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Sat Dec 29, 2018, 11:17 PM

This first year of early retirement has been one of the hardest of my life

I was an avid reader of financial independence, retire early (FIRE) blogs on the path to my own early retirement. They served as inspiration and education.

However, I found them to be an echo chamber. Each tries to outdo the next in an effort to show you how to optimize your life. Then you can retire sooner to a lifetime of carefree bliss.

That’s all great. Except it’s not true.

Sure, there are elements of truth in every FIRE blog. Just as reality TV reflects some elements of reality.

https://www.marketwatch.com/story/this-first-year-of-early-retirement-has-been-one-of-the-hardest-of-my-life-2018-12-26

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Arrow 13 replies Author Time Post
Reply This first year of early retirement has been one of the hardest of my life (Original post)
Zorro Dec 2018 OP
dhol82 Dec 2018 #1
Zorro Dec 2018 #2
dhol82 Dec 2018 #3
Xipe Totec Dec 2018 #4
3Hotdogs Dec 2018 #5
marybourg Dec 2018 #9
3Hotdogs Dec 2018 #10
Scarsdale Dec 2018 #12
SunSeeker Dec 2018 #6
PoindexterOglethorpe Dec 2018 #7
dem in texas Dec 2018 #8
LisaL Dec 2018 #11
idahoblue Dec 2018 #13

Response to Zorro (Original post)

Sat Dec 29, 2018, 11:31 PM

1. So, you are unhappy?

Not sure what you are trying to say.

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Response to dhol82 (Reply #1)

Sat Dec 29, 2018, 11:39 PM

2. Are you asking the author of the article or me?

Personally I think retiring isn’t easy for people who enjoy their jobs and steady income. It is truly a life-changing event that one should plan and be prepared for, because one’s major social order is completely disordered.

That is one of the points of the article.

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Response to Zorro (Reply #2)

Sat Dec 29, 2018, 11:50 PM

3. Totally agree.

If one does not want to retire why should they?
However, for many retirement is a joy. It was for me. I had saved enough money to now have a blast. My social order was not disturbed and I created a new one that was even more pleasurable.
I agree that one should make a plan for post retirement living. Or at least recognize that it will be different. There are many marriages that have problems when the husband is suddenly home for the duration.

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Response to Zorro (Reply #2)

Sun Dec 30, 2018, 12:00 AM

4. When it comes to my job I'm like Dogbert: "All this and a paycheck too?"

Happy with what I'm doing. Can't think of what it would be like not to work.

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Response to Zorro (Original post)

Sun Dec 30, 2018, 01:32 AM

5. I stopped to think to today --- I retired 12 years ago. I am 76.

It still is a problem filing days. I hike once or twice a week. Take drive to nowhere, just to fill time.
Go to the casino, just to fill time.

I have a social and family network and that helps but it is not enough for emotional satisfaction. My life partner died 4 years after I retired. Things went emotionally downhill from there. We did things together. There is little joy in doing the same things without her.

I am not rich but with S.S. and pension, 76k per year and few debts. So that is not the problem.

While I am not miserable, I am not happy.

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Response to 3Hotdogs (Reply #5)

Sun Dec 30, 2018, 04:03 AM

9. Sounds like a loneliness, rather than a retirement problem.

The diversions you list are all solitary ones. Could you look around for some activities where you might meet people with similar interests? Even a hiking CLUB, rather than hiking alone. Moving to an “active senior community”, especially a small or new one, is another almost sure way to find some compatible friends.

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Response to marybourg (Reply #9)

Sun Dec 30, 2018, 09:38 AM

10. Yes, depressed and lonely.

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Response to 3Hotdogs (Reply #10)

Sun Dec 30, 2018, 12:11 PM

12. Volunteer at a school.

Serve holiday dinners at the Salvation Army, or other places. Go to the Humane Society, ask if they need help. Get active in your community.

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Response to Zorro (Original post)

Sun Dec 30, 2018, 02:22 AM

6. Wow. I have no problem filling my days. I really don't get that part of it.

Sure, the financial part can be a problem. I do miss the much bigger paycheck, but not enough to put up with the rest of it. My new freedom is magnificent.

If anything, I am too busy. I need to learn to say no to people who keep asking me to do chores for them because they think I have a ton of time on my hands, when I really don't.

I love being able to go hiking on a weekday when local trails aren't crowded. I love being able to indulge myself with things like posting on DU, or exploring old rock music videos on YouTube for hours. I love being able to spend time with my husband and son without worrying about work or getting to bed early so I can get up in the morning for work. I love waking up when my body wakes up by itself instead of when an alarm clock jars me awake.

I guess I just didn't love my job as much as I love my leisure time. The folks who love their job more than their leisure time should never retire early, if at all.

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Response to Zorro (Original post)

Sun Dec 30, 2018, 02:56 AM

7. I think it depends on how much you identify with your job.

Me, I never had a job I loved. It was just work. I went in, did what I was supposed to do, and got paid. I have never had a problem filling my time outside of a job, and not having to get up early and do something I'm not crazy about is wonderful. I can read. I can crochet. I can embroider. I can write short stories. I can go to science fiction things that interest me. I can visit family or friends. None of those things require very much money, but they do require having a sense of myself outside of a job.

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Response to Zorro (Original post)

Sun Dec 30, 2018, 02:57 AM

8. I missed my job for about 90 days

Don't have to watch the clock. no more travel, no being nice when I'm having a bad day, time to have lunch with life long friends, stay up till 3 AM and sleep till 10. No rush hour traffic, can jump in the car and go antiquing, stay in granny gown all day when its cold, learning new things with online college classes. House and car are paid for, husband and I both have fairly good health, adequate pensions, 3 great-grand children, a little extra money from a website. Life is good in retirement.

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Response to Zorro (Original post)

Sun Dec 30, 2018, 11:34 AM

11. The guy retired at 41. That's very young for retirement.

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Response to Zorro (Original post)

Sun Dec 30, 2018, 12:26 PM

13. I retired 2 years ago

I live by “ I can do anything I want to or nothing at all”. Husband asks what I did all day, I respond “nothing”. He no longer asks.
To the gym
Hike
Go camping
Hang out at the coffee shop
Volunteer
Nothing at all.

Never read about what retirement should be, it is your own and unique


I am very fortunate. I am aware of that.

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