I work 2 full-time jobs from 9 a.m. to 10 p.m. I'm sacrificing sleep, friends, and hobbies so I can retire in my 30s.

I currently work two jobs a day: a 9-to-5 and then customer service until 10 p.m. I double my efforts now in hopes of retiring early, ideally in my 30s. I began this dual-job routine while completing my sociology and business major in college in 2021. The surge of remote opportunities during and post-COVID-19 made this possible, as commuting would have otherwise hindered me.

My journey towards early retirement was inspired by the FIRE (Financial Independence, Retire Early) movement I discovered on Reddit. I now document my FIRE journey on TikTok to showcase an alternative to the traditional retirement age of 65. My strategy involves intense investing in my 20s, aiming for future financial independence and a "work-optional" lifestyle. In today's economic climate, fully retiring might be impractical, but this approach should allow career breaks or reduced work periods.

During college, I juggled up to 40 hours per week on top of my marketing 9-to-5, alongside customer service, which I still pursue. Booking appointments for service issues is less stressful than marketing, where project anxieties often keep me up at night. My marketing job's flexibility allowed me to do college assignments during less busy times. Despite having many responsibilities, remote work often didn’t demand a full 40 hours weekly.

That period was extremely stressful, marked by insufficient sleep and constant headaches due to balancing work, studies, social life, and gym time. I needed to prove my ability to pay rent and aimed to buy property, which I achieved in 2021. The FIRE mentality helped me endure those challenges. While my college experience was compromised, securing property then proved to be a wise sacrifice.

Post-graduation in 2022, continuing with two jobs felt natural. Without a high-paying job typical of STEM graduates, hard work was my alternative. I became a marketing specialist (9-to-5) while maintaining my customer service role, clocking 65 hours bi-weekly from 5 p.m. to 10 p.m. and during weekends. Despite the grind, I avoided burnout by taking two days off from the second job weekly. Switching between roles posed no difficulty, as customer service is less mentally demanding and more about time.

Living frugally is a priority, though it presents challenges. I've earned 47,000 Canadian dollars this year ($34,000) plus varying commissions. I save about 70% monthly and invest most of my savings. Financial literacy and early investment were crucial goals in my 20s. Living with my family and renting out my college property helps maintain this lifestyle. Spending leads to guilt, and not spending makes me feel stingy, compelling me to save for larger goals rather than small indulgences.

Hobbies have taken a back seat; rock climbing and painting are sidelined. I meet friends when possible, but I often prefer to rest at home after long days. Lunchtime gym sessions or walks are tempting, but napping or screen time usually wins. Winter days, marked by early sunsets, sometimes end without me seeing daylight or getting exercise. 

To combat burnout, in May, I reduced my customer service hours to 55 bi-weekly and eliminated Sunday shifts. Yet, burnout persists. My family admires my ambition yet wishes I wouldn't push so hard. Seeing my struggles firsthand, they understand the toll. Community pressure, influenced by an accomplished older brother, adds to my drive.

Despite the toll on my health and sleep, my ambition to achieve early retirement keeps me going, willing to endure these sacrifices for a few more years.  

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