Many Americans fear they’ll never be able to retire, but there are those who are able to retire early, saying goodbye to the rat race before they hit 60 and pursuing their true passion. For many, that passion includes continuing to work, but at their own pace and doing something they truly enjoy. In a March study of Americans with investible assets of $1 million or more, BMO Private Bank found that most planned to retire by 56 and that 20 percent planned to retire by age 40. But more than half those surveyed said that their retirement plans included work, with 21 percent planning to work part time, 21 percent planning to start a new career and 11 percent planning to start their own business. Learn how three people retired early — their stories are on our sister site, Living on the Cheap.