Do you remember how your parents scoffed you for saying you want to do anything with video games when you were growing up? That would’ve been true twenty years ago and they were right. Fast forward to now. The internet has given us this awesome gift; sharing content has never been so much easier. It is now a more lucrative business with just not the game itself but with the content being shared.
It’s going to be hard, believe me. I want you guys to follow on this trail of thought. It all starts with the tried and true (mostly) thinking that your parents tried to steer you on.
The Problem with Today’s Working Standard
Here’s what parents were telling us since we were young:
- Go to school and graduate high school
- Get a diploma at a university
- Get a good job and get enough money to retire
Now there are so many problems related to this, starting with the school system to eventually the job part. (If you want me to cover that, that’s for another time, another place.)
What I found was that this made me unhappy. Here are the reasons why:
- I’m told what to do and when to do that
- I don’t get to do what I want to do (not just because of people telling me, but because of exhaustion, time, etc.)
- If I tried to voice my concerns I have to end up dealing with it because of _______ reason
I found that this really stripped my morale and my reason to do work. I don’t mind grinding out the suck, but I should be able to see the light at the end of the tunnel. Or rather, a reason. This is where video games come in. To many of us, we are given a reason to drive forward in the concept of a game. It may not be the game called “Real Life” where we are not progressing, but it does give us a sense of progression nonetheless. It is an escape from that grind in life. However, that leads to another problem.
Video Games and Consumerism
The lead-in to this current topic is pretty scary! Unfortunately, I can’t sugar coat the truth; video games are becoming more expensive and we are being compelled to buy more to fulfill our desire to feel progression. That’s actually really bad! We have people thinking that video games are an addiction and a waste of time. (I do not deny that video game addiction can be a bad thing; but this is also a matter of perspective. It matters how you channel that in order to become more productive.)
I want to get the following idea in your head: The goal here is to get you on a path where you are comfortable, happy and whole.
This doesn’t matter if you decide to retire from video games and move onto something else or if you do decide to make it fully into the video game industry. You are the most important person here; what you decide is important.
Bridging back to the topic at hand, we are constantly bombarded with messages that we are not enough; you are not good enough, you will be happy if you buy _____, and other scummy messages to make us feel awful about ourselves. For me, I used video games to escape from that. Because apparently I’m not good enough, I am often whisked away playing as someone who is good enough to struggle though those problems without taking risks ourselves. Unfortunately unlike games ten years ago, there is a lot of bullshit going around in the game which does not give us the full happy package. Stuff like: “in order to get the full story, buy this extra package” or “packages that accelerate your progress”. We want to feel finished and happy with our purchases, but even that is taken away now.
But OK, let me be frank. It is a cheaper hobby to get into than some other hobbies I know of.
This doesn’t mean you should stop playing because I just let out the Boogeyman. I’m saying that you can control that, or better yet, turn this into a weapon to get you further ahead of the competition.
Introducing the Concept of Financially Independent/Retiring Early
So why is being Financially Independent and Retiring Early (FIRE) important to Gamers on FIRE?
FIRE allows us to:
- not worry about money for the more important things (roof over our heads, food, bills, etc.)
- have more time to “git gud” and be passionate about our work (IE: games)
- not be restricted by others
So here’s the thing about this idea. It is always about yourself first. If you’re always concerned about making sure you make this month’s rent on time, you should not be thinking about the next Call of Duty game coming out. Your priority is making sure you have a place to live, food and other necessities. (I mean, we all need internet and electricity to play games anyway!)
If we don’t worry about the necessities, we will then have more time to focus on honing our craft. Whether that is working on your YouTube video about game theories, programming your indie game project or working towards going pro in League of Legends. If you can hone your craft, you can work towards earning for your efforts.
And finally, once you’re free from thinking about money, you can be free. Free from schedules, your oppressive bosses, anything, really. You are your own boss, you should act like it.
It’s the beginning of a new day here. I have a lot of ground to cover but let’s first lay down the fundamentals. This isn’t a get-rich-quick scheme; it’s a lifestyle. I’m glad you’re here. Let’s jump down the next pipe!