My Daily Routine

Ever since I retired, lots of people have been asking about my daily routine. So I though I should probably write about it and help the folks 🙂 and this is that post. Before I get started, you have to remember a few things about my reasons for retirement. First, I did not retire to do a startup and run like crazy. That is not to say that I am playing video games and watching TV all day either. I found my Nirvana by doing just enough and not too much. I have a lot of free time and my brain does not get overrun with multiple thoughts demanding its time and causing it to stress. So you might be surprised to see that my daily routine is almost completely about doing non-productive stuff. None of what I do on a daily basis will make the world a better place, or gift humanity with a new invention or device that begs for your attention. Some people feel that I am wasting my knowledge, skill and expertise by not doing anything.

Another thing about me is that I love to spend a lot of time with friends and family. Since all of my friends are still busy working, I spend most of my time with family, especially my daughter. And my family is loving it. Strange as it sounds (to me at least), a few folks have asked how my family is coping with me staying home all day. They are wondering if I am driving my wife and parents crazy and if they are not yet fed up with me. I am not sure what that means. May be I am wired differently, but I can assure you, family will be perfectly happy with me staying home all day forever 😉 . I don’t bother them and they don’t bother me. Most of the time we just chit-chat about random stuff, go for a walk, watch a comedy movie or cricket, do some garden work, play with the kid (for those of you who don’t know, my kid does not go to school, so she is home all day) and such.

Next, I am crazy about health and fitness. If possible I would rather just exercise 14 hours a day and sleep 10 hours. So I try and spend as much time as I can towards working out and sleeping. There are always some niggling pains, but that never deterred me from doing my exercises. I watch what I eat and exercise 5 times a week without fail unless I am on vacation. Since 2013, I have always maintained 10% or lower body fat and have had visible 6-pack abs ever since and I like it that way, although some people feel that I am crazy spending so much time on workouts. I still have a long way to go in flexibility and balance though, which is what I am trying to learn these days.

Finally, the other crazy thing about me is that I love to learn new things all the time. One of my colleague said this about me on LinkedIn — “…is a geek among geeks due to his voracious appetite for knowledge…”. I don’t know about the geek part, but I certainly have a voracious appetite for knowledge and keep reading a lot of books and taking MOOCs. I just love learning and gaining knowledge for absolutely no intended use. That is really how I started learning financial skills, for fun, and later unexpectedly became my own financial planner. So I spend a lot of time on learning. Interesting side note — I have been similarly crazy during my engineering days too, when I used to spend a ton of time at the library even skipping classes. While I was enrolled in Electrical and Electronics Engineering, I used to read a ton of computer science books to the point that the librarian said that I checked out more computer science books than the Computer Science students 😛

Having said that, you probably understand that I don’t leave a lot of time for doing “work”. What ever time I can get after using up family, health and learning time, I hand it over to work. This is the complete opposite of what people do, which is to give all the time to work first and the left overs to family and health. Hence the early retirement to avoid those fallacies.

What surprises me most is “Man”, because he sacrifices his health in order to make money. Then he sacrifices money to recuperate his health. And then he is so anxious about the future that he doesn’t enjoy the present; The result being he doesn’t live in the present or the future; He lives as if he’s never going to die, and then he dies having never really lived.

Dalai Lama

Now for my daily routine. A typical weekday looks like this, but these are not hard and fast.

06:00 - 06:30  Wake up, brush
06:30 - 07:30 Coffee, family time
07:30 - 08:30 Personal hygiene, read news
08:30 - 09:30 Breakfast, News, Youtube (tech, karate, fitness)
09:30 - 10:30 Spend time with daughter

10:30 - 12:30
Monday, Friday - House maintenance (cleaning, mopping, fixing etc)
Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday - Gym

12:30 - 13:30 Lunch, family time / nap
13:30 - 15:30 Spend time with daughter
15:30 - 17:30 Work
17:30 - 18:30 Tea, family time, learning time (TED, EdX, Udacity, Coursera etc)
18:30 - 19:30 Spend time with daughter
19:30 - 20:30 Work
20:30 - 21:30 Dinner, family time
21:30 - 22:00 Go to bed

A typical weekend is almost like a weekday except for the emphasized ones below

06:00 - 06:30  Wake up, brush
06:30 - 07:30 Coffee, family time
07:30 - 08:30 Personal hygiene, read news
08:30 - 12:30 Karate practise
12:30 - 13:30 Lunch, family time
13:30 - 14:00 Nap
14:00 - 15:30 Spend time with daughter
15:30 - 17:30 Work
17:30 - 18:30 Tea, family time, learning time (TED, EdX, Udacity, Coursera etc)
18:30 - 19:30 Spend time with daughter
19:30 - 20:30 Work
20:30 - 21:30 Dinner, family time
21:30 - 22:00 Go to bed

As you can see, on average, I spend a lot of my up time with my daughter and family, amounting to 6 hours or about 25% of a day. I spend around 4 hours doing some work, which most people attribute to being as productive (but I beg to differ), which amounts to 17%. The work includes

  • writing this blog
  • reading and watching tech news (mostly youtube subscriptions)
  • reading investment blogs, books and watching videos
  • watching random MOOC
  • doing various projects for fun

I don’t do everything listed above everyday. Some days I am just working on a project the full 4 hours. Some other days it is a mix of tech, investment videos and writing blog. It is very random really, based on my mood and environment around me.

After family time and learning, the next biggest chunk of up time goes to health and fitness. On average I spend about 2 hours or about 8% of a day on exercising, planning exercises, reading and watching fitness blogs (karate, calisthenic and body building). Beyond this, I have a down time of 9 hours or 37.5% of a day which is spent in quality sleep in the night, plus short midday naps on days that my body feels tired (especially after karate). If you have been counting, the total comes to around 21 hours at this point. The other 3 hours or 12.5% of my the unaccounted time goes in various daily activities such as eating, personal hygiene, upkeep etc. As I noted earlier, I don’t follow the exact time table everyday. Sometimes an activity can take up more time than others, and at other times we may have visitors or a cricket match or we need to attend a birthday party etc.

That is my daily routine in summary.

  • Learning/Projects – 4 hours
  • Family time – 6 hours
  • Fitness – 2 hours
  • Sleep – 9 hours
  • Other activities – 3 hours

This was my pre-retirement routine on weekdays —

  • Work – 8 hours
  • Learning – 2 hours
  • Family time – 2 hours
  • Fitness – 2 hours
  • Sleep – 8 hours
  • Other activities – 2 hour

Comparing the routines, it seems like I traded my work time with family time :). Most other things remained pretty constant. Thankfully, when I was working, I did not have to drive to work because we used to have a cab. I used that commute time to read books on the way to work and back. Also used any time I could get during breakfast and lunch to watch videos (fitness, investment, tech, MOOC). I used to be extremely popular at work as “the guy who always eats his breakfast and lunch with his desktop”, because I was always watching something at my desk as I replenished my body with nutrition. It used to be a celebration in the team when I joined them for lunch 😀

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10 thoughts on “My Daily Routine”

  1. Hey Nice Posts.
    just caught up with all your posts. very interesting and informative.
    Can you please share your thoughts on Living in Metro vs Small Towns if you are retired early. especially when your kids are being Home schooled ?


    1. Sorry, I did not see the comment (it was flagged for spam). Will do a post on Metro vs Small Towns

    1. Thank you! I just visited your blog and it is wonderful! One day I wish to travel like you. The pictures are breathtaking. Thank you for sharing, you are an inspiration!

  2. Wow, wish we all have such a life. But our daily routines, do not allow us to do what we want. Many people do not get to enjoy even their weekends. Biggest thing that holds us back is the financial part. We are too much worried about our savings, how to manage money for education, marriage, and everyday life.
    I am also tired of the rat race we urbanites are running, but have no idea how to get out.

    1. 🙂 I can understand. I was in the same boat and eventually figured out something that worked for me. I know it is not possible for a lot of people due to various reasons including luck. I only hope that this blog will help you get started at least.

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