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Old 06-24-2012, 09:17 PM   #81
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I know for me the emotional part of leaving AD was far more stressing that the financial parts. I made the transition from Lt Col to first name then back to Mr. last name. I never talk about the rank and if someone mentions it I play it off. Your transition seems about normal.

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Old 06-24-2012, 09:40 PM   #82
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Thx JD. I am doing OK now. I was surprised at myself for feeling this way because I told myself earlier that I was ready for this and knew it was coming. However, the actual "awakening" last week caught me a bit off guard because i told myself I had prepared for it ahead of time. Ha!! How'd that work out for me?!

I'm good, now. Chuckling at myself as the first step is to admit you have an ER problem, right? :-)
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Old 06-24-2012, 09:49 PM   #83
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Correct. There is a 12 step program. I think I am on step 9 or 10. I have been trying the bridge career thing with DoD however I told my boss that I would be moving on in a few weeks. Its either to another govt agency (step 11) or straight to (step 12) back to ER. Don't under estimate the Type A traits that got you to where you are now. They are still very present for me.

I have a friend who retires in Feb 13 and he had his "ah ha" moment last week when he was home visiting his mom. In his case it was more "wow I have done all of this and all my HS friends are losers. I really am a Colonel." I think we are led to believe work titles are important but in reality there irrelevant.

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Old 06-24-2012, 10:02 PM   #84
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Amen! It's just an illusion of power that some people take as their reality.

After you hang up the uniform, your only real "power" are the legacy of raising good kids and the legacy of loving your wife (or sig other) like no one else could ever do! I can't recall who sang it, but one country song line sticks with me "no one's ever put on their tombstone that I wish I would have spent more time at work!" true that! My replacement is already out there somewhere just waiting for me to vacate my desk next Summer...I can either ?futily? try to hang on to my illusion of power or start boxing up my office stuff. Hhmmm, better swing by Sam's Club to pick up some boxes!
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Old 06-25-2012, 12:37 AM   #85
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Thanks for the update, Pete, this is good stuff. You'll make the transition just fine. Sorry that your friend's mother's passing evoked the realizations, though.

As a senior officer, you may be perceived to have barely enough technical skills and persistence to be trusted to run the grille at your next family gathering. Or maybe they'll tell you to go sit in the corner with a frosty beverage and tell logistics war stories. And just how accurately will they expect you to be able to shoot during the hunt?

I'd love to hear what you think about TAP. It'll also be interesting to hear about your fellow attendees, who will just be starting step 1 of their 12-step program by the end of the seminar...

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where do you want outlets?
I can answer this one! We asked for an outlet every four feet all around the perimeter of the room. We also had a bunch of three-way light switches installed so that we could switch the lights coming or going. (We eventually cut back on the number of switched outlets in favor of power strips.) The rest of the room's power plan used about 300 extra feet of Romex but it's perfect.
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Old 06-25-2012, 01:33 PM   #86
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The first morning after I retired from the army I woke up and had a brief (very brief, maybe 5 seconds) panic attack asking myself omg wtf have I done. That was 19 years ago and it was the one and only time I ever even wondered whether retiring from the army was the right thing to do.
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Old 06-25-2012, 05:27 PM   #87
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For the first several months after I left the Navy, I often had the unsettling feeling that I had left my cover somewhere. I had to consciously tell myself that I didn't wear that anymore. Other than that, no qualms. But then, I was only a LT when I left.
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Old 06-25-2012, 05:36 PM   #88
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I am not sure one is ever done being a senior military person. Any time something needs to get done, and people are sort of standing around admiring the problem and wondering what to do, I suspect you may find yourself stepping up to rally people to get the job done. Because you have the instinct, and you were taught the way.

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Amen! It's just an illusion of power that some people take as their reality.

After you hang up the uniform, your only real "power" are the legacy of raising good kids and the legacy of loving your wife (or sig other) like no one else could ever do!
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Old 06-27-2012, 09:04 PM   #89
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Was visiting one of my worldwide units this week and ended the visit w/ a Commander's Call, or a Navy All Hands as my big blue brethren would say. One of my non-comms stood up and asked, "Sir, you've said you plan on retiring next year. Besides getting higher education degrees, what have you learned as you prepare for retirement that you would pass on to us?"

Somebody get me a tissue to wipe these tears of pride!

"LBYM," I said. "Don't take 16 years like I did to learn to live below your means!" I continued to say how I looked out in their parking lot as I arrived and saw a lot of newer trucks and motorcycles that probably they are making payments on. And as an O-6 making great money, I drive an 11-yr-old VW Passat that I paid cash for--but I wasn't always that way. I told them how, as a young officer, I turned to Consumer Credit Counseling because I got in way too far over my head and needed help. Don't be me, I beseached them.

I also then walked them through just how much a military pension can cover if they have no debt when they retire. I had them doing public math as I threw out how much for a mortgage, utilities, cell phone, cable, food, gas, etc. We got all the way down to $0 and I asked, "OK, so have we missed any necessities?" "No," they all chimed in.

OK, so after 20+ years, you will still be in your 30's, right?

Yessir.

Are you going to sit home all day now or go get a job?

Jobs, sir.

OK, what are you going to do with all that money?

Huh?

Well, we just walked through how your pension will cover the basics, so if you get debt free before retirement, then any $$ you bring afterwards...well, what are you going to do with it?

Light bulbs go on across the room :-)

I had multiple troops come up to me afterwards to talk some more on that topic.

I love this job :-)
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Old 06-27-2012, 09:08 PM   #90
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The first morning after I retired from the army I woke up and had a brief (very brief, maybe 5 seconds) panic attack asking myself omg wtf have I done. That was 19 years ago and it was the one and only time I ever even wondered whether retiring from the army was the right thing to do.

LOL - the next monday I got up to go to my new day job and grabbed my uniform first...
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Old 06-27-2012, 10:53 PM   #91
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Light bulbs go on across the room :-)
I had multiple troops come up to me afterwards to talk some more on that topic.
I love this job :-)
Excellent. I hope their light bulbs keep burning.
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Old 07-09-2012, 06:44 AM   #92
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Just thought I'd share an "ah ha" moment. I'm geo-bacherloring it for a month as fam is visiting Grandparents. So, local golf course had an ad for 1/2 golf if you start between 1100-1500. Hhmm, my early-retiree-in-training mind saw a good deal, so I went. To save even more buck$, I chose to walk the course, so my total bill was $8.

I got to go out solo as not many people are lining up at 1100 to tee off when it's supposed to hit 103 by 3-4pm. Gee, wonder why? I also noticed I was the ONLY person out walking vs using a cart...hhmmm, do they know something I don't? ;-)

The good: I luved getting back on the course after years not playing (except the office best-ball/beer drinking tournaments) since my son was born (he's a teenager now). In another thread someone polled if there's a right early retirement personality type--I'm dead even betw an INTJ/ENTP. Well, the INTJ side of me completely enjoyed the solitude of playing alone! I was actually imagining myself getting the kids off to school next Fall, wife off to work, and hitting the course for 9 holes before running errands/cleaning the house...and I was smiling.

The bad: who was the dumb a** in my mind that thought it'd be nice to walk to get some exercise in 103 degrees? D'uh! However, I am down 2lbs this morning on the scale!

The ugly: besides my sunburn on my neck because I forgot sunscreen? Going to have to plan the cost of new clubs into my "living off my military retirement" experiment. Better golf through better technology! I'm using the set of clubs I got as a butter bar back in '88. I think a minor upgrade is warranted.

So that was my $8 day of entertainment/weight loss program!
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Old 07-09-2012, 02:44 PM   #93
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The bad: who was the dumb a** in my mind that thought it'd be nice to walk to get some exercise in 103 degrees? D'uh! However, I am down 2lbs this morning on the scale!
Yeah that guy shows up around my place from time to time also.

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Old 07-09-2012, 02:54 PM   #94
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Just thought I'd share an "ah ha" moment. I'm geo-bacherloring it for a month as fam is visiting Grandparents. So, local golf course had an ad for 1/2 golf if you start between 1100-1500. Hhmm, my early-retiree-in-training mind saw a good deal, so I went. To save even more buck$, I chose to walk the course, so my total bill was $8.

I got to go out solo as not many people are lining up at 1100 to tee off when it's supposed to hit 103 by 3-4pm. Gee, wonder why? I also noticed I was the ONLY person out walking vs using a cart...hhmmm, do they know something I don't? ;-)

The good: I luved getting back on the course after years not playing (except the office best-ball/beer drinking tournaments) since my son was born (he's a teenager now). In another thread someone polled if there's a right early retirement personality type--I'm dead even betw an INTJ/ENTP. Well, the INTJ side of me completely enjoyed the solitude of playing alone! I was actually imagining myself getting the kids off to school next Fall, wife off to work, and hitting the course for 9 holes before running errands/cleaning the house...and I was smiling.

The bad: who was the dumb a** in my mind that thought it'd be nice to walk to get some exercise in 103 degrees? D'uh! However, I am down 2lbs this morning on the scale!

The ugly: besides my sunburn on my neck because I forgot sunscreen? Going to have to plan the cost of new clubs into my "living off my military retirement" experiment. Better golf through better technology! I'm using the set of clubs I got as a butter bar back in '88. I think a minor upgrade is warranted.

So that was my $8 day of entertainment/weight loss program!
The real question is .. are you going to do it again? You can use sunscreen and the 2 lbs can be good. As for new clubs, not being a golfer I have mo opinion but rationalizing a needless purchase justifying such an important addition to basic retirement gear shouldn't be too difficult. If the armed forces are anything like the corporate world (and I know they are) most of us probably are well qualified in rationalizing decision making.
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Old 07-09-2012, 03:04 PM   #95
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Old 07-09-2012, 06:43 PM   #96
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The real question is .. are you going to do it again? You can use sunscreen and the 2 lbs can be good. As for new clubs, not being a golfer I have mo opinion but rationalizing a needless purchase justifying such an important addition to basic retirement gear shouldn't be too difficult. If the armed forces are anything like the corporate world (and I know they are) most of us probably are well qualified in rationalizing decision making.

Ohhhh, you did hit a nerve with that one...in a good way as I am always preaching to my troops about rationalizing. D*mn it!

I'm not going to rush into any purchases until I do see if I will repeat the golf outing. I think I may peruse some pawn shops to see who's hocked their clubs because they, too, rationalized their purchases.
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Old 07-11-2012, 08:50 PM   #97
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The real question is .. are you going to do it again? You can use sunscreen and the 2 lbs can be good. As for new clubs, not being a golfer I have mo opinion but rationalizing a needless purchase justifying such an important addition to basic retirement gear shouldn't be too difficult. If the armed forces are anything like the corporate world (and I know they are) most of us probably are well qualified in rationalizing decision making.
MichaelB: thought of your words today. Went to the store and bought a doz used golf balls for $6 vs $22 for brand new. In addition, I noticed a nice driver on the rack w/ a lesser brand of clubs on sale by 50% for $29. I asked the sales clerk for the price on the out of place driver, and he went to ask his manager. He comes back out and said his manager was willing to let the club go for the same $29 to get rid of it, so I got it!

Went and got 9 holes in tonight and the new driver made a BIG difference in driving distance! Best part was knowing I only paid $29 bucks for it :-)

Thanks for your reminder about being ER'd. I consider this good training for next year.
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Old 07-11-2012, 11:01 PM   #98
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Yeah that guy shows up around my place from time to time also.
That guy must rack up millions of frequent-flyer miles commuting among our homes...

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I'm not going to rush into any purchases until I do see if I will repeat the golf outing. I think I may peruse some pawn shops to see who's hocked their clubs because they, too, rationalized their purchases.
It's like upgrading from an IBM PC XT to an i7 laptop. Of course at the pawnshop you're still getting bargains in the Core2Duo class.
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Old 07-14-2012, 04:58 PM   #99
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Have gone out every night this week and got at least 9 holes in. The course on base has 1/2 off greens fees after 1730, and I've been walking. Going out again in about an hour before I fly out tomorrow morning to visit 3 units in 4 days and get back Thurs night to officiate a retirement for one of my troops on Friday morning.

Since re-introducing myself to golf about 1 month ago, I played my best round last night. Actually made a Birdie by sinking a 12' putt! $29 driver still working, too ;-)

Builder has started on the foundation of our house...no turning back now!
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Old 07-14-2012, 05:56 PM   #100
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Have gone out every night this week and got at least 9 holes in. The course on base has 1/2 off greens fees after 1730, and I've been walking. Going out again in about an hour before I fly out tomorrow morning to visit 3 units in 4 days and get back Thurs night to officiate a retirement for one of my troops on Friday morning.
Since re-introducing myself to golf about 1 month ago, I played my best round last night. Actually made a Birdie by sinking a 12' putt! $29 driver still working, too ;-)
PH, I don't golf anymore, but my attention has been directed to this smartphone app:
GolfLogix: #1 Golf GPS App for iPhone, Droid, BlackBerry, Palm; the best GPS rangefinder

Of course you run the risk of completely deglamorizing your game, sucking out all the fun, and giving up in utter despair. But it seems like a great quantitative analysis tool.
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