Hey readers, friends, and fellow bloggers. Yes, I am still alive (and well-ish).
I owe all of you an explanation of where I’ve been and what I’ve been up to. I have not posted in almost 4 months and nor have I shared any explanation.
Well, sometimes life becomes hard. The past few months have been physically and mentally trying. At times I’ve been stressed, happy, tired, depressed, energetic, and burnt out. Also, sometimes life deals you a shitburger and you just have to eat it (more on that later).
This post may ramble but will provide some updates on my life, work, rental property portfolio, my dividend investing and what to expect going forward.
Well, a lot has changed over the past few months of my life. First, I moved out of my tiny room. You know the room that was only 52 square feet. If you are not familiar with my prior living arrangement, you can have a good laugh by reading my guest post on Steve from Think Save Retire’s site.
This decision was for my mental health and to improve my quality of living (big thanks to Gwen at Fiery Millennials for pushing me in this direction). I had enough of extreme minimalism after 3 years and 4 months of living in a room many would consider uninhabitable. I moved into this room when I was 25. Now, as I approach 30, this arrangement is not as cool or enjoyable. Sure, I am not making as much by living in my house hack, but that’s ok. I am still getting paid to own my home which is way better than paying rent in one of the most expensive cities in the country. Besides, it’s not all about money anyway.
I’ve also had some fun this year in the form of hockey and travel. Things got weird in Austin, Texas for one of my best friends’ bachelor party. Wild time and great city.
I attended game one of the Caps/Canes series where the Capitals won. I also took a road trip to visit a college buddy for game three in Raleigh where Ovi knocked out Svechnikov; unfortunately, that was the only Caps victory of the night.
In March, I travel hacked my way into a mostly free 10-day vacation in Portugal. The trip was fun and provided a great cultural experience. I spent time in Lisbon, Porto, and Sintra where I enjoyed awesome Portuguese food and watched the national team play Ukraine.
Naturally, we all have personal drama and family problems we must deal with. This has also been a time suck over the past few months. I won’t bore you with the details.
Oh, I’ve also been busy with work in ways that I haven’t experienced before.
Traveling for work
Last year, I shared that I accepted a new job offer. I’ve been at my ‘not so new’ job now for about 16 months. This year, my travel schedule has been insane and uncharacteristically frequent. I’ve been on a plane or train weekly for work (sometimes more).
Traveling for work sounds cool and fun but it quickly loses its sex appeal. Sure, collecting frequent flyer miles and hotel points is great. Oh and work pays for everything while I am on the road, so saving money is a nice perk. Not going to lie, I also DID enjoy my recent upgrade to a penthouse suite in Miami.
But being on the road also means not being at home. I spent three nights in my own bed in February. Traveling for work also means less time with family and friends. Frequently traveling for work leaves little time for running run errands and taking care of basic necessities like laundry. This has also presented a few challenges running my real estate side hustle which I will share more about later.
A longer work day and heavier workload were byproducts of all my recent travel. You see, when I am on the road, my day is often jam-packed with meetings. At the end of the day, there is usually a happy hour and/or dinner function with a client. Meanwhile, my email inbox fills up, my normal work responsibilities still need to be completed, and I fall behind. This leads to working more nights, early mornings, and weekends.
Unhealthy side effects of work
A longer commute accompanied my newish job. Most days I find myself spending between two and three hours in the car. This eats up a lot of my time. The longer commute means less time to work out, less time to focus on my business, less time to write, and less time with family and friends.
I also sit in my office on most days. My lifestyle has become more sedentary between sitting at work and commuting. This is something I absolutely hate and want to change. I biked to work once now that the weather is warmer. However, my commute is 20 miles each way (40 miles round trip) and something I cannot do regularly. Often, I need my car to attend meetings. Also, I’m not in triathlon shape anymore.
Work has also impacted my mental health and wellbeing this year. I am not particularly fond of the current work dynamics in my office. Some days have ended with me hating life because of my job. Some mornings have started with not wanting to get out of bed because of work. I crafted my resignation letter but am saving it for another day. I will not share too many details since this site might be known in the office now.
I also intentionally stayed away from the blog, twitter, and technology for a while. I wanted to detox myself from extra information and distractions. Previously, I found myself living too much on the internet and not living in the real world enough. I am striving to be more present in life.
This detox was needed and great in many ways. Though, candidly, I didn’t have the capacity to post even if I wanted to. Between travel, work, and trying to have some social life, there simply weren’t any hours left in the day. As a human, I still need to eat and sleep and tend to normal life requirements like errands and laundry.
Real estate stuff & Landlord report updates
I have all the data to catch up on a backlog of landlord reports. If you are behind, you can catch up here. I did win the eviction saga and will share a full account of the eviction. Cool sneak peek- there were three guns drawn and the US Marshalls were in full tactical gear.
For the first time in my real estate career, I had an opportunity to ‘be the bank’. This was an investment opportunity I walked away from but look forward to sharing in greater detail with you. Long story short, someone I knew needed a partner on a deal.
Oh and that shit burger I mentioned earlier. Yeah, while my rental property portfolio is doing just fine, I have not been able to manage things as well as I would like. Hint, my job taking me away from makes it hard to manage properties well.
I am still tracking my dividend income as well. Q1-2019 Income was great and will come out later this week. I still love dividends and feel a jolt of excitement everything the dividend payments hit my account.
For almost a year, I’ve been faced with an existential crisis. I am no longer driven by monetary gain. Making more money will not make me happier. I turn down opportunities because I value my time over money. My career provides no fulfillment, though, I never expected it to. I’ve viewed my career as a means to the end. However, it’s draining to do something five days a week when your heart is not into it.
This is a concept I will expand on in greater detail in a future post. I am 29 and will be 30 in less than a year. I want to make the most of my next 30 years, live a life of fulfillment and no regrets. More importantly, I want to live a life of meaning and impact.
Moving forward, I will continue to post. I will be more active in the community and twitter etc. I will try to stay current with the countless emails (keep them coming – I love hearing from all of you). At times, my posting may become irregular; I do have a life outside the blog. Until I quit my job, I will not have the bandwidth to run this site like a full-time business.