What do C-Suite executives often sacrifice? Life in general: relationships, hobbies, health. So why is it so appealing to make it to the top of the Corporate ladder? I can think of only a few motivating reasons:
Nobody wants to have a boring career. Clocking in and doing the same routine task for years will drive any ambitious person insane. I think it's very noble to seek a rewarding and challenging career. This helps you constantly grow and become more. But there are breaking points. Sure, you will have a bigger paycheck but this strategy does not guarantee wealth.
For me, I am deep in the rat-race. This was by design and choice. I was recently promoted to entry-level management. It is exhausting to manage others while also being responsible for my own work. 60+ hour weeks are the norm. Sometimes you have to get deeper in the rat-race before you can exit. Diving into the cold water with both feet is a quicker strategy than only putting in one leg. Jumping in with both feet for 5 to 20 years is better than 40 years. Doing entry level jobs isn't going to expedite financial freedom. The more money I can make and invest, the sooner I get out. Extremely simple and motivating equation.
Remain focused on what you truly want to accomplish. If your goal is to break-free from the rat-race, do whatever it takes. With the right strategy, financial freedom will come many years (or decades) sooner. My strategy is to generate wealth from multiple sources. Many of these strategies are tax advantaged:
Most millionaires have 3-5 different sources of income. To be on the safe side, I prefer to have 10 strategies. Don't settle for 1 or 2 strategies. Part of my strategy is to be promotable. When I make more money, I am able to contribute more to retirement. We also have a 3 paid off rental properties. We don't plan on growing our wealth primarily via rental properties. It takes a lot of work but it keeps us diversified.
Fully max out tax advantaged accounts. Most people consider themselves as "maxing out" their 401k when they contribute 5% of their wages. A meager 5% is almost a guaranteed way to keep you a "lifer" in the rat-race. My definition of maxing out a 401k is contributing $18k/year (IRS limit). It is disappointing when people truly believe they are maxing out their retirement by only contributing the amount required to get the full company match. For example, my company matches 100% of my contribution up to 5%. I am contributing 5%. Therefore, I am maxing out my 401k, right? WRONG. Don't think this way. Don't only have one strategy.
If you want to retire before you have grey hair, you need to contribute as much as possible. Get a couple strategies cooking for you!