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Re: Does anyone feel jealousy from friends/family/others?
Old 02-23-2007, 12:24 PM   #81
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Re: Does anyone feel jealousy from friends/family/others?

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From the great General Stillwell "Don't let the bastards grind you down".
Which originally came from British Intelligence in the mock Latin form Illegitimi non carborundum

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Don%27t...grind_you_down
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Re: Does anyone feel jealousy from friends/family/others?
Old 02-23-2007, 12:26 PM   #82
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Re: Does anyone feel jealousy from friends/family/others?

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Originally Posted by OkieTexan
I, too, have heard the "hard work" ethic all my life. I practiced it well for 35 yrs. Having reached my goal of early retirement, it still amazes me that people imply that I am lazy, worthless, or somehow not carrying "my share" of the load because I don't report to a job every day. It seems to be deeply ingrained in a lot of folks...
Yes, that point of view really amazes me, but I do think it's one of those unexamined prejudices in a lot of people. There are many:
  • You are worthless or lazy unless you are "productive" (i.e. work).
  • If you have a lot of money, you are obligated to spend it by buying expensive showy items.
  • You somehow "owe" society to work until 65.
  • Leisure time is somehow "worthless".
  • If you are good at anything, then you should try to turn it into a money-making endeavor (never mind the outrageous idea of doing something just for the sheer enjoyment of it.

Sorry - soapbox. This is one of my "hot buttons". I'm still cringing from the last thoughtless (automatic) comment I got - "Well, you might as well try to make some money at it". Like there is no higher purpose in life?

Yes, prejudices against early retirement and leisure do run very deep in our society. We have an overdeveloped work ethic and excessive consumerism. It's mindless and automatic for many people.

Audrey
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Re: Does anyone feel jealousy from friends/family/others?
Old 02-23-2007, 12:59 PM   #83
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Re: Does anyone feel jealousy from friends/family/others?

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Originally Posted by audreyh1
...Yes, prejudices against early retirement and leisure do run very deep in our society. We have an overdeveloped work ethic and excessive consumerism. It's mindless and automatic for many people.

Audrey
I think it is more disbelief that you got your nest egg illegally somehow. I know my step kids have strong opinions about some of the "flasher" folks in their subdivisions. Somehow it seems easier to ascribe "doing well" with doing something that was not legal (dealing drugs, corrupt businessperson, politician on the take, hiding money from the IRS, etc.) that is it is to believe some people are able to use limited resources to create wealth in a legal and efficient manner.

From comments I have overheard about "rich people" and their money one believes they all got it by stealing it. I think the media's presentation of the evil corporations has something to do with this concept too. The concept of becoming FI to that mode of thinking requires doing something wrong or mysterious and therefore, bad. I believe it comes from a lack of education on the virtues of living better without over-consumerisim and without debt rather than the brainwashing to the opposite. Example: watch a 5 year old on Saturday morning while they are watching cartoons. What message do they get ground into them every 4 minutes? Look at prime time TV. Same message. Buy, buy, buy. Sure I undertand the whole idea of a free economy and the need for marketing and consumerism relative to the expansion of business. What I object to is the blind eye from the media on offering a a balanced view to help educate parents and the population in general on the evils of over-buying and being in debt.

The result over time has been that people feel trapped between the "need" to consume at increasing levels while the companies they work for continue to remove retirement friendly benefits. This produces stress which comes out as envy to those that have somehow found a way to "get around" the system to become FI while they continue to sink in the quicksand of credit card debt.

Education and good solid role models like those on this and other similar boards can help those who are just beginning to see they live in the Matrix. This board can help them but they have to choose the red pill or the blue pill.
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Re: Does anyone feel jealousy from friends/family/others?
Old 02-23-2007, 01:16 PM   #84
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Re: Does anyone feel jealousy from friends/family/others?

The criticism mentioned here by some ER's reminds me of the comments my wife & heard when we decided she would stay home to raise our children when the were born.

People wondered why would you want to stay home and raise your children when you could be out working and making money instead ?
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Re: Does anyone feel jealousy from friends/family/others?
Old 02-23-2007, 01:36 PM   #85
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Re: Does anyone feel jealousy from friends/family/others?

Quote:
Originally Posted by SteveR
I think it is more disbelief that you got your nest egg illegally somehow. I know my step kids have strong opinions about some of the "flasher" folks in their subdivisions. Somehow it seems easier to ascribe "doing well" with doing something that was not legal (dealing drugs, corrupt businessperson, politician on the take, hiding money from the IRS, etc.) that is it is to believe some people are able to use limited resources to create wealth in a legal and efficient manner.
I can honestly say I have never run into this particular assumption/prejudice.

Audrey
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Re: Does anyone feel jealousy from friends/family/others?
Old 02-23-2007, 02:15 PM   #86
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Re: Does anyone feel jealousy from friends/family/others?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Empty Pockets
The criticism mentioned here by some ER's reminds me of the comments my wife & heard when we decided she would stay home to raise our children when the were born.

People wondered why would you want to stay home and raise your children when you could be out working and making money instead ?
Yeah, our first child was born in December and we've already gotten several comments based on the fact that my wife is staying home to raise our child (and hopefully more, down the road).

I remind people that she is working ... raising kids is work, whether you do it yourself or pay someone else to do it for you (i.e., a nanny is working and the childcare "industry" is full of working employees).

Thankfully, unlike talking about who takes care of your kids, it's much easier to be vague or to just avoid discussing finances with friends/family. I definitely wouldn't mention the investment property - why would you? I don't mention anything when I buy some stock as an investment, or when I buy a mutual fund, or whatever the investment might be.
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Re: Does anyone feel jealousy from friends/family/others?
Old 02-23-2007, 04:05 PM   #87
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Re: Does anyone feel jealousy from friends/family/others?

I find it helpful when people starting asking about our investments to start asking them if they have maxed out on their 401(k) and the like. Ideally, the subject will go on to March Madness (Go Hoyas).
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Re: Does anyone feel jealousy from friends/family/others?
Old 02-23-2007, 05:17 PM   #88
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Re: Does anyone feel jealousy from friends/family/others?

Okie Texan
Quote:
Having reached my goal of early retirement, it still amazes me that people imply that I am lazy, worthless, or somehow not carrying "my share" of the load because I don't report to a job every day.
I have heard this "fair share" argument also. Since we have retired, we have given more time in volunteer hours than we ever did when we worked. When we have visited friends and family, we help with the current projects they have going on. So much so, that these people offer to pay us for our time in addition to the 'free' room and board. What do the critics mean by 'fair share' of the load? Every connection to another human being does not have to be a financial one, IMO.

audreyh1
Quote:
You somehow "owe" society to work until 65. Leisure time is somehow "worthless".
Right. One of the things that appealed to us the most was having large blocks of unscheduled time. Billy and I are creative types and one doesn't simply sit down and 'turn the switch' to on. Having every moment scheduled is a sure way to kill the imagination or inventive juices.

SteveR
Quote:
I think it is more disbelief that you got your nest egg illegally somehow. From comments I have overheard about "rich people" and their money one believes they all got it by stealing it. I think the media's presentation of the evil corporations has something to do with this concept too.
When we first moved to Chapala, Mexico in the early 1990's, people thought we had done something illegal to become FIRE'd - namely - run drugs (!!) Sure, we were in our 30's and it was rather unusual to be retired at our age. But no one really wanted to hear the boring story of how we simply worked our pituties off and saved. They wanted a more colorful story!

Quote:
people feel trapped between the "need" to consume at increasing levels while the companies they work for continue to remove retirement friendly benefits.
We didn't have 'retirement friendly benefits' -- at least for most of our working adult lives. We had to pay for our own health insurance and I personally never did have an employer matched retirement fund. After Billy was recruited for a major investment firm, things changed in those departments. But mostly it was hard work, prioritizing and saving.

Lusitan
Quote:
I remind people that she is working ... raising kids is work, whether you do it yourself or pay someone else to do it for you (i.e., a nanny is working and the childcare "industry" is full of working employees).
I agree with you wholeheartedly. Thank you for being there for your kids. I respect what you are doing, and (IMO) it's much better for a parent to be present in raising their kids than having strangers raise them and getting a print out of diaper changes, naptime and meals eaten when they pick them up at daycare...

Be well,
Akaisha
Author, The Adventurer's Guide to Early Retirement
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Re: Does anyone feel jealousy from friends/family/others?
Old 02-24-2007, 11:16 AM   #89
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Re: Does anyone feel jealousy from friends/family/others?

This is sad in my estimation, that people would envy and try to pressure you to be what they are. Well, I don't run my life on what they think and they sure don't run theirs on what I think! I always remember it's about me, but it isn't about me. Life is about my choices and what I desire to accomplish in life - how the people react around me about that isn't necessarily about me, but about their life...and their choices, etc. I have moved around so much and met so many people - (warning - generalization coming) - most people are concerned about themselves most of all. What's fascinating is how many of my friends who live very far away mention I'm the only one who still keeps in touch with them via email/snail mail, etc. It takes discipline to pay attention to those things that are 'out of sight and out of mind.' So, in a long roundabout way, when someone says something to you in jealousy, anger, etc, just think - a year from now, 2 years from now, 10 years from now, will what they say to me now matter? 99.9% of the time probably not.

Sure, it can be hard to deal with it at the moment- that's why I remove myself from that if it becomes too much. That's the I(ntrovert) in me needing to be 'fed' :-).

Akaisha - audrey1 - all of you - keep on keepin' on - you all are my mentors for showing the way to true freedom - the ability to call your time your own and do what is important to *you* - makes for a wonderful life.......

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Re: Does anyone feel jealousy from friends/family/others?
Old 02-24-2007, 11:58 AM   #90
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Re: Does anyone feel jealousy from friends/family/others?

Speaking purely for myself here, but I think I deal less with jealousy and more with beating myself up because I'm not working for someone else. I manage to win those battles though - haven't had a job where someone paid me a salary or wages since maybe '93 or so. As we've managed to get on top of the ball with our rentals I've farmed out more of the rental work, which means if I want to stay in my slippers in front of the 'puter most of the day i can. Can tell I have guilt pangs though, because I justify to myself - was out doing rental fixes most of yesterday and did a contract at 7:30 last night, have a heater to fix and a kitchen to visit with a painter today - SEE! I'm working! When we get to seriously divesting I know I'm going to be struggling with self worth issues. Woe to the last few tenants as I assuage all my guilt through micro-managing their apartments!
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Re: Does anyone feel jealousy from friends/family/others?
Old 02-24-2007, 12:07 PM   #91
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Re: Does anyone feel jealousy from friends/family/others?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Lusitan
Yeah, our first child was born in December and we've already gotten several comments based on the fact that my wife is staying home to raise our child (and hopefully more, down the road).

I remind people that she is working ... raising kids is work, whether you do it yourself or pay someone else to do it for you (i.e., a nanny is working and the childcare "industry" is full of working employees).
Thank you! I wish more people would see the value of raising their own children.

And I agree with Akaisha that having large blocks of free time is the most valuable asset one can acquire in life.

Our society values the work ethic for sure but it goes beyond that. There's such a need to be busy "accomplishing" and accumulating things all the time. The 60 hour work week. All the kids in after school enrichment programs. The striving to improve the decor of one's home, the body beautiful, the wardrobe, and not to mention acquisition of the latest electronics and sports equipment, etc, etc. Sometimes I get all caught up in it too, but then I end up so very tired and disheartened.
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Re: Does anyone feel jealousy from friends/family/others?
Old 02-24-2007, 01:28 PM   #92
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Re: Does anyone feel jealousy from friends/family/others?

I will be retiring at 55 this September (my birthday present to myself, yippee!). My family is thrilled for me (my Dad retired a little early himself, at 61) , although I have a younger brother who can't understand what I'll do with myself all day...I think maybe he was adopted....

There has been no resentment that I've noticed, but there certainly has been envy, or at least, a certain wistfulness, among friends and work colleagues. Some of it is due to divorce or medical issues, which have postponed plans for retirement. Most of it comes from colleagues a decade younger than me, who see another 10-15 years stretching out ahead of them! I like these people, so in spite of being giddily happy, I try not to rub their noses in it. (Except for my supervisor and my boss, who will not find out about my plans until exactly 30 days prior, and I plan on rubbing it in plenty)

The absolutely best people to tell is anyone whose has retired in the past couple of years, they are so happy for me!

Sheboyganite

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Re: Does anyone feel jealousy from friends/family/others?
Old 02-25-2007, 10:54 AM   #93
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Re: Does anyone feel jealousy from friends/family/others?

deserat
Quote:
What's fascinating is how many of my friends who live very far away mention I'm the only one who still keeps in touch with them via email/snail mail, etc. It takes discipline to pay attention to those things that are 'out of sight and out of mind.'
I agree. This is what I do as well - keeping in touch. I respect you for that, deserat! It takes discipline and commitment. Loyalty.

Quote:
Akaisha - audrey1 - all of you - keep on keepin' on - you all are my mentors for showing the way to true freedom - the ability to call your time your own and do what is important to *you* - makes for a wonderful life.......
Free time is what I value the most. I get very stressed when all my moments are scheduled out far in advance. No time to breathe! No room to create or reflect.

Old Babe
Quote:
Our society values the work ethic for sure but it goes beyond that. There's such a need to be busy "accomplishing" and accumulating things all the time. The 60 hour work week. All the kids in after school enrichment programs. The striving to improve the decor of one's home, the body beautiful, the wardrobe, and not to mention acquisition of the latest electronics and sports equipment, etc, etc. Sometimes I get all caught up in it too, but then I end up so very tired and disheartened
I agree. There's no way to have it all -- all the time. I become overwhelmed with the expectations and the debt and the running around to 'look' good on so many levels to other people. Just give me a good conversation, and some nature. I'm pretty simple, really. All that consuming makes me nervous!

Be well,
Akaisha
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