If there is one attribute needed in order to retire early, it is open-mindedness.

Every person who has retired early has this, let’s call it a trait. For some personalities it’s a developed trait and doesn’t come easily.

Our lives have been shaped by our parents, our friends, our own experiences and by society. We fall into societal norms and expectations.  We build a life that fits into those norms. In my case, I was on the common path of college, marriage, career, kids, divorce, and then retirement.

Until one day I woke up and start thinking differently.

I started thinking with an open mind and started seeing that life is more than just walking through and waiting on life’s phases and checking them off. I started exploring other possibilities. I started asking questions. Surely, I didn’t have to wait until 65 for the last phase of life, retirement? Surely there could be ways I could reach it sooner. And furthermore, if I could reach it sooner and start to live that phase, it re-defined what that phase IS. It is no longer the last phase, but the first step to an entirely new existence. All it took was an open mind.

A closed mind can be opened whereas an open mind rarely closes.

When I think of being closed minded, I think of fear being the underlying issue. Fear of failure, rejection, the unknown, uncertainty, etc.  Being open minded is not about taking unnecessary risks. Rather it’s about learning to think outside of the box, taking your life off of cruise control and changing the direction.

Once you realize that you are in control of the path of your own life, things start getting interesting.

If you went to the doctor today and got the diagnosis that you have five years to live, your present life would change. That news would open your mind very very quickly. The way you planned your days would change. Celebrations would take on an entirely different meaning. I can guarantee you that it would reshape how you look at life and change the direction of it.

So, you know as a human being you have the capacity to have an open mind… now the question is will you require something as dramatic as a life threatening news or loss to access that capacity in your life?

Millions of us have figured it out. There’s no secret to retiring early. It’s about freedom. It’s about taking control and living the life you have always wanted to live.

What does it take?  Get your mind right.  Get your lifestyle right.  Get your finances right.

What are you waiting for?

Live open minded my friends

If you need help getting your mind, lifestyle or finances in order, check out my virtual portal AskEricGaddy.com. I retired at the age of 48 after 24 years as a financial advisor and retirement planning expert and I enjoy helping others get on track to seize their own freedom.