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I retired at 34. I can teach you how.

You don’t need to be 65 to retire. You don’t need to be a multimillionaire. You don’t need to be a tech bro, or a lawyer, or a well-off medical professional. (Though that would definitely help!) Industry gurus like Suze Orman claim you need at least $5 million (and ideally $10 million) to quit the rat race. In my opinion, that’s overkill.

This blog is about my own strategy. Have you heard of the FIRE movement? (Financial Independence, Retire Early.) Or maybe its offshoot, lean-FIRE? If yes, you’re my target audience. If not, but if you’d like to retire young, then you’re also my target audience – you just don’t know it yet.

No matter where you live, who you are, or where you come from, there’s always a way to improve your financial situation. (Fair warning: that might not be easy.) This blog deals with grand strategies like making 5-year plans and funding your retirement accounts, as well as smaller, tactical stuff like saving money on entertainment, cooking fast and frugally (don’t worry, it’s not all lentils), and enjoying life while having fun. (Did you know that video games are 100 times more cost-efficient than movies?) If you’re not familiar with things like index funds and geographic arbitrage, stay tuned and read on!

Some of the things I’ll write about might seem extreme, and that’s fine. Over the course of my 13-year journey to financial freedom, I lived in seven cities, moved to a different country, contributed up to 90% of my paycheck to my retirement accounts, etc. You don’t need to follow my steps exactly, and I don’t expect you to, but I hope the things I describe will make you stop and think, and maybe – just maybe – you’ll improve your own financial situation, if only a little.

Before you ask – no, this isn’t the kind of story where the protagonist nonchalantly mentions that he got a huge inheritance that paid for everything. (Those articles are a dime a dozen.) I never had a six-figure salary. I was never fought over by recruiters (quite the opposite, actually). I made a lot of mistakes along the way, which I’ll also describe here. (Honesty is the best policy, eh?) I started out as an immigrant without any role models or mentors, and then gradually forged my own path to early retirement: I won’t be as arrogant as to say “if I could do it, anyone could do it!” – but hey, I like to think my example proves that extreme perseverance can pay off.

My name is very foreign and fairly hard to pronounce, so let’s just go with the initials – GL. I’m glad you stopped by here: I hope you read on and learn more. If you’re willing to make some fairly drastic lifestyle changes, you can join me in early retirement – and your journey can start here. I look forward to helping you on your quest.

Good luck,
GL