Why Sailing is the Perfect Mini Retirement

Why Sailing is the Perfect Mini Retirement

What is a mini retirement?

The concept of a mini retirement has been attributed to Tim Ferriss from his book The Four Hour Work Week.  The idea basically means taking extended time off of work to relax, reboot, indulge, and/or explore the world, instead of waiting until retirement age.  Mini retirements can occur multiple times throughout a person’s career, if planned correctly.

You can always make more money, but you can’t make more time. This is the mantra I now live by.

Reasons to take a mini retirement.

Mini retirements are a way to break out of our routines, to clean our mental slate and start fresh again.  Extended time off gives us an opportunity to experience real change that could alter the course of our life in a positive way.  It gives us a way to spend quality, uninterrupted time with kids and family.  It allows time to learn new skills, start a new project, or launch a business.  To travel, be location independent for a while, to give back through charitable work, or to spend a year or two sailing the world.

You can always make more money, but you can’t make more time. I learned this concept from the book Live on the Margin by Pat Schulte and Nick O’Kelley.  It inspired me to pursue the goal of sailing the world with my family. This is the mantra I now live by because its absolutely true.

Why sailing is the perfect mini retirement.

I believe that sailing is the perfect mini retirement activity for a number of reasons.  There are too many to list, but here are a few that stand out to me:

Firstly, its just cheaper to live on a sailboat.  You don’t have the cost of a mortgage plus car payments, plus all of the other suburban living expenses.  In fact, the importance of those things diminish as you start to focus on saving for a life on a sailboat.

If you play your cards right, you can recover the cost of the boat when you finish and put it back in the bank to use for the next mini retirement.

In order to cross an ocean, or even sail to the Bahamas, there are a plethora of skills you must learn.  Your kids will also need to learn new skills to live and crew on a sailboat.  They will learn hands-on science, history, new languages, new cultures, and learn to find friends and socialize outside of their daily norms.  These are skills that will benefit them throughout their lives.

Planning for a sailing mini retirement causes you to save money so you can buy a boat and afford to be out on it for a while.  You learn to live frugally.  You learn to value your goals and your family over material things.  Material things don’t matter much if they can’t fit on a sailboat.  Every time we walk into a store and want to buy something big we remind each other that it won’t fit on the boat.

In fact, you reduce the amount of “stuff” you own, learn to live in a smaller space, and inevitably leave a smaller footprint on the planet.  Sailing can be one of the most conservationist ways to live – catching your own food, making your own water, using solar and wind for energy, reducing the amount of garbage you produce.

What is your opinion on the concept of a mini retirement?  What reasons do you think sailing is or isn’t the perfect mini retirement?  Please share in the comments below!



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