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Old 04-14-2013, 09:20 AM   #41
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Brewer,

I suspect the more time you spend doing the things you really enjoy will result in a quicker decompression vs simply sitting around the house relaxing. IIRC you developed a love of hunting and the outdoors, and exercise like krav maga, and I am sure you have many other interests as well to help you decompress.
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Old 04-14-2013, 10:24 AM   #42
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I had stages - I was hysterically happy/relieved right away knowing I would not be doing the airport every Monday anymore. Waking up at night and realizing I had no alarm to worry about not going off was smile enducing! I took almost a year to truly get to baseline. I had a problem with spending money and was crazy with quicken and watching the portfolio performance. Now I spend freely (for me) and don't worry about the porfolio - I've tweaked my investments and am comfortable with how they are now -- the biggest relief is having more money now than when I retired almost 8 years ago
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Old 04-14-2013, 12:30 PM   #43
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Waking up at night and realizing I had no alarm to worry about not going off was smile enducing!
I semi-retired almost 3 years and go to the office once or twice a week (arriving about 10:00 as it is a long commute) and do a little work at home. The other day I didn't have any real work planned so didn't set my alarm. I would usually wake up about 9:30 but must have been really tired because I didn't wake up until my cell phone rang a little after 10. It was a couple of people from my office who were calling to ask me something and they immediately dove into the topic. I asked them to stop a moment so I could get woke up. Their utter shock that I was still asleep at 10 was priceless.....
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Old 04-14-2013, 12:49 PM   #44
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I have no clue how long it took to decompress.

During the rat race I use to keep a schedule to make sure all tasks got completed and on a timely basis. After ER I no longer worried about completing a multitude of tasks in a short period of time. Now, it is "why do today what you can put off until tomorrow. Tomorrow may never come." Tasks that make it onto a "to do list" do not seem as important as they once did. Life is good after ER.
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Old 04-14-2013, 01:19 PM   #45
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I've been retired for several years now. There are still things that must be repaired, replaced, rented, planned, improved, weeded, cut, pruned etc. The problem for me is getting my b*tt motivated enough to get started. I come to believe it's because I do not enjoy working on something alone anymore. This is a new feeling for me. If someone else is around to watch, help, criticize, annoy, or hold the flashlight, I'm good to go. I love to help friends and neighbors repair stuff or work on their problems, just not MY stuff. What is going on with this?? Is this a symptom of something going on mentally? Anyone else have this problem?
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Old 04-14-2013, 03:26 PM   #46
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Only took a couple of weeks to get past the feeling I was just on an extended vacation and then all was right with the world. I was not burned out, but eager to spend more time at home since I commuted a significant distance to my w*rkplace and was not home during the week.

Whether it's a really busy day or not doesn't matter, it's a blessing to be able set the agenda and decide on the activities. Life is good.
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Old 04-14-2013, 08:10 PM   #47
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I would say I suffered from burnout from my megacorp. I started the decompression process almost immediately, but it was about 6 months before I began to feel I was truly recovering. I am about a year out, and I am just about "normal". I am somewhat addicted to company gossip because most of my friends are still there, but after hearing the continuing horror stories, I am so, so thankful to have left.
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Old 04-14-2013, 11:27 PM   #48
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Did anyone go through a period of sadness or loss, following the exit from the workplace? Most people are talking about feelings of freedom and elation, which is great, but I'm wondering if there were any difficult feelings. For instance, did anyone feel sadness or loss over the closing of such a long chapter of your life, the "end of an era" so to speak? Or loneliness at leaving behind friendships at work? Anxiety over the sudden lack of a paycheck? Disorientation about how to fill your day? etc?
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Old 04-14-2013, 11:55 PM   #49
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Did anyone go through a period of sadness or loss, following the exit from the workplace? Most people are talking about feelings of freedom and elation, which is great, but I'm wondering if there were any difficult feelings. For instance, did anyone feel sadness or loss over the closing of such a long chapter of your life, the "end of an era" so to speak? Or loneliness at leaving behind friendships at work? Anxiety over the sudden lack of a paycheck? Disorientation about how to fill your day? etc?
Yes, I did for a few weeks. Mostly sadness over leaving behind friends, some of whom I will never see again. Some sadness or emptiness over loss of status, ending an era, a little feeling of "getting old". Some sadness over leaving a business that i was instrumental in building. But mostly relief...a burden lifted. Like I said earlier, it will take a while to for completeness, but I think I'm well on my way.

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Old 04-14-2013, 11:56 PM   #50
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I had anticipated this but it never happened. My overwhelming feeling has been relief that I never have to endure the bad times again. I feel satisfaction about what I achieved, and I hope that others will build on it, but I am happy to move on.
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Old 04-15-2013, 05:23 AM   #51
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Did anyone go through a period of sadness or loss, following the exit from the workplace? Most people are talking about feelings of freedom and elation, which is great, but I'm wondering if there were any difficult feelings. For instance, did anyone feel sadness or loss over the closing of such a long chapter of your life, the "end of an era" so to speak? Or loneliness at leaving behind friendships at work? Anxiety over the sudden lack of a paycheck? Disorientation about how to fill your day? etc?
An unequivocal 'Nup!!

W*rk had just become a right-royal PITA, the politics, the downright numb-skullery of upper-management 'processes' being foisted on the worker-bees, the grinding remorselessness of legislative and administrative bureaucracy, the same-old same-old issues of dealing with work-colleagues and sub-ordinates that were more interested in pushing self-serving wheelbarrows than actually doing/producing stuff......sigh, do I sound a tad Bitter-n-Twisted (tm)

'Closing the long chapter of my life'.....nah, my 'War and Peace' had gone on for too many chapters already and I was tired of reading the same paragraphs repeatedly and the era-end couldn't come fast enough for me. No loneliness of leaving folks behind, those I really had an affinity with we still keep in touch with and have lunches as often as we [us and them] want.

No anxiety, well maybe a bit of the cobbly-wobbles, over no paycheck. I'd done the research and 'figgerins', much assisted by the advice gleaned from this board, had tracked expenses and, based on those, was fairly confident we would be OK. The GFC 'unpleasantness' didn't help, occurring only one year before I had planned to retire. But OTOH it helped in stress-testing our plans and attitudes and leading to the view that, if we could weather that, we'd be OK again.

'Filling my day'......never even give it a thought! Do what I/we want whenever we want, including periods of achieving precisely nothing at all for days on end That's what retirement is all about

I guess the trick is to leave the pre-retirement issues and attitudes behind, get on with forging new attitudes.....that is if you want to, or can be bothered to.....there's always tomorrow to get serious about that stuff

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Old 04-15-2013, 07:22 AM   #52
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Did anyone go through a period of sadness or loss, following the exit from the workplace? Most people are talking about feelings of freedom and elation, which is great, but I'm wondering if there were any difficult feelings. For instance, did anyone feel sadness or loss over the closing of such a long chapter of your life, the "end of an era" so to speak? Or loneliness at leaving behind friendships at work? Anxiety over the sudden lack of a paycheck? Disorientation about how to fill your day? etc?
No way. As I wrote in Post #39, I was working only 2 days a week by the time I ERed in late 2008. So there were few changes to my daily life other than getting rid of what had become a nuisance to my daily life. There was no sadness or loss, just relief by ridding myself of the last bit of my #1 reason for leaving - the commute.

As for the loss of a paycheck, I had very much intentionally set up my ER to replace my 2 biweekly paychecks per month with an equivalent single, monthly dividend payment. So instead of me working for my money, my money was now working for me!

I had very few friends at work and never hung out with any of my coworkers, so there was pretty much nothing to miss there. For the last few years, I had a lunch partner for many of the days I was at the office, but I can't say I missed that. I was very glad to put that long chapter of my life behind me.
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Old 04-15-2013, 09:54 AM   #53
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I've been retired for several years now. There are still things that must be repaired, replaced, rented, planned, improved, weeded, cut, pruned etc. The problem for me is getting my b*tt motivated enough to get started. I come to believe it's because I do not enjoy working on something alone anymore. This is a new feeling for me. If someone else is around to watch, help, criticize, annoy, or hold the flashlight, I'm good to go. I love to help friends and neighbors repair stuff or work on their problems, just not MY stuff. What is going on with this?? Is this a symptom of something going on mentally? Anyone else have this problem?
tight,

I can *so* relate to your comments. I, too, am wondering what this stems from.

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Old 04-15-2013, 09:55 AM   #54
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Did anyone go through a period of sadness or loss, following the exit from the workplace? Most people are talking about feelings of freedom and elation, which is great, but I'm wondering if there were any difficult feelings. For instance, did anyone feel sadness or loss over the closing of such a long chapter of your life, the "end of an era" so to speak? Or loneliness at leaving behind friendships at work? Anxiety over the sudden lack of a paycheck? Disorientation about how to fill your day? etc?
Within a 1-2 week period my daughter (and only child) married, I retired, and my doctor put me on BP and blood sugar meds for the first time. I didn't feel sadness or loss, but I felt OLD! Thank goodness the feelings of freedom and elation vastly overshadowed that negativity, though. I hardly thought about it, to tell the truth, because there was too much fun to be had in retirement, to linger on negative thoughts. Would I be any younger had I not retired? Uh, no...

If you are financially well prepared and you know it, you won't worry about a paycheck. That is the point of all the financial preparation that most of us have been doing for years and years. As egotistical as it may sound, I trust my own nearly-beaten-to-death figures more than nearly anything else I can think of. As for the other concerns you raise, first of all it's not like the people at one's work all died; the earth is still graced with their presence and one can always make the effort to go see them if desired. One can learn to seek out others if/when one feels lonely, rather than having mandated interactions with others. And, one of the great joys of retirement is getting to decide how to fill your day.
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Old 04-15-2013, 10:25 AM   #55
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I am only (semi-)semi-retired, but I have noticed the same thing. I wonder if it is related to the loss of a significant social structure, whether it was a positive, negative, or mixed one. This seems especially true of certain simple/repetitive type tasks. Even as a kid, it was easier to do the raking chores if someone else was helping.

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tight,

I can *so* relate to your comments. I, too, am wondering what this stems from.

omni
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Old 04-15-2013, 10:30 AM   #56
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I am only (semi-)semi-retired, but I have noticed the same thing. I wonder if it is related to the loss of a significant social structure, whether it was a positive, negative, or mixed one. This seems especially true of certain simple/repetitive type tasks. Even as a kid, it was easier to do the raking chores if someone else was helping.
You may be onto something.

While w*rking, I was always lauded for being a great team player (unlike the many prima donnas the corporate culture seemed to spawn). Perhaps, I like that sense of team spirit?


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Old 04-15-2013, 12:15 PM   #57
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Did anyone go through a period of sadness or loss, following the exit from the workplace? Most people are talking about feelings of freedom and elation, which is great, but I'm wondering if there were any difficult feelings. For instance, did anyone feel sadness or loss over the closing of such a long chapter of your life, the "end of an era" so to speak? Or loneliness at leaving behind friendships at work? Anxiety over the sudden lack of a paycheck? Disorientation about how to fill your day? etc?
For me, it was more of a transition than sadness or loss. When you work for so many years, I think your job does to some extent become part of your identity. Retirement gives you the opportunity to "redefine yourself".
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Old 04-15-2013, 02:16 PM   #58
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I had anticipated this but it never happened. My overwhelming feeling has been relief that I never have to endure the bad times again. I feel satisfaction about what I achieved, and I hope that others will build on it, but I am happy to move on.
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Old 04-15-2013, 02:25 PM   #59
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Not long at all for me. I retired as golf season was kicking off and I moved right on into that. No stress on the golf course, well......most of the time.
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Old 04-17-2013, 08:16 AM   #60
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I did a "practice ER" when I retired from the military at 43. Going from an unbelievably stressful j*b in the Pentagon to an utterly relaxed lifestyle took about a weekend. The pleasure of getting the local newspaper delivered along with the WSJ every morning, then sitting with as many cups of coffee as I liked, for as long as I liked, before starting my day was simply as good as it could possibly get.

After 4 or 5 months, I started getting antsy and looking for something to do. So I got a civilian j*b (in a completely different career field), and actually enjoyed it for a number of years. But when the company got bought out I volunteered for the first round of layoffs (I was 55 at the time). Much to my delight, they accepted, gave me a nice severance, and I went into full-scale ER with never another thought about w*rking again. For the second time, the transition was about a weekend.

Needless to say, as soon as I hung up my commuting shoes, people started calling and asking for consulting time. I have always made it a rule to never do more than 10 weeks per year in that role, and only on projects I truly enjoy, so it's really just a hobby, not actual w*rk.

Since I know you slightly, I would venture to guess that you will find your experience to have at least some slight parallels with my second ER. Nothing to worry about in the least!
My experience was similar. Retired from the military with no job lined up. Planned to kick back for about 90 days before finding a job. It turned out to be about 4 months before I started working. One thing I learned during that period was that the finances were going to be easier on just my Navy pension than I had planned on.

Held a few jobs during my 6 1/2 year civilian "career" and always took a couple months off between jobs. When I finally retired for good, I was well versed on retirement living and had zero adjustment problems.
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