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Thank you, Vicky

I’ve just finished reading Vicky Robin’s letter to the FIRE community as she is departing to some other contexts. There’s lots of gratitude and warm heartedness throughout the whole letter.

I’m taking time to dream and write and think and stay close to my heart, trusting that this, like everything else I’ve done, will bear fruit in surprising ways. I have no idea where I will land, but my little boat is clearly leaving the harbor.

That’s beautiful. I appreciate when people are self-reflective, and they aren’t afraid to tell everyone about their thoughts, hopes, doubts and feelings.

I also appreciate Vicky’s thoughts that the whole FIRE movement misses the point: financial independence is not a final destination, but a tool.

I always thought that teaching history, philosophy, ethics and literature at schools is a waste of time. Give me more STEM, you know. These days I think that both are very important. On the other hand, I doubt any of these subjects can be really taught (go through the curriculum and verify the knowledge). How does one teach another so that they want to change their life?

Teachers have to plant seeds of curiosity and inspiration, prove their teaching with a personal example, and then provide guidance. In this context, I think Vicky has done a great service to the FIRE community with her letter: she showed how she feels about the topic, and she pointed to vision and gave perspective.

I wonder if she originally thought of “Your Money or Your Life” as a strategic transitive point, or she has discovered that it is not worthy of being a final destination in the retrospect.

On a seemingly disconnected note, I had a conversation with a friend of mine yesterday who just switched jobs. When I asked him about the reasons for the switch, he said that he followed his former manager, because this person is a pleasure to work with. I’ve asked my friend to describe this person because I’m curious of what characteristics such people have. It turned out that the person was almost 60 years of age, very seasoned in their experience, had seen enough in their career to become a hands-off manager, but yet they continued to keep doing actual work. I think this is a great explanation of why one would follow another person.

With the today’s increased pace of the economy, and me being so focused on it, I wonder if I even trust older people. Does my infinitely prolonged childhood make me continue to distrust older people (because they simply don’t understand) as it was in my actual teenage years?

I think we need to listen more to the older, senior and wise people in our lifes.