What Does a Passive Retirement Look Like?

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The following is a guest post from Corey at Passive Income to Retire, where he is keeping track of his progress to retire early. Corey is one of my close personal blogging friends from the Yakezie group and is doing a very good job building his blog(s) and helping others with their finances. I know you’ll enjoy the post!

What Does a Passive Retirement Look Like? 

If I were to tell you that I am 24 years old and I plan to retire in 2-3 years from passive income, I am sure that you would wondering, “What’s the catch?”

I recently started my second blog ‘Passive Income to Retire‘ in order to document my progress towards reaching a goal to retire early. To sum up my goal, I hope to build up passive income streams that will provide me with enough money to replace my mediocre salary from my day job.

I want to think long term, so my plan will eventually integrate long term income streams as well (real estate and dividend investing). Here’s the catch – earning income online is not passive at all and as a result, my plan to maintain these income streams really isn’t retirement – not in the traditional sense at least. Before you think my goal is completely ridiculous, let me explain.

Online Income Isn’t Always Passive

My new goal in life is to earn enough money from blogging (and a few other online business ideas) so that I can quit my day job. Six months ago, I didn’t even know that you could make money from blogging. Now, I not only know it is possible, but I am doing it! I don’t want to just stop with mediocre success. I want to shoot for the stars. My earnings have increased rapidly, and that is the reason for my new goal. I enjoy it so much that I have invested a lot of time to build up my first blog.

The only problem with this goal is that making money online isn’t passive. Some people claim that it is semi-passive, but to be honest, it takes a lot of work. When my (non-blogging) friends hear how much I am beginning to make from my blog, they want to know how they can do the same thing. The fact is that I earned very little money my first and second month even though I probably put in 100 hours for each of those first months. Usually it takes 6-9 months to make any money, if not longer. (It is also important to point out that the Yakezie Network has been a huge help as I am learning the ropes).

The idea of replacing my income from my day job to start another full-time job didn’t make any sense. Why would I forfeit many of the benefits that come with working for an employer just to be able to work in my pajamas? Even though it is a lot of hard work, I hope to create systems that will let me manage an online business (or “empire” as it is often coined). Managing these blogs and online businesses will take time. This is why I recognize that I will have to work about 3 days a week to keep everything running smoothly. I know this won’t happen overnight, but I hope in 2-3 years, everything should be in place that this should be manageable.

Working 3 Days a Week Isn’t Retirement

Because I know that online income isn’t entirely passive, I knew I couldn’t just expect to do nothing for the rest of my life. Plus, I enjoy this stuff. Why would I want to stop? I didn’t want to become a coach potato at the age of 27, but I also didn’t want to become a workaholic like some bloggers that I know. Like I said, why just swap jobs? Why not try to do something completely radical at the same time? Lots of people make a living from blogging, but how many people do it in 3 days a week?

This retirement goal is about so much more than not working. I no longer see retirement as not working. Where’s the fun in that? It is instead, about being free to follow my dreams (without working too much), experiencing life, and giving back to the community that I am apart of. The best way that I can see how to do this is to work part-time. This would give me the freedom to be able to participate in important causes and also get me out of the 9-to-5 job. A great part about this is that I don’t have to work for 40 years to begin my life.

Ultimately, the question I keep coming back to is what I could do with those extra two days every week. The potential to make a huge difference in this world with that time means a lot more than getting out of the rat race.

So, here’s my question for you- What would you do if you only had to work 3 days a week? If there is something else you would rather do, why aren’t you working towards that goal?

Jacob’s Thoughts – Listed below are my random thoughts as I was reading this article.

  • Great post here Corey! It’s definitely good to see someone come to the realization of what they want to accomplish in life, and then initiate the process of making that dream a reality. 
  • I definitely agree with you about blogging not being the best source of passive income, as I have probably put in several thousand hours to writing content and building the community of my blog over the past 2 years or so. But, because I really enjoy the blogging process, I don’t mind at all. I will, however, be very interested to follow your progress and learn ways that you find to make it more passive. 
    • However, I am a believer that blogging can be a nice source of leveraged income in the sense that you can put together an article (or collection of articles), and that information can be referenced by anyone the world over for possibly years to come. 
    • In other words, there is a possibility that you can provide value to others while you sleep. 
    • In this way, blogging is a leveraged source of revenue, but maybe not directly passive in the strict sense of the word.
  • Like you, I also think that retirement is not necessarily a time when I would just be relaxing/doing nothing all day. Instead, it would be about being free to choose things that I would want to do, irregardless of if they were associated with a job. 
  • I definitely hope and expect to develop passive income from real estate investing and online ventures as a hobby/side-business. However, I intend to keep my primary career as developing and commercializing pharmaceuticals, as I feel very strongly in a commitment to delivering these medicines and improving the health of the world as a whole. As such, I would be perfectly fine and completely fulfilled doing this job 5 days a week. 
  • In general, I think that if people do a little soul-searching and determine that there is something (or multiple things) that they want to contribute during their life, but are not able to do so in their current job, it would be beneficial for them to begin taking small, actionable steps towards this goal. After all, life is short!

***Photo courtesy of http://farm5.static.flickr.com/4134/4791395291_552f7b8978.jpg


  1. That would be great if you retired by 27!

    Do you have a monthly income goal in mind, or just an age?
    My recent post To Cash-Out Refinance And Make It Rain…. Or Not

    • I have a monthly income goal in mind (to be shared eventually), but it's not finalized yet. I also want to have a pretty hefty extra emergency fund in place before I pull the plug. It is hard to give up the benefits from my employer without a safety net – especially at my age (even though my wife is going to have a stable income that we can live off of).
      My recent post My Financial Goals

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