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Discussion in 'Bad Dog Cafe' started by DrGnosis, Dec 8, 2018.
I'm in my first year away from being a wealthy teaching magnate.
I've retired several times before, but always had to go back to work, out of money. This time people send me money every month. It totals a bit less than I was making, but our house is paid off, our vehicles are paid off, and my time is mine. I think we'll be OK. If not, well, I've been broke before. . . .
I work for a large international corporation. 25+ years in the industry. I just hit 15 years with my current employer. I have learned so much about my field of work. More importantly I have learned about myself and evolved. I am not a "ladder climber" type. I like to stay under the radar, yet do a bang up job. I find it rewarding and fulfilling. The stress? Yes it comes and goes. Sometimes it's overbearing and I find myself looking for a way out. Then it passes and things are good. I would suggest that 90% of the stress comes from crappy managers who are clamouring to the top of the company. Questionable actual related job experience, but they have business and engineering degrees or some other. They don't always know what I do in my job, yet it seems they have a little book that tells them how to tweak me for ultra efficiency. Watching the financial cycles come and go, the management come and go, I see and understand the pattern. I have learned how far I am willing to go for the company. How much stress I can seem to tolerate before it does start to effect my personal life and health.
I have discovered ways to help me tolerate. To certain managers, I may appear to have become less of a "Team Player". I make a conscious effort to regulate my work hours. I work from home a lot more. I spend more time out in the field, with my customers, away from the office. I focus on my hobbies at home. I make a point of leaving job stuff until tomorrow if needed. Because at 4 PM I am going home to play guitar. Or work on my vintage car. Or just chat and laugh with my family. This is much less stressful. The corporate BS can suck the life and motivation right out of you. I have adapted. I am lucky as I am able to find ways in my job to shred some stress. To get away.
I would like to believe you're all wrong about dying early after retirement. I would like to believe that as soon as my next big financial commitment is paid for I will walk away from my job. I sure like the idea of not needing a job. Yet I look at my career and think, this is my area of expertise. This is what I do and what I have become. My brain craves the activity and stimulation. My wife and I raised two outstanding (yes I am biased here) sons. We have lived a great life. I've done everything I've wanted to. My job accounts for a large part of this. When I get stressed and too wrapped up in the job, I think about folks out there who feel trapped in their jobs and are worse off. There is little to no flexibility. I at least have flexibility. I am fortunate in a lot of ways.
My wife and I have a plan. We're working it along and it's coming together nicely. Will I retire before 60? Will I live well into my golden years? I can't be 100% sure. Life is a box of chocolates Forrest.
At the ripe old age of 22 I had a low 6 figure income, my new wife had an income not far from 6 figures. i still managed to drink away the bulk of it because i hated where i was living. ( DC area).
i gave it up and went home to less than 20k a year and my new wife decided to join me and she made about 15k a year.
We were both much happier and although we split up a couple years later, she remained in the KC area for another 25 years. I would not have survived staying in the DC area. The job was fine but i could not cope with the traffic and crowded conditions.
i still like to visit, just to remind myself i made the correct decision for my sanity. Lots of fond memories and friends!
Congrats! I'll be retiring from my mega-millions public teaching position as of August 15th.
When I took my first straight job at 30, I promised myself I'd keep playing and then have all the time in the world to play again when I retire.
No guarantees but I've kept my end of the bargain, so far.
Retired from low 6 figures with every benefit you could imagine at 56, 2 yrs ago.
Never was the super motivated ladder climber type but I was good at what I did and getting team members to be high performers, just couldn't learn to say No...I'll have to do something eventually
But won't have airports, hospitals, banks, E911 services, County Administrators...the list goes on, screaming at 2am their data services are down. I was the provider....usually nobody up the chain I could call!
Provided for us well, kids are grown and I wanted to know the grandkids.
I did... left a well payed boss job in London, even left my own company, and went back to Spain to live as a Landlord.
Now, I earn a sixth of what I was earning but benefits are inversely proportional: Live with my (soon ex-wife) and daughters witch I love, wake up (early) without rush, cook, putted my band again, started two more bands, time, I have time to live and do things...
There are advantages to just enjoying living.
I don't think anyone was implying that retirement "caused" an untimely death, just that death and retirement both tend to occur at an "advanced" age. Coincidence? Let's just hope so.....
You'll be fine, I worried about money when I first retired. When you don't work, your expenses are much less, after a while, you realize you're going to be fine. It's a process.
When I hauled heavy equipment, the first order of business was to be alive at the end of the day. A different kind of stress, but stress. When I finally gave that life up, and changed to a new profession, the money was less, a lot less, but over time I made the new job into an even better success financially than my equipment hauling days. I have no regrets.
I'd be the last person to ask. I never could make the math work out on how much the limited hours I have on this planet should be worth, vs how much anybody was willing to offer me. Had two reasonably successful, albeit low-paid careers, with other stuff like building houses in between. Always opted for less stress and more life with my family. My only ambition was to not be working, which I achieved by turning 62 about 5 years ago. Being retired and broke is infinitely better than working every day and being broke. I say, go for less stress, and if the stress is equal, go for more money. And get out as soon as you can.
I guess I will be the voice of dissent and say that living paycheck to paycheck and struggling to keep the electric bill paid is a type of stress, as well. Been there, done that, don't want to go back.
Granted, I'm 38. Will I change my mind in 5 years? Maybe.
Life is stress, period. All we get to decide is which direction it comes from.
I can't speak for anyone else. Allowing my life to be dictated by fear and greed, avoiding risk no matter what, taking the easiest way... those all come at a terrible cost.
The thing that always floors me is that once I accept the harder path, and stop chasing certainty, all kinds of good, cool things happen, things that would never have been possible otherwise.
I didn't take that trip I mentioned because my employer chose to be gracious. I was taking the trip regardless, and I simply notified them I was leaving in a couple months. I was planning to pursue other insurance options, COBRA for example, until I returned and found a new job. So many fears... What if I can't find a new job? What if it doesn't have insurance? Doesn't pay enough? What if this company fires me as soon as I tell them I'm leaving?
I could die crossing the street, too.
Lest you think the key to the story is the generous employer, another guy left eight months before I did, purportedly to travel. When he heard the company was holding my job for six months, he complained "how come they never asked me back". I have no idea, but possibly due to the fact that he was a weasel. He left, secretly wanting them to ask him to stay, at which point he'd probably have asked for more money. Fear and greed...
don't kid yourself. Take the money. Figure out your walkaway budget and go get it.
dont let other people drive your life. drive it yourself and be their driver if you have to... but, LIVE your life, don't slide along.
I've been broke and I've been not broke. I vote for being not broke.
Not exactly the same scenario, but after 10 years of mediocre paying jobs, I started my own company. For the past 8 years, I’ve been my own boss, spent lots of time with my kids, and I’m (finally) making more than what I used to. Self employment has its own challenges, but it’s worth it for me. I also realized that I will never really retire due to finances, but the low key lifestyle I have now makes up for it.
What kind of a job do you need when both the car and the house are free?
This is what I used to think...maaaannnn....if my house was paid for things would be so much easier....I've never had a car loan.
I lived a VERY simple life...stripped down...but a little math revealed that my mortgage/taxes, which were very low for this area at 750/month, were only 1/3 of my monthly expenses.
2k? yea I had a few teaching jobs that paid that .. almost killed me. ;-) The work not the money. One thing to keep in mind is that while most high paying jobs are stressful sometimes it’s just the craptastic place you are at. I had adjunct faculty positions at a few local schools where the culture was just rubbish. I took a summer position at a high profile place and thought “ oh the pressure will be even worse” Nope the academic equivalent of being fed peeled grapes. Motivated students, gregarious colleagues, a “Fellows” suite that was bigger than my first apartment. Still not much money but wow it was fun.
In the US, the biggest monthly expense for many self-employed persons is health insurance, deductibles and co-pays. Europeans and Canadians and many Asians don’t have this hurdle, which greatly affects the decision to leave a job.
I hear you brother, I enjoyed my last job, quite a lot actually, but being retired is awfully hard to beat. If I could have worked three or even four days a week, I might have worked until I kicked the can down the road for good, but in the business I was in you needed to be there all of the time. So... Retired it is, and I'm A-Okay with that!