Dream adventure 1: Not an easy start (July 2019)

My name is Jirka and welcome to follow my dream adventure, which I embarked on in July 2019. Whether you are my friend, a stranger or someone from my family, I decided to share every month of my adventure and path towards my dreams.

Background story

Last year, I started my first real full-time job. At first, I was really happy and excited. Soon, I realized that a 9-5 job in a big corporation is not really for me. Having stumbled across the FIRE movement (Financial Independence Retire Early), I started to work my way out of the rat wheel and become financially independent.

(Un-)fortunately, my job contract was not prolonged. Having failed at finding another job I would love, I decided to take this risky path towards the unknown. I decided to live a life without a job, trying to become an online entrepreneur and fulfill my dreams.

My 3 BiggestDreams are:

1. I want to grow my BiggestDreamers Community in order to help more people to achieve their dreams 

2. I want to establish my own business/project I am passionate about and become financially independent in the next 10 years, so I do not have to work for money but just for my pleasure and have more time 

3. I want to make movies which would inspire other people

I believe that sharing your dreams or goals with as many people as possible (and especially with strangers) helps you to achieve your goals faster. Not knowing the right people is one of the greatest obstacles people are facing, when they want to reach their dreams. Therefore, I started a community of BiggestDreamers, where you can present your dreams, goals, and ambitions in front of people you have never met before. This way you can get advice, new perspectives, and feedback on your dreams.

This dream journey is supposed to show you how it is to leave the safety net of a paid job. I will share not only my success but also my failures. More importantly, you will have the chance to see how I am able to afford it and what I am doing in order to achieve my dreams.

Currently, probably like many of you, I do not have any business idea. The only thing which I have are my dreams, goals, passion, and determination not to give up.

I hope that I will be able to inspire you and that you will enjoy this journey with me.

July 2019

The first month of my jobless life did feel rather like holidays than the start of a new journey. I wanted to visit my family and therefore, I used most of the time for them.

Nevertheless, I am aware of the incredible privilege and responsibility to have this time and not being forced to find a new job immediately.

Therefore, I set up a plan and goals, which I wanted to follow during this month. Furthermore, I tried to establish new routines in order to keep my life structured.

Unfortunately, some things, which I wanted to rely on stopped working right in the beginning and it showed to me that this adventure is not going to be as easy as I imagined …

My goals and progress

BiggestDreamers

Last year, I started a blog about my community of BiggestDreamers, which I would like to improve and expand. Hence, I invested a lot of time into improving my blogging skills.

I dived into SEO (Search Engine Optimization) in order to bring my blog more organic traffic from Google searches. This included improving the blog posts itself, adjusting the page speed and much more. I realized that there is a lot behind successful blogs and websites.

Besides my blog posts I started to work on my BiggestDreamers podcast and I was more than happy to have my second interview with Devang from India, who told me about his travels and dreams.

Healthy lifestyle

One of my other goals is to live a healthier and sportive lifestyle. In order to achieve this, I wake up every day around 6 o´clock and do my morning routine consisting of jogging, meditating and some fitness training to build my muscles.

I have been doing this routine for quite some time already. However, one important part was always missing – healthier eating. I never cared much about what I eat and this is one of the things, which I decided to change.

In order to increase my motivation, I set my goal to have a six-pack by the end of this year, which is possible only with a combination of healthy eating and training.

I already did some cooking on my own before, but always the same easy meals. This time I created a cooking plan for every day in a month and started to cook by myself every day. I also paid attention to what I eat and got rid of unhealthy stuff. In my case, I had to give up white bread, pasta, and sweet things.

Finances

This is probably the most interesting question for many of you.

How can I afford to live without a job?

Saving

One of my biggest strengths is that I am not a big spender, which has been so far the keystone of my success. This way, I was able to save up enough money, which would allow me to survive for almost three years.

Having designed a lifestyle in which you do not need much money is essential in order to survive without any income. The more money you need per month, the more you have to earn and the shorter will your savings last.

Insurance

Giving up a job means also giving up your insurance and pay it by yourself. Fortunately, I can be insured through my father until the age of 30 (4 more years), which is when I would like to be already sustainable with my business. This is another argument for taking this journey at the age of 26 and not later when you cannot get these benefits.

Income and investing

On one hand, I am very fortunate that my family wants to support me financially, which helps me to cover most of my rent (300 € a month). On the other hand, I will not get any financial support from the Austrian state. According to the Austrian law, you need to prove that you have worked for more than a year, in order to be eligible for the support during your unemployment, which I did not.

However, I do not want to rely only on my parents and savings in order to survive. Having been interested in investing,  I invested almost 8 thousand euros into various assets, which I hope to bring me some revenue in the long run.

The biggest part of my portfolio consists of ETF´s. (Exchange Trade Fund) The second important pillar is my crypto investments. I want to emphasize, that when I invested, it was meant to be my play money and I was aware of the high risks, e.g. that I can lose everything, which partly happened. You can read more about it in the section about failures.

I have invested into new crypto-projects like Minervabot or PlusToken, which are basically AI programs doing automated trading with cryptocurrencies. The revenue you can get is 20%, respectively 10% monthly. Having high revenues like this, an investment of 2500 € is able to generate monthly revenue, which covers 80% of my monthly expenses. It is important to say, that so far I would have been far better off if I just held my cryptos and did not experiment. Anyway, it was a valuable lesson and I learned a lot about cryptocurrencies.

Back in February 2019, I did not think about to live from these revenues since I had a job. Now, the situation has changed and I hope to enjoy these revenues at least till the end of this year. Then I would like to replace them with more sustainable and less risky income.

Lastly, I want to take some small jobs, which would help me to improve my finances a little bit.

Here you can find the exact numbers, which would put you more into perspective:

In July I had income from the following activities:

Small payment from my old job 265 €
Small job                           200 €
Minerva bot 356 €
My family 250 €
____________________________________
Total 1071 €

My expenses in July were as follows:
Food: 154 €
Rent: 303 €
Transportation: 122 €
Others: 159 €
_____________________________________
Total 738 €

As you can see, I was able to get even more than I needed thanks to my family, who always supported me. In the long term, I plan to get a small job, which would help me to become more sustainable with my income (in case I do not figure out how to get an income from my own business ideas)

I have to say that this month is not a normal month, as I spent most of the time with my family, where I do not have so many expenses. However, in general, my expenses stay usually below 850 € per month.

I am well aware that not everyone is lucky to get such support from the family. However, I also just do not rely on it and try to create some income myself or at least try to minimize my expenses so I can live from my savings hopefully until my 30th birthday.

My biggest successes

I consider my daily morning routines as one of my biggest successes. In July, I was able to wake up almost every day early and do some jogging and exercising.

Furthermore, I have formed a MasterMind group with some other people from Financial Independence week, which is meeting every week and I have not missed a single one this month. I am very proud of that, as this group helps me a lot to get motivation and inspiration.

Lastly, I am also happy about learning a lot about SEO, which helps me to understand how online businesses work. This is crucial, as one of my goals is to become an online entrepreneur.

My failures

Right in the first week of my “free” lifestyle, I encountered two major “kicks”. A platform called Plustoken which I invested in stopped working and I lost not only my money (1000 €) but also all monthly revenues (250€ per month), which I was counting on during the first months of my jobless life.

As if it was not enough, I got ripped off as I was trying to help a stranger and lost 34 €.

Secondly, I planned to organize my BiggestDreamers meetings in Prague and Luxembourg, while I was traveling. Unfortunately, my account on Couchsurfing, which I mainly used for these purposes, was suspended and I did not organize any event.

These events had a major impact on my start and made it clear that I will have to work hard in order to achieve my dreams and goals. However, I think that it is important that these things happened because they taught me that a lot.

Financially, I cannot rely only on my investments, as they can be gone any day. Secondly, I have to have always a plan B and not take anything for granted.

Happiness

As mentioned before, my start into this new lifestyle was definitely not smooth. Furthermore, on the one hand, I wanted to enjoy my time, on the other hand, I wanted to work hard in order to build a new business or a project.

Therefore, the weeks which I spent at home in Vienna working on my projects and learning felt psychologically hard. This was especially difficult when I came back to Vienna after visiting my family. It was for the first time when there was no one, who would tell me what to do next, just me.

However, all in all, I felt much better than in my 9-5 job trying to enjoy every single day. My newly created “gratitude” routine helped me to realize that we have to savor every moment.

Wrap up

July 2019 was a very special month for me. I decided to take this huge step into the unknown without having any idea, how I am going to sustain and what I am going to do for a living. I am determined to learn and not to give up in order to find what I love to do and fulfill my dreams.

If you want to know how my life is going to evolve, subscribe to my blog. I will give you an update every month of my adventure.

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