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View Poll Results: After becoming FI, did it get easier or harder to deal with office BS?
I found it harder to deal with aspects of my job I did/do not like. 51 35.17%
I found it easier to deal with those. 70 48.28%
No change to my attitude. 16 11.03%
No idea - I quit the moment I became FI! 8 5.52%
Voters: 145. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 12-08-2014, 10:42 AM   #21
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For me, it became harder. It took me many years to achieve FI and one of my motivations that kept me going was the desire to be free of all that crap earlier than most people. For me, becoming FI was not a moment where I woke up and said to myself "I'm FI" but more of a process. Plus, I felt I needed a safety factor in case the markets tanked.

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Old 12-08-2014, 10:48 AM   #22
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Originally Posted by RISP View Post
Thanks for all the replies so far.

I'm not American, so I do not know the specific requirements, but how hard could that possibly be?
I applied for unemployment in 2013 when the government went on furlough. I'm in the state of Maryland. Normally, to get unemployment all you have to do is apply for at least two jobs per week. And you can do that on the internet. I think I made a account, pulled up a list of jobs I might qualify for, and sent a resume to two of them.

As it turns out, I didn't even have to do that. Since I was guaranteed a job to return to (they just didn't know what date), they waived the requirement of applying for a job. I didn't find out about that part, however, until I was back at work.

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Old 12-08-2014, 12:31 PM   #23
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I'll let you know in 37 months (but who's counting) when I reach FI!

Who knows - by then the main irritant (boss) may have moved on, in which case my attitude will improve by leaps and bounds.
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Old 12-08-2014, 12:42 PM   #24
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It became easier for me because I stopped caring as much.

For about 2 years or so prior to early retirement, my FI was going up and my job satisfaction/enjoyment was going down-at a faster rate.

Two years after reaching FI my attitude to megacorp was 'bring it on baby'. To the point where I asked colleagues in the industry for a good legal recommendation. So when downsizing impacted me six months later I was thrilled about it and mentally prepared. Based on my experience with associates who had been downsized I think being mentally prepared was a huge benefit. Instead of 'why me' it was ' I won the lottery'. Of course I had to keep this attitude to myself until the details were worked out.

And I lucked out. A very generous package plus 38 weeks of employment insurance after my severance period expired. After that I took my DB and gov't entitlements.
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Old 12-08-2014, 12:51 PM   #25
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I answered the 4th choice because that was the closest to what happened with me. One of the pieces of my ER plan, the FI part, had fallen into place in the middle of 2008 when the company stock I owned hit a certain value. I did work for 4 more months, giving my resignation notice after 3 months, once the last piece of my ER plan fell into place later in that summer. (See my signature line.)

I stuck around just long enough to finish the one main project I had been working on since early 2007. I really wanted to see it get done because it had been the only thing I was really working on and I didn't want to abandon it so close to its completion. It was a very challenging and often enjoyable project but also mentally draining, as I increasingly found myself struggling to concentrate on it in the afternoons.

I had my own way of dealing with the office BS - I not only was working part-time since 2001 but I also asked to further reduce my weekly hours worked from 20 hours to 12 hours. I made this request just after I was assigned that one last, big project, thereby eliminating nearly all of my other work including all of the BS administrative stuff. Being in the office even less often than I had been before exposed me to less of the general office BS than I had been before. It also probably tipped the bosses off that I would eventually resign, not that I cared a whole lot.

That being said, in my last few months of working, even before I hit the FI mark mid-summer, I asked myself many times a day, "Why am I still working here?" It was a great relief to not ask myself that question any more once I gave my notice.

And as others have posted, my desire to go the extra mile to get something done had long disappeared (beyond the one project I had been working on, not that I stayed late to keep working on it).
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.

"I want my money working for me instead of me working for my money!"
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Old 12-08-2014, 01:00 PM   #26
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From a military perspective, once you hit 20 years (pension requirement) there seems to be a big weight lifted off of your shoulders. You know that unless you commit a crime your pension is guaranteed. Although I am FI, I am still working. Plan was to ER in Sept but it may be here in January. Work is almost unbearable. There is just no "want to". I'm in a churn industry where there is no end. Lots of importance put on the font and slide layout. Have never cared about that stuff.
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Old 12-08-2014, 01:07 PM   #27
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A little of both for me. Once I decided that I will ER in 2015, I've stressed less at work. I haven't told anyone at work that I'll be leaving in less than four months, so when we have team meetings to plan our work beyond the four-month time frame I just nod my head and smile inside. I work at a more relaxed pace, knowing that by the time anyone notices that I'm not getting as much done as I used to, I'll be out of here.

What is harder now is getting up in the morning and coming to work. There are many more interesting things I would like to be doing, but they need to wait. So close I can almost taste the freedom...

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Old 12-08-2014, 01:31 PM   #28
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Originally Posted by Calico View Post
I'll let you know in 37 months (but who's counting) when I reach FI!

Who knows - by then the main irritant (boss) may have moved on, in which case my attitude will improve by leaps and bounds.
That happened with me. I had an irritant, mainly my office mate, that was getting me to the point I was ready to quit. My company's lack of action only added fuel to the flames, essentially telling me to stop whining and just deal with her. Well, she's no longer in the office. And my attitude has improved tremendously!

I have noticed though, that the more financially independent I am, the less tolerant I am of the BS. I was hoping I'd get a more carefree attitude, knowing that I wasn't bound down by the j*b anymore and could quit at any time. But instead I've found myself more willing to voice my opinion and stand my ground when something annoys me.
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Old 12-08-2014, 01:31 PM   #29
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No change for me. In my last assignment, I was the "Maytag Repairman". They always laid off based on seniority, especially for those of us over 50 so I would have been the last standing. If they wanted me to clean toilets, that was OK with me. I figured if they wanted to pay me the kind of money I was getting for menial tasks, that was fine with me. I would usually create myself an interesting project to do just to keep from being bored. I guess they appreciated it, because every time I have seen the boss, he has asked me to come back to work.

I couldn't keep my mouth shut on when I was planning to retire. Even the big bosses back at the head office knew. Not a big deal. I don't think it changed compensation or anything.
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Old 12-08-2014, 01:39 PM   #30
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At first it was tolerable. As time went on, it became more difficult to be the "nice guy". I tend to voice my opinion anyway, and as time went on, I was getting more vocal by the day. I can't remember exactly what happened to trigger my "F this, I'm out!"...probably more of a death by a thousand cuts more than anything. I will say, once my date was official, by "give a damn" meter went flat.
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Old 12-08-2014, 01:41 PM   #31
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I found it easier. Perhaps because I still like most of my job and the B.S. part wasn't the majority of it. Being (politely) more direct about what made sense and what did not, as well as putting my personal time ahead of excessive work priorities (e.g. turning off the work computer over the weekend and no more attending conference calls on vacation days, no matter how "urgent") seems to have overall improved things.

The interesting thing is that, in a sense, it has made it harder for me to ER. These changes have my my job both more interesting and less burdensome. I'm now rethinking my ER plan to be based on personal timing instead of on being fed up with BS on the job.
Current target FIRE date: June 2017 or +50K to the portfolio, whichever comes first
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Old 12-08-2014, 02:00 PM   #32
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My 2 strongest traits are smart and lazy. Luckily the smart part was dominant and I could still produce at a high level. Lately though the lazy part is taking over as motivation is fading.

I can still "do my job" at an above satisfactory level but going above and beyond is gone.
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Old 12-08-2014, 02:02 PM   #33
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The office BS became harder for me to deal with, mostly because I knew I was FI, and had to make an extra effort to remain polite!

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Old 12-08-2014, 02:55 PM   #34
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I guess I was lucky, I didn't find the working environment difficult at all. In fact I liked it there. We had a good crew and the work got done, very little BS.
I heard the call to do nothing. So I answered it.
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Old 12-08-2014, 03:00 PM   #35
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Originally Posted by W2R View Post
For me, it was harder because I was SO tempted to just walk out and never return. Seriously, my thoughts were, "Why would anyone sane put up with this voluntarily?"
Wow, that sounds so much like my situation too. However, I stayed on a few more years strictly for the extra money.
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Old 12-08-2014, 03:23 PM   #36
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I put that it was hard. But that's only part of the story. Most tasks became less annoying because I didn't care as much about them. But... my boss's attitude towards me did become harder to take. He was going through an unhappy stage in his life (separation/divorce) and took it out on his team (me and my friends). That became harder to take because I knew I really didn't have to take it - I could quit. The commute also became harder to take. I quit in year 3 of a 5 year major freeway construction project. (805 and Mira Mesa Blvd for those who know San Diego). The area I worked was very heavily trafficked and even shifting hours didn't improve the commute. That was very hard to deal with once I reached FI.

The straw that broke my working back was the corporate decision that people from my team would need to rotate through a customer site - to hold their hand and just be present. (Not really needed from an engineering POV - just there to show the customer we were engaged.) I like travel - but spending a week away at a time from my family... in a place I have no desire to visit... for no good professional reason... I gave notice.
Retired June 2014. No longer an enginerd - now I'm just a nerd.
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Old 12-08-2014, 04:01 PM   #37
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The office BS part didn't change for me .

The hardest part was what Rodi brought up. the commute.

I often ended up assigned at the far end of the city , like 35 miles from home, ok, not that far, except at 4 pm at an avg. speed of 15 mph, that is several unpaid hours a day in stop n go traffic , with " What the He.. am I doing here " echoing in my head.

Some unfortunate souls I worked with , who got on the wrong side of management, were purposely assigned far out , and given "Freeway Therapy" to punish them. Didn't happen to me, distant assignments just turned out that way by chance.
“The finance industry is 5% rational people and 95% shamans and faith healers.” - Charlie Munger
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Old 12-08-2014, 04:19 PM   #38
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My office politics was different than most in that I was part owner of our company when I became FI . I only had to deal with 2 people with more stock than I, and they generally left me alone. All was well until they sold out to some younger guys. The new boss told me that people over 50 aren't forward thinking enough for modern business, etc. So I helped out by retiring.

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"And in the end, it's not the years in your life that count. It's the life in your years" - Abraham Lincoln
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Old 12-08-2014, 04:21 PM   #39
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Easier for me because I do not get stressed out or worried about things. No need to worry about career advancement. No need to fake anything, I pretty much say what I think. Not trying to get my boss's position or move up higher positions. Just here to collect a paycheck! My current job is pretty easy, and I spend too much time goofing off on computer, like now
I used to have a handle on life....... but it broke!

Semi-Retired 7/1/16: working part-time (60%) for now
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Old 12-08-2014, 04:49 PM   #40
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Originally Posted by aim-high View Post
My experience is that it's not harder, but is more conflicted.
I concur. It always seemed like I had two jobs.

One, which was always the most important to me, was to handle the professional responsibilities to the best of my abilities, i.e. keeping the company out of regulatory hot water, employee safety, no environmental disaster, or negligence on my part or my crew leading to any of those things. Those things never get easier, but if you have the right people working for you - and you treat them right, that job is much more likely to go right. That part of the job I loved.

The other job, which I never cared for one bit, was that of dancing to the management whims de jour. I viewed that sort of thing as being akin to being chastised for failing to hand Nero the lyre while Rome burned, and maintained my focus on job one, but would spend the extra time necessary to keep Nero satisfied it that was what it took. It was surprising how that simply became nothing but a petty annoyance towards the end of my working days, before becoming FI it would have driven me up a wall.

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