a week, I immediately found myself with way more free time. Guess what? 

It was fucking epic. 

It was perfect. 

It was better than I even imagined.  

Here are a few of the many benefits I’ve noticed so far:

  1. Natural waking: For years, I’ve used an alarm clock. Now I can get up when my body naturally wakes up. That’s not to say that I sleep in. My sleep schedule is pretty consistent, and I’m awake between 7-8 am. But it sure feels good not to have to get up for any particular reason.  
  2. Not feeling rushed: I get up and start my day on my own terms. So long as I have a general plan, I can manage my time quite easily without rushing to fit everything into an already packed schedule. 
  3. Flexible schedule:  When I was working full time, I was obliged to break my day into predictable blocks of time: work, eat, exercise, meditate, etc. Now if I don’t feel like writing in the morning, I can exercise or meditate instead. My time can be spent however I like. 
  4.  Everything is on my terms: Even though I’m naturally an extrovert, and even though I like working with people, I truly prefer to work alone. There’s less drama, politics, and pressure to accommodate others. 
  5. Enjoying off-peak activities: I love going out for breakfast. When I was working full-time, I would only ever go out for breakfast on weekends. Usually, it’s crowded and noisy on the weekends, and there are never any deals or offers.  I’ve now discovered that I can go out wherever I want, and that workdays are generally super chill and quiet.  

I’m certain that there will be loads more benefits that will come up over the coming months, but for now, I’m really enjoying the novel nature of having a fluid and flexible schedule that I define on my terms. 

If your schedule was completely open, how would you spend your days? What do you foresee for life after you become work optional? 

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