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Old 02-18-2010, 10:00 AM   #21
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For me social interactions are really important maybe because I am not at all an extrovert. I volunteer at a few things every week and get more out of my time there than do the people who get the "benefit" of my time. I had a little posse of very close friends, but many of them have moved away in the last few years--great to have people to go visit, not so great if you want to do something spur-of-the-moment with someone. For some of us being alone too much = lonely.
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Old 02-18-2010, 11:46 AM   #22
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For me social interactions are really important maybe because I am not at all an extrovert. I volunteer at a few things every week and get more out of my time there than do the people who get the "benefit" of my time. I had a little posse of very close friends, but many of them have moved away in the last few years--great to have people to go visit, not so great if you want to do something spur-of-the-moment with someone. For some of us being alone too much = lonely.
This is also my situation. I have many casual friends locally, but only tend to see them if I am doing the activity where we met-usually one sort of other of dancing. This has become harder physically since an auto accident several years ago. I am fine, but various joints start to complain after a while, and I used to be an energizer bunny so I can't quite get used to the new (apparent) reality. I also read more now, and this is a solitary activity.

I see my lover usually twice a week, my regular dance partner 2 or occasionally 3 times. I have local kids and see them maybe 2 times monthly on average. I have casual neighborhood friends that I chat with often and I enjoy this. I have one close friend that lives about 45 minutes away. But many of my very close friends have moved away, or in some cases died. I am close to a brother and sister, and talk on the phone to the brother and my brother-in-law usually at least weekly.

My happiest times were when I lived with my family, and close were when I lived in other group settings. I have never found that others imposed on me, I usually appreciated having someone to go out for a coffee with or get or give some help with a project. But young people are much more flexible than older ones (including me!), so I hesitate to look for a group setting now.

Ha
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Old 02-18-2010, 11:55 AM   #23
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I never thought much about the importance of friends till I got a house of my own a few years ago and started telecommuting. That meant all day at home alone, except for a short lunch break. I learned quick that loneliness is a terrible, terrible thing. Friends and family shot straight to the top of my priority list, and now I really treasure the people who can tolerate having me around.
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Old 02-19-2010, 05:46 PM   #24
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I agree with the author that having friends can boost your happiness.

But I doubt if using a fixed allocation for your time (x% for friends, y% for finances, z% time health) is a good idea. There are times when you need to be 100% concentrated on your finances or health and times when they don't need much of your attention.

FWIW I'm an INTP. Social contact usually drains my batteries and I need a lot of alone time to recharge.
But meeting my friends, most of who are still those from my college days, not to drink or eat (I'm not a people person) but to spend some time together doing things we all like, is one of the secrets of my happiness.
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Old 02-19-2010, 10:13 PM   #25
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If there's one thing in my life that's missing; It's the time I spend alone
Sailing on the cool and bright clear waters; There's lots of those friendly people
Showin me ways to go; And I never want to lose your inspiration
I couldn't agree with you more. It's definitely time for a cool change, even if others think you're just a lonesome loser.
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Old 02-19-2010, 11:56 PM   #26
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Read the article. We know Updegrave as a proponent of international diversification.

Important:
Quote:
...I spend too much time working and not enough keeping up with friends.
It is possible to do both. It is necessary to do both.
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Old 02-20-2010, 01:43 AM   #27
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I can spend plenty of time alone and with my DH and be perfectly happy. But, there is nothing like spending time with friends. When we lived in a large city and worked and were raising kids, we didn't have time for a lot of friends. We had a few good, long-time friends. Since we retired and moved to a small town, we have more friends than ever and have reconnected with people I grew up with. Also, we volunteer and have met some lovely people as well as having the best neighbors ever. Its very satisfying.
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Old 02-20-2010, 09:11 AM   #28
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I can spend plenty of time alone and with my DH and be perfectly happy. But, there is nothing like spending time with friends. Also, we volunteer and have met some lovely people as well as having the best neighbors ever. Its very satisfying.
The quote above describes us as well. In fact, I have to have some alone time daily to thrive.

I agree with the article, a condensed version of How to Retire Happy, Wild & Free (Zelinski) and Work Less, Live More (Clyatt) - two essential retirement reads IMO.

I look forward to "retiring" where too much of my time is devoted to work, even what's on my mind away from work, and people who will mostly not matter to me once I quit my work role. DW and I will have to join groups and/or volunteer to meet other people, a journey that we look forward to. Retirement is most certainly much more than reaching a $ nest egg though IMO.
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Old 02-20-2010, 11:52 AM   #29
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My "need" for friends hasn't changed since retirement. I don't see the correlation. Anyhow, the friends I had while working (6 months ago) are still my friends.
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Old 02-20-2010, 05:55 PM   #30
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I see my lover usually twice a week,

Kudos to you Ha for telling it like it is . Most of us skirt around the issue with SO or dear friend or companion when what we really mean is lover . Congratulations on being so upfront in a very good way !
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Old 02-20-2010, 06:17 PM   #31
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Thanks Moemg. It so often seems to me that only Europeans and gays/lesbians are allowed to have lovers. The rest of us must content ourselves with a denatured description of what is really a very beautiful relationship, and a relationship that many of us need.

Another aspect of it is when a woman appoints me to be her lover, I appreciate it and it helps me to be reminded that I should try to do my best, realizing that she has given me both a gift and a responsibility.

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Old 02-21-2010, 11:23 AM   #32
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I never thought much about the importance of friends till I got a house of my own a few years ago and started telecommuting. That meant all day at home alone, except for a short lunch break. I learned quick that loneliness is a terrible, terrible thing. Friends and family shot straight to the top of my priority list, and now I really treasure the people who can tolerate having me around.
I found this post especially interesting because telecommuting had the exact opposite effect on me. When I am working from home, I almost never leave the house for lunch because I do not want to see other people. One down side that I have noted: Time that I spend alone seems to fly by much more quickly than I would like.
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Old 02-21-2010, 12:34 PM   #33
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Look, I'm a recluse. I generally hate people as a whole, but having a few good friends that you can share your hobbies with or shoot the bull with over a beer or whatever makes life a little sweeter. I know people that have 400 "friends" and seem to know everyone. They are always hanging with somebody and rarely alone. Ugh! On the other hand I have a few friends and we have some shared hobby or lifestyle or whatever, but we can go months without seeing each other and that's OK. I could use a few more. For instance I don't have a fishing buddy. While I like fishing alone, its nice to share the experience sometimes, especially when the other guy and you look at the world in a similar way. In another thread I posted that our goal (DW and I) is to get some more friends. Not a herd of them, just a few close friends to hang out with, share good times, etc. Still, no one should be telling anybody whats best for them or suggesting how many or what kind of friends you should have. If you want none, I get that. If you want a constant stream of them so your never alone, I don't get it but you should do what makes you happy. Not what some writer says should make you happy.
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Old 02-21-2010, 01:23 PM   #34
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"Thanks Moemg. It so often seems to me that only Europeans and gays/lesbians are allowed to have lovers. The rest of us must content ourselves with a denatured description of what is really a very beautiful relationship, and a relationship that many of us need."

Ha: Iīm not sure I get what you mean..... Despite me being an European.
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Old 02-21-2010, 01:52 PM   #35
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I have a handful of local friends who are wonderful supports on a daily basis. I try to be as good a friend in return. I also have distant friends acquired by living in different areas over the years. We e-mail and visit once in awhile(I just got home from visiting a couple in Houston that I first met in Virginia in 1979). They are all essential to my happiness, and I value them as I would my closest, most beloved family member.
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Old 02-21-2010, 01:55 PM   #36
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I canīt say I have CLOSE friends. Maybe two or three good ones left from work. They still at it.

The funny thing is that I donīt socialize with them; but with my wifeīs friends instead. I have nothing in common with them. Our weekly get-together bores me to pieces. I accompany my wife and try to look interested and amused.

I fail miserably. And my wife gets mad at me for not making the least effort to appear to be having a good timeShe says that I seem to be somewhere else, spaced out. She says that if I canīt help looking spaced out at least do it with a grin and looking at them!

But then Iīm sure they wouldnīt give a damn if I didnīt meet with them.
They consider me an elitist prick. And too pro American to boot!

Finally-Iīm quite another person when there is just 2 or 3 of us together: much more friendlier, interested, amused. The reason is that I like conversation -which doesnīt seem possible every Friday with no less than 10 or 12 of us together in a noisy coffee bar..... which is precisely where all of them -but me- want to go.

Sorry, this turned out to be rather long winded. But I neede to tell somebody.
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Old 02-21-2010, 02:31 PM   #37
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Just for you Vicente

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Old 02-22-2010, 06:36 AM   #38
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Thanks BBB! Arenīt they the very best ever?
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Old 02-23-2010, 05:58 AM   #39
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I can spend plenty of time alone and with my DH and be perfectly happy. But, there is nothing like spending time with friends.
We feel this way too. Sort of a balance between two extremes. Another interesting aspect for me. My semi-ER job is working with people about 20 to 30 years younger and I've enjoyed the friendships, even if more on a working basis. Also have friends 20 years older. Let's see, got my fishing buddy, my jetskiing buddy, my kiting friends, some hangin out friends, some neighbor friends, friends at the Y, and my best friend (DW). I'm set
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Old 02-23-2010, 08:30 AM   #40
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Its really nice to have young friends. When I worked, I worked with a lot of young engineers just out of college and also in their 30s (the ages of my own boys). They were always fun at work and in social situations. In fact, they introduced me to jello shots! LOL I'd never heard of them; once I was introduced to them, I offered to bring some for the next office party. I probably spent $60 on exotic liquor to make fancy jello shots (they turned out much better than the bar variety!). Anyway, it was fun. I still get an occasional email from these kids asking about how we're enjoying retirement, etc. And, they want to know when we'll be in town so we can get together.
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