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transition to full-time retirement
Old 09-09-2006, 10:16 PM   #1
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transition to full-time retirement

I retired back in March 2003. But I found myself sucked into some short term consulting within a couple of months. I didn't like it. Consulting involves someone else's deadlines and pressure. When I started consulting I was thinking that I could control the schedule so it couldn't get in the way of retirment. . . but it did.

So I retired again in November of 2003. In March 2004, I let some colleagues talk me into helping them form a start-up company. My proviso was that I would work no more than 3 days a week, no more than 6 hours a day, and no more than 2 weeks a month. And I got to pick the hours, days and weeks. They agreed and I was doing that for a healthy 1/4 time salary until March of this year. When I agreed to the 1/4 time gig I figured how can that little work get in the way of retirement . . . but it did.

So in March of this year I handed in my resignation. Rather than accept it, they asked if I would reconsider if I worked no more than 1 day a week for the same pay. I agreed to do that thinking there is no way that this little work can get in the way of retirement . . . but it did.

So last month I resigned again. This time, they asked if I would be willing to represent them by attending 3 or 4 conferences a year that they would pay for. I'm thinking, how can that be a problem?

Sooner or later, I'll get this retirement thing right.
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Re: transition to full-time retirement
Old 09-09-2006, 10:36 PM   #2
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Re: transition to full-time retirement

Quote:
Originally Posted by sgeeeee
I retired back in March 2003. But I found myself sucked into some short term consulting...When I started consulting I was thinking that I could control the schedule so it couldn't get in the way of retirment. . . but it did.
Hey, not everyone succeeds on their first try.

Quote:
Originally Posted by sgeeeee
So I retired again in November of 2003. In March 2004, I let some colleagues talk me into helping them form a start-up company. My proviso was that I would work no more than 3 days a week, no more than 6 hours a day, and no more than 2 weeks a month.... I figured how can that little work get in the way of retirement . . . but it did.
OK, so you weren't successful on your second attempt. The third time is the charm...

Quote:
Originally Posted by sgeeeee
So in March of this year I handed in my resignation. Rather than accept it, they asked if I would reconsider if I worked no more than 1 day a week for the same pay. I agreed to do that thinking there is no way that this little work can get in the way of retirement . . . but it did.
Uh Oh. This is not looking good...

Quote:
Originally Posted by sgeeeee
So last month I resigned again. This time, they asked if I would be willing to represent them by attending 3 or 4 conferences a year that they would pay for. I'm thinking, how can that be a problem?
Maybe it's time for you to give up and just work until you die figure out what you want to do when you grow up.

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Re: transition to full-time retirement
Old 09-10-2006, 12:30 AM   #3
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Re: transition to full-time retirement

Thanks for the congratulations and encouragement. I appreciate it. :P
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Re: transition to full-time retirement
Old 09-10-2006, 05:52 AM   #4
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Re: transition to full-time retirement

sgeeee,

You are approaching this from the wrong perspective. Start showing up drunk or, at least, look like you've been drinking. If you can't stomach a little booze in the morning, get a bottle of gin and cut it 90% with water. Use it as an after shave and you'll smell like you've had a double for breakfast.

When you get fired, you might be able to collect unemployment. That would be a cash bonus.

Just trying to help.
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Re: transition to full-time retirement
Old 09-10-2006, 07:26 AM   #5
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Re: transition to full-time retirement

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Originally Posted by sgeeeee
Thanks for the congratulations and encouragement. I appreciate it. :P
Sgeeee, I thought you were complaining about your inability to fully commit to ER and crying out to the forum for help. I was being sarcastic and trying a little reverse psychology to help you see the error of your ways.

After reviewing my comments, it is clear that they lack the compassion and sensitivity often reflected in your posts. I suppose the only thing I can do now is to blame it on Clinton.



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Re: transition to full-time retirement
Old 09-10-2006, 08:00 AM   #6
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Re: transition to full-time retirement

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Originally Posted by REWahoo!

After reviewing my comments, it is clear that they lack the compassion and sensitivity often reflected in your posts.* I suppose the only thing I can do now is to blame it on Clinton.
You are so right. If Clinton had just managed to totally destroy the economy with the tech bubble sgeeee would be out of work today. Unfortunately, there was enough life left in the "old girl" for GWB to save.
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Re: transition to full-time retirement
Old 09-10-2006, 10:18 AM   #7
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Re: transition to full-time retirement

Quote:
Originally Posted by sgeeeee
So I retired again in November of 2003. ..So last month I resigned again. This time, they asked if I would be willing to represent them by attending 3 or 4 conferences a year that they would pay for. I'm thinking, how can that be a problem?

...Thanks for the congratulations and encouragement. I appreciate it.
Don't take it personally, but my first reaction to your post was like REWahoo's. Felt like you were posting more for feedback on why you are having so much trouble giving up the work connection, rather than one of those jubilant, "Hey, I finally retired!" threads.

Here's hoping your work-thing is for all the right reasons -- enjoyment, extra income stream, ESRBob type stuff etc. Not that easy to tell from your OP.

At any rate, congrats and enjoy.
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Re: transition to full-time retirement
Old 09-10-2006, 10:45 AM   #8
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Re: transition to full-time retirement

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Originally Posted by sgeeeee

Sooner or later, I'll get this retirement thing right.* *
Yeah, you and the Rolling Stones!
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Re: transition to full-time retirement
Old 09-10-2006, 11:00 AM   #9
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Re: transition to full-time retirement

I'm finding that fixed commitments are what get in the way of retirement, whether or not they can be considered "work."*

When you're free to go anywhere at any time, any commitment to be somewhere at a particular time is like a fly in the ointment.

For me, it's jazz gigs and rehearsals.* I love them, and it's the main "this is what I do" thing, but "let's drive there and camp for a week" is often interrupted by "wait, I have a gig on the 23rd."

OTOH having a few fixed time/place commitments helps you to appreciate your freedom, so maybe the conferences will be a good thing.
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Re: transition to full-time retirement
Old 09-10-2006, 11:14 AM   #10
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Re: transition to full-time retirement

Quote:
Originally Posted by sgeeeee
Sooner or later, I'll get this retirement thing right.* *
Hey, no matter how much you have to sneak around to do them, no one will abuse you for picking up the occasional $500 book report...
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Re: transition to full-time retirement
Old 09-10-2006, 12:19 PM   #11
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Re: transition to full-time retirement

Quote:
Originally Posted by TromboneAl
I'm finding that fixed commitments are what get in the way of retirement, whether or not they can be considered "work."

OTOH having a few fixed time/place commitments helps you to appreciate your freedom, so maybe the conferences will be a good thing.
That's an interesting observation.

Looking at it from a semi-retirement perspective , I might someday have a choice between working 2 days a week (.4 FTE), 7 to 10 days per month every month, or 3 months a year full-time (also about .4 FTE). Which do you feel would get in the way of that feeling of spontaneity the least?
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Re: transition to full-time retirement
Old 09-10-2006, 12:22 PM   #12
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Re: transition to full-time retirement

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Originally Posted by Rich_in_Tampa
Looking at it from a semi-retirement perspective , I might someday have a choice between working 2 days a week (.4 FTE), 7 to 10 days per month every month, or 3 months a year full-time (also about .4 FTE). Which do you feel would get in the way of that feeling of spontaneity the least?
You can do two days a week and quit the third day.* It's a little hard to do the same when you're in the second day of the three-month commitment.

My spouse can handle a drill weekend without breaking a sweat. However that third day of a two-week commitment usually starts with a lot of whining oversleeping groaning sniveling difficulty at getting up & at 'em. (Sometimes I even feel a little guilty about going surfing before she's left for work, but it's her choice!) She knows herself far too well to get sucked into a three-month set of orders.

But you're setting us up with a strawman question.* You really should be asking "Would you prefer to do that by electrocution, gas chamber, or lethal injection?"
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Re: transition to full-time retirement
Old 09-10-2006, 12:35 PM   #13
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Re: transition to full-time retirement

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Originally Posted by Nords
You can do two days a week and quit the third day. It's a little hard to do the same when you're in the second day of the three-month commitment...
But you're setting us up with a strawman question. You really should be asking "Would you prefer to do that by electrocution, gas chamber, or lethal injection?"


I should clarify: the 3-month option would be spread out over the year, not 3 in a row (unless I intended that). This is the "locum tenens" option where I would fill in for absent physicians for month here and a month there, hopefully either someplace really interesting to visit, or near the kids and grandkids.

No setup or strawmen intended -- happily I don't consider my work to be toxic, just excessive.
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Re: transition to full-time retirement
Old 09-10-2006, 07:52 PM   #14
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Re: transition to full-time retirement

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rich_in_Tampa
That's an interesting observation.

Looking at it from a semi-retirement perspective , I might someday have a choice between working 2 days a week (.4 FTE), 7 to 10 days per month every month, or 3 months a year full-time (also about .4 FTE). Which do you feel would get in the way of that feeling of spontaneity the least?
Rich, is there a potential financial advantage to three months full time? i.e. could you prorate your medical licence fees and/or insurance? If you worked part of every week I'm sure that would not be possible.

You didn't say whether this would be clinical or academic work. If it's clinical work, you will need to avoid getting sucked into giving "just one or two classes" or writing "just one or two papers" or collaborating on "just one grant", all of which have the potential to turn into major time commitments.

As a physician who will be facing similar options my preference would be to work 7-10 days per month, for the following reasons:

1. I want the option to travel several times a year, when I feel like it, and may change my place of residence. This eliminates the two days a week option.
2. It would be a real shock to go from full time ER to full time work for 3 months.
3. The intermediate option would keep me in the loop with colleagues, friends and new developments.
4. It would also enable me to schedule other projects (e.g. nonclinical consulting using my MBA skills and administrative experience).

Either way it's a great position to be in!

Meadbh


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Re: transition to full-time retirement
Old 09-10-2006, 08:13 PM   #15
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Re: transition to full-time retirement

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Originally Posted by Meadbh

As a physician who will be facing similar options and my preference would be to work 7-10 days per month, for the following reasons:
Excellent points.

I think the 2.5 days per week would keep me just over half time and thus eligible for health insurance etc. so probably has a slight edge financially. But like Al noted, it might really start to feel like work after a while . And, it would make travel more difficult.

3 months a year, nicely spread out, would give tons of continuous free time, and I like that alot, though the transition from ER to work to ER would be abrupt. Given the locum tenens travel, it would also be more disruptive of domestic matters, away from home, etc. No health insurance with this one.

7-10 days a month would be less money, but health insurance is included albeit at a lower salary.

I'm at the point where I'll just have to see what presents itself at that point. I can probably negotiate come kind of favorable situation given the organizations needs and my "senior" position. It would be helpful to hear from anyone who has tried these scenarios on for size.
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Re: transition to full-time retirement
Old 09-10-2006, 08:23 PM   #16
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Re: transition to full-time retirement

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Originally Posted by 2B
sgeeee,

You are approaching this from the wrong perspective.* Start showing up drunk or, at least, look like you've been drinking.* If you can't stomach a little booze in the morning, get a bottle of gin and cut it 90% with water.* Use it as an after shave and you'll smell like you've had a double for breakfast.

When you get fired, you might be able to collect unemployment.* That would be a cash bonus.

Just trying to help.*

Now that sounds like good advice. And if it's not good, it will at least be fun.
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Re: transition to full-time retirement
Old 09-10-2006, 08:26 PM   #17
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Re: transition to full-time retirement

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Originally Posted by REWahoo!
. . .* I suppose the only thing I can do now is to blame it on Clinton.
At least we can agree on that. It's comforting to have your scapegoats even before you have a problem, isn't it?
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Re: transition to full-time retirement
Old 09-10-2006, 10:02 PM   #18
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Re: transition to full-time retirement

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I'm finding that fixed commitments are what get in the way of retirement, whether or not they can be considered "work."
Yeah. The problem is that certain kinds of activities require early committment. It doesn't matter whether they are work, volunteer activities, or recreation. Once you've committed, there may be undesirable consequences if a "better" gig comes along. Most of the volunteer archaeology projects I work on require a 1 week committment plus ususally 2 to 4 days of travel. I still do volunteer professional activities -- for example I am the editor of IEEE Microwave Magazine. I enjoy both of these activities and don't mind too much when one rarely interferes with the other. The problem I was having with 1/4 time work was that after scheduling all my enjoyable volunteer activities, I was boxed into working most of my available free days.

It turns out that the confernce attendance is a great opportunity for me to visit old friends and colleagues in interesting locations. (Next June the International Microwave Symposium is in Hawaii. I'll get to visit Nords. ) I end up attending three conferences a year as part of my editor gig, so I'm thinking this should work out well.

Quote:
Looking at it from a semi-retirement perspective , I might someday have a choice between working 2 days a week (.4 FTE), 7 to 10 days per month every month, or 3 months a year full-time (also about .4 FTE). Which do you feel would get in the way of that feeling of spontaneity the least?
I won't pretend to know what will be best for you, Rich, but here is some of my experience trying to develop a transitional retirement. I still like engineering. I'm pretty good at it and I have a lot of good friends, x-students, and research colleagues that I enjoy being with. So I have continued to try to find ways to include things I liked about engineering without including things I didn't like. Finding that balance has not been trivial. When I was working 3 days a week I started out working M, Tu, Wed so I would have a 4 day weekend even on the weeks I worked. That was great for awhile, but eventually I had to work on less pleasant problems. I found that it was more pleasant to get a day off after each day of work. But that creates a different kind of schedule issue. you can't plan any multi-day outings during the week. Cutting down to 1 day a week made it difficult to make a meaningful contribution. That's not rewarding. I have now decided that volunteer professional activities offer the best chance to balance the things I like about engineering with my other interests. I'm lucky enough that I don't need the money from work, so I'll do the volunteer work. My colleagues at the start-up will gladly support these efforts and all I need to do is put the company name on my name badge when I attend -- and file a report on what I learn.

Quote:
Hey, no matter how much you have to sneak around to do them, no one will abuse you for picking up the occasional $500 book report...
I still do 2 or 3 of those a year. That is no-brainer money. I read a manuscript I'm interested in, have the authority to influence and make it better, get a copy of the finished product, and $500 for my effort. I can do the reviewing whenever and wherever I want.
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Re: transition to full-time retirement
Old 09-11-2006, 12:40 AM   #19
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Re: transition to full-time retirement

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Originally Posted by sgeeeee
(Next June the International Microwave Symposium is in Hawaii.* I'll get to visit Nords. )*
Sounds great! I should be back from West Point by the first week in June.

Have you already seen the Big Island's petroglyphs, or did your avatar come from some other archeological site?
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Re: transition to full-time retirement
Old 09-11-2006, 09:31 PM   #20
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Re: transition to full-time retirement

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Sounds great!* I should be back from West Point by the first week in June.

Have you already seen the Big Island's petroglyphs, or did your avatar come from some other archeological site?
I've never been to Hawaii. DW and I havent' even begun to research the archaeology. We learned a little bit about it when we researched and visited Easter Island several years ago. We have done quite a bit of work on petroglyphs
http://www.golio.net/My_Homepage_Files/Page7.html
and will certainly have the Big Island glyphs on our must see list.

The avatar is actually from Spur Cross -- an archaeology site North of Phoenix -- but the spiral shows up in primitive petroglyphs all over the world.
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