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Think you'll do that in ER? Maybe not
Old 05-31-2016, 01:33 PM   #1
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Think you'll do that in ER? Maybe not

I think it's hard to know before you retire what activity you'll most want to do post-retirement.

There are activities we pursue to release stress from work, sometimes without realizing it. Once work is out of the picture, that counterbalance might lose its attraction.

I mention this because I see a fair number of posts by pre-retirees that say something along the lines of "I want to spend a lot of my time in retirement doing _________." To my mind, that's work talking. They might feel differently once they retire.

For example, throughout much of my work life, I collected memorabilia. It relaxed me. Once I retired, I lost almost all interest, and now my focus is on selling most of what I collected.

Do you have a similar story?
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Old 05-31-2016, 01:46 PM   #2
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Yep.

I read a lot while working and thought I'd do even more once I had the opportunity. Turns out once I could do whatever I wanted I had no interest in reading. That changed over time and I now read quite a bit, but I didn't pick up a book until I'd been retired for about three years.
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Old 05-31-2016, 01:55 PM   #3
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I thought I would be doing a lot of woodworking and photography when I first retired a little more than 2 years ago. I do these things, but not as much as would like and not as much as the yard work that seems to be taking over my life. The problem is that things take longer to do after you retire.
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Old 05-31-2016, 02:12 PM   #4
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Another one here. I confused distractions with interests, but did not realize this until the stress from work was gone and I was no longer interested in the distractions.
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Old 05-31-2016, 02:21 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Focus View Post
Do you have a similar story?
Similar. Before retirement I was very active with radio control (R/C) airplanes, both building and flying. After a stressful week, going down in the basement and spending a couple of days building a new airplane was very relaxing. First flights are never relaxing, but after confirming that everything works the flying part is relaxing too, as is just goofing off at the flying site with the other club members.

After retirement I lost almost all interest in it and ended up selling/giving away/throwing out almost everything but the small tools. Those are still useful for other tasks that arise occasionally.

Now I find that I'm renewing an interest in electric R/C flying machines, both helicopters and airplanes. Just today I was wondering if that's because what I really got tired of was the mess of glow fuels (they leave an oily mess on the airplane that is a pain to clean up) and having to drive a half hour or more in heavy traffic to the flying site. Building airplanes out of balsa wood creates an amazing amount of dust and I was tired of that too.

Now with the smaller electrics and a larger back yard than I've ever had the opportunity arises to step out the back door, fly for a while, and go back inside. Just put the batteries on charge and I'm done. An example is this Pitts S-1S - buy it, charge the battery, bind to your transmitter (a 30-second process), and it's ready to fly. And according to the video it flies very well indeed! I'll probably end up buying one of those or something similar.

Or maybe I'm just getting lazy.

Pitts video: E-flite UMX Pitts S-1S BNF Basic RC Airplane with AS3X Technology | Horizon Hobby
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Old 05-31-2016, 02:22 PM   #6
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Quote:
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I confused distractions with interests
That's a great way to put it.
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Old 05-31-2016, 04:13 PM   #7
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I found my list of ideas of things to do after retirement. I'm pretty sure it was a mix of things I'd like to do and things that could keep me busy because I have things like contracting, which I've done none of and had zero interest, from the day I left. I have things like "write a book" even though it's never been much of a desire.


I guess the thing that surprises me most is lack of travel. I've taken a few nice trips including two to Europe but not the extent I thought I might. I found I really don't like the flying experience, so I'm not as excited about going different places. I suppose the answer would be to get an RV and drive all around, but my cats don't travel well in cars and I don't want to find out they do poorly in an RV too.
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Old 05-31-2016, 04:29 PM   #8
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Oh me too! I thought for sure I would spend time gardening, write a book, take up the piano again, work towards an MBA, and learn Mexican Spanish. Actually those were just a few of about two dozen things on a list I made several years before retiring.

I haven't done ANY of those things, and I am thrilled to report that even so, I am having a blissfully happy retirement.
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Old 05-31-2016, 04:36 PM   #9
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I'm doing pretty much what I thought I would. Playing lot's of golf.
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Old 05-31-2016, 05:06 PM   #10
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It's been a little over a year since I ER'd, so maybe I'm still in the honeymoon phase.

The one thing I thought I'd be doing more in retirement, that I'm not, is running. I'm still running, and trained sufficiently over the winter / Spring to do the Broad Street Run a month ago, but I'm not nearly as regimented in my training as I thought I would be. I guess for me, running was efficient exercise (burn a lot of calories in a relatively short time) and stress relief. Now there is little to no stress, and I have time to pursue other forms of exercise. I still do some sort of physical activity 5-6 days/week, but this time of year there is a lot more paddling, biking, and hiking than running.
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Old 05-31-2016, 05:32 PM   #11
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Before I retired I found motorcycling a wonderful way to handle the stress. It requires total concentration while you are doing it (assuming one wants to stay alive) and I found that a long ride after a difficult work week was a wonderful way to put that stress behind. After ER I found the interest on riding diminishing gradually as the stress went away and I finally sold the bikes when I looked at the mileage and realized I'd only ridden 200 miles in the entire year.
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Old 05-31-2016, 06:53 PM   #12
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Mom told me not to believe men who tell you what they will do after retirement, they aren't lying they just don't do it. Her boyfriend had a house built on a golf course got a golf cart going to golf in retirement. Mine got a house on a river, going to fish every day. She was right they don't do it. I didn't make plans but at least I knew his were just wishful thinking. He got a boat for the river and can't fish when weather is very bad, river it too high, fish aren't running, hand needed operation, boat broken down, cat needs to go to the vet, etc so maybe fish 10-15 days a year like I and mom expected.
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Old 05-31-2016, 07:04 PM   #13
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I expected to play more golf but not as much as I am ending up playing. I got hooked up with a few good but different groups, two out of our home course and a traveling group, so I play 2-3 times a week. I also recently took up doing some volunteer work and also spend more time doing things around the house... but at my pace.. not rushing things because i have to go to work tomorrow.

My dad once said that he was so busy in retirement that he didn't know how he ever found time to work... at the time I thought it was the lamest thing that he ever said... but now I understand.
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Old 05-31-2016, 07:22 PM   #14
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My goals have changed after retirement, also. After retiring, I have discovered that life is ever changing and dynamic. When I was working, life did not change much. Same old, same old. I have learned to live more in the moment and it does not take grand things to make me happy. Friends are very important, more so than when I was working. I also am much busier now. You have to be a self starter and push ahead to do things outside of your old comfort zone.
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Old 05-31-2016, 08:28 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Philliefan33 View Post
It's been a little over a year since I ER'd, so maybe I'm still in the honeymoon phase.

The one thing I thought I'd be doing more in retirement, that I'm not, is running. I'm still running, and trained sufficiently over the winter / Spring to do the Broad Street Run a month ago, but I'm not nearly as regimented in my training as I thought I would be. I guess for me, running was efficient exercise (burn a lot of calories in a relatively short time) and stress relief. Now there is little to no stress, and I have time to pursue other forms of exercise. I still do some sort of physical activity 5-6 days/week, but this time of year there is a lot more paddling, biking, and hiking than running.
I've had a similar experience with my training. When I was working, I planned my training, because I had to - fit in a run at lunch, etc. Now that I'm retired, I can train whenever I want to, so it's easy to lose that focus. Like you, I'm still very active, but not nearly as focused or structured as I used to be.
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Old 05-31-2016, 08:31 PM   #16
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I had in mind I would be volunteering for things that mattered to me. A vacation and typical nonprofit bureaucracy entering the picture unexpectedly changed my mind.

OTOH, I had no idea I would love reading--all nonfiction--as much as I do. I was just thinking today that I've read between 60-70 books over the last year. I've loved every minute of it.
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Old 05-31-2016, 09:49 PM   #17
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......
My dad once said that he was so busy in retirement that he didn't know how he ever found time to work... at the time I thought it was the lamest thing that he ever said... but now I understand.
So true.

I'm not sure I'm doing anything I thought I would do in retirement, currently I blame it on closing/finishing/dealing with stuff I simply put off when working, and some sibling drama..
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Old 06-01-2016, 11:42 AM   #18
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I had / maybe still have great plans to pursue existing & new hobby-type activities once I left the office for good.

Although I've only been ER'd for 12 months (thank you ER forum ) I find too many distractions from those "plans". Most involve goofing off or other activities not associated with those hobbies.

I might just cast some of them off, having 12 - 14 hrs a day back in my life is something I guess I'm not used to yet. I have only myself to blame.

_B
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Old 06-01-2016, 11:43 AM   #19
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Things are meant to be changing and not just hobby. I was planning to go to Canada next year to take advantage of the strong dollar but I think next year I will go to UK again. So many things to do here and I might substitute the train ride from Vancouver to Alberta with the train around the Swiss Alps. It's cheaper for one thing. Since I never been to Switzerland, I might as well try. My husband is more keen to go to UK vs Canada.
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Old 06-01-2016, 12:45 PM   #20
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Before I retired I found motorcycling a wonderful way to handle the stress. It requires total concentration while you are doing it (assuming one wants to stay alive) and I found that a long ride after a difficult work week was a wonderful way to put that stress behind. After ER I found the interest on riding diminishing gradually as the stress went away and I finally sold the bikes when I looked at the mileage and realized I'd only ridden 200 miles in the entire year.
My grand dad was a sailor, my dad was a sailor and I sailed from the time I was 6 years old. Won all kinds of racing trophies etc. as a kid. Sailing was my entire non-work life!

Got a nice big, comfy boat about 15 years ago. I never planned a 'sail around the world' thing, but now that I've RE'd, all we do is sit on it, eat, swim and take naps. Even though we're on it almost every day, we hardly ever leave the harbor anymore...it's just sort of become our summer home.

DW thinks I just burned out; part of it is, as I get older, the amount of work it requires underway; lots of pulling, tugging and jumping around.

We're getting serious about going to power but even then, our focus of late is lounging on a boat vs going out in it.

Maybe I'm just getting old. Glad my dad never got to see me like this!!
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