Sunday, February 01, 2015

Downside of financial independence.

Initially, I wanted to put up a piece on who the Child in the Basement really is. I wanted to talk about the problems of trying to frame social ills by telling a story and how it distorts the issue for everyone, Then I became so tired that perhaps I should blog about something much simpler that more people can relate to.

So this will be short post.

A lot of people speculate about what happens when someone reaches financial independence.

Does the person turn good and end up doing a lot of charity work ? Or does the person turn and start bullying other people with their new-found freedom ?

Increasingly based on what I've observed, it is none of the above.

Financial Freedom takes away all pretense of who a person is.

In the past someone may have to get up early and show up at work on time. Once they get cash-flow every month, there will no longer be a need to hold a job. Similarly, a financially free person may not be all that reliant on the people around them because free-markets will now be responsible for putting food on the table, so expect many folks to become more anti-social.

There is definitely a good reason to conclude that all financial freedom does is remove the mask that we put on to cope with the challenges society throws at us everyday, the net effect is that your life after reaching your financial target will reflect who you really are in essence. In my case, I always wanted to recapture my happy days  in NUS when I was an undergraduate. It therefore comes with no surprise that I am once again back in school.

That being said, I am slowly learning that have a cash-flow may not work out for everyone.

Some people can be by nature lazy and lethargic. Others are anti-intellectual. A steady cash-flow will kill off every motivation to improve themselves and cripple their ability to ultimately find happiness in life.

As it turns out that beyond pleasure, happiness is a sum of person's relationships, accomplishments, ability to attain flow and how meaningful their life is. Without a job, goals, motivation or need to interact with people, financial freedom will sound their death knell and they soon find themselves in a limbo.

I've read a lot of books on self-help and personal development and as much as I know, I could not find a cure for someone who sets a low standard for their own lives.


  1. Yep. I can feel myself being more lazy and demotivated. (And i dun even have a huge cash flow from the free markets)... :(

  2. Most human by nature is lazy; otherwise there will be no machines, robots and automation

  3. I am curious to see how I will change as I get to enjoy financial independence eventually. It's great that you are already there and can be in a position to share your thoughts with us.

  4. Sounds like a virus.