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Tips for hanging on
Old 02-25-2015, 06:33 PM   #1
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Tips for hanging on

I will be retiring from Megacorp in the summer of 2018. DH has had significant health issues, and even though I have a retiree medical ($10K deductible), I'm not comfortable flipping the switch now. We want to move, and I'm saving about 75% of my salary for the next 3 years, which will enable us to put down about 85%. DH will be eligible for Medicare in 2018, so that's my date.

I find myself becoming more and more impatient with co-workers who aren't doing what they're supposed to do. I have a new (younger) boss, and he's got places to go and promotions to earn, and he is dumping on me because he has no clue how to do most of it. I'm crabby, I'm not sleeping well, and I'm just downright snippy most of the time. Poor DH really takes the brunt of it.

I'm excited for moving, and wish I could pull the plug now, but we're just not there yet. We'd be OK, but I don't want to be OK, I want to be 110% sure. FireCalc gives me 90% now, but 100% in 3 years, even with taking out a big chunk for the new house. We need to move to a better neighborhood, and will sell this house for whatever we can get for it, just to get out.

Were you "testy" when you know your days were numbered? How did you keep from telling someone to p*ss off? I wonder if I'm hoping they offer me a package to get out early if I keep acting like a whiney brat?

Thank you for letting me vent.
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Old 02-25-2015, 06:52 PM   #2
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The first thing that popped in my head was that if I were in your shoes I would be searching hard for a similar job in the area I wanted to move to.
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Old 02-25-2015, 07:44 PM   #3
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Once I was FI and still working I went into "cynical and irreverent" mode... I could sort of say what everyone was thinking but was afraid to say. I still needed to be careful to be diplomatic about it but with FI I had the freedom to do it and not fret about the repercussions. The funny thing was, I think people at all levels really appreciated it.

You have the opportunity to become the Yoda of your group. My boss was younger at that stage, and while we butted heads initially, over time he came to really appreciate and solicit my counsel.

Let go a bit and you might find it a lot easier to live with your job the next few years. Keep my signature bylines in mind.
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Old 02-25-2015, 08:24 PM   #4
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I am still in my OMY. My attitude changed a lot when I started to work from home. There is no commute time. There is no face to face interaction (confrontation). My total work hours is about 2-3 hours a day, and no one knows what I do or don't do as long as I deliver. I do a lot of walking in early afternoon, and run errands during the day. The work pressure went way down, near 0 now.

So, if you can work from home, try it.
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Old 02-25-2015, 09:51 PM   #5
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wish I could pull the plug now, but we're just not there yet. We'd be OK, but I don't want to be OK, I want to be 110% sure.
I'm in this situation. Depending on how generous I want to be with expected spending or how much margin I want to add for safety, I can get all sorts of 90-ish numbers out of FireCalc. But knowing that if I walk away tomorrow I would be at least okay, has been the armor that makes a lot of the bad behavior in my work group not so bothersome. When VP throws a bunch of resources at a pointless project destined to fail while neglecting a better easier choice that is likely to succeed, it's not personal to me anymore. It's their problem. I'll give good advice and make a sincere effort to point them in the better direction, but if I cannot carry the day, that's now the end of my stress about it. If they really do screw up so bad they call for some extra work hours, I'll help but with no really bad consequences if I lose this job, I can afford to be more assertive about limiting extraordinary efforts or getting compensating time off in return. They make as many bonehead decisions as ever, but reaching almost-FI has really put me in a reduced stress mindset.

I see that some people get less tolerant of work BS as they near ER, but for me it has had the opposite effect. Maybe a little like I am people watching the commotion, but it really doesn't affect me as much as it used to before FI.
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Old 02-26-2015, 06:26 AM   #6
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IN my case, I had loved working in my job for a long time until my Boss retired and was replaced by a younger and more micro managing person, lacking any management skills. Breakdown in communication between the two of us has created a stressful and toxic situation that I thought of retiring. All our communication is thru emails even though his office his next to mine.

Did some research and all points to "job burnout". I was in the same situation as you, not sleeping well, crabby (DW took the brunt of it). felt overwhelmed and and lost interest on things, I used to love doing. Finally, after putting in some numbers, I see I am FI but working another 2-3 more years (till SSS) will give me the best scenario.

Finally, I made a proposal that if I could work partime (2 1/2 days a week). The responsibities that my Boss complained mostly about will be given to anther person and the responsibities which he said I did very well will still be handled by me. I gave him an analysis that working part time with less salary, benefits and other benefits will also save the company thousands of $. I guess it worked both ways, It was beneficial to both of us.

So I will be working 2 days on the office and the half day in my home. I am earning less but will keep my health insurance and much much happier. I think this will keep me going for a few more years working since the stress is lesser. I told DW, I will not last another year working full time in the office. Either I quit or might have health issues in the future. This new arrangement has given me my energy and attitude back. Like a breath of fresh air but still plan to retire in 2-3 years.

Good luck and things always gets better..


Quote:
Originally Posted by SumDay View Post

I find myself becoming more and more impatient with co-workers who aren't doing what they're supposed to do. I have a new (younger) boss, and he's got places to go and promotions to earn, and he is dumping on me because he has no clue how to do most of it. I'm crabby, I'm not sleeping well, and I'm just downright snippy most of the time. Poor DH really takes the brunt of it.

Were you "testy" when you know your days were numbered? How did you keep from telling someone to p*ss off? I wonder if I'm hoping they offer me a package to get out early if I keep acting like a whiney brat?

Thank you for letting me vent.
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Old 02-26-2015, 07:51 AM   #7
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As I got closer to my last day (which is today ), I found myself becoming more and more detached from whatever was going on. My position has little or no stress anyway but minor annoyances no longer annoyed me.

I would suggest you shift gears in your brain. You can decide if you want to be Yoda as pb4uski suggested or become Wally of Dilbert fame. You know there is no upside that would really matter to you so close to retirement. The downside is you lose your position before you wish to or you eat your insides out anguishing over things that don't matter.

If things don't get done or done right, it doesn't make a significant difference to you (unless you are in health care ). The typical megacorp role is just being a cog in a machine. Be the cog.
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Old 02-26-2015, 08:05 AM   #8
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I was born a cynic but kept it under wraps until one day when I was in my 50's I suddenly realized that we were in fact FI. Not where I wanted to be to quit but could live more or less as we did and not work. From that day forth my life changed. Management/Co-Workers just did not bother me. I felt that I had a duty to offer advice and direction and a professional obligation to warn of danger and other wise, having spoken once, I let it run. Not my problem. I worked for a lot longer partially because I did not know one could just stop early and partially because of health care, but I never had another day of job related stress. FI is not really FI it is FREEDOM.
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Old 02-26-2015, 08:39 AM   #9
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I'm working 2 days a week as a rehired annuitant. All the same irritants are there, but I can afford to have a more realistic perspective - be more myself, which means I am infinitely more comfortable in my own skin.

Although I am doing what is expected of me to the best of my ability, I can afford to see the "other guy's" side of things, because the job is not going to last forever and I have no "career" to worry about. When I was in career mode, I had to train myself to be less empathetic - if I cared too much about other people's side of things, they saw it as weakness and ran over me! Putting on the armor and the mask day after day used to take a lot out of me.

P.S. Sorry if this seems a little disconnected from the OP's questions - at first I thought I was responding to the OP who wants to go to part-time work. Still, my comments do apply to my last months at work, after I put in my retirement papers and informed my management. I've just had a lot more practice now at being "myself" in the workplace.

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Old 02-26-2015, 08:49 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SumDay View Post
Were you "testy" when you know your days were numbered? How did you keep from telling someone to p*ss off? I wonder if I'm hoping they offer me a package to get out early if I keep acting like a whiney brat?
It's probably only natural. I had an enjoyable career for the most part but it started to hit me about 12-18 months out. And while I'll confess there were times I wanted to tell a few coworkers (mostly Corp in my case, but some local) "to p*ss off," it passed pretty quickly and most of my coworkers were reasonable. As always the bad coworkers had been jackasses all along, and nothing I was going to do was going to change that - the issue was with them, not me, so me reacting badly would only make me part of the problem (sink to their level?).

Even when my initial reaction was bad in that last year or so, very soon after each incident I reminded myself I'd be gone in the foreseeable future, and the jackasses would still be working there (or terminated) long after I was gone - that helped. And for the last few months, whenever confronted with a situation or assignment I didn't enjoy, I reminded myself 'this is the (next to) last time I'll ever have to do this' - I really enjoyed that. So it's probably all in how you think about it, after that initial bad reaction.

And finally, I was a manager also. While I dealt with most of the HR issues I faced in my last 18 years, there were a few I was on the fence about that I had not dealt with. In my last 6 months, I cleaned up any personnel messes I had (two terminations, a demotion, and a little reorganizing to depower a couple jackasses), so the guy that followed me could start off with a clean slate, and not have to be the "bad guy" for quite a while. I won't say I enjoyed it (I didn't), but I took pride in leaving my post better than I found it. If you have any supervisory responsibility, it's a good objective before you leave IMO. And once you start, few will take chances 'p*ssing you off' - and remaining coworkers will appreciate your "cleanup," they know who the bad actors are as well if not better than you do. And my successor is one of the people who keeps in touch with me nearly 4 years later, and realizes all I did to get him started off on the right foot.

Whatever you do, don't take it out on your spouse. You'll be coworkers for another 30 years or so...
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Old 02-26-2015, 09:14 AM   #11
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When I was some 6 months from ER, I posted here about "Miserable and Hanging On." Granted, my exit was closer than your timing, but I did employ some "survival" tactics.
For the first time in my career, I became a clock-watcher in that I left each day at 5 on the button. There were some company issues where I offered some solutions.......but managed to word it so that others would have to implement. I convinced management to let me work from home once every 2 weeks -- that may not sound like a lot but it made a big difference for me. And, finally, when the BS became too high, I did my best to remind myself that it didn't matter because of my limited time remaining there.
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Old 02-26-2015, 09:47 AM   #12
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I know I am not what most here would call FI (only $500k in all investments & paid off house), but with very low expenses I am mostly FI. Like pb4uski I have gotten more and more irreverent at times and I take a long lunch break every day to workout in the office gym. Everyone assumes I must be smart - how could I behave the way I do and not be? Being this way keeps things in perspective and the stress low - try it yourself.


The hard thing for me is to get my pension right away I need to stay here until early 2023 (gawd, it hurt to write that! ).
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Old 02-26-2015, 10:06 AM   #13
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I feel for you !!! I've been snippy and bratty for over a year now. I think it's natural. I try to take a deep breath and remind myself that this is a temporary situation and that it will be over soon. It is MY decision to stay. I also work from home alot more, and I'm done working at 5:15 unless the boss has some sort of (usually self-imposed) firedrill to deal with.

Hang in there !!! I feel for you !!!! Try to laugh at their ridiculous ways rather than try to fix it for them.
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Old 02-26-2015, 10:50 AM   #14
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Thank you everyone for sharing your stories and inspiring me to quit taking this so seriously. I'll be gone long before most of these people who are driving me nuts, and it's my little secret I get to divulge whenever I want.

I'll comment on a few responses:

Moving isn't an option, yet. DH has a part-time consulting contract that lasts about another two years, and moving would require him to have a 6 hour round trip commute. Not gonna happen.

I've been in this j*b for over 30 years, and have a pension coming. Not sure I have the bandwidth or desire to change jobs at this point. This one is at least a somewhat known quantity.

There were many years I didn't use all my vacation (shame on me), when I worked 60-70 hour weeks, and basically gave it my all. I have been lucky enough to telecommute 99% of the time for the past few years and have just started taking advantage of it. I'll stop and take a walk when I'm really fuming, I've been known to catch a nap when needed, and sometimes running the vacuum after a stressful conference call is just what I need to blow off some steam. And, I usually put in my 8 hours and shut it all down, which can be hard when telecommuting.

Again, thanks for all the input. It's good to know I'm not the only one who has gone through this.
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Old 02-26-2015, 11:05 AM   #15
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As much as I can, I tune out my boss by limiting my interactions with him. I am also getting things done "his way" (not necessarily the right way or for the good of the Megacorp). It has been working although I had to lower my professional integrity quite a bit.
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Old 02-26-2015, 11:08 AM   #16
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.... and sometimes running the vacuum after a stressful conference call is just what I need to blow off some steam.....
I'm feeling sorry for the carpet.....
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Old 02-26-2015, 11:27 AM   #17
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I'm about 11 months out (at least that's my story and I'm sticking to it) so I can understand how you feel. One thing you might try, since you are "OK" now is to set some intermediate time goals. 2018 probably seems very far away. What if you take it a year at a time and reevaluate at each goal date? It may still be 2018, but at least it won't seem so daunting...

I'm doing that now; just taking it a quarter at a time. Also, as Midpack touched on, I'm a Manager and am focused on leaving with everything ready for my successor. Also, I brought a number of people into the business so I feel that I owe them that. You might want to think about any type of goal like that which will keep you "distracted" from the clock and calendar.

Good luck!!!
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Old 02-26-2015, 11:58 AM   #18
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Originally Posted by pb4uski View Post
Once I was FI and still working I went into "cynical and irreverent" mode... I could sort of say what everyone was thinking but was afraid to say. I still needed to be careful to be diplomatic about it but with FI I had the freedom to do it and not fret about the repercussions. The funny thing was, I think people at all levels really appreciated it.

You have the opportunity to become the Yoda of your group. My boss was younger at that stage, and while we butted heads initially, over time he came to really appreciate and solicit my counsel.

Let go a bit and you might find it a lot easier to live with your job the next few years. Keep my signature bylines in mind.
+1 Exactly!
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Old 02-26-2015, 08:34 PM   #19
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As much as I can, I tune out my boss by limiting my interactions with him. I am also getting things done "his way" (not necessarily the right way or for the good of the Megacorp). It has been working although I had to lower my professional integrity quite a bit.
I am now only a couple of months from quitting, and for the past 3 months I am doing the same. It's been hard, wanting to do things well but working for "idjits" who are younger and clueless. I don't respond to a good portion of my boss's emails because every day his ideas change and the targets change....not possible to keep up with moving targets.....

To the original poster, yes it's hard. My 2years more extended to 3 years when my company went through changes making it very worth my while financially to stay another year. But my management changed early last year and it has been H**L ever since. I try hard to keep perspective and focus on MY goal, FIRE.

I woke up one day in December and realized that I will have the "last laugh" in a way, because I will leave the job and never look back, this spring. But all the idjits will still be there and having to deal with each other's idiocy. Perhaps it's because I am so close, and perhaps it's because I now have this mantra, I am feeling really good.

I wish you the best--keep your perspective and focus.
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Old 02-27-2015, 02:37 PM   #20
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OP, if you focus on something you are dissatisfied with it will just drag it out longer. My suggestion would be to find something fun to distract you from thinking about work and immerse yourself in it. The time will go by a lot faster that way.

Its just another 3-4 years. You can make it.
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