I was having a conversation with my colleague earlier this week about pensions.
I'm not putting any money into a pension fund. I never have and I never will.
Maybe this is a little short-sighted of me, but I honestly don't believe that the banks will keep it safe and given the current rate of inflation, I don't think that the amount of money I can afford to save will be enough to buy me a banana by the time I reach retirement. So why bother? Life is going to be so different in 50 years time that we might not even have to retire. Look how different life was 50 years ago. No internet. No mobile phones. No remote desktop. No Apple.
Who knows what unthinkable and fantastic ideas the innovators of today are going to come up with? Every day new and emerging technologies unfold before us. Maybe I'll come up with one myself. I know one thing for sure, I won't come up with it sat at my desk doing my day job. World-changing ideas and research require a big investment, of both time and money.
If your lifelong ambition is to take some time off work and write a book, why not use the money you've saved for a pension and take the time off to write the book now? You might get dementia or not be physically able to type by the time you retire, and you never know, that book could make you enough money to last a thousand retirements. Obviously I'm not suggesting that you squander your life savings on something utterly ridiculous, these are still weighty decisions that require lots of thought. But if you've got something that you truly believe in or you are entirely miserable all day everyday, then I definitely recommend considering this. And if it doesn't work out then that's okay. Failing is a sign of progress. (If you haven't read the Hunter S Thompson piece entitled 'security' then you should check it out, as it summarises how I feel brilliantly). Bankers bet on far scarier and more dangerous things. And guess what, they use your money.
Personally, I'm just going to play it by ear and stay curious. Stay excited about things and take calculated risks while investing in myself. Be it with time or money. Ideally, I hope that I can find a little farm in Peru or somewhere to go and work on. I'm dreaming of a simple life in the sunshine with no possessions or too much responsibility. As long as I've got enough food and some good friends then I'm all set as far as I'm concerned. Who needs fine china and newly upholstered sofas anyway? I'd rather forego these in the pursuit of my life goals and make the most of my money now, whilst I know I am well enough to do them.
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