I started my investment journey more actively in 2013. My aim was to build up my nest egg with positive portfolios in SRS, CPF and CDP. This is in addition to my company's pension fund, insurance savings and cash savings. I was also looking at conserving some cash in order to invest in some government bonds.
I have decided to leave my job and my last day with my employer is tomorrow. In fact, I have been on leave for a while now. With the day job out of the way, I am now solely responsible, in every sense, for myself. Personal circumstances may have changed but my approach toward investment is still the same, i.e., long term with fundamentals and preservation of capital.
I will cash out the company's pension fund and along with my other sources of funds, I would be investing on my own just like before. The big difference is that now that I have more time, I no longer need to confine my research to late at night and during my leave. I can attend as many AGMs as I like as long as they are not scheduled at the same time. Yes, I had no guarantee of free time even during 'off days' and weekends in my past day job. I had extremely unpredictable working hours, to say the least.
Since young, I have held the view that as a member of the society, it is incumbent on us to contribute to the society and I dislike the idea of being a burden to the society. Accordingly, I have been conscientiously planning for my retirement, so I thought. I bought numerous insurance policies, I put money in saving accounts, I keep track of and project my CPF balance, I don't spend unnecessarily. Basically that's my plan for retirement and about 10 years ago, I realised that my plan, though sound, is built on the basis that I work till 55 years old.
With the mindset of being a 'useful' member of society, I have no problem with working till 55 years old or even beyond. As I am gearing toward a secured retirement, I have been constantly searching and reading the relevant materials and somehow, I started to find myself reading a lot of materials on investment even though my research was on how to have a secured retirement. Apparently, successful investment equals to successful retirement, monetary wise. In a nutshell, I started reading a lot of investment books in 2010 and at the same time, started doing my own investment, 'experiment style'.
I have seen some success since I started and I began to allot more funds to investment from 2013. For the longest time, I imagined holding on to my day job (got to work at nights rather frequently too in fact) and doing investment concurrently. I can then continue doing investment after I retire. Best of both worlds! I am blessed in my investment journey. A few years elapsed and I started to realise that I have the option of retiring early based on my investment returns. Be that as it may, there is no reason to retire early since I have been coping well with my day job and investment. Besides, I still want to be seen as a 'useful' member of society. Haha, vanity over sanity!
Suffice to say, circumstances changed and deteriorated at the work front and I decided to leave my day job this year. In fact, I am just expediting my retirement plan by 8 years. I still can be a useful member of society after leaving my job, starting with responsibilities to my family and myself first. I think it is fair that after 30 years of full commitment to work, I can now looked forward to no more interrupted family outings, no more late night work calls, no more sleeping with my phone, no more waking up family members at nights and more crucially, peace of mind. Sanity over vanity.
In a true sense, to be a useful member of society is not to burden the society to begin with. Hence, the need to be financially independent till our last day on earth. Therefore, I am quietly excited that I am now able to do what I like and am passionate about full time. My next goal is to grow my current balance in SRS account to 800k by the time I am 62. With yearly compound returns of about 5%, which I aim to achieve, the goal is attainable. Many would say there is no point to accumulate such amount as any amount above 400k is likely to be taxable. Well, I don't mind paying taxes at all, regardless of age, if I am able to contribute as a member of society.