If you are currently employed and still have a decade or two before your official retirement age, but planning to retire early and work from home, it's certainly the right way to go. There are a lot of possibilities, and there's no reason why you should wait because you know life speeds up with age, your life won't wait for you. So you can - and you should - start preparing yourself now in your spare time and take advantage of the experience.
That's how I did it, and how millions of others do to make their second half of working life a better, easier-going but a lot more fruitful one. I tried and tested a lot while I was still employed and when my work from home business started to take off, I decided to quit the day job. Creating a good long-term plan now will make things easier for you than I ever did.
The first question you're asking yourself may be whether to look for a new employment opportunity on a part-time basis or to work for yourself.
My answer is definitely the latter. Many people seek work-from-home employment opportunities such as virtual assistant or database entry jobs for flexibility. Of course, advantages of working for a company include guaranteed salary, sick pay, bonus incentive schemes and various employment protections. But you'll still be in a controlled environment.
You'll have to continue to negotiate over pay and other rights from time to time. Your performance will be monitored and reviewed. You won't have the decision making power and complete freedom that you want.
No More Stress
There's only one reason why people want to retire early - for freedom. They want to spend more time on something else rather than work. Such as for family, for health reasons, flexibility for travelling, etc. And they no longer want their job to disrupt their freedom. Your reason must be something similar too - that you want to take more control of your life and be stress-free.
This is a little old statistic from Statista, but in 2017, it was said that 39% of employees in North America claimed their workload to be the main cause of stress, while 31% said it was the people they were having to deal with. Hardly a surprise, right? Perhaps these are the reasons why you may be considering early retirement, too.
Your stress level can be dramatically reduced by working from home. You won't have to see your coworkers who you don't get on with, you may not have to get up early in the morning, and you may be able to catch up with your work any time of day or night.
But still - so long as you work for someone else, you cannot decide your own workload. If you cannot finish your work by the deadline, your ability will be judged by the employer and that can affect your future salary or work relationship, hence another stress.
Prepare Yourself To Be Self-Employed
Of course, you cannot be completely stress-free by being self-employed. But think about it - if you like working in a team, like to create a buzz, value harmony and synergy, like to encourage one another and grow together...you're probably not reading this? If you do, you'll struggle with isolation and loneliness by retiring early. What I love about working on the internet on my own is the fact that everything that I do is under my own control and being in the 'no office politics, no interference' environment.
Assuming you have no problem working on your own - the potential cause of 'stress' when working for yourself can be;
These problems can be avoided easily if you start working online from home as a hobby, and quit your day job when the money starts to roll in periodically. Next, I'll tell you how I started to work for myself on the internet.
Some Business Models Don't Work Out For You
I first started my online business just for fun, using a couple of hours in the evening. I started dropshipping which I initially thought was great.
Dropshipping is one of the most popular internet jobs across the world. For example you open your store on eBay and decide to sell household appliances. Amazon sells a coffee machine for $50. You sell the same machine for $70 on your eBay store. A customer buys it from your store and pays $70 to you. You immediately order the same machine from Amazon and arrange to send it directly to your customer, paying $50 to Amazon. The difference of $20 will be your profit.
Problems (=causes of stress) of drop shipping can be;
For the above two reasons, I felt that my day-to-day life is tied to the customer service management. If I didn't respond quickly enough, I could receive bad feedback and that would affect my reputation. So it became a routine to check customer orders 3 times a day at least, when I was still working in the office full-time. As you can imagine, having to go out on the corridor during working hours to make sure everything with my dropshipping business was all under control was stressful as I wasn't totally faithful to my employer.
Content Marketing Can Be Stress Free
A routine that becomes stressful can cause you to lose interest in the job - perhaps gradually, and you eventually decide that there's no point in doing anything half-heartedly. I stumbled upon Wealthy Affiliate as I was just about to lose interest in my dropshipping business. This program teaches how to make money with affiliate marketing through content marketing.
Content marketing is a method to make a business profitable by distributing useful content to the relevant audience. Content can be in any format - text (blogging), video (YouTubing), audio (podcasting), etc.
When I first joined Wealthy Affiliate in 2015, the program was almost 100% focused on written content marketing, but nowadays it also teaches video marketing. It has everything. you need to start an affiliate marketing business through content marketing such as;
- Build a WordPress website within minutes of joining
- SEO keyword tool
- Content writing templates
- Video and text training (Online Entrepreneur Certification Course and Affiliate Bootcamp)
- A vast amount of community support
- Live chat and
- Weekly webinars.
The very first thing you need to do is to choose a niche that you're passionate about. Something that you've always been interested in, so you'll never run out of the topics that you write about. You may need to do some research - google to find out what other people say, trends, statistics, regulations, etc. Because it's an area you're interested in, you won't get tired of researching it.
Content marketing can be stress-free as far as I'm concerned because there's never a time limit for any part of it (unless you're providing content for someone else.) Whether researching, forming the idea or writing, you can use your own good time. And with Wealthy Affiliate, you're not on your own. You will have questions and doubts along the way, but plenty of help is there through the community, Q&A sessions and live chat.
I loved writing content, and because Christmas was approaching within 2 months of joining, I was able to start making affiliate commissions quite quickly. After 6 months, I started to receive enough money and suddenly my retirement plan became a reality. I made sure my monthly income would be as much as what I was earning from my day job as an accountant. It was time for me to go free - I quit my job and I've never looked back since.
I want you to know that there really was no magic there. I'm ordinary, and I'm not even a native English speaker. So as I said at the beginning of this post - if I could do it, you could do it even better!
Retire and Work From Home - Start Content Marketing
Content marketing - blogging - allows you to express yourself, and write about what you love, your hobby, or something that you have a good knowledge of. But of course, you need to know certain techniques (search engine optimization) for your webpage to be ranked in search engines. Wealthy Affiliate offers pretty intensive courses for you to learn all about it in your own good time.
If you want to experience what I experienced - you can create your account for free and give yourself a blog test drive and see how I feel. No credit card is required. I recommend it as the best way to retire and work from home without stress. Give it a try today.
Hi Ray, I am already retired and happy to live my life just with pension income but feel it would be nice if I could have a little bit of extra to provide better life to my children and grand children. I am not so sure if I can carry on blogging for the rest of my life. I am 66 years old. I know it will take a long time to learn new skills. Please advise, thanking you in advance.
Hi Norman, you can start blogging for free and see what happens. You might have a lot of questions and doubts, but until you actually start, you never know if it works out for you or not. My best advice is to (1) decide your niche – what you want to blog about today, and (2) start building your site as soon as you can. If you get stuck, please don’t hesitate to ask me any questions. I’m here to help! Thank you for your comment.
Hello Ray. I like your idea of becoming stress free by working from home. Thank you so much.
Thanks Onni! I appreciate your comment.
Retiring early means you will have no pension income for a while so you have to be aware that solely relying on your affiliate income is always going to be risky.
Hi Irina, yes you’re right, like any other jobs, no income source is 100% safe. So if you’re thinking about quitting a job and moving to online marketing, you do need to make sure you are already earning enough online and you’re committed to it. Thanks for your comment.
Hi Ray, I’m currently unemployed and looking for a job. I still have many years until my retirement age and I’ve never even imagined about early retirement (I’m 42). Is there an option if anyone at my age or younger to be successful online and not working for a company any more? Do you think I have a potential to start right now? I don’t have a website or any knowledge in SEO yet. Thanks for your advice.
Hi Joseph, thanks for leaving a comment. Yes! There are many people at any age who opt to quit the day job and start working online, either seriously as a full-time or be more relaxed and enjoy online marketing as a hobby/part-time. Yes you can start learning all about website building, blogging including SEO, affiliate marketing, etc. Bear in mind that you can’t start today and make money tomorrow – it will take time. So just look for a job as normal, and start building your site using your spare time. Any more questions don’t hesitate to get back to me by leaving a comment or send me a message any time. I’m hear to help. Good luck!
Very good advice, thanking you for this. I have many friends in South East Asia doing dropshipping work successfully. I suggest that you should check out a training course by David Vu. It’s available on Udemy and other platforms and very useful. Thanks.
Thanks for your comment Ellis, I know about David Vu and his drop shipping course. I agree, it’s very good, though it’s a few years old? It only costs around $10 so I’d recommend it to anyone who’s interested in a drop shipping business too.
I was totally impressed by the way you started to make money within 2 months after opening a website. I have some question please kindly reply.
1. Is it necessary to learn about SEO in order to make money?
2. Is your income all affiliate commission?
3. Do you offer a coaching service. If so how much do you charge for it?
Thanking you in advice.
Hi Ali, thanks for your comment and questions. I think I was lucky because I started my website before Christmas and I focused on Christmas gift products so I was able to earn my commissions pretty quickly, though not enough to make a living at that time. It took me further 4 months before the money started to roll in constantly. To answer your questions;
1. SEO technique is to receive organic traffic, so there are other ways to make money online, such as by purchasing traffic or using paid advertisement services. But these methods are not sustainable (i.e. you have to keep paying), so I would strongly advise you to learn SEO technique!
2. Majority of my online income is yes, affiliate commissions on various niches.
3. No I don’t offer a coaching service, but I’d recommend you to join Wealthy Affiliate (from the button link!) The premium membership will cost you $49 per month, and it’ll be definitely cheaper than receiving a 1-2-1 coaching service elsewhere.
Any more questions don’t hesitate to get back to me any time. Thanks for your visit!