Hi there and welcome to WowPursuits!
We’re Mr and Mrs Wow, early retirees residing in Singapore. This blog chronicles our journey to Financial Independence Retire Early (FIRE) — a journey of adventure, of ups and downs, of comebacks.
If you’re interested in personal finance, investing, entrepreneurship or self-development, you’ve come to the right place.
WOW stands for Wealth, Opportunity and Wisdom. In this blog, we will be sharing with you how we:
- accumulate, preserve and grow our wealth,
- seek and seize business opportunities, and
- gain a little more wisdom along the way.
Who are the WOWs?
We are both graduates. Like most people, we started off our careers by climbing the corporate ladder, but it didn’t take long for us to realise that we were not really happy. Our jobs weren’t giving us a sense of fulfilment and we weren’t making a positive impact on the world. To be absolutely honest, we just didn’t like the corporate world and its bullshit (no offence to anyone).
Thankfully, our personal life was more fulfilling than our professional life. We got lucky in love and tied the knot in 2001. For the next 20 years, we started two businesses together. The first one failed miserably; the second one succeeded and helped to turbocharge our plan to get FIREd.
Marrying each other was the best decision we’ve ever made. We are soulmates who support each other’s individuality. We are business partners who complement each other’s skills. Together we became debt-free in 2018 and achieved financial independence in 2019. Mr Wow was 45 and Mrs Wow was 42.
In 2020, we decided that it was time to start a new chapter in life. We retired from our business as we wanted to pursue other interests such as starting this blog and experimenting with new recipes in our kitchen. So far, it’s been really fun and one of the most creative periods of our lives!
You may be wondering why the pseudonyms, Mr and Mrs Wow. Well, call us publicity-shy. Although we’re excited to share our story, we cherish our privacy more. Also, this blog is about knowledge, not self-promotion. Ultimately, we’re doing this to spread financial literacy, not to make money. (Trust us. There are easier ways to make money than blogging.) And we kinda like the sense of mystery that anonymity provides.
Why Did We Start WowPursuits?
First, the idea of writing about money and entrepreneurship interests us greatly. Second, helping others to become more financially savvy not only gives us joy and fulfilment, but also serves as a constant reminder that we should be grateful for what we have. Even if we only end up helping one person in this whole world, it would be worth it.
Let’s Set the World on FIRE
We only told a handful of people (mainly family and close friends) about our retirement. However as time went by, more people knew about it and many expressed scepticism. The silent sceptics mostly just hmmmmmm… and rolled their eyes. The outspoken sceptics had a lot of comments even though they knew little about our financial situation.
It’s human nature to cast doubt on things we are not familiar with. In a world where households are sinking deeper into debt, the idea of FIRE is inconceivable to most people. Sure, the FIRE movement has gained greater exposure in recent years but the “blaze” is not widespread enough. We hope this blog will help to “fan the flames”.
Let’s Talk Business
Starting and running a small business is a risky undertaking, especially if you’re doing it with your spouse as you’re basically putting all your eggs in one basket. When our first business failed, it was one of the lowest points in our lives. We went in separate directions for five years. Mr Wow returned to the corporate world while Mrs Wow explored one business idea after another. Then came our second business and we couldn’t be happier to join forces again. Yippee!
We did many things differently the second time round. We finally chose the right business — one that combined passion and profit. We also approached the business like we were running a marathon (not a sprint), starting small and gradually growing it based on the resources we had (but not taking our own sweet time either). The pace was key to maintaining our interest and momentum. Money wise, we ran a much tighter ship than before and did not spend even a cent on unnecessary things. Most importantly, we definitely quarrelled less often as we understood ourselves and each other better. Guess we finally found our rhythm.
There were challenges, of course. For one thing, the response rate from our print ads began to decline as the shift to online search increased year on year. The future of our business hung in the balance and we needed a digital transformation — fast! It was a steep learning curve but our hard work (mostly Mr Wow’s) paid off and our website went from “nowhere to be found” to the bottom of page 3 on Google within half a year! In case you’re wondering, we eventually reached page 1!
We want to share our experience with current and aspiring business owners so that you do not have to go through the same mistakes we made. As American novelist Louis L’Amour once said, “Knowledge is like money: to be of value it must circulate, and in circulating it can increase in quantity and, hopefully, in value.”
Ok, hope we’ve piqued your curiosity. Read on for ideas, inspiration or just another perspective. And be ready to be wowed.
P.S. We actually sat on this project for quite some time as Mrs Wow had some reservations about blogging (read her article to find out). We’re so glad we decided to give it a shot as it’s been a really fun journey!