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Sudden Epiphany
Old 03-04-2010, 08:07 AM   #1
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Sudden Epiphany

Not sure if this is the right subject thread or not, but.....did anyone who is currently FIRE, wake up one day (before ER), and say on THAT DAY...that's it...I'm otta here...and "retire" THAT DAY....no more job, business ownership etc ? I imagine that would take quite a bit of hutspagh.......just wondering.

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Old 03-04-2010, 09:15 AM   #2
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Yes, I made precisely that decision but then modified it. At the time I had mentally checked ER off for one to two more years since DW wanted to keep working for a while. But a couple of weeks after I became eligible for an unreduced Federal pension I woke up one morning and said "I'm done." (I always counted readiness for ER as achieved when as our portfolio and my pension was sufficient that both DW and I could retire and live the life we were accustomed to -- we were at that point.) The decision was so strong that I wanted to literally pull the plug that day but DW told me to cool my jets for a couple of days and consider whether a more reasonable notice was in order. After I thought about it I gave over three months notice (end of year). I was a 31 year, highly regarded employee at a senior level and realized a more measured exit was in order. Once I announced the decision I actually enjoyed the final months and had a great good bye party (another thing I hadn't really wanted).

The main reason for my initial "I'm done" decision is that despite liking most of my job, my peers, and my employees, the job was highly stressful. My epiphany was that I didn't need to live with the stress when a very attractive ER was in reach. Once I thought about it I realized the fixed notice would relieve the stress and it did. I did give notice the day after my epiphany.
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Old 03-04-2010, 09:22 AM   #3
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I suspect some of us "young dreamers" would be interested to see if anyone who had to rely completely (or almost completely) on their own investments were able to pull the plug this suddenly. Seems like that would take a lot more planning and forethought with your finances than simply knowing you have a "big enough" pension waiting for you on a certain date. Growing a large enough personal retirement savings nest egg to retire doesn't happen overnight or even in a couple of years of working on it.
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Old 03-04-2010, 10:07 AM   #4
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About 3 years before my eligibility, I made detailed calculations and extended budgets. Once that was done and refined, I realized it really was going to work with a comfortable margin. I then set a first out date and a most likely date. I was so eager to go then but still had to wait. Odd thing was during my last year, I wasn't feeling eager anymore. It was like the inevitability of the date made me very calm. I just ticked off each item in my list as the time came. Happy for it but not that just can't wait feeling. I left on my most likely date. No regrets and I don't miss it.
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Old 03-04-2010, 10:23 AM   #5
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I planned my retirement date almost a decade beforehand.
My supervisor knew informally for about 3-4 years beforehand.
I gave official notice and submitted my retirement papers six months and three days beforehand.

In other words, no. I like to be absolutely SURE before I do something life-changing like this, and as a matter of personal pride I wanted the transition to be completely seamless, which I believe it was. Plus, I was waiting for retirement eligibility so that I could get subsidized medical benefits. Giving lots of notice was what seemed best given my individual personality and job situation.

I don't see why someone else couldn't just retire on a moment's notice if that sort of thing works for them and their job situation.
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Old 03-04-2010, 10:32 AM   #6
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Not to me, but it did to a former co-worker of mine last November. He didn't like the way things had been changing on his job for the last several years. The steam just built up and built up, and last Thanksgiving over the weekend he ran the numbers, decided he could live on the pension, savings etc, he had. Monday morning, or maybe Tuesday, he was outta there.
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Old 03-04-2010, 10:55 AM   #7
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Didn't take any chutzpah on my part as I started saying that about 6 months before.
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Old 03-04-2010, 11:18 AM   #8
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I was going to wait till 55 but 16 months before I realized that there were a lot of changes that I did not like happening in the next little while. Also there were a couple of projects that were going to blow up in the next while and I would probably be involved in fixing them, so I checked my numbers for the fiftieth time on Wednesday, gave two months notice on Thursday, realized on Monday that I was going to have a crappy time for the two months as any remaining desire to go to work was really really dead. I was then able to do a fast handover and booked six weeks leave for the remaining notice time. Better than burning bridges in my opinion.
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Old 03-04-2010, 11:42 AM   #9
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I swim with a guy who worked climbing poles for 40 years or so +/- for the electric/power company from right out of high school at 18. That's alot of climbing.
Anyway, he was telling his story and said that one day he just couldn't get his leg to go up the pole rails/steps (whatever they are called). He looked so baffled as if he just didn't still know what happened to his legs and why he couldn't climb.
I asked him, "Well, how old were you when this happened?" thinking, since he seemed so confused as to what happened to him that he must have been pretty young for such a frightening happening, and you know his answer? 60 years old.
I still chuckle about this once in awhile. 60! My gosh..he should be celebrating that he was able to climb like that at such an advanced age at all!
Shows the crazy expectations and how hard some of us drive ourselves. And I was no better, so I'll shut up now.

Moral of this story: Sometimes we linger too long at the job than is good for us.
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Old 03-04-2010, 11:57 AM   #10
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I had planned for ER for years (10 or so) and the last few recent years we actually had enough in investments to enable me to quit, but I never could pull the plug for various reasons-- the biggest being I owned a profitable Chevrolet/DCJ dealership and wanted to milk it for a little more money.

My epiphany was when all my customers dried up late 2008/early 2009 and my business started losing money. Once the store started losing money it was a fairly easy decision to pull the plug, even though our portfolio took a huge it (about 40%) around the same time. I figured the portfolio would eventually recover (it has) so I ERed anyway at age 44.
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Old 03-04-2010, 12:18 PM   #11
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Yes and no. Yes I realized when the cr*p from the No Child Left Behind Law(or as we call it, ALL JOY LEFT BEHIND) began to obliterate any semblence of my job due to making impossible targets(abolishing the normal curve for people as opposed to products) that I couldn't stay on until I was 70 just for the fun of working with little kids. And yes when we realized rather suddenly that our original place of retirement would not work due to its isolation from both our kinds of people and our kinds of activities(though it is beautiful), and when we suddenly decided to chuck everything and move to the beach 600 miles away to the north, a 90 MINUTE DRIVE from Canada.

But, no, when to do this we had to first sell the first retirement property in the rural setting in the middle of a deep housing depression, and no when we realized that I cannot get the full pension until I was 59.5 and SS until I was 62.

So we avidly played the lottery every week for awhile. Didn't work.... But I will retire in 2011 no matter whether we sell the second property or not, though we probably can't move until we sell it.

So a big YES, and a small no.

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Old 03-04-2010, 12:58 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ferco View Post
Not sure if this is the right subject thread or not, but.....did anyone who is currently FIRE, wake up one day (before ER), and say on THAT DAY...that's it...I'm otta here...and "retire" THAT DAY....no more job, business ownership etc ? I imagine that would take quite a bit of hutspagh.......just wondering.

Ferco
Almost...once I had all my financial and benefits "ducks in line" and knew my FERS options backward and forwards...it was not a snap decision by any means.
I requested a 1-on-1 meeting with the director, asking for a transfer to escape a horrible predator. I asked to be able to finish out my remaining 1 year 10 months until I was eligible for an early out.
He didn't see it my way. So I politely informed him I have no other choice but to resign. I got a bona fide eye popper and jaw drop for that statement.
My resignation letter was in his email inbox within 24 hours. I gave 6 weeks notice and proceeded to leave with dignity and grace. And 3 extra paychecks.
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Old 03-04-2010, 01:45 PM   #13
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Close. I came in day after Labor day (ironic? - you decide) and gave my notice. However, I was beginning vacation on Friday of that week for the rest of my c@reer.

A month before, I had fully integrated into an assignment that I actually loved doing. It used the skills I had acquired over the past several years and I was good at it. I had my ducks in a row to ER (FIRE really) but I was actually having fun! Suddenly, i was jerked from the good assignment and given one that was not only boring but demeaning. I tried it for a month and said "adios, I'm not mad, I'm just outta here". EXTREMELY liberating. I look back and am actually glad it happened that way. Heck, I might still be there if it weren't for the crappy assignment.
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Old 03-04-2010, 02:42 PM   #14
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My decision as somewhat sudden, I had a cardiac event in Oct 07 and decided that I was not going to ignore it like a lot of folks do, usually to their detriment. I hung on until March 08 for a small buyout. I was 57 at the time, younger son had just started college. But whatever I had financially was going to be enough and now was the time. I liked my job and would have had to be dragged out if my previous manager was still there. Retirement is good. Playing with our grandchildren right now, time for a nap for everyone.
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Old 03-04-2010, 07:30 PM   #15
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I retired then went back for one more year . About six months into that year I knew it was a mistake but staffing was tight so I waited until Jan.1 and gave two weeks notice and never looked back !
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Old 03-04-2010, 07:32 PM   #16
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After reading all the material from a retirement seminar. I realized I could afford to take the next early out offer and I did.

Years ago, a cow*rker went out to lunch on a Friday and didn't come back. He was at a local establishment, drinking a margarita, and thinking about going back to the office when he decided to take advantage of an early out offer that ended at COB that day.
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Old 03-04-2010, 07:54 PM   #17
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Close. I came in day after Labor day (ironic? - you decide) and gave my notice
Funny, my last official day will be July 4th. Independence Day! Kind of appropriate.
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Old 03-04-2010, 08:11 PM   #18
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Ferco, everyone is different for sure. I have read all of the posts here and agree a lot with W2R. I look at ER as something that is carefully planned for and then successfully executed. I personally think that is in line with a life of LBYM and just an extension of that.
I know some folks that have done just what you mentioned. One friend of mine was given an action item in a meeting and told his boss that he wasn't going to do it. Of course the boss said "oh yes you will". He retired that afternoon.
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Old 03-04-2010, 08:31 PM   #19
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After reading all the material from a retirement seminar. I realized I could afford to take the next early out offer and I did.

Years ago, a cow*rker went out to lunch on a Friday and didn't come back. He was at a local establishment, drinking a margarita, and thinking about going back to the office when he decided to take advantage of an early out offer that ended at COB that day.
Reminds me of a favorite song of mine:

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Old 03-04-2010, 08:36 PM   #20
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No epiphany for me. All planned well ahead of the event.
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