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Got the Work Blahs --- What to do
Old 04-20-2007, 04:40 AM   #1
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Got the Work Blahs --- What to do

Lately I have developed the blahs about work. My motivation and interest has begun to drop. Mainly due to frustration with all of the BS... too much "Peter Pinciple" in management ranks.

I have 4.x years left before FIRE. I have always been a conscientious employee. But lately, I have considered just trimming back and fading into the woodworks... try to go into stealth mode. The problem is I will be bored to tears.

Any ideas?
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Re: Got the Work Blahs --- What to do
Old 04-20-2007, 05:08 AM   #2
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Re: Got the Work Blahs --- What to do

I took a few extra sick days. Never telling anyone before hand just called out on a nice weather day. Did some things on that day just for myself. Ran a good long workout went to the bookstore had a nice lunch.
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Re: Got the Work Blahs --- What to do
Old 04-20-2007, 09:11 AM   #3
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Re: Got the Work Blahs --- What to do

You really do need at least one mental health day...maybe a couple.
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Re: Got the Work Blahs --- What to do
Old 04-20-2007, 09:45 AM   #4
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Re: Got the Work Blahs --- What to do

If you get bored, try using the spare time to work on tweaking your retirement planning, budget, and so on. Straighten out your office and files. Meanwhile, dream, dream, dream.

I have about 3 years to go, and can certainly relate to what you are saying.
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Re: Got the Work Blahs --- What to do
Old 04-20-2007, 10:29 AM   #5
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Re: Got the Work Blahs --- What to do

Unhappy or bored final years on the job are a real problem. I went through a similar situation until, luckily, they changed my assignment to include international travel and responsibilities and things became fun again.

Take the situation seriously and try to do something about it. Life is short and years (even just a few) spent unhappily on the job are truly wasted. In RE, you'll think back, slap yourself in the forehead, and wonder why you flushed a significant portion of your life away!

When I look at the demise of dbp pensions and that sort of thing, I do see an upside. At least with 401K's and portable pension plans, you're free to move to interesting work even very late in your career without the worry that you're "throwing your dbp pension away."

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Re: Got the Work Blahs --- What to do
Old 04-20-2007, 11:10 AM   #6
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Re: Got the Work Blahs --- What to do

3 martini lunches?
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Re: Got the Work Blahs --- What to do
Old 04-20-2007, 11:56 AM   #7
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Re: Got the Work Blahs --- What to do

I have been having the same kind of problems, with 5 years to go - and wish it was tomorrow today. Taking a few mental health days helped, but didn't solve the ennui and frustration.

However, in the past, I have generally changed j*bs every 5 years or so, and have been here for 6 yrs. So, even though I like this environment more than most other j*b's I have had, I am looking for something new. That would be more scary if I felt I was looking at another 15 or 20 years of w*rk. But I figure I can benefit from a honeymoon period and then slug it out closer to the end. This has helped considerably, since even if I can't FIRE yet, I now have a shorter horizon before getting into something new.

Don't know if your situtation will allow that type of change.
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Re: Got the Work Blahs --- What to do
Old 04-20-2007, 04:54 PM   #8
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Re: Got the Work Blahs --- What to do

Appreciate the comments. I will work it out. Just hit a motivational low. I will hang in there for the next 4 years (I am not miserable). I have a DBP and retirement Group Health Ins.... so it is in my interest to stick around.

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Re: Got the Work Blahs --- What to do
Old 04-20-2007, 05:11 PM   #9
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Re: Got the Work Blahs --- What to do

Problem with a lot of senior level workers is they become overqualified for their jobs and can handle it in a fraction of the time alloted. So you either move to a more challenging job, or you die of boredom. I didn't want to do the former, so I was stuck with the latter.

Boredom was my biggest problem before I left my full time job. I could deal with stress much better than with boredom. With stress there are things you can do, and an entire cottage industry devoted to helping people to deal with stress. But what do you do about boredom? Every hour, every minute, every second, ticking by.

I did the best I could, tried to fill my time with other projects, and was able to do that for a few years but eventually I just could not take it any more. That's when I decided I had to leave.
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Re: Got the Work Blahs --- What to do
Old 04-20-2007, 06:01 PM   #10
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Re: Got the Work Blahs --- What to do

Even though I am International, I just volunteered for a US project just for a change of pace.
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Re: Got the Work Blahs --- What to do
Old 04-20-2007, 11:13 PM   #11
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Re: Got the Work Blahs --- What to do

I also did a job change. After 10 years in the same role, I found that I had a distinct lack of enthusiasm at the start of another same ol', same ol' project. So a couple of months ago I did a lateral move to another job type. Now there are interesting things to learn and my day-to-day tasks are completely different than before. I still want to FIRE as soon as possible, but the new job at least keeps me engaged and interested for now.
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Re: Got the Work Blahs --- What to do
Old 04-21-2007, 05:39 AM   #12
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Re: Got the Work Blahs --- What to do

i just tell myself im working to fill the time bewtween weekends
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Re: Got the Work Blahs --- What to do
Old 04-21-2007, 07:49 AM   #13
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Re: Got the Work Blahs --- What to do

Want2retire's advice is very good.

Focus on your life outside of work. As much as possible, plan and think about the new life you'll be starting 4 years from now.

If you haven't already, work at developing a "This is just a paycheck and benefits" attitude.

You mention:

“Mainly due to frustration with all of the BS... too much "Peter Principle" in management ranks.”

Another way to look at it is: Why should you care about the B.S. and whether or not they have perfected the “Peter Principle” at your workplace ? In 4 years, you’ll be out of there, so what do you care? If you view your job as just a means to an end, then what does it matter?

For myself, I have had to endure so much B.S. and idiotic management practices in the various jobs I’ve worked, that I had to completely change my philosophy about how I viewed my job. Once I did that, things got much better. The funny thing is, my management thinks I do a better job now too.

John
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Re: Got the Work Blahs --- What to do
Old 04-21-2007, 08:17 AM   #14
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Re: Got the Work Blahs --- What to do

I've been where you are. Here's how I've approached it. First, I have a plan to FIRE, and they don't know about it. This is my secret weapon. Second, because I am accountable to multiple people, all of whom want 100% of me, I have started to manage my time to my benefit. I prioritize the activities that are important to me, like vacations, and I make sure to get out of town. I refuse to get a Blackberry for privacy reasons. I work long hours, so I put my personal appointments on my calendar and just tell people I'm not available at that time. Third, I have explored other opportunities. That has been quite revealing; I've discovered that the grass is not always, or even usually, greener somewhere else and I now appreciate better the advantages of my current situation. This exercise also convinced me that I have a lot to offer. Fourth, I have developed the attitude that I have nothing to gain by underselling myself. I've negotiated better contracts by rejecting first offers that don't meet my criteria. I'm a significant asset to my various organizations and I know they know it. If I push the envelope too far, I'll get fired, and if that happens before my FIRE date then I'll have opportunities to freelance on my terms.

In other words, they don't own me. Life is good!
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Re: Got the Work Blahs --- What to do
Old 04-22-2007, 02:42 AM   #15
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Re: Got the Work Blahs --- What to do

Quote:
Originally Posted by chinaco

I have 4.x years left before FIRE. I have always been a conscientious employee. But lately, I have considered just trimming back and fading into the woodworks... try to go into stealth mode. The problem is I will be bored to tears.
I'm in the same boat except I have 6 years to go. I think my problem is that I'm tired of the routine and I have a long commute. So, I'm fixing my house up and will move into the city.

I think I need to shake my life up and make some changes. If I do that the next six years will fly by.

Would creating some kind of change in your life outside of work help out ? A new hobby or interest ?
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Re: Got the Work Blahs --- What to do
Old 04-22-2007, 06:03 AM   #16
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Re: Got the Work Blahs --- What to do

Good comments and ideas. Thanks so much!
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Re: Got the Work Blahs --- What to do
Old 04-22-2007, 07:43 AM   #17
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Re: Got the Work Blahs --- What to do

this is probably real obvious so i'm just going to state it anyway: one of the problems with being aware is that it becomes harder to fool yourself.

i've got a cousin who i dearly love but she has become so engrossed with "the secret"-type of thinking that she can not see her way out of that paper bag. though she really can't afford it, she's getting ready to spend another few thousand from her home equity line to participate in a hawiian "retreat" for the like-minded. she can see neither the ill-effects of such thinking nor the danger of such spending. but she seems to be--at least while proselytizing her new-found belief system and making her plans--happy. who am i to argue with that?

my fear, of course, is that one day life is going to pull the rug out from under her and instead of continuing to fool herself she will have to face that she has been wearing the mask of a fool. my hope is that she will then be able to find a way to grin and bear it.

"life is always right"~~le corbusier
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Re: Got the Work Blahs --- What to do
Old 04-22-2007, 01:40 PM   #18
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Re: Got the Work Blahs --- What to do

You could do what I did: quit and take several months off and burn through several thousand dollars. My attitude about work is so positive and energetic now.

On the other hand, I don't have near enough to retire and had to keep cutting spending. You might decide you don't want to go back to work after all.

Okay, my method is not really recommended, but it really does wonders for attitude and focus when I get back to work again.
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Re: Got the Work Blahs --- What to do
Old 04-22-2007, 01:42 PM   #19
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Re: Got the Work Blahs --- What to do

4.x years is a long time to stay motivated when your heart is not really in it. Have you thought about retweaking your plan to see if there is a possibility of exiting a bit earlier than originally thought?
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