Introducing Work Freedom Day!

You may be aware of Tax Freedom Day which is the day of the year when the average American has worked enough to pay Government tax obligations and can start working for themselves. In Michigan this year, it was on April 17th.

I’d like to introduce Work Freedom Day as the day of the year where you’ve accumulated enough Dividend Income during the year to no longer need to work. For early retirers, that day would be January 1st but for many of us still on the FI Journey it’ll be somewhat later in the year.

My Work Freedom Day

Based on my projections this year, and I’ll revise it nearer the date, my Work Freedom Day will be 20th November 2014 and I can’t wait! Even if I won’t retire this year, it’ll be a nice milestone to celebrate!

How to calculate your Work Freedom Day

To calculate this date, I’ve estimated my projected dividend income for the year and used the following formula:

Day of year = (1 – (Total Projected Income) / (Total Yearly Budget) ) * 365

For this year, the formula gave me a result of 324 which I converted to 20th November using the site

Update: I’ve made a quick and dirty calculator below

I’m going to be tracking this date going forward and hope to watch it move towards me due to higher than projected dividends!


Quote of the day

Our freedom can be measured by the number of things we can walk away from.

18 thoughts on “Introducing Work Freedom Day!”

    1. Hi Living At Home,

      I think so; at least I didn’t read it anywhere else and after having the idea last night, I searched for “work freedom day” online. All I found was a site in the UK which was used the term in the context of “tax freedom day”. So I think it’s my idea, but maybe it’s on the web with another name somewhere!

      I had no external help with the formula – it’s simply the dividend income divided by budget multiplied by 365 days. Then it’s just a Julian date conversion to get the real date.

      Anyway, I just thought it was a more interesting way of saying “my dividends cover 11% of my yearly income”, and it gives me an excuse to celebrate later in the year!

      Thanks for stopping by!

  1. I updated this post to include a simple calculator to determine your Work Freedom Day given your projected dividend income and yearly budget. Please be gentle with it!

  2. It’s definitely an interesting concept! Though not all of my investment income is from dividends, the idea still works and my work freedom day is still in December this year, but next year it’s likely to be in November already. Definitely a nice way to keep motivated – seeing the day move closer and closer to the beginning of the year.

    1. Hi Kristi,

      Thanks for stopping by and commenting! Yes, I thought it was a fun way to show progress and it’s something tangible to celebrate when the day arrives!

      It’s great that you moved forward from December to November; that’s a big improvement. Using last year’s income with this year’s budget put me at November 28 last year, but I still hope to move my day further forward this year.

      I like your blog; it’s really well written so I’m off to read some more.
      Best wishes on your journey to independence!

  3. I like the concept of a Work Freedom Day. Puts things into perspective of where one stands in achieving financial independence as a flat number doesnt really say much.

    One way to view inflation would be to see that number slowly move back automatically towards Dec 31 unless the dividends keep growing. This is why I invest in dividend growth stocks – so that I can keep that slow trickle in check 🙂


    1. Hi R2R,
      Me too – I like numbers and everything but a date was much more tangible, and judging from how fast this year is going, it’ll soon be here!

      That’s a great point about inflation – it’s like the evil twin of compounding interest! I’m going to try to use inflation to force me to reduce living expenses simply by keeping my next year’s monthly budget the same as this year. At least that’s the plan.

      Yes, dividend growth really is the gift that keeps on giving!

      Best wishes on your roadmap!
      – DL

    1. Hi DFG,
      Well the only way is up! 🙂

      I think that being able to even determine the date puts you in the rare minority. And remember you have two knobs you can operate to bring the day forward – spend less & earn more. Easier said than done I know, but at least there are knobs to be turned!

      Best wishes on your FI journey!

    1. Hi PIP,
      That’s awesome – congratulations! Nearly two months of financial freedom! 🙂 I’ve re-calculated mine to be November 18th, 2 days earlier on account of a revised forward dividend projection. Now I just need to plan how to celebrate it which is a nice problem to have!

      Thanks for stopping by – best wishes!

  4. Great idea dividend life…What a fun calculator tool! A bit depressing since it seems like I have so much more work ahead of me but informative nevertheless. 🙂

    BTW…It seems like we are on somewhat of a parallel path. Our work freedom day is 1-day apart (Nov 14, 2015) and it appears that we started our blogs roughly the same time (April 2014).

    Wishing you continued success on your journey, may your work freedom day continue to get closer to Jan. 1!


    1. Hi AFFJ,

      Thanks 🙂 As much as I like numbers, I needed something more tangible to help show progress and turning the percentage into a date was just the thing. And it’s a great feeling when you finally reach the day and well worth a celebration!

      Wow, that’s quite the coincidence of the same blogging start and work freedom days! You have the luckier date I think since mine’s on the 13th! My day this year moved forward about a week compared to last year from a combination of higher projected dividends and planned investments this year.

      I hope your FI journey and experiences have been similar to mine – the most surprising thing I’ve found is that it’s not just ‘personal finance’ but it’s more generally a way toward a better life. For me it’s included aspects of self-improvement, self-sufficiency, entrepreneurship and being happy in the ‘now’ while planning for the future.

      I look forward to reading your progress on your blog!

      Wishing you every success on your journey,

  5. That is a really nice idea!

    I have just created my own little calculator within my investment spreadsheet. Now, as each dividend drops into my account (and I update my spreadsheet) I can see how many extra days I have “bought” myself.

    I have only nudged myself down to 29 December 2015 so far. Plenty more to come though!

    An excellent motivation tool! Thanks a lot!

    1. Hi Dividend Drive,

      I’m glad you found it useful – it makes a tangible date for a small celebration too! Even if you’ve bought yourself 2 days so far, that’s putting you far ahead of many people.

      I also find it useful in helping to control creep in my budget. Even a small increase in monthly spending can push the date back since it requires significant investments to pay that increase.

      Wishing you all the best on your road to FI and pulling your date forward!

      1. I certainly did find it useful. You’re right, it is great way of keeping control (and encouraging cutting back) on your spending. Really nice!

        I just put together a little post earlier this week about it. I think if you change the date from moving backwards in the year to forwards (chasing you in real time) it is a great way of tracking your financial independence “crossover point”. (In case you’re interested, you can read the post here:

        Of course, like anything, it is far than perfect for that I suppose! But it is an idea some people may like!

        Keep up the great progress and posts!

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