I’m going to ask a question and the answer will probably be “do what makes you happy.” Nonetheless, I’m going to ask.
So my current situation is that I took a year off in 2016 and lived abroad volunteering with Doctors Without Borders in South Sudan helping run hospitals. During my holidays I would surf and surfed in Costa and Bali. I found out I really enjoy surfing even though I’m pretty bad.
I wanted to move back to the States because traveling full time is not my cup of tea (at least yet). I came back to the job that I had when I left, a series of fortuitous events occurred in my favor for this to happen.
From a financial standpoint: I make $100k+ and save 25% of my income. From a savings perspective I am in the $200k range. I am 31. I also started to do some side consulting and picked up my first client for roughly $3,500 a year. I can pick up more but I just don’t have the time right now.
On the personal side: I’m single and have no children. I just got out of a long distance relationship so focusing on doing a good job at work and traveling/surfing.
Why I love my job: I have a great team and I get 2 months off each year. 1 month is unpaid. This allows me to travel extensively and take long surf trips. I am currently in Costa working remotely.
The dilemma: my boss (the CFO) is quitting in June and has asked if I want to apply or not. It would be a big raise and I’d be a young CFO (ego talking here) but I’d lose the ability to travel 2 months. I’d be back to 2 weeks of vacation pretty much and that is not something I want.
Yes I could be the CFO save up a ton of money and then retire sooner but the trade off would be giving up the best years of my life when I most physically fit (training for an Ironman) to possibly not even make it to 40. My cousin who is my age just got diagnosed with breast cancer. She is young and is in great shape too. Another thing I consider is that when I talk to people, I rarely bring up what I do at work and try in earnest not to ask people about their job - your job rarely defines you. I talk about my surfing/traveling and the people I’ve met doing both. I enjoy my job but it is not my defining characteristic.
What would you do?
My answer is that I think I’m going to decline applying to be the CFO and maybe just take on more clients for my side hustle consulting.