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  • Writer's pictureZachP

#71. Is Your Fuel Tank on "E"? A Common Problem When Chasing FI


I gauge a lot of things in life like a fuel tank.


No one in this world has an infinite supply of "X" without needing to refill their metaphorical fuel tank.


Will power? Motivation? Desire? Drive?


There is an infinite source of these things, but you cannot tap into that source without taking the time to refuel. Or better yet, taking proactive measures to create a longer-lasting fuel source.


The Journey To FI


A pitfall that many people chasing financial independence have to face is trying to progress while on empty.


For you fellow rebels out there, we all know you can drive a vehicle 20ish more miles once the fuel light comes on. But, it's all a guessing game.


And what happens if you calculate things wrong? It takes a lot more effort to refuel your car as opposed to if you just took it to a gas station well in advance.


This is the same for our mind, body, and soul.


The Mind And Soul (And Mental Fatigue)


Have you ever suffered from physical exhaustion without putting forth physical effort? I definitely have.


If we do not spend time on our mind and soul, our physical body will suffer.


Mental fatigue often feels like a physical problem. It leaves you not wanting to spend time with your family, not wanting to get out of bed, and not wanting to see anyone in the outside world.


One comforting thing to realize is that these feelings happen to pretty much everyone. If someone is able to ward off these feelings completely, then they have put in a lot of work in to do so.


Proactive vs. Reactive


The best way not to experience burnout through mental fatigue is through proactive measures.


Reactive measures are the bubble bath and glass of wine after a hard work day, or the urge to get away for a weekend or longer to clear your head.


Reactive measures to deal with stress are fine, but the more proactive steps you can take, the less you will be forced to take these reactive steps.


Focusing on eating a healthy diet and exercising regularly are powerful proactive tools to stress management.


Another method that is powerful (but very difficult to accomplish at times) is setting the appropriate boundaries with work and personal life.


Strive to have designated times for relaxation, leisure, and quality time with loved ones where you cannot be distracted by work.


If you have to turn your phone off or leave it at home to accomplish this, do it. Oh, and feel free to tell your boss that The Sytch (aka Zach) said you could.


That's how life worked prior to the last 25 years, and everything was okay.


Where I Am At, Mentally


For anyone reading my blog, I never want someone to come out thinking, "Lucky guy, he has it figured out."


That is far from the truth.


I am writing this post because I am reaching a point where the walls around me keep getting closer and closer together.


I am feeling more and more paralyzed, but, at the same time, I have increased responsibilities to fulfill.


It's easy to put too much pressure on yourself, and I believe this is what I am doing. If I make one, two, or even three missteps with anything I have going on, realistically, things will be fine.


99.9% of missteps are fixable.


Onward . . .



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