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Old 12-29-2011, 01:21 PM   #21
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Not a trick question. I don't mean retirement itself, as much as having the goal of reaching FIRE completed. I suppose it gets replaced with figuring out how to generate income
For me ER was not a target to reach, but more like a state of life I wanted because it enabled me to do things that were difficult because of work. But yes, if you are looking for another target to replace this one, figuring out how to make money isn't bad. It does get boring, though.
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Old 12-29-2011, 02:18 PM   #22
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Most of the really successful early retirers here point out the difference between retiring to something and retiring just to get away from something. If you are retiring "to something", it seems to work out. If you retiring just "to get away" from something, I think it may lead to a let down.

I'm partially ERing in 2012, although at 62, it isn't very early compared to many here. I'm taking less compensation in return for more time off. My wife and I WERE going to just put away whatever I make, but then we lost a tenant and some pretty good income. We looked at it and decided it will still be okay in the long run, so we're dipping our toes in. Hopefully, we will find that we really do have enough to live on and that I am plenty busy and happy when not working. Even if another investment or two goes south, we should be okay, just not as well off as my wife would prefer.

At some point, you reach the point of paralysis by analysis, which is where I've been many times on this issue. If you're pretty sure of the money, go for it.
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Old 12-29-2011, 02:29 PM   #23
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I don't have the insight that many people on this forum do (I am only about 4.5 months into it), but I think "adjustment" is a whole lot better word to use to describe it than "disappointment".

My working situation was actually quite pleasant: an academic environment, very casual and loose in the rules, a nice group of co-workers, and a very smooth and happy departure. But it was time to move on and I knew it. So now it's all about what's next
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Old 12-29-2011, 03:40 PM   #24
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Although I had been working on FI for years, the decision to ER and was sudden.
The whole process took less than a year. We had to cash out on our house in CA and move east across the US as a part of the deal. During the year, I went to retirement parties at work where the retiree was planning for years and had built their dream house etc. My process was a throw together affair. Closing on the necessary house sale fell through 3 times.
Lot's of stress involved in the transition but it was worth it.
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Old 12-29-2011, 05:51 PM   #25
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I don't have the insight that many people on this forum do (I am only about 4.5 months into it), but I think "adjustment" is a whole lot better word to use to describe it than "disappointment".

My working situation was actually quite pleasant: an academic environment, very casual and loose in the rules, a nice group of co-workers, and a very smooth and happy departure. But it was time to move on and I knew it. So now it's all about what's next
Right! The adjustment can be a challenge but a fun challenge too. I probably would have worked longer if things had gone smoother at work. Things have turned out well though. It's nice to feel quite independent and the process would have been harder if I'd started 10 years later (if at 65 instead of starting at 55).
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Old 12-29-2011, 06:19 PM   #26
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For me ER was not a target to reach, but more like a state of life I wanted because it enabled me to do things that were difficult because of work
Exactly. You do have to have some idea how you will spend your time in retirement. I had plenty of things to keep me occupied once I retired, and I've since even added to that list. So I am never bored, and certainly not disappointed in the least with the decision to retire. You only have so much time on this earth......why spend all of it doing what someone else wants you to do? You worked hard and long to achieve FI........take some satisfaction in that, and enjoy the rest of your life!
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Old 12-29-2011, 06:20 PM   #27
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Let's see, which one of these situations is more of an anticlimax:
1. Waking up on Monday morning and realizing that you can surf all day if you have the muscles to do so.

2. Waking up on Monday morning and realizing that you have to go to work.
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Old 12-29-2011, 08:00 PM   #28
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As I prepare to return to work next week, with almost six more months of work ahead of me before I am done, I am having a hard time imagining being disappointed when I am retired. Very hard.
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Old 12-29-2011, 08:52 PM   #29
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I found out last year when my father-in-law got ill and died and we had to deal with his estate that was 11 hours away by car and just as long by air that retirement is still real life. It's not some utopia filled with endless fun and excitement. You still get sick, you still have to deal with people and family, you still get depressed, anxious, etc. It's life without work. I definitely prefer it to life with work, but it's not going to fix your life.

Temper your expectations. I think we all use a lot of superlatives to describe retirement, and it is great, but it's not magic. if you're generally happy and optimistic, you'll continue to be. If you're depressed and sad, you'll stay that way too unless work was the only source of that. What makes retirement great is the ability to do what you want when you want. That is still a lot of responsibility for the retiree.
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Old 12-30-2011, 12:22 AM   #30
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I LOVE being FIRE'd!!! Never was happy being a wage slave and my periods of self-employment were stress inducing. My problem is more dealing with the realities of being older. The future always seemed endless to me. I'm only 58, but it's dawning on me that my time & (especially) energy have limits.
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Old 12-30-2011, 09:12 AM   #31
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I've been running my FIRE spreadsheet for 5 years, actively thinking about it for the past 10 and now that I'm actually there it's a bit of a let down. There have been other things that have taken me few years to accomplish and I know that after they were achieved, and the initial euphoria of success, I felt as if I'd lost something. So once your spreadsheets or FIRECALC etc said you could actually retire was it a bit of an anticlimax?
I'd say not. As far as my main ER spreadsheet goes, I have had to maintain different parts of it since I ERed. Sure, the part of it which projected my investment income did not have to be run with several trial-and-error scenarios. But the expense budget part of it along with my year-long budget part still needs to be monitored often. The part which monitors my estimated income taxes always needs to be monitored because it changes as often as I get irregular cap gains distributions.

Because I was working part-time for the last 7 years of work, including only 2 days a week from 2007-2008, switching from that to working zero days a week was hardly a shock to my system. Work had become a nuisance to doing the other things I had been doing on the 5 days I was not working, interfering with them and often causing scheduling conflicts.
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Old 12-30-2011, 10:12 AM   #32
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I found out last year when my father-in-law got ill and died and we had to deal with his estate that was 11 hours away by car and just as long by air that retirement is still real life. It's not some utopia filled with endless fun and excitement. You still get sick, you still have to deal with people and family, you still get depressed, anxious, etc. It's life without work. I definitely prefer it to life with work, but it's not going to fix your life.

Temper your expectations. I think we all use a lot of superlatives to describe retirement, and it is great, but it's not magic. if you're generally happy and optimistic, you'll continue to be. If you're depressed and sad, you'll stay that way too unless work was the only source of that. What makes retirement great is the ability to do what you want when you want. That is still a lot of responsibility for the retiree.
How very true! I remember there were some posts about the same thing. Yes, the problems with w*rk are gone, but those might not be the biggest problems for all individuals.
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Old 12-30-2011, 12:19 PM   #33
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I don't have the insight that many people on this forum do (I am only about 4.5 months into it), but I think "adjustment" is a whole lot better word to use to describe it than "disappointment".
I agree with this as well...

At just over 7 months into my FIRE. The biggest question for me has become "Why was I so worried about this?". I reviewed my ER to death... from every angle and through every scenario. (It didn't help that the few people, I confided in, were dissuasive.)

Now, however, the very thought of going back to work is almost physically repulsive to me. On the rare day that I wake up with nothing on the schedule, or with a hint of melancholy... I only need to think about my previous life to I snap out of it.

Then, with a shake of the head and a "whew," I grab the leash and take the dog for a walk.
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Old 12-30-2011, 01:21 PM   #34
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Originally Posted by flyfishnevada View Post
I found out last year when my father-in-law got ill and died and we had to deal with his estate that was 11 hours away by car and just as long by air that retirement is still real life. It's not some utopia filled with endless fun and excitement. You still get sick, you still have to deal with people and family, you still get depressed, anxious, etc. It's life without work. I definitely prefer it to life with work, but it's not going to fix your life..
Very true, but one doesn't have to deal with life's other problems while trying to balance a stressful work environment that is not sympathetic to problems outside of work.
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Old 12-30-2011, 01:44 PM   #35
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It's not some utopia filled with endless fun and excitement. You still get sick,
That's for sure. I have the Cold from Hades right now, so bad that I couldn't sleep at all last night. I am utterly miserable and don't feel like going out. I feel pretty contagious and I don't want my sweetie to catch it.

It's still a lot better than having to go to work like this, though. I can sit here and doze, stay warm, and get better without feeling guilty about it. I think this is the first cold I have had since retirement.

Sorry for the whine!
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Old 12-30-2011, 02:52 PM   #36
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I feel pretty contagious and I don't want my sweetie to catch it.
He's supposed to wear a facemask when he comes over with decongestants, antihistamines, acetaminophen, chicken soup, chick flicks, and foot massages...
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Old 12-30-2011, 02:58 PM   #37
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He's supposed to wear a facemask when he comes over with decongestants, antihistamines, acetaminophen, chicken soup, chick flicks, and foot massages...
I'll just be happy if he doesn't catch it too, so that I don't have to do the above for him.
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Old 12-30-2011, 03:00 PM   #38
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That's the best thing. Even though you still have problems and issue to deal with, you don't have to do it while juggling work. I was in a mood when I wrote that and it seems a little glum, but it's true. Retirement is not a cure all. But it is fantastic. It's really as good as you let it be. If you expect it to be more than it is, retirement might be dissapointing.

Get better, W2R!!!
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Old 12-30-2011, 03:12 PM   #39
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I feel your pain (literally).

My daughter started daycare a few months ago, and I think I've been sick more in those months than the last decade.

The cough from the latest cold has been keeping me up at night (like I needed more breaks in my sleep than my daughter provides ). Thankfully I have discovered Robitussen with Codeine.

I've been near useless for the last two weeks at work, but I'm turning the corner now.



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That's for sure. I have the Cold from Hades right now, so bad that I couldn't sleep at all last night. I am utterly miserable and don't feel like going out. I feel pretty contagious and I don't want my sweetie to catch it.

It's still a lot better than having to go to work like this, though. I can sit here and doze, stay warm, and get better without feeling guilty about it. I think this is the first cold I have had since retirement.

Sorry for the whine!
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Old 12-30-2011, 03:27 PM   #40
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The FI part of being FIRE'D ended up being the most important factor. After decades of worrying about the next layoff or quarterly sales quota's I feel no pressure at work. (evidenced by the fact I'm posting here during the last hours before the year end closing).
As a matter of fact I actually enjoy my job. The funny thing is that my clients and peers treat me very well. This is due in no small part to my attitude.
Being FI has actually created a new lease on my working life. It's fun.
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