Shockingly, FIRE (financial independence, retire early) is not really a “goal” from many physicians. It's not that they don't want FIRE. It's that they assume they will work the usual 30+ year career, which gives them plenty of time to save up for a nice nest egg. I think every physician (especially women!) should strive for financial independence (FI) or pFI in a reasonable amount of time.
1. Carve out the dream job
How many physicians do you know are not happy with their current job but can't walk away because, well, they need the money? The answer is probably a lot.
In fact, one frightening survey said only 6 percent of doctors are happy with their jobs. Yikes!
Attaining pFI or FI gives you the ability to work on the terms that make you happy. It gives you the ability to walk away from a job that isn't working for you. I don't know about you, but I'd love to see less patients per hour and spend quality time with them instead of being rushed so that I meet “my numbers.”
2. Go part time!
Many women physicians would love to work less and spend more time with their families. Or spend time on other priorities. Attaining pFI gives you that ability. This is definitely one of the main drivers for us.
3. Stay flexible when life throws you that curveball
I hear a lot of “I love what I do and will work until I die” among physicians. Not so fast. Your goals and priorities will likely change as you get older. And sometimes, you don't have a choice.
A close family member needs extra care or passes. Your child has special needs or other needs that require your time and attention. Being FI gives you the freedom and ability to take the time you want to address whatever life may throw at you.
4. Enjoy your freedom
To me, FI means total freedom. We have become so used to debt that we are numb to it. We think of debt as “just another monthly payment.”
Final Thoughts on Women Physicians and Financial Independence
Looking over these top four reasons that women physicians should pursue financial independence, it's hard to believe you might have ever thought FIRE wasn't for you. If you're just getting started, no worries. Even if you've made financial mistakes in the past, you can still reach FIRE. To get started, calculate your net worth and check out the other FI resources on this blog to see how the start of your FIRE journey stacks up.
What do you think? Why is financial independence important to you? Comment below! ]]>