One of my favourite podcasters is Tim Ferriss, author of The Four Hour Work Week and other personal development tracts. If you can set aside the somewhat relentless “Yes I Can” striving for nirvana and the hagiography of Silicone Valley tech billionaires (most of whom are seemingly oblivious to the concept of “luck”) he broadcasts some of the best and most interesting interviews that I’ve listened to.
One of his set pieces is to ask the same somewhat left-field questions of each guest, such as “What gadget have you bought in the last six months for under 100 dollars that has changed your life?” Another favourite is when he asks them to outline their morning routines. He seems quite fixated on this, although I’m not sure why. Maybe it’s because we all start the day in a certain way? I know I definitely have an “early retirement” morning routine that is probably the one bit of structure my days have at the moment!
I’ve always been an early riser, so I’m out of bed for half six, feed the bloody cat, and fix myself breakfast. I quite like porridge, but if I can’t be bothered making it I opt for Shreddies. When working I was a branded Shreddies fan, accepting no substitute, but I’m now a convert to the Lidl Own Label version. Well “convert” is maybe the wrong word. “Tight fisted bastard” might be a better description of why I’ve changed.
I do like fresh coffee, so I brew up a pot and then read The Times on my iPad. I tend to read only the columnists these days because at least they are up front with their opinions while the rest of the paper is just another mouthpiece for establishment Britain. The media is so conformist these days…..but that’s a later blog rant, probably.
I’ve kept a daily journal for years and it’s possibly one daily habit I couldn’t do without, so I spend twenty minutes or so jotting into that and this takes me to about half seven. At that point I get ready to head to my local Bannatynes gym for a swim. I try to do this every day but it’s not easy. I tell myself that it’s good for me in numerous ways, not least because of the fact that I’m saving on my hot water bill by not showering at home!
With the swim over, I settle down to about my fourth morning coffee and fire up my laptop. I like to track my finances on a daily basis so I download bank and credit card distractions with a view to pulling the wife about the McDonalds Happy Meal (£1.99) she tried to sneak through the household expenses by waving her joint debit card at the contactless machine.
This takes me to around ten, and with a somewhat heavy heart I open my emails. I’m registered with several job websites who bombard me daily with “opportunities” for my consideration based on the filters I selected long ago. Which is probably why “Global Account Director, based San Francisco” will have to be binned, although I still have dreams, I still have dreams.
And that’s my weekday early retirement morning routine.