My Revised Number (and revised, and revised, and revised…)

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My Revised Number (and revised, and revised, and revised…)

Debbie and I (as she will tell you) had a lot of fun over this … her original spreadsheet was really just a projection of her current expenses (with some additional ‘do you think I can really afford them’-type stuff) … in other words, it was a budget.

I hate budgets!

So, after a little bit of work – and, thanks to both Lee’s List and Ryan’s Table [imagine: the two most useful tools for this part of our exercise were created by our own readers/contributors … now, do you see the power of the 7m7y Community?] – Debbie has a clear and concise view of her Number that will knock your socks off …

… if you are just reading and haven’t yet tried to work out your own Number, just take Debbie’s post and give it a whirl … you’ll be glad you did …

I had an extremely difficult time coming up with my new number, using the spreadsheets and formulas and calculations.  It was easier before – when I was just guessing on a number based on some general lifestyle situations, and then making some assumptions on the rest.  Once I sat down to REALLY calculate it, with more accurate estimations and inflation – forget about it.  AJC is probably wishing he was charging me an hourly rate for all the time he spent explaining (and re-explaining) how to work through my mess of numbers!

Anyway!  What I found really interesting is the end result… my Number… after hours of calculating and discussing – is actually not all that far off from the number  I just (basically) made a bunch of educated guesses to get back when we were first looking at the “Number” in terms of our life’s purpose! (It was about 8,250,000). What does that mean, exactly? Eh, I have no idea – just thought it was interesting.

One-Off Expenses
Total Needed in 2008 Dollars
In 2018 dollars
Car1 $22,000.00 $33,000.00
Car2 $22,000.00 $33,000.00
House $400,000.00 $600,000.00
One Time Australia Trip $50,000.00 $75,000.00
2 Kids, College Education $443,000.00
Start up Business Money $500,000.00 $750,000.00
Subtotal $1,934,000.00
Annual Expenses
In 2018 dollars
Vacations $30,000.00 $45,000.00
Gifts $10,000.00 $15,000.00
Groceries $18,000.00 $27,000.00
electric/gas $6,000.00 $9,000.00
car gasoline $2,000.00 $3,000.00
phone/cable/internet $4,000.00 $6,000.00
Kids clothes/misc $5,000.00 $7,500.00
entertainment(misc) $12,000.00 $18,000.00
house help(maid/gardner) $18,000.00 $27,000.00
School Tax $7,256.00 $7,256.00
Property Tax $9,000.00 $9,000.00
Income Tax
Subtotal $173,756.00
multiply by 20 $3,475,120.00


But then- we had to do something about the income tax you pay when you’re a millionaire-type person.  This was another part that was a bit over my mathematical-concept challenged head.  But I used the info from AJC, which was to divide my Annual Expenses in 2018 Dollars / .65 and then Multiply that number by 20  before adding to the one-time expenses.   So my new total, my new number, by the year 2018 becomes =   $7,280,338.46

I think the absolute hardest thing about this process for me was realizing at that date, (November 2018) with that number ($7,280,338.46), I really wouldn’t have to work anymore.  In my mind – I see myself always doing something or other, but the idea of picking projects and business opportunities because they are things I want to do… because they could allow me to make a difference in someone else’s life… it’s just so motivating!  You’ll see I have “start up money” of about $500,000 (in today’s money) in my one-time expense category… it’s the business(es) I fund using this seed money that will likely continue to earn additional income on top of the money the “NUMBER” will be earning in interest to supply me with what’s needed for my living expenses the way I want my life to be by 2018.  I already have a list of ideas in their infancy stages… can’t wait to put more thought into them.

Remember my Lee’s List?  Those items are included in that mess of numbers too… mostly giving the ability to travel, spend more quality time with family and friends…and then the nicer house.  Originally I thought “$500,000” seemed like the house price to go with, but after looking at some houses for sale –  there’s not much difference between a $400,000 home, so I went with the lower of the two.  I’m so used to being frugal that when the time comes, I could very well be excited over a $280,000 home and feel it has everything I ever needed or wanted!

(art from mc escher)
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Reader Comments

Debbie, I am so thrilled to hear of your frustration of putting together you revised number:) I have put off re-doing my number again because I have thought, “this is so far above my comprehension”. But I tried one more time.
I appreciate your post because for some reason I seemed to understand it better than any of the others.

@Lee if you only knew just how frustrating LOL. Like AJC mentioned, I think I was stuck on transporting my existing lifestyle and debt and living expenses into the future as-is; and couldn’t get my head around the idea of creating numbers that fulfilled my life’s purpose. I knew that was the point of the exercise, but my brain wasn’t cooperating. Can’t wait to see yours!

Debbie your spreadsheet looks so great. I’m glad you got your number nailed down a bit better. This is definitely a tougher exercise than it first seems I think because it is forcing our minds to change the way it thinks about our money in the same manner necessary to go out and build that kind of money that we need. In other words, “Do what you’ve always done and you’ll get what you’ve always got”. I think it’s this kind of challenge to our thinking that will get us “something different”. Keep up the good work!

Right on, Scott! I think the first thing we have to change is ourselves, and that begins with our thinking and mindsets. The hardest thing for us to change, yes?

@ Diane – That certainly has been my experience 😉

It’s all a foreign language to me, but I have no doubt you can do it. Then you can take care of me 😉

@ Mom – Did you know that with the right teacher/motivation, you can get a decent, working knowledge of almost any foreign language in just 2 weeks?! And, you’re never too old to learn …

… so, maybe in 7 years, YOU’LL still be taking care of Debbie – if that means ‘springing’ for the corporate jets and other stuff that she’s not yet rich enough to buy 😉

You have extraordinary talent, ambition, a go getter and a mind set to never give up. Absolutely no doubt in my mind you can have your dreams and wishes come true. But, I’m second on the list to take care of, why you say? If memory serves me, I do remember years ago I said (when you where little tike) whose going to take care of old Aunt Bet? In a sweet voice you said “I will Aunt Bet”. Guess what Mom, we’ll all be together!


Sounds like you need to invest in those new real estate things for non-retiring baby boomers – a community that shares a commons area. Then put your Mom and Aunt Bet into two of them and let them be the property managers for the others (hiring for the labor of landscape, housekeeping, accounting, etc., and letting them do the showing and selling).

@ Diane – Imaginative combination of ‘helping’ and ‘earning’ … let’s run the numbers (and, the Numbers)! 🙂

[…] has told you in previous posts how difficult it was for her to come to grips with both her Life’s Purpose and her […]

I am curious about the new real estate things for non-retiring baby boomers…