The Millennial Revolution Backlash, Backlash

I love stories about people achieving financial independence. The Wealthy Barber, The Idiot Millionaire, and Mr. Money Mustache are all examples that emulate. I find their grit and creativity inspiring. Firecraker and Wanderer from Millennial Revolution are no exception.

What amazes me is the dismissive and sometimes angry nature of some of the comments and general “buzz” that stories like these generate. What I find inspiring, some people find infuriating, or even dangerous.

Of course this isn’t new, and it probably shouldn’t surprise me. Money is a touchy subject and the internet can be a reactionary and unforgiving forum.

But all of  the heat that I’ve seen surrounding their recent fame compels me to shout from the sidelines in defence of Firecracker and Wanderer.

They are roughly my age and are in a slightly different significantly better situation than I am in, financially. And I think what they’ve done is inspiring.

  • They worked hard for a decade in jobs that they didn’t necessarily love, but were financially rewarding
  • They realized that something that seemed normal in their immediate social circle wasn’t right for them, and so they didn’t do it (i.e. they didn’t buy a house)
  • The lived efficiently making sure they were getting good value for their money
  • Now, they continue to work hard on projects they enjoy while contributing to society (writing books, volunteering, sharing their financial independence story, etc…)

I’m not saying they’re perfect, no one is. Nor would I want to imply that their story should or even can be used as a template for everyone else in the world. And if your situation is vastly different from theirs, then reading about them could be very frustrating indeed. If that’s that case it might be a good idea to find a story that at least starts from a place that more closely matches your own. And when you find it be inspired, or be frustrated, but in either case channel that energy into changing your life to be more like what you want. And if everyone does that then maybe the internet will find peace.

Begin Again

A few weeks ago, I was watching the women’s 3000 meter steeplechase qualifiers at the Rio Olympics. During the third heat, three of the competitors fell down. The last of the three to get up struggled to put her shoe back on for a second before throwing it aside and continuing on with one bare foot.

She didn’t come back and win the race, but she did still come in 6th out 18 in the race. And still ran a faster time than 99.9999% of other women in the world probably could have.

But that isn’t the point. The point is that she chose start again after falling. She chose to get up shoe or no shoe, and continue to put one foot in front of the other. That’s what’s inspiring about this.

It doesn’t matter if you fall or falter, what matters is what you do when you fall. That’s what defines us. That’s what makes us who we are. That’s the lesson I am continuing to learn. That’s the reason I’m choosing to begin again.