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Old 03-14-2017, 11:02 AM   #1
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I'm Out of Steam

I'm late 50s, married, and have child with one more year at an in-state public college. Have been lurking here for a couple of years.

We're about 2 1/2 years from my full retirement eligibility, and I can't see going more than a few months past that. It's both a long way off and it isn't.

We're dealing with long commutes, levels of work responsibility we're no longer comfortable with, and living in more house than we need. Having decided on relocation outside the DC area, we're reasonably confident financially.

My questions of the day are:

1. How do you push through? I'm pretty well burnt out, and don't want to be that guy who hangs on at work past my personal sell-by date. OTOH, I've given it 35+ years of my life in various forms; they can put up with me for a couple of years.

2. Has anyone retired and restarted a career at 62 or later? I will be retiring wanting work income to allow delaying Social Security, though would like 1-2 years of non-working time for travel first. In any case, full retirement is getting less appealing to me as it gets closer.

Thanks and glad to be here!
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Old 03-14-2017, 11:28 AM   #2
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Welcome. I've only been here a short time. But, it sounds like you've got a whole bunch of decisions to make (work, retire or reenter workforce; relocate of stay put).

I was at the grocery store yesterday (yes, my DW had to go grocery shopping the day before a big snowstorm up here; total madness), it was midday and I noticed half of the guys bagging groceries were my age. Sobering.

Nothing will give you more confidence than a well thought out plan.
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Old 03-14-2017, 12:05 PM   #3
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Nothing wrong with continuing to work if you need to, or want to.
Perhaps you would satisfy the travel itch by taking extra long vacations, including use of unpaid weeks to make the vacation longer.

Not many people travel for 1-2 years, it's usually a number of trips with the remaining time at home, so lots of vacations could solve your itch.
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Old 03-14-2017, 12:08 PM   #4
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Dear Out,

Welcome!

Let's start out with answers to your questions:
  1. How to push through? I have roughly the same timetable as you, and I estimate that a quarter of my mental process during every waking hour is devoted to retirement. I think about the activities I will undertake, the arrangements that must still be completed to make it successful, and the apprehensions I need to satisfy before I pull the trigger. Discussions on this forum, both the relevant and the diversionary, are invaluable.
  2. Retired and restarted a career at 62? There are any number of such threads here; maybe one of the mods could steer you to one. I have no experience with this, nor do I intend to. However, I do have several ideas for beginning brand-new, second careers once earning a living is no longer the primary consideration. My suspicion is that once you take that 2 year sabbatical, you will find re-entry difficult in multiple ways.


You said "In any case, full retirement is getting less appealing to me as it gets closer." If you aren't mentally ready to retire, then don't rush it. Take retirement for a test drive first: go on vacation for a whole month. I did that recently and it was instructive. If you are mostly bored, then you're not ready. If you find it exhilarating, then it's time to map out your exact glide path for the upcoming2.5 years.




BTW, I'm with you entirely on the commuting thing. I am a DC native, so I know all about the relentless traffic. There are approximately two people in the metro area who don't mind it: The President of the United States and the owner of the Washington Redskins. That's because they both have helicopters at their disposal. Hey, there's an idea! Keep w*orking and buy yourself a chopper! While everybody else is dealing with gridlock and road rage, you can glide serenely over the rush hour carnage with no worries!



Anyway, welcome again. I look forward with lively anticipation to reading your future posts.
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Old 03-14-2017, 12:10 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by Mykle57 View Post
Welcome. I've only been here a short time. But, it sounds like you've got a whole bunch of decisions to make (work, retire or reenter workforce; relocate of stay put).
Thank you for the welcome!

The relocation decision is coming together pretty well, we have only a few areas to consider. We'll move unless a compelling reason to stay put appears in the next couple of years.

My father worked part-time (seasonally) into his 70s, and that is appealing to me as I get older. Staying in our current work situations doesn't seem realistic for either of us, so that part of the decision is made.

The post-retirement work decisions will be the hardest.
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Old 03-14-2017, 12:12 PM   #6
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You sound like a lot of us. Did all the right things for a boat load of years, and now feel a little like a deer in the headlights. Your plan for a year or two of travel is fantastic. I suspect that'll clear your head some, either make retirement more or less appealing but either way, you win. Count your blessings too for there are many with far fewer choices. Good luck and keep us posted.


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Old 03-14-2017, 12:52 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by Out of Steam View Post
2. Has anyone retired and restarted a career at 62 or later? I will be retiring wanting work income to allow delaying Social Security, though would like 1-2 years of non-working time for travel first. In any case, full retirement is getting less appealing to me as it gets closer.
Unless you have a highly-sought-after skill, you will find age discrimination troublesome - mainly because employers do want to pay for the experience.
I am a few years younger than you and that has been my experience.
Maybe part of the problem is that I located in no-job growth NJ.

My uncle was able to go back 10 years ago to doing some contract work, because he was a civil engineer with experience with building nuclear power plants. They needed that expertise. However, he had to go to rural Tennessee for a few years.
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Old 03-14-2017, 12:53 PM   #8
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About 7 months after retiring I got bored so started to do some consulting work. Then I was offered a job teaching an online college class which is something I had never done. 4 years later I love it and now teach it every semester year round.
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Old 03-14-2017, 12:55 PM   #9
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You might be surprised at how many job opportunities could open up - part time, at home, etc. If you are interested. I now wish I had made a change earlier, instead of staying almost 34 years at the same big company.
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Old 03-14-2017, 01:00 PM   #10
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Hi and good luck with those decisions. I hang up my spurs 6-30-17. My job usually involved extensive travel and a couple years ago, I negotiated a work from home deal (when not travelling). It was better than a pay raise for me. Then, about 18 months ago, the travel dropped off considerably, and I did not revisit the WFH arrangement (just kept quite, did my job, and make "cameo" appearances to the office once or twice a week). So, the last two years have been easier than most others. Success = where preparation and opportunity intersect. I've enjoyed both.
I might work retail seasonally and part-time only - for drinking money. Otherwise, remodeling the house and landscaping will keep me busy enough.
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Old 03-14-2017, 01:08 PM   #11
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I pushed through the final few years by ratcheting down my level of responsibility at work. Essentially, I took myself out of the race for promotion, which freed me from the office politics that surround anybody who's seen as competition. With that, I was seen as a competent colleague who was helpful without being a threat. I also gave up an assignment that I liked but that had a horrible commute. These two changes helped me focus on things I liked about my work, while feeling less stress about things I didn't enjoy (e.g. office politics).

Quote:
Originally Posted by Out of Steam View Post
I'm late 50s, married, and have child with one more year at an in-state public college. Have been lurking here for a couple of years.

We're about 2 1/2 years from my full retirement eligibility, and I can't see going more than a few months past that. It's both a long way off and it isn't.

We're dealing with long commutes, levels of work responsibility we're no longer comfortable with, and living in more house than we need. Having decided on relocation outside the DC area, we're reasonably confident financially.

My questions of the day are:

1. How do you push through? I'm pretty well burnt out, and don't want to be that guy who hangs on at work past my personal sell-by date. OTOH, I've given it 35+ years of my life in various forms; they can put up with me for a couple of years.

2. Has anyone retired and restarted a career at 62 or later? I will be retiring wanting work income to allow delaying Social Security, though would like 1-2 years of non-working time for travel first. In any case, full retirement is getting less appealing to me as it gets closer.

Thanks and glad to be here!
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Old 03-14-2017, 01:40 PM   #12
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You sound like a lot of us. Did all the right things for a boat load of years, and now feel a little like a deer in the headlights.
This is very much the case, especially the "deer in the headlights" part. I took a promotion that I probably shouldn't have in the past few years, so I haven't had the opportunity to wind down quietly.
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Old 03-14-2017, 02:47 PM   #13
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Frequent naps at work worked wonders for me.
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Old 03-14-2017, 05:33 PM   #14
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I pushed through the final few years by ratcheting down my level of responsibility at work. Essentially, I took myself out of the race for promotion, which freed me from the office politics that surround anybody who's seen as competition.
I'm clearly not a candidate for another promotion, as I hit a rough patch a couple of years ago during which I expressed interest in an early retirement offer. Things have settled down in the past 6 months, though there's some remaining effects.

My plan has been to narrow the breadth of my responsibilities to specialize in an area I'm strong in. I've had some success with this, though I have one more project outside my tech specialty to hand over to somebody--who is not yet hired.
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Old 03-14-2017, 05:35 PM   #15
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Frequent naps at work worked wonders for me.
My plan includes frequent strolls around the building (inside and out).
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Old 03-14-2017, 06:12 PM   #16
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I'm clearly not a candidate for another promotion, as I hit a rough patch a couple of years ago during which I expressed interest in an early retirement offer. Things have settled down in the past 6 months, though there's some remaining effects.
I can relate, Steam.
We had major reorg and I was overlooked for one of the Region VP jobs which is what I did at the time. I'm still running a market but it took the wind out of my sails and hit the ego. My mindset now is to do my job for 3 more years and EXIT. Corporate BS bucket overflowing!!
The challenge I am realizing is that if I mail it in for 3 full years and check out now I may not survive 3 full years.

I don't know your company or industry is similar but for mine, you almost have to continue the appearance of the upward track just to maintain status quo. Even if I wasn't worried about the company moving me out- personally, it would be hard to maintain focus & sanity for 3 years by thinking (obsessing) about retirement for years.

Hope your situation is different and you can be more open about your intentions; with you company and yourself. Sounds like we all need to find that short term purpose, whether through our job or other outlets until we can complete our work life. That's what I need to work on.
Either way - Good Luck. We're rooting for you.
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Old 03-14-2017, 06:44 PM   #17
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I pushed through the final few years by ratcheting down my level of responsibility at work. Essentially, I took myself out of the race for promotion, which freed me from the office politics that surround anybody who's seen as competition.
+1

Over the last 2 years I've been trying to move more towards a "mentoring/trusted advisor" role instead of a leadership role. It is mostly working, though at the moment I'm fending off a couple of "opportunities" to lead projects that five years ago I would have jumped at the chance to head. I'm happy to give others the "limelight" since the things the "limelight" leads to I no longer need.
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Old 03-14-2017, 06:50 PM   #18
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Frequent naps at work worked wonders for me.
Yes, that's one way to push through. I work part time and that works pretty good too. To the OP, is there anyway you can get your current employer to allow you to go part time? It doesn't solve everything and creates a few issues of it's own, but it forces less responsibility and a day or so less in the office. As for the commute, any ability to get a day or two a week working from home?
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Old 03-15-2017, 06:10 AM   #19
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Well said; that is how it worked for me.

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Originally Posted by jollystomper View Post
+1

Over the last 2 years I've been trying to move more towards a "mentoring/trusted advisor" role instead of a leadership role. It is mostly working, though at the moment I'm fending off a couple of "opportunities" to lead projects that five years ago I would have jumped at the chance to head. I'm happy to give others the "limelight" since the things the "limelight" leads to I no longer need.
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Old 03-15-2017, 06:11 AM   #20
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This might be preferable to napping, at least in an "open office" environment.

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My plan includes frequent strolls around the building (inside and out).
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