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Old 04-08-2017, 10:51 AM   #41
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However, what ever your financial goal is you must stick with it if it is going to give you peace of mind. If you don't reach those goals and then look back wishing you had done this or done that, then that won't make you happy in another way. It's easy for others to tell you to just go ahead and quit. They are not in your shoes and only you know for sure what your financial situation really is. I would echo two comments made earlier. I would take more vacations. I am retiring in four years. I too would like to retire now at 57 but the difference in my pension would be about $4000 month. I am not going to quit now. However, I do plan to travel and look forward to doing it. I have a trip planned to Panama with my kids and grandkids right before Christmas and a trip to Hawaii with my in laws and my youngest daughter. Events to look forward to help pass the time nicely. The other suggestion of starting your hobby now is also a good one. Get started on what you're interested in now.
Wow! Staying 4 years would give you an ADDITIONAL $ 4000/month in pension! I'd say that would be incentive to stick around.

I must admit that I get rather jealous when I hear of folk with strong pensions and, at least as important, significant retiree medical. Then, the rational side of me realizes I would have had to w*rk another 10 to 17 years in the same company or organization to even access such bennies, if I even had such options. It would have felt like a prison sentence. In a way, I'm glad DW & I were fortunate to retire "only" on savings since we had the ultimate in flexibility when to call it quits.
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Old 04-08-2017, 11:20 AM   #42
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Try to find a less stressful job with your current employer. Your manager is probably under performance pressure too. Is there a training/assistant role you could play for a couple years even at a pay cut? Think about the manager's needs and play to them for a less stressful assignment. Remember you could quit and that wouldn't help the manager.

I agree with the poster who suggested you start 'slow playing' your work if you stay in your current position. Don't jump and run when your manager blows a whistle. So what if s/he puts you on a pip? Read your benefits documents, what does it say about the consequences of termination?
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Old 04-08-2017, 01:48 PM   #43
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Rod, Rod, Rod...I too am 63, so I am paying $1100 a month for good health insurance until I get to Medicare. So what? I have been self employed for 41 years so to me it's a usual cost, but if you have been "employed" all your adult life, you may look at paying for one's insurance as a PITA. That should not keep you chained to a job and boss you don't like. I just took SS and since I didn't wait until 66 I took a $5K annual haircut, but my "break even" point would be age 78, so until that age comes due, I made the right decision, (but I am in a unique situation because my wife has no survivor benefit to my SS.)

BTW, you and I had once PM'd about the NYL annuity. We rejected it due to the lack of COLA. If we experience 2% inflation, then in 18 years the annual revenue is 36% less buying power. But I digress...

My point is: You can maximize the MONEY you'll have in retirement OR, you can maximize the TIME you have in retirement. I recently chose "Time" at 63, or I should say I'm semi-retired because so many clients won't leave me alone. I need to taper them off. It's hard to retire suddenly when you have people relying on you. Perhaps your boss will let you continue to work freelance with a non-compete?

I made the mistake a few years ago of going to my 40th high school reunion. There were so many guys in my birth year who had died of natural causes that it got me thinking. When I retired a couple of months ago, I deleted all my industry bookmarks, unsubscribed to everything including notifications, etc., and I have to tell you, it is a great feeling of losing stress, always thinking about what needs to be done next. You should try it!

And one last thing: With your knowledge of the medical device industry you can quit and then immediately set up your own one-man-band consultancy business. The IRS let's you function for 7 years without a profit, and you can then write off a lot of your expenses, (do NOT deduct a home office!), such as gas, cell phone, visits to Staples, etc. LikedIn is great for this. If you are well known in your industry you can make some dough, although if you take SS before your FRA of 66, you may only take a salary of $17K annually, so the rest has to stay within your company's checking account. Think about that. I am in an industry of 90% independents, thus I learned this is how they do it when they take SS early and must keep their salary low.

In sum, it's difficult to walk away from your high salary, that's called the Golden Handcuffs, and after a lifetime of not having to pay for your own health insurance it may seem onerous, but the stress you're taking on will KILL you. You have OMY Syndrome: One More Year. You can't live your life by fear.

Good luck!
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Old 04-08-2017, 02:21 PM   #44
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Perfect example, got an email last night from my hyper type A manager. Here's the quote. "Rod, I'm going to come into town next Wednesday afternoon and spend the day with you Thursday. Let's get some people out to dinner Wednesday night. I look forward to a productive few days." Ugh, thanks for the short notice, and a few days before Easter. Why don't we just make calls on Easter morning!
I wouldn't let it bother me. Is he lonely and need a dinner buddy? I get tired of the business dinners, so I'm biased as some just want an expensive night of food and drinks on the company dime.

If there isn't a reason to meet after-hours, I would respond with, "Great, I'll let the team know, but I won't be around on Wednesday evening. I'll coordinate a few meetings for Thursday. Safe travels."
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Old 04-08-2017, 07:48 PM   #45
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Hey everyone, enjoying my second glass of Cabernet and checking out the amazing responses that have come in. I was mainly looking for some ideas to relieve the stress and make the 36 months go by a bit easier.

No, I'm not chucking my solid financial plan and quitting my job. I love the responses. What a wide range of them! Believe me I am looking at all of them.

Hobbies: well from my username I am a tennisplayer. I play 3 times a week. I play in USTA tournaments and give guys half my age fits. I am a very active 62 year old. When I tell these guy my age they are like.....what!!!!! I am also a guitar player since I was 12. I buy, collect, and sell guitars...love it. Two of my friends are well known guitarplayers nationally. I have played on stage with Joe Walsh. I spend time every night on tennis and Guitarplayer forums. Like Carlos said, I'm I've ...been there and done that 10 times more than my young manager, so yes it just makes me crazy.

I do not want to mess with my financial plan and quit now. If I decide the pressure is too much, I'll quit and get a part time non stress joB at Lowes.

Keep the ideas flowing as to how you dealt with and handled your last few years.

Thank you all so much. Your thoughts, even if they do not fit my plan, still are interesting and helpful to read.
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Old 04-08-2017, 09:04 PM   #46
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Hey everyone, enjoying my second glass of Cabernet and checking out the amazing responses that have come in. I was mainly looking for some ideas to relieve the stress and make the 36 months go by a bit easier.



No, I'm not chucking my solid financial plan and quitting my job. I love the responses. What a wide range of them! Believe me I am looking at all of them.



Hobbies: well from my username I am a tennisplayer. I play 3 times a week. I play in USTA tournaments and give guys half my age fits. I am a very active 62 year old. When I tell these guy my age they are like.....what!!!!! I am also a guitar player since I was 12. I buy, collect, and sell guitars...love it. Two of my friends are well known guitarplayers nationally. I have played on stage with Joe Walsh. I spend time every night on tennis and Guitarplayer forums. Like Carlos said, I'm I've ...been there and done that 10 times more than my young manager, so yes it just makes me crazy.



I do not want to mess with my financial plan and quit now. If I decide the pressure is too much, I'll quit and get a part time non stress joB at Lowes.



Keep the ideas flowing as to how you dealt with and handled your last few years.



Thank you all so much. Your thoughts, even if they do not fit my plan, still are interesting and helpful to read.


I made a list of everything I liked about my job and referred to it often while I waited to be ready. In my case, I had a significant bonus coming to me that I didn't want to leave behind, but had to be active on the payroll on a certain day to get it. DH and I planned our FIRE date years in advance, but really got serious and committed to it about 9 months before pulling the trigger. The last year was the hardest, but focusing on positive aspects of the job, combined with reminding myself that staying the additional time was MY choice, got me through it. We RE'd at ages 56 & 57 last fall and haven't looked back!
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Old 04-08-2017, 09:47 PM   #47
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What you need to do is to analyze what your employer needs and design a role that takes you out of the grind. Do you know of ways to improve the effectiveness of their marketing, perhaps do staff training. With your many years of experience you can contribute in unique ways. Keep in mind the fact that you will be retiring in 3-ish years, what will they miss the most from your departure?
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Old 04-09-2017, 06:45 AM   #48
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Hey everyone, enjoying my second glass of Cabernet and checking out the amazing responses that have come in. I was mainly looking for some ideas to relieve the stress and make the 36 months go by a bit easier.
Cabernet certainly helps!
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Old 04-09-2017, 06:50 AM   #49
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I did not focus on an inevitable death for most of my life, but I did come to a point where I faced the reality that once you hit about 60, those remaining years are very precious and finite.
I think it's a mistake to focus on an inevitable death at any point in your life. Life is for living.

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That said, feel free to work as long and hard as you want.
Thanks for the permission.

That is exactly what I did. I worked long and hard for as long as I wanted, and not a moment longer. I had a rewarding career (several careers, actually). I mostly enjoyed my job, but when one turned very negative, I found a new one. My last job went sour with a few years remaining before my planned retirement so I stuck it out rather than switch jobs. As I wrote, having the end goal in sight made the job tolerable. The stress of the job was dramatically reduced because I was confident in my plan.

When the time of my planned retirement was near, I re-checked my financial status and found that I was right where I hoped to be. I decided to postpone my retirement date for 6 months because we were in the middle of a major project, and I felt that I owed it to my team to be there to help them through the transition. Those 6 months flew by - in part because I knew they were the last 6 months that I'd be working.

At the end of the project, I gave my notice, fielded the inevitable questions ("You are retiring? Why?") and left. I still keep in touch with my friends/former coworkers. And I even helped the company out for 11 months as a part-time consultant - on my own terms.

I had a good plan, executed it reasonably well, and got somewhat lucky in life (no health issues, no major unexpected events to derail our plans).

I look forward to a long and happy retirement. It's been fun so far.
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Old 04-09-2017, 07:21 AM   #50
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Wow! Staying 4 years would give you an ADDITIONAL $ 4000/month in pension! I'd say that would be incentive to stick around.

I must admit that I get rather jealous when I hear of folk with strong pensions and, at least as important, significant retiree medical. Then, the rational side of me realizes I would have had to w*rk another 10 to 17 years in the same company or organization to even access such bennies, if I even had such options. It would have felt like a prison sentence. In a way, I'm glad DW & I were fortunate to retire "only" on savings since we had the ultimate in flexibility when to call it quits.
Yes, I am very fortunate. I have been a school administrator for the last 20 years and have made more money than I ever imagined from when I first went into teaching. I have become very weary of the entitled parents that I work with on a daily basis. It's a shame how people feel that the taxpayers should cover their kids every need. Anyhow, that will be for my book.

Longevity plays a role in our pensions in California. You have to work at least 30 years and be 61 and a half to get a big portion of your salary. I will actually make my salary plus some since they won't be taking out our contribution towards retirement any longer. Also, if you have been with the same school district for 20 years or more, if you retire before age 65 you can remain on your medical plan until you are eligible for Medicare. However, this is only for the employee but not the family so you'd have to come out of pocket for your spouse or if you have children.

The golden handcuffs have me shackled. However, I have found a way to make myself happy. I have decided to go back to the classroom for the last few years. I will make less money but will be much happier with the kids and not deal with as many issues. I will get back a whole lot of time which is more important than anything else. I will get my whole summer vacation back. Yeah! Plus, and here is the biggie, we can pull reduce our work year to half after age 55 and still get a full year's worth of service credit which is calculated into your pension benefits. So it would like working for a year, but you have only worked for half the year. No, you don't get to be paid for a full year. You only get the time. I plan to do this for the last two years. I bought a home in Texas to escape California's ugly taxes plus the cost of living is so much less expensive.

That's how I am handling the last few years so I don't get overly burned out and like I said in my earlier post, I look forward to traveling and having fun.
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Old 04-09-2017, 03:59 PM   #51
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Yes, I am very fortunate. I have been a school administrator for the last 20 years and have made more money than I ever imagined from when I first went into teaching. I have become very weary of the entitled parents that I work with on a daily basis. It's a shame how people feel that the taxpayers should cover their kids every need. Anyhow, that will be for my book.



Longevity plays a role in our pensions in California. You have to work at least 30 years and be 61 and a half to get a big portion of your salary. I will actually make my salary plus some since they won't be taking out our contribution towards retirement any longer. Also, if you have been with the same school district for 20 years or more, if you retire before age 65 you can remain on your medical plan until you are eligible for Medicare. However, this is only for the employee but not the family so you'd have to come out of pocket for your spouse or if you have children.



The golden handcuffs have me shackled. However, I have found a way to make myself happy. I have decided to go back to the classroom for the last few years. I will make less money but will be much happier with the kids and not deal with as many issues. I will get back a whole lot of time which is more important than anything else. I will get my whole summer vacation back. Yeah! Plus, and here is the biggie, we can pull reduce our work year to half after age 55 and still get a full year's worth of service credit which is calculated into your pension benefits. So it would like working for a year, but you have only worked for half the year. No, you don't get to be paid for a full year. You only get the time. I plan to do this for the last two years. I bought a home in Texas to escape California's ugly taxes plus the cost of living is so much less expensive.



That's how I am handling the last few years so I don't get overly burned out and like I said in my earlier post, I look forward to traveling and having fun.


Just curious, where in TX did you buy? DH and I considered leaving CA for TX or FL and actually went on some exploratory trips. We have family in and near FL and lots of friends in TX. But in the end, CA won out for us due to weather, friends, and diversity of activities we enjoy.
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Old 04-09-2017, 04:44 PM   #52
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I really like Gumby's suggestion. It is what I plan to do myself. I also find that when I have a "plan" it eases my stress over a situation a great deal. I guess it is a matter of feeling less the "victim" than feeling you are in control, working the situation in a way that is ultimately a good thing for you. In short, use the remaining time at work to actively plan for retirement. This includes financial plans, stuff like work on the house, perhaps a bucket list of travel plans, start new hobbies or plan for them, etc. Actually for me the planning is a lot of fun! Then you'll enter retirement with a great sense of having fulfilled those plans.
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Old 04-09-2017, 05:51 PM   #53
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Just curious, where in TX did you buy? DH and I considered leaving CA for TX or FL and actually went on some exploratory trips. We have family in and near FL and lots of friends in TX. But in the end, CA won out for us due to weather, friends, and diversity of activities we enjoy.
I am in the northern part of Houston suburbs in the City of Conroe. I live 10 minutes away from the Woodlands. The weather is not bad. It was in the 70's and 80's during Thanksgiving and Christmas. It's been in the high 70's and 80's these last two weeks. It's the summers that can be difficult with temperatures in the mid 90's and then add the humidity. So from mid May until mid September it heats up with the humidity, but from then on it's really nice. There are lots of trees out this way too. In fact, about 5 minutes north of me is the Sam Houston National Forest. This is the area that the 2016 Womens Olympic Gymnastics team practiced with their famed coach trained before the Olympics.

We also have a beautiful lake, Lake Conroe, which is 10 minutes west, which is great for fishing, boating, jet skiing and swimming. It's not my Orange County digs with Dana Point and Laguna and Newport Beaches, but it's good enough for me.

I also like that I have access to everything as well. Living in the OC, I was an hour from downtown Los Angeles and an hour from downtown San Diego. I had access to football, baseball and basketball without issue between the two cities. I have learned that I don't need to live in the city to enjoy its benefits. :-)
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Old 04-09-2017, 06:03 PM   #54
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Quality of Life is more important than money. I've got about 11 months to go.

.......
Age 60 = State Pension (w/blended SS,) Free State Healthcare...



Michael
I would make 100% sure that you still get the free Healthcare

At Georgia you have to have health insurance the day before you retire or
you do not get it. I had to pay Cobra from the time I left till I turned 60.

One of the reasons I stayed so long. Hope yours is different
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Old 04-09-2017, 07:13 PM   #55
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Took 3 years "off" with DW and it was addictive. You will adjust and likely do way better than you expect and then wonder why you didn't earlier. I've been "back" to w*rk for 2 years and am jones-ing for the good ole days. Looking forward to spending some of DGD's early years in a couple and hope to be off to the "good life" again soon.

You will not regret it...just do it.
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Old 04-10-2017, 06:07 AM   #56
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I do not understand why having dinner with your boss is such a big deal and why it would be so stressful. Surely after so many years in sales you are accustomed to dinner meetings with customers and colleagues. During my career I had countless dinners with clients or with senior management. Most especially when I was in sales/sales management.

Chill out. You seem really uptight about it. Really, how bad can it be.
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Old 04-10-2017, 06:41 AM   #57
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............Chill out. You seem really uptight about it. Really, how bad can it be.
I think this is for the OP to decide for himself. Speaking for myself, this kind of crap can be soul crushing after a while.
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Old 04-17-2017, 01:58 PM   #58
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I'm fried, burned out in my position. High pressure medical device sales. Just turned 62, 3 more years till Medicare, SS, and annuity. This will cover all my expenses. No touching my money! Now I'm thinking, sticking it out 2 years, taking a year off and paying for my own healthcare. Just don't think I can do 3 years without snapping and you reading about me in the paper...lol.

Any helpful hints?
As my group and I sat through a culture change town-hall I thought of your thread.

After one of the Directors on the panel made a point that he was very happy with, my colleague says to me: "At some level I am envious that my career never took me to the heights where I could get away with explaining 'Aircraft Carriers take a long time to turn around' as some kind of contribution".

I hate when he does that to me during a meeting because it generates involuntary reactions that may have to be explained.

I thought you could identify with this.
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Old 04-20-2017, 11:03 PM   #59
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I moved from Kingwood (close to Conroe) to Reno two years ago, in the opposite direction of the poster. We lived there for 25 years.

But I/we like mountain high desert living, skiing, hiking, and fly-fishing, so Reno was a great fit, without Cali taxes. The Truckee River is a 5 minute walk from my house to fly-fish, but Houston housing is indeed cheaper, at least in the far suburbs.

He may a little mis-underestimate the heat of late May-September, unless you stay in air conditioning; I laugh when fellow hikers complain about Reno heat in July and August, but North Houston in the pine forest like Conroe and Kingwood is comparatively "liveable" compared to the rest of Houston.

In the poster's defense, Houston has world class theater, ballet, and opera--and the Astros (I drove to El Cerritos on Saturday to take the BART to the Coliseum to watch them play the A's, and met my oldest son there)!


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Just curious, where in TX did you buy? DH and I considered leaving CA for TX or FL and actually went on some exploratory trips. We have family in and near FL and lots of friends in TX. But in the end, CA won out for us due to weather, friends, and diversity of activities we enjoy.
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Old 04-23-2017, 08:40 PM   #60
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Hello friends. Some interesting things came up last week. The CEO from a company I was with for 9 years then we had a wonderful buyout called me. They have formed a new company and asked me if I would come on board next spring when their new drug is approved. They have hired our previous COO, CFO, Director of Sales, and all my previous managers. I must have received 10 calls and LinkedIn messages, telling me...the old team is back, this will be great fun again! Of course I said heck yes I'm interested. What a fun team we had.

Then a buddy from our tennis club here in Ohio tells me he wants to open up a satellite office in...........Fort Myers, where I have my condo, and would I be interested in working with him and helping him out for the next 2 or 3 years, what ever I want.

Amazing how some new opportunities can change your outlook! I will keep you posted.
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