Retire Early Helen Blog

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Retiring early means no more job-related stress

Three years ago, I decided to retire early, and live my life in my way. Five years ago, I left the engineering career, partly because I was sick and tired of the stress caused by the job.  While in the rat race, I managed the stress okay.  But, when the choice came up, I would prefer not having the share of stress. Job-related stress is no stranger to...

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Where are you from?

About 15 years ago, I went to a local immigration office, to ask some questions.  The office was on the 3rd floor.  As a walk enthusiast, I just took the stairs. Once out of the stair door, I saw a couple of security officers busy checking the visitors, who came from the elevators. After being cleared, each visitor was taking a seat in the waiting area.  The stair...

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How different are the graduate schools in China and US?

Today, I’m going to talk about the graduate schools in China and US. I was an undergraduate student for 4 years, and a graduate student for 3 years in mid 1980s in China.  Fortunately, I also got chance to study MBA for one year in mid 1990s in US (I didn’t graduate).  Then attended an engineering graduate school in US for another year, and graduated. Yeah, I used...

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How to measure the success of life?

About a month ago, I was on the phone with my dad.  Out of the blue, he told me:  “I don’t think your life is successful.”  I didn’t say much in return. Everyone is entitled to have an opinion.  Parents are no exceptions.  If someone judges me, usually I just ignore it.  If it’s too intrusive or offending, I yell and hit back. After hearing my dad’s comments,...

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Retiring early is an adventure

Retiring early was always my dream. When my kid was young, many times I wished I were able to stay home with him.  Sending him to the day care at that young age was like sending him to the war zone.  It ripped his heart and mine.  I always felt the guilt.  Why did I have to work?  I needed the money to live.  It’s just that pure...

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Demystify financial advisors

Nowadays, financial advisors are all over the places.  You see them at the banks, insurance companies, brokerage firms, wealth management companies, or mixed business of the above.  You wonder what kind of financial advisors work for your best interest. In order to get your business, some might even say that, their consultation services are free.  The word “free” always alerts me, because there is no free service.  Everyone...

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Happy Chinese New Year! – the Year of the Dog

February 16, 2018 is the Chinese New Year, the Year of the Dog.  For our world full of dog lovers, definitely this is going to be a year of love and friendship. Yeah, we already had a very good beginning.  During the opening ceremony of the 2018 Winter Olympics, the South and North Korean players teamed up.  They walked proudly into the stadium in ONE team, under one...

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Sweet tax refund

It’s the tax season again in US.  If you are expecting the sweet tax refund checks, probably you can’t wait to file the tax returns.  Yeah, the tax filing offices are lit up again. The long-forgotten tax accountants are back.  They are smiling, and counting the extra dollars in their pockets.  As the mid April deadline is approaching, they are becoming the most beloved professionals in this country....

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Is early retirement good or bad?

Does early retirement work for everyone?  Is early retirement good or bad?  Should people retire early?  Or work to the age of 70, as Suze Orman suggested? From my experience, I feel early retirement is great.  I can do whatever I want, and live a life without work-related stress.  Here are some of the early retirees in the personal finance blogging community, who are enjoying their early retirement...

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Do you need Overdraft Protections?

Have you heard about “Overdraft”, and “Overdraft Protections”?  Today, I’m going to talk about it.  Why?  I want you to have the knowledge, so you can make a decision that is best, only for you and your family. Overview: If you choose to overdraft, it’s like you start digging a hole for yourself. Then if decide to go for overdraft protections, you are digging yourself deeper and deeper...