Reactions and changes are caused by catalysts. In my case, the change was thinking differently about time and money and the catalyst was Mr. Money Mustache.
There isn't anyone that has changed the way I think about of life and money more than MMM. His principles are based on real life experience, classic literature, and knowledge passed on by other FI Gurus. He has reviewed books like your Your Money or Your Life and The Magic of Thinking Big, which is next on my list.
The most important thing that he has taught me is that time is worth more than money, but you need money to have the time. The most simple way of having money is by not spending it and having it work for you once you manage to keep it.
It took me 35 years, but I figured out what makes me happy. It isn't cars. It isn't clothes or a big house. It is being social with my family and friends, smoking good food, playing music, and working a few hours a day on the computer. It is a pretty cheap lifestyle that gives me an incredible amount of fulfillment. MMM's blog has hundreds of posts about simplifying life, reducing expenses and risk and truly increasing your life's satisfaction. His writing is emotional, kind of insulting, but motivating as hell.
I am not FI yet, but I am a lot closer than I was and a million times closer than I would have been without his blog. If you haven't, check him out and enjoy feeling like a dumbass for not doing it sooner.
Well, he is a "walker" and not a "talker". He retired when he was 30 after working for about 10 years. With an above average income, he saved the majority of it just becuase that is what he thought was the right thing to do. His savings increased to a point where he realized that it might be able to provide enough dividends to pay for his lifestyle for the rest of his life. Add a rental property's returns and you have Financial Independence and Early Retirement. After he was married, he knew he didn't want to work all day while raising a child. So he and his wife retired when their child was born. He writes about how to achieve FI and also a lot about fullfillment and happiness. He believes the same thing as me and that is that removing things that make you unhappy will have more impact than adding things that might. He writes a lot biking. He thinks everyone should ride a bike. If you live too far from work, move closer. Ditch your leased car, big house, and save the money. Within a decade or two, it can make you more money than you are working for. He believes that humans need to work and be physical. Lifting weights, eating right, and having a bit of fun are super important to him. His blog has a lot of emotion and data within it. He was an engineer and loves the science and numbers behind life.
He changed my life and opened my eyes to the possibility of FIRE. Because of him, I have read many books and blogs and listened to hundreds of podcasts about FIRE. It is real and attainable. Motivating stuff.....