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Type A personalities may not take easily to retirement
Old 11-18-2012, 10:57 PM   #1
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Type A personalities may not take easily to retirement

Another interesting article.

"So youíre a Type A personality: hard-charging, status-driven and impatient. How do you think thatíll work out for you in retirement?


Quite possibly not so great, according to Donald Asher, a Gerlach, Nev., career consultant who has been studying Type A retirees. ďType Aís donít stop being Type Aís in retirement,Ē Asher says.


Asher, who speaks on this subject around the country, told me that a Type A personality isnít very well suited to the retirement life."

Type A personalities may not take easily to retirement - Business on NBCNews.com

Is your personality well suited to the retirement life ?
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Old 11-19-2012, 12:55 AM   #2
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I can think of a few examples of extreme Type As I have known who retired. The seemingly successful retirees all had some kind of project (or multiple projects) that they worked on, like writing a book or building a lake cabin or planning and planting a huge garden. I cannot think of any Type A retired acquaintances without a focused project or two who seem happy with their retirement. They haven't taken up a life of golf, leisure or even travel. A few went back to work, though they didn't need any money.
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Old 11-19-2012, 06:59 AM   #3
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I'm only type A behind the wheel of a car. The rest of the time I am laid back. ER rulez.
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Old 11-19-2012, 07:57 AM   #4
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DH is type A; even his leisurely pursuits like reading are somewhat driven. He will rake our 98 percent leaf-free yard one more time before snow falls. He fills his day with preplanned tasks toward some goal--right now he is working toward a t-shirt from his yoga place. Probably helpful in his case is that he always had hobbies and interests that a career impeded.

So he adores being retired and being able to plan his own extremely important tasks.
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Old 11-19-2012, 07:58 AM   #5
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I'm only type A behind the wheel of a car. The rest of the time I am laid back. ER rulez.
Gee, you must have been the one riding my rearend at 70 MPH on LBJ this morning.
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Old 11-19-2012, 08:45 AM   #6
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I'm only type A behind the wheel of a car. The rest of the time I am laid back. ER rulez.
I was amused to see this in Africa. Whereas everything else is so laid back and slow paced, a personality switch occurs when an African gets behind the wheel. I guess it is just hardwired human nature.
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Old 11-19-2012, 09:11 AM   #7
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Gee, you must have been the one riding my rearend at 70 MPH on LBJ this morning.
That could have been any of a few hundred thousand people...

Btw, I highly recommend avoiding LBJ at all costs...
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Old 11-19-2012, 10:32 AM   #8
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I have such a mellow personality that if it weren't for the need to make a living and I also enjoyed my work, I would have gone into ER right after my graduate work (I enjoyed school too, if that makes sense to you).

Never cared about any spectator sport. Never watched an entire game of any type in my life (lost interest quickly). Never participated in any competitive game. Would rather do any physical exercise alone. Don't even know any card game.

So, what's this type A that people speak of? Why do people want to be near one?
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Old 11-19-2012, 10:42 AM   #9
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DH is type A; even his leisurely pursuits like reading are somewhat driven. He will rake our 98 percent leaf-free yard one more time before snow falls.
Type A or OC?
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Old 11-19-2012, 10:44 AM   #10
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Type A or OC?
What, they're mutually exclusive?
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Old 11-19-2012, 11:15 AM   #11
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I think the author of the article has a strange definition of Type A.
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So you’re a Type A personality: hard-charging, status-driven and impatient.
I might agree with the rest, but status-driven? I'd substitute just "driven". I don't think Type A personalities are driven by status; often they are driven internally rather than externally. They are not necessarily insecure people who are trying to impress everybody else and gain status. That is sort of a back-handed insult towards Type A's IMO.

And yes, my guess would be that anyone who is overly insecure and excessively worried about status would have a pretty hard time retiring if their status and identity are solely job-defined. But I don't think Type A's necessarily fit into this category.

I think Type A folks might need a longer adjustment period at the beginning of retirement than others, to decompress and find other directions for their energy. But I don't think they are unsuited to ER, at all. In fact, I suspect they may appreciate ER even more than most, once they have settled in. In retirement, they can use their considerable energy and drive to accomplish goals that THEY set, rather than goals that are set for them. No more spinning the wheels and twiddling the thumbs at work, because they can use their considerable energy and focus towards productive progress on their own projects and related to their own goals.
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Old 11-19-2012, 11:27 AM   #12
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I think the author of the article has a strange definition of Type A.

I might agree with the rest, but status-driven? I'd substitute just "driven". I don't think Type A personalities are driven by status; often they are driven internally rather than externally. They are not necessarily insecure people who are trying to impress everybody else and gain status. That is sort of a back-handed insult towards Type A's IMO.

And yes, my guess would be that anyone who is overly insecure and excessively worried about status would have a pretty hard time retiring if their status and identity are solely job-defined. But I don't think Type A's necessarily fit into this category.

I think Type A folks might need a longer adjustment period at the beginning of retirement than others, to decompress and find other directions for their energy. But I don't think they are unsuited to ER, at all. In fact, I suspect they may appreciate ER even more than most, once they have settled in. In retirement, they can use their considerable energy and drive to accomplish goals that THEY set, rather than goals that are set for them. No more spinning the wheels and twiddling the thumbs at work, because they can use their considerable energy and focus towards productive progress on their own projects and related to their own goals.
+1
Type "A"'s aren't driven - they do all the driving. Retirement should be no different, just an opportunity for them to set their sights on new targets.
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Old 11-19-2012, 11:37 AM   #13
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So you’re a Type A personality: hard-charging, status-driven and impatient. How do you think that’ll work out for you in retirement?

Quite possibly not so great, according to Donald Asher, a Gerlach, Nev., career consultant who has been studying Type A retirees. “Type A’s don’t stop being Type A’s in retirement,” Asher says.
Noting the authors caveat possibly, I don't doubt Type A's do better if they have other interactions and projects to keep them enjoying life. And I don't doubt most Type A's don't have any problem finding other things, but some do, and some of them go back to work in some form.

As for status-driven vs driven. Are all Type A's status driven? No. Is status a motivator for some/many Type A's. I'd say yes. Think of successful, egomaniacs you've known or known of, few if any were Type B's IME.
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Old 11-19-2012, 11:46 AM   #14
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Type "A"'s aren't driven - they do all the driving. Retirement should be no different, just an opportunity for them to set their sights on new targets.
My thought exactly. Why wouldn't a type A make early-retirement a challenge and try to excel at it? Sure, such a retirement would not look anything like mine, but why would it be any less successful?

Set lofty goals for yourself - travel around the world, learn to play the piano, learn a foreign language, start your own charity, etc... - and go for it with all your might!
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Old 11-19-2012, 12:05 PM   #15
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Never cared about any spectator sport. Never watched an entire game of any type in my life (lost interest quickly). Never participated in any competitive game. Would rather do any physical exercise alone. Don't even know any card game.
Wow - I thought I was the only person like this. All through school I wondered if there was something wrong with me. I was quite a fast runner but didn't pursue it at a competitive level as the competition didn't interest me. I never fully understood the rules of most games such as soccer and rugby - other than the obvious ones of where to put the ball in order to score, as I didn't quite get the point of the game i.e. - why are all those people chasing a ball around a field?

My lack of inclination in this direction felt like a distinct disadvantage in school but in adult life, it hasn't been so bad. I tend not to measure my performance by that of the people around me, but by my own internal yardstick. Likewise, I have never cared that much what my co-workers were earning. All that mattered to me was whether my wages were enough for my needs and wants.

Obviously we're not type A's NW-Bound, so what are we? I'm thinking of a letter quite a way down the alphabet
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Old 11-19-2012, 12:11 PM   #16
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My thought exactly. Why wouldn't a type A make early-retirement a challenge and try to excel at it? Sure, such a retirement would not look anything like mine, but why would it be any less successful?

Set lofty goals for yourself - travel around the world, learn to play the piano, learn a foreign language, start your own charity, etc... - and go for it with all your might!
Great post. I think that's a much better description of the truly Type A personality!!
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Old 11-19-2012, 02:21 PM   #17
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Wow - I thought I was the only person like this. All through school I wondered if there was something wrong with me. I was quite a fast runner but didn't pursue it at a competitive level as the competition didn't interest me. I never fully understood the rules of most games such as soccer and rugby - other than the obvious ones of where to put the ball in order to score, as I didn't quite get the point of the game i.e. - why are all those people chasing a ball around a field?

My lack of inclination in this direction felt like a distinct disadvantage in school but in adult life, it hasn't been so bad. I tend not to measure my performance by that of the people around me, but by my own internal yardstick. Likewise, I have never cared that much what my co-workers were earning. All that mattered to me was whether my wages were enough for my needs and wants.

Obviously we're not type A's NW-Bound, so what are we? I'm thinking of a letter quite a way down the alphabet
Sounds like me a lot. Never cared about sports at all.
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Old 11-19-2012, 04:04 PM   #18
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Sounds like me a lot. Never cared about sports at all.
Ditto. I was the kid in the far outfield examining a dandelion when the fly ball came my way.
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Old 11-19-2012, 04:42 PM   #19
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Ditto. I was the kid the far outfield examining a dandelion when the fly ball came my way.
Ha! You reminded me of the time I was playing basketball at high school. I noticed that the ball was flying swiftly towards me. The teacher and my classmates were yelling for me to catch the ball, but it all happened too fast. The ball hit me square on the bridge of my nose, snapping my glasses in two at the center. My glasses fell on the ground in 2 pieces, while I stood there, wondering what had just happened

Another time, I did actually score a beautiful basket from the very opposite side of the court. Everyone was amazed - including me. It was a fluke, never to be repeated
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Old 11-19-2012, 06:04 PM   #20
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Perfectionist, sounds like. "OC" would be if he got down on his hands and knees and dug old grass thatch out of the lawn by hand, one piece at a time, for hours and hours.

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Type A or OC?
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