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Old 03-05-2013, 04:32 PM   #21
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Richard, I felt much the same way. Since, I didn't contribute to society, I didn't feel I was relevant anymore. What I found out was there are many other ways to be a useful member of society. For one, I now get to spend a lot more time with family, friends, and neighbors. I take my nieces and nephews fishing every chance I get. They like it (almost as much as I do) and I get to mentor them to be stewards of the environment. I have been able to help neighbors and friends with anything from projects around the house to building a house. The thanks I get are far more sincere than anything I ever got from work. I volunteer to help do wetlands restoration, plant mangroves and trap nuisance gators. I have time to be involved with the political process beyond just voting and maybe something good can come of it (but I am not holding my breath). And as my DW pointed out, by leaving the workforce, I opened up a job opportunity for someone else. Opportunities to help out seem to come up all the time. While I was working, I never had time for any of them. Now I get to pick and choose. In reality, if I continued to work another year or decade, I think would have still felt guilty when I left. I had to learn other ways to be useful for myself. Now after 9 months, I don't feel nearly as guilty. Particularly on Monday mornings.
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Old 03-05-2013, 06:00 PM   #22
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I don't worry about it because i contriutred nothing to society
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Old 03-05-2013, 06:03 PM   #23
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I don't worry about it because i contriutred nothing to society
LoL Like your sense of humour
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Old 03-05-2013, 09:47 PM   #24
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Agree with others that paid w#rk is NOT only way to "contribute". In fact I've often run accross w#rking folks who might make the world a better place if they stayed home in a rockin' chair watchin' the corn grow
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Old 03-06-2013, 08:06 AM   #25
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Richard, I felt much the same way. Since, I didn't contribute to society, I didn't feel I was relevant anymore. What I found out was there are many other ways to be a useful member of society. For one, I now get to spend a lot more time with family, friends, and neighbors. I take my nieces and nephews fishing every chance I get. They like it (almost as much as I do) and I get to mentor them to be stewards of the environment. I have been able to help neighbors and friends with anything from projects around the house to building a house. The thanks I get are far more sincere than anything I ever got from work. I volunteer to help do wetlands restoration, plant mangroves and trap nuisance gators. I have time to be involved with the political process beyond just voting and maybe something good can come of it (but I am not holding my breath). And as my DW pointed out, by leaving the workforce, I opened up a job opportunity for someone else. Opportunities to help out seem to come up all the time. While I was working, I never had time for any of them. Now I get to pick and choose. In reality, if I continued to work another year or decade, I think would have still felt guilty when I left. I had to learn other ways to be useful for myself. Now after 9 months, I don't feel nearly as guilty. Particularly on Monday mornings.
From one Doug to another, nice post!
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Old 03-06-2013, 10:38 AM   #26
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...or less than 28 seconds.
With that one, she'll think she is back in high school.

Ha
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Old 03-06-2013, 10:55 AM   #27
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I don't worry about it because i contriutred nothing to society
Me neither. Spent 30 years in marketing, the last 8 at a video game company!

Seriously, though, right now I'm teaching marketing parttime and even that makes me a little uneasy in a way. I don't feel comfortable anymore teaching students how to get consumers to buy more stuff. I think this will be my last teaching gig, in marketing at least.

And to Doug's point, I find that in ER I am so much more relaxed with family and friends, and also with the working folks I interact with in stores, restaurants, etc. I smile more and make the effort to engage them in conversation, etc. Not exactly the most profound contribution to society, but I feel better about my place in that society by appreciating the little things and trying to share that good feeling with others.
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Old 03-07-2013, 10:38 PM   #28
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Richard, I felt much the same way. Since, I didn't contribute to society, I didn't feel I was relevant anymore. What I found out was there are many other ways to be a useful member of society. For one, I now get to spend a lot more time with family, friends, and neighbors. I take my nieces and nephews fishing every chance I get. They like it (almost as much as I do) and I get to mentor them to be stewards of the environment. I have been able to help neighbors and friends with anything from projects around the house to building a house. The thanks I get are far more sincere than anything I ever got from work. I volunteer to help do wetlands restoration, plant mangroves and trap nuisance gators. I have time to be involved with the political process beyond just voting and maybe something good can come of it (but I am not holding my breath). And as my DW pointed out, by leaving the workforce, I opened up a job opportunity for someone else. Opportunities to help out seem to come up all the time. While I was working, I never had time for any of them. Now I get to pick and choose. In reality, if I continued to work another year or decade, I think would have still felt guilty when I left. I had to learn other ways to be useful for myself. Now after 9 months, I don't feel nearly as guilty. Particularly on Monday mornings.
Thanks Doug (very nice comments) and all who've responded. It's the volunteering aspect that seems to be so very self-satisfying and rewarding. Never one to have tried that in my somewhat selfish, survival mindset, you've provided sage advice and guidence in exploring this path. Participating in the political process is especialy intriguing.
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Old 03-07-2013, 11:07 PM   #29
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It's the volunteering aspect that seems to be so very self-satisfying and rewarding. Never one to have tried that in my somewhat selfish, survival mindset, you've provided sage advice and guidence in exploring this path.
My advice, FWIW: as volunteering will be new to you, take some time to decide what opportunities most appeal, and try only one thing for a while before branching out into two or three others. As MBAustin says, it is easy to overcommit: which can lead to stress, mutual resentment and burnout. There is no place for those problems in retirement!

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Participating in the political process is especially intriguing.
To each his own. But personally I'd be wary about that, especially in today's America where so much of politics seems to revolve around relentlessly demonizing the opposition (one might just as well listen to talk radio all day: a recipe for hypertension!).
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Old 03-08-2013, 06:10 AM   #30
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Seriously, though, right now I'm teaching marketing parttime and even that makes me a little uneasy in a way. I don't feel comfortable anymore teaching students how to get consumers to buy more stuff.
Don't be too uneasy about teaching marketing. It depends on what the student takes away from it. As an elective I took a class in marketing. It was an eye-opener. I'd never considered that advertising companies employ people who have spent their entire lives designing packaging not to protect a product, but to entice people to buy it. That and the whole gamut of store lighting, displays, and the like.

A classic in advertising circles must be the "Pet Rock" if anyone remembers those.

The class enabled me to look at store displays, advertising, and the entire "consumer culture" in an entirely new and unflattering light.

And resist it.
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Old 03-08-2013, 11:40 AM   #31
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I have absolutely no experience in marketing. In my humble opinion anyone who is teaching people something that they may use to support themselves and through their labors also help support other people is making a tremendous contribution to society.
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Old 03-08-2013, 05:25 PM   #32
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thanks, walt and jclarksnakes, you've made me feel better about my efforts in teaching marketing. I do try to instill the notion that successful marketing is all about understanding your customers' needs and wants, and offering them something of value. So if my students go off to do that in their marketing careers, that should help us consumers.
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Old 03-08-2013, 06:09 PM   #33
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Dunno. The Oracle from Omaha is still working and making heaps of money (I think).
True, but he is one of the few who can work on his own terms.
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Old 03-08-2013, 07:48 PM   #34
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My advice, FWIW: as volunteering will be new to you, take some time to decide what opportunities most appeal, and try only one thing for a while before branching out into two or three others. As MBAustin says, it is easy to overcommit: which can lead to stress, mutual resentment and burnout. There is no place for those problems in retirement!

My volunteer work or helping neighbors and friends is probably not as altrusitic as it seems. I do things that I like doing, whether it is welding or running heavy equipment or slogging around a swamp cutting down invasive trees with a chainsaw. The fact that it helps someone else is almost secondary. These things are all fun (to me) in small doses. When I have other things to do, it is easy to say no.

Quote:
To each his own. But personally I'd be wary about that, especially in today's America where so much of politics seems to revolve around relentlessly demonizing the opposition (one might just as well listen to talk radio all day: a recipe for hypertension!).
My involvement in the political process is limited to the local level and is mostly aimed at keeping our elected county officials from frivolously spending our property tax money. Perhaps it would be better stated that I am more of an involved citizen. Milton, I agree with your view of most politics and the subsequent stress.
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Old 03-08-2013, 09:29 PM   #35
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Richard, I felt much the same way. Since, I didn't contribute to society, I didn't feel I was relevant anymore. What I found out was there are many other ways to be a useful member of society. For one, I now get to spend a lot more time with family, friends, and neighbors. I take my nieces and nephews fishing every chance I get. They like it (almost as much as I do) and I get to mentor them to be stewards of the environment. I have been able to help neighbors and friends with anything from projects around the house to building a house. The thanks I get are far more sincere than anything I ever got from work. I volunteer to help do wetlands restoration, plant mangroves and trap nuisance gators. I have time to be involved with the political process beyond just voting and maybe something good can come of it (but I am not holding my breath). And as my DW pointed out, by leaving the workforce, I opened up a job opportunity for someone else. Opportunities to help out seem to come up all the time. While I was working, I never had time for any of them. Now I get to pick and choose. In reality, if I continued to work another year or decade, I think would have still felt guilty when I left. I had to learn other ways to be useful for myself. Now after 9 months, I don't feel nearly as guilty. Particularly on Monday mornings.


Charity begins at home. I really like that you started out emphasizing spending time with family, friends and neighbors, and taking your nieces and nephews fishing so often. Those are tremendous contributions. Contributing to "society" doesn't mean contributing only to employers or strangers. Sometimes it's the contributions closer to home that make the most difference.
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