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Old 10-11-2011, 09:21 PM   #41
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I retired at the end of July this year after much number crunching and financial rearranging. I did not hate my job but I did want to retire to raising my two younger children and taking care of my disabled wife. I had a "to" to retire to and a good job to retire from. I have been busy every single day, never a dull moment and no regrets.

I have time to do things I neglected before retirement and few time critical tasks.

I think the advice above about visualizing what you are going to retire to is very sound.
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Old 10-11-2011, 09:47 PM   #42
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Yes but.... I am in a dream job. My job is almost completely stress free; my staff are all competent and friendly; I have a lot of down time and I get 8 weeks of vacation time annually. My former boss doubled my salary a few years back which allowed me to pay off my mortgage 10 years early. I've built up a six-figure nest egg and my pension will be in the $60K range before taxes, less about $500/year for full health benefits.

Finding another job like that would be impossible.

On the other hand, I'll have to retire sometime. Or die in the saddle, which is not an option. Mandatory retirement functions are bad enough.... forcing a mandatory funeral on my staff would cause me to haunt the place.
Here's a thought experiment:
If you seek the workplace as a source of entertainment, instead of being responsible for your own entertainment, then why are you on a discussion board devoted to early retirement?
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Old 10-12-2011, 02:15 AM   #43
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That's what I have been considering too. Working part time in the short term may be part of the solution.
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I've actually considered working 2 weeks on and 2 weeks off. You never know about these things.
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Old 10-12-2011, 07:56 AM   #44
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Or, go take a nap....
Or, as I did yesterday, reorganize my closets to free up space for my growing book collection.......THEN take a nap LOL!
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Old 10-12-2011, 08:14 AM   #45
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I'm within a few months of retiring but, as I get closer to the date, I'm beginning to doubt the wisdom of ER.

I'm a creature of impulse (sort of). I get an idea about something, and that's all I can think of for months. Then I do it - get it out of my system - and lose all enthusiasm for the idea.

Case in point: I've been wanting to buy an RV for years and have done hours of research. I was going to spend every waking moment travelling around and doing interesting things. Finally, I bought one on September 1st. I used it on the Labour Day weekend and haven't taken it out since.

This past weekend (Thanksgiving long weekend) was passably nice weather-wise. Instead of going out, I spent the weekend on the couch, watching re-runs of 3rd Rock from the Sun. And I did a bit of geocaching.

So, what if ER is another one of these whims? I've been thinking about it and planning it for years. But what if it's just another RV dream?

Has anyone ever had any regrets?

Nui
If you enjoy your job, you might want to linger a while. I bailed when I did not like the way things were going at work. Every time I hear about the goings on at my former place of employment I'm reminded how fortunate I am to have elected early retirement.
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Old 10-12-2011, 08:25 AM   #46
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Has anyone ever had any regrets?

Nui
No way. Whenever I see a transit report about delays or other problems with the Long Island Rail Road (the commuter rail system I used to get to work) or the PATH trains (a small subway system I used to get to work), I say to myself, "I am sooooo glad I am not part of that crap any more!" Any time there is a day with undesirable commuting weather (i.e. extreme heat in the summer, extreme cold in the winter, snow, rain), I say to myself, "I am soooo glad I am not part of that crap any more!"

Any time one of my friends tells me about something stupid which happened at work, I say to myself, "I am sooooo glad I am not part of that crap any more!"

Simply avoiding or ridding myself of the negatives associated with working makes me have no regrets about ERing nearly 3 years ago.
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Retired in late 2008 at age 45. Cashed in company stock, bought a lot of shares in a big bond fund and am living nicely off its dividends. IRA, SS, and a pension await me at age 60 and later. No kids, no debts.

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Old 10-12-2011, 08:54 AM   #47
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May be I look at this too simplistically; just lay out your list of Pro/Cons for either continuing to work or retiring early. I would suspect for most the answer will be pretty obvious. No one knows you better than yourself. Nevertheless, better to be pondering this now rather than later and finding out you made a bad decision without clearly thinking things out vs acting on impulse.
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Old 10-12-2011, 09:33 AM   #48
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Maybe you just needed a weekend to take it easy? I think that extrapolating what retirement might be like based on a long weekend while you are still working is probably misleading.
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Old 10-12-2011, 10:01 AM   #49
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Has anyone ever had any regrets?

Nui
No regrets after more than a year of ER. I had a great job too - pays well, allows me to travel a bit, competent staff, uses skills I am good at. However, I found myself longing to be out of the office and doing things other than working like watching movies, going for a jog, reading a book, taking a nap, cooking dinner, just taking leisurely lunches or even just playing homemaker. I also wanted longer vacations and leaving office earlier. I had all these "inner distractions" during office hours for like months and finally I knew I have to make the choice to get a life and sacrifice the safety net of a "great job" which is robbing me of the life I want to live. ER is a personal choice but if you consistently feel that you are trapped by a "great job" and you are financially able to ER, why not go and live the life you want now?
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Old 10-12-2011, 10:17 AM   #50
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Originally Posted by Nords View Post
Here's a thought experiment:
If you seek the workplace as a source of entertainment, instead of being responsible for your own entertainment, then why are you on a discussion board devoted to early retirement?

Oh - entertainment is not a factor. I get plenty of that. On top of my regular day job, I'm a professional Polynesian dancer and am coming up on my 1000th show. I also teach Polynesian dance as well as tap dancing (not together). Lots and lots of entertainment!

I also just bought an RV, since I know that the only way I can prevent couch potato syndrome is to get the heck outta Dodge.

Nah... I'm just getting cold feet because I like the money. ER is definitely coming.
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Old 10-12-2011, 10:45 AM   #51
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I ER'd last December. I have no regrets. I did have some doubts because I was typically one of those people anxious to get back to work after 3 weeks of vacation. I was concerned that by the end of January I would be bored. Nope. Didn't happen. Then I thought that I would be bored at the end of 6 months after completing most of my after retirement to do list. Nope. I had a life outside of work and I'm happy to be living it.
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Old 10-12-2011, 11:13 AM   #52
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Has anyone ever had any regrets?
No regrets on retiring when I did. I went out at the top of my game and while I enjoyed the work itself, other issues (DC area traffic and bureaucratic BS topped the list). I was very careful to make sure the numbers worked and there were no surprises there, but I didn't plan on what to to do with me. That was a mistake.

The first year was an extended vacation along with a new house and learning a new area, and then I started looking for "projects" but didn't want to commit to a job, and found that in helping a friend build an airplane. That was a neat thing to see go from a skeleton to a finished airplane.

On a whim I applied for a job nearby and to my surprise was hired. I went in with my KMA hat* firmly in place but so far it's working out all right. All the others are also retired law enforcement types so the threshold for BS is low and management knows it, I get days off when I want, there's little paperwork and of course the unplanned-for extra discretionary income is always nice.

So for now I'm renewing an interest in photography and learning a lot about that - start two classes next week that I'm looking forward to.

YMMV.
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Old 10-12-2011, 07:33 PM   #53
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Originally Posted by Nuiloa View Post
I'm within a few months of retiring but, as I get closer to the date, I'm beginning to doubt the wisdom of ER.

I'm a creature of impulse (sort of). I get an idea about something, and that's all I can think of for months. Then I do it - get it out of my system - and lose all enthusiasm for the idea.

....

So, what if ER is another one of these whims? I've been thinking about it and planning it for years. But what if it's just another RV dream?

FWIW, it may help to adjust your thinking on these kinds of things rather than thinking of them as whims. I often tend to get interested in something and immerse myself in it and then I'm done with it and it often has little (if any) interest to me at all. I once thought that this was a weakness because I didn't stick with things.

Yet, over the years, I've come to think of it as a strength. I see it as learning something -- to whatever degree I decide to learn it -- and then I don't need to do any more with it. I enjoyed it and had pleasure from it and now it is time to go on to something else. Because of these kinds of things I have a wide amount of knowledge about a lot of very diverse things which has often been helpful to me.

I have learned to be cautious about throwing serious amounts of money into things that I may not want to stick with for the long term. Some years ago I became interested in sewing and machine embroidery. I had no experience with others. I bought the most advanced consumer machine of the day and all the software and educated myself all about it. I had a web site where people could post or download designs. I was even the owner of the most active mailing list on the subject (averaging several hundred messages a day). I was a well known person in the community spending hours every day running the mailing list, keeping up the website, emailing many people in the community, getting involved in communications between the manufacturer and users, etc. I easily spent about $10,000 on paraphernalia. What I wasn't doing was much sewing or embroidery as I found I liked looking at it and talking about much more than doing it. And, eventually, I shocked everyone by selling everything and quitting.

Anyway....about ER.

I was going to ER last year but my boss prevailed on me to stay part-time which has worked out well (working 1 or 2 days a week). I will at some point fully retire of course. I do realize that I may at some point decide I don't like being retired (I seriously doubt it but it could happen). I sort of feel that if so I could find something else to do. It might not be as good as the job I had but so what? I wouldn't really need the income so I could do something entirely new or even volunteer or find some other regular activity.
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