I jumped off the corporate ladder (and left a six figure income) a few years ago after building up 'financial flexibility' through simple living and rental income. Now, at 43, I still work in my career field, but only 2-3 days a week.
My background is engineering, sustainability consulting, energy management and mobile work program coordinator.
Ironically, working 40+ hours a week as a "sustainability" consultant for a large organization, did not feel "sustainable".
As "primal" beings, and as adults, I feel that we need flexibility and freedom in our careers. Some of the biggest thinkers like Einstein, Benjamin Franklin and DaVinci, only did 'busy' work about 2-3 hours per day. The rest of the time was spent thinking, discussing and pondering.
It seems though that our current society shuns part time work and pondering. So, this is why a community forum like this is soooooo important for those of us who want to buck societal trends and escape the 40 hour work week.