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View Poll Results: Anxiety before retiring
No anxiety - 25 30.12%
Some anxiety - continued to work although plenty of money to retire 14 16.87%
Some anxiety - retired anyway (what was I concerned about) 40 48.19%
I thought this was a poll on poles again 4 4.82%
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Anxiety before FIRE (poll)
Old 02-05-2011, 01:49 PM   #1
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Anxiety before FIRE (poll)

Seeing how everyone around here likes polls and poles, I was wondering:

How many had a lot (more than a fleeting feeling) of anxiety as they got closer (less than a year) to FIRE?

What if anything did you do concerning it?
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Old 02-05-2011, 01:56 PM   #2
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The anxiety didn't really start ramping up for me until about a month before I left work. I found myself re-running all the simulations (FIRECalc and company) I could find just to make sure. I kept talking out my plan over and over with DW, who would nod sagely while continuing to do word search puzzles.
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Old 02-05-2011, 01:56 PM   #3
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Absolutely no anxiety - unless that's the term you use to describe the feeling of a five year old kid as Christmas approaches.
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Old 02-05-2011, 02:01 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by F-One View Post
How many had a lot (more than a fleeting feeling) of anxiety as they got closer (less than a year) to FIRE?
What if anything did you do concerning it?
I'd say my anxiety peaked around five years before ER and dropped exponentially as the blessed date approached.

Luckily I had plenty of retirement checklist tasks to accomplish beforehand, so there wasn't much time to worry about what I'd do all day. And once I'd ER'd, that imaginary problem resolved itself before I really had a chance to notice that it was gone.
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Old 02-05-2011, 02:11 PM   #5
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I gave my checklist to Nords, so he could worry for me about my retirement.
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Old 02-05-2011, 02:18 PM   #6
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I retired a little earlier than expected, in 2007, due to a layoff. Though nominally a 100% equities proponent, my anxiety was enough to raise about 3 years of cash (including college tuition for DS) and hedge with gold and BEARX. The plan was to leave the equities alone until all of that ran out, though I ended up reinvesting quit a bit of it. My DW decided to continue working, mostly because she still enjoys it. All good moves as it turned out.

Never too concerned about what I'd do in retirement. Kind of like a teenager now, jumping from activity to activity depending on what catches my eye at the time.
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Old 02-05-2011, 02:19 PM   #7
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I had a "run screaming into the night" retirement once I realized I spent less that $25K/year. I'd rather sell a kidney than go back to work.
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Old 02-05-2011, 02:21 PM   #8
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Plenty of anxiety from 3 years out worrying about the DB pension still being available. Last 6 months the anxiety changed rapidly to eager anticipation.
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Old 02-05-2011, 02:32 PM   #9
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None, I had known for years I was FI. I knew my retirements plans more than covered my current spending. I was working because DW was working and I was bored around the house. From the time she decided she was ready to move to the lake until we both retired was less than three months.
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Old 02-05-2011, 03:17 PM   #10
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My anxiety was more related to social aspects than financial since I socialized a lot with my co-workers . I retired anyway . I found new friends and still socialize with some of the former co-workers .
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Old 02-05-2011, 03:46 PM   #11
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Not retired yet, so no vote. However, leading into retirement I can say:

1) Highest level of anxiety was actually telling my boss, I delayed several times. He was in denial for almost a month, but now he realizes I'm serious and we've talked about who will replace me.
2) Moderate anxiety, the period before I told my boss. The one more year syndrome, annoying but probably inevitable.
3) Least anxiety, after I told my boss and ever since. No one aside from DW and my boss know yet, and I like it that way, don't look forward to co-workers once they all know. I am enjoying work a little more now, and whenever something happens I don't like - I smile and tell myself, won't have to deal with this much longer. And mentally checking off some assignments in my head with a 'last time I'll ever have to do this,' and the co-workers/audience doesn't know it.
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Old 02-05-2011, 03:51 PM   #12
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Absolutely no anxiety - unless that's the term you use to describe the feeling of a five year old kid as Christmas approaches.
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Old 02-05-2011, 06:55 PM   #13
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One of my favorite hobbies leading up to ER was to test my retirement plan against all the "what ifs" I could think of. I did this for hours and hours every week, and while I did not foresee the Market Crash of 2008-2009 or the real estate crash, I did think of some pretty gruesome possibilities. It survived them all, so I was not anxious about financial matters. I was not anxious about my emotional adjustment, either, because I knew I would take to retirement naturally.

So, I voted that I was not anxious.

However, I admit that occasionally, in the middle of the night, I was fearful that something terrible and unexpected could happen - - a "Katrina II", or maybe my agency would be disbanded before I could retire (forcing me to move at my own expense to Alaska or something), that my daughter would need money desperately for some reason, or maybe I would be wrongfully arrested for something serious, etc etc. Just general fear of unexpected awful things happening. As dawn broke my anxiety would vanish, so generally I was not anxious at all about retirement.

I think the source of these fears was the thought that nothing is this easy, and the surely something would stand between me and retirement.
However, guess what? It really IS this easy to retire.
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Old 02-05-2011, 07:01 PM   #14
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I'm there right now with 54 days to go. I have prepared for this day for a long time. So far I'm not getting anxious or nervous about ER. Funny thing though, when I'm driving in to work each day I actually think about getting into a wreck and not being able to enjoy ER. That's weird.
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Old 02-05-2011, 09:34 PM   #15
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When I left my job in 1998, I was too ignorant to have anxiety.

When it got close to the time that DH was set to retire, he looked at me and said, "Everything ok?" I said "Let 'er rip!" No anxiety on his part at all. He's been blissful since day one...
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Old 02-05-2011, 09:55 PM   #16
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Some anxiety - retired anyway. My original plan was to not retire until Nov 2011. But circumstances made it so I decided earlier. Wouldn't trade my decision for the world, nor would I trade seeing the expressions on some faces when I told them, "I'm outta here!!"
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Old 02-05-2011, 10:08 PM   #17
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My only anxiety was that I wouldn't get to retire. I volunteered to be downsized, but they didn't want to let me go. If I hadn't gotten the RIF package I'd have had to work 2 more years in order to be eligible for retiree medical bennies. Luckily, through a combination of pleading and acting like a real @-hole, they RIFed me. As far as retirement, my only anxiety was when I realized DW likes to shop online when she's bored. Luckily she's found some activities that keep her interested, and may bring in about what she spends on crap interesting home goods.
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Old 02-05-2011, 10:26 PM   #18
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Hopefully less than 12 months to go.

Having over-engineered the financial side (famous last words), my remaining anxieties are:

1. The social side

2. The risk of coming down with a bad case of "just-one-more-yearitis" and delaying things

To reduce the chances of chickening out, I told my immediate boss about my intention to retire early.
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Old 02-06-2011, 04:54 AM   #19
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There are days when I feel I have not made the "mental jump" yet... One more year in my case means about an additional $5k-$10k per year in retirement. Still, I am targeting FIRE date July 2012.

Quote:
Originally Posted by traineeinvestor View Post
Hopefully less than 12 months to go.

The risk of coming down with a bad case of "just-one-more-yearitis" and delaying things
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Old 02-06-2011, 10:02 AM   #20
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Not retired yet, so no vote. However...

1) Highest level of anxiety: planning early FIRE, crunching numbers, and learning I'm not that far off for a moderate income for retirement. At 41, I thought I was 14 years away, but will have FI in 2-3 years, and option to RE in as early as 4 - 6 years.

2) Moderate anxiety: Lifestyle change with younger kids.

3) Least anxiety: how I will fill my days.
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