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Old 06-02-2009, 11:58 AM   #21
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I just passed the 4 year mark on retirement. I still have my pre-retirement "to do" list and 60% of the items have been checked off as accomplished. The remainder of the list will likely never be done. Things change with time and retirement - interests, priorities, energy levels, but mostly your view of what is really important.
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Old 06-02-2009, 11:58 AM   #22
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One of the neat things about retirement is that we have choices that we never had before, because all we have to do is keep breathing and the bills are paid.

And that's worth a lot.
Well that is true! Might as well do whatever makes your retirement happier and more fulfilling.
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Old 06-02-2009, 12:07 PM   #23
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I'll call this past winter the phase where I really got past the euphoria of FIRE and took the time to get comfy with my own company. I never got angry or impatient as the article described, except when my 2 dogs would be stuck right under my feet and elsewhere, constantly.
They had to adjust to FIRE too.
Right now I still feel occasional bursts of "so what am I accomplishing today" and sometimes go overboard. But overall, I think I'm finally getting this right. It feels wonderful.
In all seriousness...
The circumstances of having to reinvent a new life 4 years ago, taking the bold step of voluntarily resigning (not retiring), and my age...all mix together a little differently than the traditional retiree. Every situation is different, none better nor worse.
Take a look at my most recent signature.
There is a lingering thought in my head that I still have songs to sing.
The difference is that I am not seeking the next act in the play, it will find me. And if it doesn't, oh well.
Just smile and wave.
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Old 06-02-2009, 12:15 PM   #24
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DW reminded me that I retired three years ago on May 25. Dang where did the time go?

Never had a list, just went about doing things as needed. Such prep old house for sale, put on market, sell, move. We already had new house purchased before my retirement.

Work on new house, settle in.

All along the move, fix up routine, take time to hang out, go to Y for workouts. Go camping, kayaking, biking, bicycling, workouts, Jujutsu classes, whatever.

Prime reason for easily transitioning is I had practice. Early on in life sold everything got a motorhome, bummed around the US for a year or two. Bought another house. Changed j*bs, to a far away city. Sold old house bought new... and so on.

Change has been a constant in my life.

I had never bothered with lists, goals, career. Always did what needed to be done as necessary and no more. So retirement was just another change. No, getting a new j*b is not on the horizon, I'll take to being a hobo first. DW and I like our unplanned casual daily life. Though DW does make lists, for food shopping, etc.

My guess is that if one had a highly organized life, it will be difficult to transition to dis-organization in terms of daily life. Practice.

Oh and if you defined yourself by the position you held, or titles acquired, things could get rough. Letting go of titles is akin to getting teeth pulled for many. Being just ____ insert first or nick name here takes practice.

At the diner or Y or on park-bench no-one gives a hoot who or what you were, good BS, politeness, and a tip is what counts. Plus, really liking your own company is priceless.

Cheers.
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Old 06-02-2009, 12:22 PM   #25
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Gotta get driving around onto the schedule!

I've always figured we get up and go to work by ourselves, what's to stop us from going everywhere alone? The only item on this week's list that has a partner-in-crime is the "Up!" movie. SO can't walk very far and I need to for my health. I enjoy the chance encounters with strangers which not-so-strangely happens less often when I'm with a p-in-c. Yeah, I don't "get" shopping either, no longer hang out with my shopping people. Forget gambling, guess that's one no no I kept from childhood, do they smoke in you casinos, that puts me off.
Recall I live way out in the country, so my social contact opportunities are pretty limited. This is one of the reasons I volunteer at the monthly food bank at the local church, besides saving money on food. It is one of the best volunteer gigs I have found yet. I may get more involved on the county or state level. Maybe.
As far as venturing out on my own...I have done that to some extent. There are 3 prisons in the area and the type of folks who have moved into the area along with the incarcerated is a reason for some extra caution. I stay pretty close to my little town, which is pretty crime free. Not so elsewhere in the small cities nearby. No gangs, but lots of drifters.

Local casino has smoking with a smaller non-smoking section. Gambling is fun once a year or so. I do not seek it out. Too cheap!
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Old 06-02-2009, 01:10 PM   #26
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Recall I live way out in the country, so my social contact opportunities are pretty limited. This is one of the reasons I volunteer at the monthly food bank at the local church, besides saving money on food. It is one of the best volunteer gigs I have found yet. I may get more involved on the county or state level. Maybe.
As far as venturing out on my own...I have done that to some extent. There are 3 prisons in the area and the type of folks who have moved into the area along with the incarcerated is a reason for some extra caution. I stay pretty close to my little town, which is pretty crime free. Not so elsewhere in the small cities nearby. No gangs, but lots of drifters.
Wonder why they put the prisons NEAR YOU??
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Old 06-02-2009, 01:12 PM   #27
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Wonder why they put the prisons NEAR YOU??
Oooooooo....he is emboldened by the illusion of safety in the infinity of cyberspace.
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Old 06-02-2009, 01:16 PM   #28
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I'm not a type A so I did not have any massive to do lists but I knew I would find ways to fill my time and I have . My sister who is a type A +++++ threw herself into everything clubs ,volunteering ,moving , furnishing her new house , and now it has been six months and she is starting to burn out . I went the other way I started slowly adding things to do as I needed them and left lots of puttering time . I do not feel empty without working but I do miss the social aspect of it .
Totally agree with you.
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Old 06-02-2009, 01:45 PM   #29
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Why does retirement have to wonderful & fulfilling ? My work for forty years was sometimes fulfilling sometimes boring and sometimes just plain awful . Retirement is just another phase of life sometimes great , sometimes boring but luckily it has not been just plain awful.
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Old 06-02-2009, 01:47 PM   #30
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Until very recently it was mandatory that people retired at 65. At at the same time no pensioned retirement was possible prior to that age, save, like me, you were part of a massive lay off in big public corporations, being in such cases the minimal age 52. Spanish people, not being known to be workaholics, tend to envy people like me. And I tend not to air my condition, considered unfair by many.
The thing that is surprising me most in this forum is that you donīt seem to conform to the idea we have of you as people with an almost ethical attitude toward gainful work. In fact it baffles me that many of you reire or have retired much earlier than me ....willingly.
It seems to me that your very early retirement isnt always tbat. Itīs some sort of prolonged vacation with an option to going back to work and suplement your pensions. This is impossible in Spain- Once retired if you go back to work -which is extremely rare- your pension is suspended.
Am I misguided in my idea of your attitude toward working?
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Old 06-02-2009, 01:49 PM   #31
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Why does retirement have to wonderful & fulfilling ? My work for forty years was sometimes fulfilling sometimes boring and sometimes just plain awful . Retirement is just another phase of life sometimes great , sometimes boring but luckily it has not been just plain awful.
Excellent question!
This is one of the mental blocks I had to overcome. I was expecting TOO MUCH of retirement. The initial euphoria, of course, was wonderful and fulfilling, as in "I have arrived."
But the reality of retirement is it is simply not w*rking for someone else anymore. It has its own merits and disadvantages.
We still have to shop, cook, enjoy ourselves...just like before, except the time budget is totally different.
Zero w*rk, 100% other things.
Some of the "other things" still stink.
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Old 06-02-2009, 01:59 PM   #32
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Until very recently it was mandatory that people retired at 65. At at the same time no pensioned retirement was possible prior to that age, save, like me, you were part of a massive lay off in big public corporations, being in such cases the minimal age 52. Spanish people, not being known to be workaholics, tend to envy people like me. And I tend not to air my condition, considered unfair by many.
The thing that is surprising me most in this forum is that you donīt seem to conform to the idea we have of you as people with an almost ethical attitude toward gainful work. In fact it baffles me that many of you reire or have retired much earlier than me ....willingly.
It seems to me that your very early retirement isnt always tbat. Itīs some sort of prolonged vacation with an option to going back to work and suplement your pensions. This is impossible in Spain- Once retired if you go back to work -which is extremely rare- your pension is suspended.
Am I misguided in my idea of your attitude toward working?
This may shed some light...
Work ethic - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
and of course the American dream
American Dream - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
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Old 06-02-2009, 02:05 PM   #33
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But if you surrender to the process and allow yourself to experience fully all three stages of transition, a path will emerge and you will walk confidently into your new life.
W2R I've read enough of your posts to know you read the entire article and are probably looking for validation? Anyway I'm about four months behind you and appreciate the article. Many of the responses have been tremendously insightful. Isn't it what is often said here, "Come on in, the water is fine".
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Old 06-02-2009, 02:11 PM   #34
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W2R I've read enough of your posts to know you read the entire article and are probably looking for validation? Anyway I'm about four months behind you and appreciate the article. Many of the responses have been tremendously insightful. Isn't it what is often said here, "Come on in, the water is fine".
To be honest? I thought the author was full of baloney, and that she made up the "three stages" just to sell the article. I thought that it was likely that her initial observations were real, though (just not her solutions).

Her initial observations surprised me, since I was under the impression that if one had things that one wants to do in retirement, that are inconsistent with work, that would pretty much take care of the non-financial preparation for retirement.

Edited to add: For example, concerning Phase I she said
Quote:
In retrospect, I realize I didn't have an inkling that work filled so many human needs—identity, meaning, and community. I was too focused on the open door and all the exciting things I would do once I crossed the threshold.
Baloney! Identity? What's so different between saying "I'm an Oceanographer" and "I'm a retired Oceanographer"? Meaning? Puleeze. And community? I don't go to work to socialize.

Quote:
In Phase Two, I'd experienced sleepless nights, angry outbursts, silent sobbing: the emotional tumult that Bridges calls the "neutral zone." His metaphor for phase two—"the emotional wilderness"—captures more fully its juicy texture.
Sounds like she's a psycho. Angry? Sobbing? maybe it's menopause.

Quote:
In Phase Three, I settled down and regained my voice. I forged a new identity and found a new purpose. I'm as happy as I'd envisioned yet know that aging will present new challenges in my future.
Sounds like the end of a fairytale.

And yes, it has been really interesting reading the responses!! Thanks, everyone.
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Old 06-02-2009, 03:18 PM   #35
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However, the author of this article says that she planned as I have but still found retirement to be unrewarding and disappointing for her. She discusses many aspects of retirement, and here is one of many thoughts that
Wherever you go you take yourself with you.
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Old 06-02-2009, 03:36 PM   #36
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To be honest? I thought the author was full of baloney, and that she made up the "three stages" just to sell the article. I thought that it was likely that her initial observations were real, though (just not her solutions).

Her initial observations surprised me, since I was under the impression that if one had things that one wants to do in retirement, that are inconsistent with work, that would pretty much take care of the non-financial preparation for retirement.

Baloney! Identity? What's so different between saying "I'm an Oceanographer" and "I'm a retired Oceanographer"? Meaning? Puleeze. And community? I don't go to work to socialize.
Actually, she didn't retire; she found a way to stay totally engaged in business by taking on coaching 'opportunities'. This article strikes me as portraying retirement as an ordeal one has to work through in order to become totally happy. Too bad she wasn't happy with herself before she quit working.

There are many ways to bring structure to one's day -- if structure is what's needed. Bringing daily structure is different from the working the "Bucket List."

I wouldn't view upcoming retirement as having certain roadblocks before you can get to the "list." You can start the list any time you choose, and you have the rest of your life to accomplish it, rewrite it, and/or chuck it and start a new one.

First thing, though: practice becoming non-type A. I too had a 60 hour per week job, with little time for friends, family, or making my residence a comfortable home. So the first several months were dedicated to attempting to learn how to be non-type A, and get on with making my nest more comfortable. This included many naps, as needed.

Today, I can still be Type A, but when I do, I find I make myself miserable.

Every day is an adventure. Yes, you need structure, but one doesn't need to make it as tightly structured as when you w*rked. There was a reason one structured tightly -- w*rk takes up VALUABLE Free Time. When the requirement to spend 8-10 hours/day laboring and commuting is removed -- you have the rest of your life to get the "list" completed.

-- Rita
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Old 06-02-2009, 03:40 PM   #37
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I am about to finish the third year of retirement. Now, I am not as giddy now as I was the first couple of months, but still very content.

I think I may be in Moemg's camp. I never understood why people thin they have to 'make a difference', do something to give back to society, be busy all ktime, etc.

I don't volunteer. I don't have a part time job an never plan to. I don't care where the time goes, as long as I get to go along. I don't care if I get something accomplished today, there is always tomorrow. I like to watch TV, even stupid reality shows, and don't care if friends know it. Five O'clock is time for drinks on the deck and watch the sun set over the lake. I don't need structure, that's why I retired to get away from it. I have no retirement list of things to do, and I have done them all! The closest thing to a list is the latest idea of what we want to do next. i.e. trip to Utah to look at rocks!

If you try to forge your retirement into something you think others think it should be, given time you will be miserable. If your retirement is what you really want it to be, then you will be happy you did it. It's your retirement after all!
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Old 06-02-2009, 03:53 PM   #38
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I am about to finish the third year of retirement. Now, I am not as giddy now as I was the first couple of months, but still very content.

I think I may be in Moemg's camp. I never understood why people thin they have to 'make a difference', do something to give back to society, be busy all ktime, etc.

I don't volunteer. I don't have a part time job an never plan to. I don't care where the time goes, as long as I get to go along. I don't care if I get something accomplished today, there is always tomorrow. I like to watch TV, even stupid reality shows, and don't care if friends know it. Five O'clock is time for drinks on the deck and watch the sun set over the lake. I don't need structure, that's why I retired to get away from it. I have no retirement list of things to do, and I have done them all! The closest thing to a list is the latest idea of what we want to do next. i.e. trip to Utah to look at rocks!

If you try to forge your retirement into something you think others think it should be, given time you will be miserable. If your retirement is what you really want it to be, then you will be happy you did it. It's your retirement after all!
I agree with your view of retirement. But many people will think that itīs a banal and wasteful way of spending the rest of your life. And some would even think that you are shallow)insubstantial/without interests... Well, too bad.
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Old 06-02-2009, 03:54 PM   #39
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However, the author of this article says that she planned as I have but still found retirement to be unrewarding and disappointing for her. She discusses many aspects of retirement, and here is one of many thoughts that interested me:
Your homework for tonight is to list the errors this person made. It should be easy for you considering how long you have been on this board.


"I resented sharing the computer with my partner." - Is this a person you will allow to influence your life? She couldn't figure out to buy another computer?
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Old 06-02-2009, 03:58 PM   #40
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To be honest? I thought the author was full of baloney, and that she made up the "three stages" just to sell the article. I thought that it was likely that her initial observations were real, though (just not her solutions).


I would never have considered that perspective. I did have a little trouble with the whole sobbing episode. Women are just more intuitive interpretting other women. I've dealt with all kinds of Deputy Directors and invariably it becomes a power trip after a certain salary benchmark. Perhaps she no longer had someone to pick up the dry cleaning?
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