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How do you know you are retired if you are still working ?
Old 12-11-2010, 12:54 PM   #1
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How do you know you are retired if you are still working ?

How Do You Know You're Retired if You're Still Working? - Retirement: A Full-Time Job

There is a lot of discussion about working in retirement but look at our members Nords has a blog and wrote a book , Trombone Al does music gigs , Martha does part time legal work , NW works part time as does Walt , another member has a sawmill, Va collector sells on ebay & I do too so are all these members not retired ?
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Old 12-11-2010, 01:09 PM   #2
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How do you know you are retired if you are still working ?

IMO, retiring means you leave behind something you no longer want/have to do. If a new interest brings you pleasure and a few extra bucks...well, go for it.
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Old 12-11-2010, 01:50 PM   #3
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I'm happy to say that I ended my PT gig selling boats and now I can say I'm retired fully (again). I'm so much better at doing nothing.
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Old 12-11-2010, 01:54 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by bbbamI View Post
How do you know you are retired if you are still working ?

IMO, retiring means you leave behind something you no longer want/have to do. If a new interest brings you pleasure and a few extra bucks...well, go for it.
I'm with bbb on this: if what you do is optional and stopping it would have no significant adverse financial consequences, you keep your FIRE bragging rights.
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Old 12-11-2010, 04:04 PM   #5
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I'm with bbb on this: if what you do is optional and stopping it would have no significant adverse financial consequences, you keep your FIRE bragging rights.
I'm with this as well.

Many FI folks like to be actively working, whether or not it be for charity or for paid work. Earning money even though you don't need it is nothing to be ashamed about.
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Old 12-11-2010, 05:31 PM   #6
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I'm with this as well.

Many FI folks like to be actively working, whether or not it be for charity or for paid work. Earning money even though you don't need it is nothing to be ashamed about.
Thanks Alan and now to spend my ebay mad money !
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Old 12-12-2010, 12:32 AM   #7
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Originally Posted by Moemg View Post
There is a lot of discussion about working in retirement but look at our members Nords has a blog and wrote a book , Trombone Al does music gigs , Martha does part time legal work , NW works part time as does Walt , another member has a sawmill, Va collector sells on ebay & I do too so are all these members not retired ?
I think Sydney has a great perspective on the emotional aspects of ER-- but she still chose to go back to work for a paycheck, not for volunteer time. In her defense, I don't think she's talked about what she's going to do with the money. But people can't help wondering if this is another case of "failed ER" disguised as "a really cool project".

I also like Bill Birnbaum's perspective:
http://adventureretirement.com/2010/...-need-to-work/
I didn't even know about him until he commented on "The Military Guide" blog, but I think he's nailed the "guys gotta work" style of thinking.

What will separate the ERs from the wannabes is how they handle the money. If someone goes back to work and donates all their after-tax earnings to charity, then good for them and they're in the former category. If someone goes back to work and enjoys having the money, let alone needs the money, and would rather keep working than live without all that lovely money, then it's hard to see how they're retired. Semi-retired, sure. But not ER'd.

So far my criteria have been avoiding the dissatisfiers-- commuting, office attire, arbitrary deadlines, management, meetings. Lately an additional one has been "If the surf is up, do I still have to go do this?"

I admit that I still struggle with figuring out how to classify money-making hobbies. I'd guess that at some point you'd either be plowing the revenue back into the hobby or donating it to charity, not using it for your own personal lifestyle enhancement. Heck, I haven't even figured out why we're still landlords. Until we can come up with a really compelling reason to be "NOT landlords", then we'll keep cashing those rent checks.

In the case of "The Military Guide", making it a non-profit project is a credibility issue as much as an ER issue. Our contributors put a lot of effort into getting the book written & edited, and that value is worth recognizing, so the book is not going to be given away for free. Readers also tend to not put a lot of value on a free product, although $2.99 would be plenty to eliminate that problem. But at the same time it's difficult to judge the credibility of a retirement adviser when their retirement-plan success might depend on how much you're paying for their advice. Donating to a charity seems to be the best way to handle the inconsistency.
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Old 12-12-2010, 07:34 AM   #8
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To me it simply means my KMA hat is still there. I'm working because I want to, not because I have to. That makes a world of difference.

The unplanned-for income is nice, that means we can buy toys like the motorcycle or drop $100 on dinner without having to think about it. DW can spoil the nieces, she just ordered $200 of stuff for one. Those are "nice to haves" but certainly not necessities. Even with that the bulk of the extra is going to savings.

We've talked about it - even if we won the lottery I doubt our lifestyle would change significantly.
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Old 12-12-2010, 07:51 AM   #9
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Ive been retired for three years now. The only thing that I have worked on is my golf game. The wife does teach a night class at the local college. She puts in about 3 hours a week. We just put the money she makes into IRA's.
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Old 12-12-2010, 08:35 AM   #10
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I'm with bbbamI... u do what u want/like vs. what others want ... most times at your timetable.


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Originally Posted by bbbamI View Post
How do you know you are retired if you are still working ?

IMO, retiring means you leave behind something you no longer want/have to do. If a new interest brings you pleasure and a few extra bucks...well, go for it.
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Old 12-12-2010, 10:40 AM   #11
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Originally Posted by bbbamI View Post
IMO, retiring means you leave behind something you no longer want/have to do. If a new interest brings you pleasure and a few extra bucks...well, go for it.
+1

It's surprising how many people here can't wrap their heads around more than one interpretation to retiring...
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Old 12-12-2010, 10:57 AM   #12
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When I think of work I think of alarm clocks , real clothes , set hours and tasks you have to do for a set period of time . Most of us are doing something occasionally , in our PJ's or sweats for no set periods and as Nords said " if the surf is up ,do I still have to do this " and for most of us the answer is No . So sure we all do something that brings in some extra cash but I don't see unhappy workers tied to the grindstone of jobs just a happy bunch who have found their path in retirement .
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Old 12-12-2010, 11:00 AM   #13
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Originally Posted by Midpack View Post
+1

It's surprising how many people here can't wrap their heads around more than one interpretation to retiring...
Not me! I see two or maybe three interpretations: there's "retired", there is "working", and then there is...uh...uh..."semi-working".
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Old 12-12-2010, 11:09 AM   #14
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Not me! I see two or maybe three interpretations: there's "retired", there is "working", and then there is...uh...uh..."semi-working".
Your tongue is planted firmly in cheek, but to me once you're FI this [below] is the larger point...
Quote:
Originally Posted by bbbamI
IMO, retiring means you leave behind something you no longer want/have to do.
...what comes next is not as important IMO. Some here seem to "enthusiastically" defend only one "correct" interpretation (their own) for all - I respectfully but enthusiastically disagree.
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Old 12-12-2010, 01:42 PM   #15
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When I retired in July my wife, who has been working part-time from home for 8 years, went from being part-time to semi-retired. It's all in how you look at it.

For my part, I think that retirement is whatever you want it to be. If you "retire" and open a small business that involves your passion, work 80 hours a week and love every minute of it and want to call yourself retired, fine with me. If you want to work 3 hours a week cleaning an office building or something and call yourself employed, fine with me. I think the FI part has more to do with it that anything. If you are FI, whether by wise saving and investing, pension, SS and/or extreme frugality, and you aren't working to pay the bills, you're probably retired.
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Old 12-12-2010, 02:05 PM   #16
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Old 12-12-2010, 02:15 PM   #17
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I don't care if it's "semi-retired" or "semi-w*rking". If there's no work that I like to do, then I would walk away. But I will not lie and say that I work just for fun. Heck, if it is really really that fun, I would have paid to do it! Right now, people need me and my work is paid decently, and I have said time and time again, this uncle Scrooge loves to count money.

Heh heh heh... My portfolio keeps setting new high. Heh heh heh... Do I keep buying more with fresh money?
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Old 12-12-2010, 02:55 PM   #18
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i think that working is going to a job, typically full time, that is required because it is how you pay your bills. once you leave that type of job then working because you want to or because you like the work and typically for far less money and most importantly you do not need the money to pay the bills is still being retired. of course not working at all is being retired but i can see the latter as still being retired.
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Old 12-19-2010, 07:57 PM   #19
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I have a lot of difficulties with this one. A few years ago I transitioned from 100% FT to 50% PT (same company). The flexibility of telecommuting and being able to take a lot of time off is liberating, but I still don't yet consider myself as retired (perhaps semi-retired though it doesn't feel semi-retired).

Am looking forward to hanging it up totally sometime in a couple years though.
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Old 12-19-2010, 08:11 PM   #20
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"School is OUT for summer" has been consistently great for me for almost 4 years now. I have NO desire to w*rk. I attribute this to being on the fast track since age 15, living a very focused and goal oriented life and getting the c*reer thing done. ENOUGH!

Mr Boston, OTOH, is almost 6 months retired and is getting antsy. He is even more driven than I am (kinda scary huh? ). He wants to do something PT but I keep supplying him with very valid reasons not to.

We shall see how it all turns out...
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