After spending so much time hanging out with FI geared people I feel like the Financial Independence and self-accountability strategy is common and held by many strong people. 

I’ve told my story about my FIRE day and how I gave my job to a 63-year-old co-worker who was laid off the previous year.  How they were upended in their income-generating ability from a megacorp and how they found it impossible to gain new employment at their advanced age.

I realized they are quite the opposite of fiRE.  They are now retired, but without the FI.  They are Oh Shit Retirement Early (earlier than planned).   

NOTE: I started writing this post a few months ago when I was taking stock of my interaction with cohorts.  In the past two months, the nation world has been placed on coronavirus related lockdowns.  In that time—as early as week 2—there have been thousands of news reports and articles in the US showing the disastrous impact of a (temporary) loss or lowering of income. 

There are “rent strikes” and mortgage skipping activities all over the place.  There are long lines of cars at the food bank distribution locations (see videos of nice/new/even luxury vehicles in line).  The ramifications of this disruption/disaster are far greater—and much faster impacting—than the great recession in 2008-2009.

The wondering of—did people learn from the last income/economic problem?  Did we as a whole put more money away into emergency funds?  Did we decide the great recession was so scary financially that we didn’t want to go through that stress if at all possible?  I’m seeing so many reports to the contrary.

Inserted Paragraph:  So here we are; MILLIONS of people laid off from work.  Additional MILLIONS of people with reduced income through partial furloughs/reduced hours.  There are even articles stating some/many employers will not rehire the same people once they begin rehiring workers.  Will companies try and pick the best employees looking for work?  Why wouldn’t they?  Where will this leave the “less” desirable workers?–the less-skilled, the higher paid, the older workers nearing the end of their career?  Are there tons of people about to be OShRE?

Original Paragraph:  There are a lot of articles, statistics, and podcasts sharing that many people (baby boomers) who want to (need to) work longer, to age 70 or even longer.  There are also many statistics showing this plan does not always work out as they wish.  Many people lose their jobs before they want to stop working and throw them into the Oh Shit stage of life.

My original thoughts about people thrust into retirement before they were ready (are many people never financially ready?) has turned into a shocking panic for so many:

10,000 turn 65 each day * 60+ days of this working crisis = 600,000+ people

I would love to leave this post with an idea to help—and idea to make a difference, to make something better.  It may come down to being there to help those folks:

  • Take stock in their situation. 
  • For them to understand their balance sheet and net worth statement. 
  • To understand their true historical spending each month/year. 
  • A way to know the exact position of their financial status.

Then, and only then can a plan be drafted to see how the future may lay out.  A plan showing how financial activities project over the course(s) of the future.  What is possible, and what seems not-possible.  A plan.  A goal.  Some options.  Hope.

*** Nothing in this article is to be construed as financial advice.  I am not a financial planner, nor do I pretend to be.  You should always consult your own professional when seeking advice.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.