May Update

It’s been a very interesting month!  I almost purchased a large quantity of stock this month, but it didn’t end up working out.  In case you’re interested, I placed a limit order on May 6, when the stock market nearly instantaneously lost almost 1,000 points.  I noticed that certain ETFs I was watching had plunged relative to the 4% market drop.  I raced to log on to my brokerage site and was fortunately able to place a limit order.  But  I was a few minutes late and it did not trigger.  Had it triggered, I would have bought the ETF at the March 2009 lows.  What a missed opportunity — that was a very, very exciting day.

I’m not sure how I feel about the market these days, with the EU bailout passed.  In my gut, I still feel like the market is overpriced.  But I don’t feel as strongly as I did before, when the Greek crisis was looming.  I feel like the next large market gyration may be delayed a few years, when the U.S. is forced to take its own austerity measures or lose its AAA credit rating.  What happens if inflation hits instead to make it easier for the government to pay back its debts?  I guess the stock market will still take a hit.  Anyways, bottom line — I hate sitting on the sidelines.  But I can be a very principled person.  I quit TV and Facebook based on principles and I refuse to let talking heads dictate how I invest my money.

On the spending side, this month has not been as good as previous months.  Yes, the smaller rent payment helps, but this is a multi-special occasion month, so naturally I will spend more.  Fortunately, my net worth increased even though stocks fell over the past month and I have increased spending.

The Joy of Living :)

Sorry for the lack of posts lately.  I’ve been busy living my life.  Lately, I’ve felt a breath of fresh air come in my life.  Maybe it’s the weather or my new perspective on living.  I think much of it also has to do with me settling into my plan to retire early.  In the past few months, I’ve been very focused on developing my plan going forward and this has led to a lot of stress — mostly due to my personality.  The plan is now more or less in place.  My expenses are nailed down (I will be moving into my new apartment in a few weeks) and I have taken 90% of the steps to put my plan into action.  The only two remaining tasks are:

1.  Invest the cash in my non-taxable accounts and

2.  Switch to an HDHP health plan at the end of the year.

I can now focus on spending my time in the best way possible.  I’ve decided to put more effort in at the office.  I don’t work more than I have to and I don’t volunteer for tasks, but I do my best.  This way I don’t feel like a useless, bottom-dwelling louse.  I’ve been planning more social events with friends and making new friends.  I attended an alumni event a few weeks ago and have subsequently met up with people I became acquainted with there.  I went on a road trip with an old college buddy and camping with some other friends.  All in the last month.  All within my arguably tight budget.  I’ll have to keep an eye on this spending though, but these activities really make me feel alive again.