Kevin Hellriegel's Blog of Worthless Advice

The only blog that you really want to read…or ignore.

Tag Archives: retirement

Moron or Mentor…your choice!

Sometimes, you need a little guidance and direction in your life.  You feel a little lost?  Perhaps you need a little direction in your life?  Do you have that nagging feeling that you aren’t headed into the best years of your life?  In my vast time surfing the web, scrolling through thousands of tweets, and reading numerous Facebook posts, I see a common thread of having good mentors in your life.  However, are we listening to Mentors or Morons?

Yes, the good old mentor, a beacon of guidance and coaching that can help lead us on a path of success.  Of course, reading my worthless advice blog won’t help you in the least bit, but that’s ok with you, right?  You need someone to listen to and it might as well be me, right?

You could argue that my advice is pretty solid on a number of issues like business, family life, and how to keep your imaginary stalker Cyndi happy, but my cat Mr. Whiskers might disagree on my cat raising skills.  Perhaps that is where the moron part comes in?

In your everyday life, you will come across people with great ideas, smart as a whip, highly intelligent.  And then other times you come across people that are complete morons and you wonder how they are still alive.  The most annoying mentors are the ones that seem pretty dumb yet they somehow have a huge following and make money.  How is it possible?  I don’t understand it.  My blog of worthless advice is a joke but I spew out the same nonsense they do, and non of my three followers have made me rich. (Cyndi my imaginary stalker doesn’t have a lot of money….)

Mentors and gurus are people we look to for guidance on how to live our lives or to run or business.  We can also throw in the term Life Coach because frankly I haven’t a clue what the hell they do anyway.  I should become a Life Coach or a Guru (after I repackage a bunch of old self-help programs as my own).  I’d be awesome at it.IMG_7749.JPG

Either they are brilliant or the they are morons and the line between the two is very thin at times. Much like my blog is based on what I loosely term as “advice”.  That’s why most of the posts are worthless.  But it is a worthless advice blog.

My Mentor/Guru motto: Get out there and roll around with the bears and butterflies! (Another phrase I invented that I’m sure will become an internet sensation!)

“Get out there and roll around with the bears and butterflies!” means whatever I need it to me at the time someone decides to ask me about it.  I’ll be vague and talk about mentors.  It will be prefect.

Ah, another successful “life” post!  Have an awesome day my readers!

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Hold On…I’m busy designing my vacation home!

Sure, not everyone has the time to design an amazing vacation home like I do. But then again, most people have real jobs and work for a company that wants them to produce a measurable amount of productive work. I, on the other hand, am a slave to myself and, frankly, my own worst nightmare as a boss.  I show up late, watch funny cat videos (with my co-worker Mr. Whiskers), and drink on the job (while operating heavy machinery). Well, if you count my desktop as heavy machinery….

So you can imagine how I quickly jumped onto the chance to read a recent article from The Washington Post titled “Three Tips to Avoid Headaches when designing a vacation home”.  I won’t ruin the article for you but the first tip is to be wealthy enough to afford a vacation home you can design.  That wasn’t one of the tips but it should have been because who has a the time and money for a vacation home?

Now, I have designed numerous vacation homes in my mind, and have even made drawings in my sketchbook (of lost hopes and broken dreams) so that I don’t forget my ideas. My designs vary from the recycled 20 foot ocean crossing storage container home, to the midrange 1000 SF cabin, to the 5,000 trilevel overlooking Lake Chelan.  In fact, half of my future vacation home will be a “man cave” in the style of industrial chic while the other half will be whatever my wife wants. Really, we both have to live there together so I have to be sure to make her happy.  Because we know if she isn’t happy, then I won’t be happy.

My next thought is: Is this a “vacation” home or my “retirement” home?  Are they one in the same?  Because I basically hate people, I would like a home out in the middle of nowhere.  A small town or city feel to it.   I really don’t want to be social.  One other idea: I’d like to have an outbuilding that is a simple Japanese style dojo. Which then makes me wonder if I should have a home with a courtyard in it and thus more in the style of an Asian country home. 

As an introvert, living in a rural setting would suit me fine.  Yes, I do like to hang out with dear friends so my vacation home will need a few guest bedrooms. Or better yet, cottages for guest to visit.

In the meantime, I’ll work and see if I can’t finish the rest of my working career.

Kauai, Maui, Sunny March Weather in Seattle! Oh My!

IMG_5778Yesterday, we had some beautiful sunny March weather here in Seattle. I was actually out on my back deck enjoying the sunshine and working on my suntan. It must have been about 65-70 degrees out. Even after we “sprung” ahead into Daylight Savings Time, I got some stuff around the house accomplished. So spending a few minutes on the back deck with my wife and daughter was a treat that was well deserved.

We usually, have pretty gray weather around here in March but not lately. Last week, we went hiking in the sun.   I have been able to preserve my Hawaii tan for a lot longer than I thought I would. Yes, dear readers, I was gone for two weeks to Hawaii in February. I spent a week on Kauai with my daughter visiting my parents and then we flew to Maui and join my wife and my son for another week. Life is rough.

My last trip to Hawaii was two years ago and that was to Kauai. I haven’t been to Maui in 15 years. To be honest, both are wonderful places but I prefer Kauai. I admit I lean towards Kauai (since I went to school there and lived on Kauai as a teenager). My wife likes Maui because she use to live there. As I always say, Hawaii is a great place to visit but not as fun to live there.

Koi Fish Pond

Koi Fish Pond

What? How can I say that? How can I say Hawaii isn’t an awesome place to live? When you take a vacation, everything is awesome. I’m relaxed, I don’t worry about money, and I’m living in a nice condo resort with hot tubs, swimming pools, and sunny beaches. I picture myself relaxing and drinking every day of my life if I lived in Hawaii. Heck, every time I’m on vacation I think how wonderful it would be to live in Washington, NYC, Eastern Washington, etc. Where ever I am at, I can picture me enjoying living there. My family and I would be hanging out at the pool every day. In reality, you have to work or you would be retired. Ah, retirement. But you would be doing the same thing as you would be doing now. Just in a warmer, humid climate.

Now, I’m not turning down the opportunity to move to Kauai or Hawaii in general if someone offered me a job there. Both my wife and I know what it is like to live there.   But rest assured dear readers, I’m still a few years away from retirement, I haven’t won the lottery, and my online business hasn’t taken off where I can retire from school photography just yet.

Do you have a place you wish you could move to? What is holding you back from moving or even taking a vacation?Kaua'i -  The Garden Isle

Excuse Me, can I be retired now?

It’s a rainy Wednesday here in Kent, Washington and that is normal.  No sunshine for the likes of us to cheer us up.  Luckily, I am a pretty upbeat person despite my sarcastic nature and attitude.  In my day to day job as a seasoned school photographer, I deal with teachers, parents, and kids.  Most of the time, I have a great time with all three parties.  I can’t complain about my job besides the fact I actually have to leave my house.

Yesterday evening, one of our Girl Scout cookie clients (Quick Business Tip: always call your customer’s clients…it sounds like you care about them versus just viewing them as a paycheck.  An example: lawyers have clients and Wal-Mart has customers…we’ll get into lawyers in another post) came to pick up his cookies.  He asked how business was going and I told him it was good but I’d rather be retired.  He chuckled because it is oblivious I’m totally hilarious all the time (and it’s my story so I can say how funny I am).  Anyway, I also mentioned I can always use more business (who doesn’t want more business and more money?).

However, the sticking point to my business growth plan is that I’m currently too comfortable and lazy.  I like my level of business but would like more income without doing more marketing for more clients.  Some people love the thrill of the sales call and getting new accounts, I’m not one of them.  I’m an introvert in an extrovert’s career (school photography).

Now, I can be an extrovert when I need to be.  I can put on my big boy pants and get things done.

What I really want to do is stay home (in jeans and T-shirts; I’m not much of a track suit type of guy) and do nothing.  Well, I would do something.  I enjoy reading and blogging but those too activities aren’t making me too much money.  I like to be with my family and take vacations.

Basically, my dream job is to be a lottery winner (oh, you can’t win if you don’t play) thus I wouldn’t have to worry about working and money.  I want to be retired.  I’d sit around drinking a refreshing beverage and reading a book (or working on a novel) at my oak desk in my office.

Let’s be clear, it is an office and not a man cave.  A man cave would paint a picture of a comfortable leather couch, a flat screen TV, and some of my favorite sport teams’ logos all over the place, with a well stocked fridge to boot!  My office is a nice 12×16 (foot) building separate from my home.  It has internet, electricity, and heat.  If it had a bathroom I could be out here for hours.  It isn’t a man cave because I work here; I can’t relax like in a man cave but at least it is a quiet place for me to work in.

Needless to say, I’m still working and living life: Go Team Kevin!

 

Thanks for wasting another few minutes of your life to read my blog.  Make my life that more exciting by commenting below or pushing the “like” button below the post.

 

 

 

 

Worthless Advice Update “Don’t quit your day job: Making money so you can retire!”

I like how motivational speakers tell you to “follow your heart”.  I would be an awesome motivational speaker because my worthless advice can easily be translated into useful advice.  Most of the advice you hear from motivational speakers is really common sense stuff that we all choose to ignore.  We get comfortable in our lives and forget to keep pushing ourselves.  We get bogged down with everyday life.

I am a perfect example of this (I tend to be a perfect example in a lot of my worthless advice examples) .  I run my small business and I’m dog tired after a day of work.  I want to relax when I leave my office.  I don’t want to think about work when I close my office door.  Yet, I am always thinking about it.  I think about how far I’m behind in getting this order done or that project accomplished.  When will I finish that?  Did I pay car insurance?  Did I get my oil changed?

A small business is like an ADHD kid on a sugar high.  A million things are going on and you want to give your attention to all of them.  You just need to prioritize.

Ha. Ha.  I love that “prioritize” advice statement.  I like it when an expert tells us to set aside a certain day to pay your bills.  Should that be before or after I realize I don’t have any money?

I envy my friends who drive off to work, do their job, and then come back home.  They leave their job at the office.  Sure, I could probably make my life easier by planning better (gee, is that the motivational speaker in me creeping out?) but that would defeat the whole purpose of offering worthless advice.

Another worthless advice statement: “If you fail to plan, then you are planning to fail.”

Oh, touché. I guess this would be a disaster if you fail to buy toilet paper and you ran out.  Does that mean deep down you are sabotaging your own success?  Do you want to be a failure?  What would your mother think?  (Psst.  Your mom is just happy you don’t live in her house anymore.  Remember?)

Yes, you should plan.  Be forward thinking.  See?  My worthless advice is based on useful advice no one cares to remember.

When I have a chance, I’ll come up with some additional gems of worthless advice for you.

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