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Old 04-28-2014, 09:49 AM
 
Location: NYC
2,896 posts, read 1,580,961 times
Reputation: 7908

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First off let me say that I am not looking for sympathy or am whining or anything like that. I am grateful to be where I am & healthy & am thankful. I'm hoping some good folks out there may have gone through where I am now & I am looking for suggestions for concrete steps forward.

I was recently offered a buyout at work & accepted it at the last minute & 3 weeks later I was out, that was 12/31. I had been intending to work FT another 2-3 years (I turned 62 in January) but when I did the math I saw I would have 7 1/4 -7 1/2 X annual earnings in savings once I paid off the mortgage, then I knew I would feel like an idiot if I didn't take it.

Thing is I've been a bit of a worker bee the last 10 years & let personal relationships & outside interests slide (I'm single). I figured I would give myself a month or 2 off, take care of my finances & maybe start picking up some part-time work then. Well, I looked out my window most of the last 4 months & saw this awful weather & not see any reason to push myself like I have for the last 33 years.

Long story short: I wasn't prepared for full-time free time & I'm not so motivated now to jump back to the cubicle farm even for a temp basis & I find myself sitting around wasting time, gaining weight, staying up late & somewhat isolated (I live in a typical urban apartment situation). I kind of know what I have to do but it is the "how to" that I can't get to yet: nutritious meals, exercise, social interaction, professional engagement.

It's just a major transition point that came abruptly without warning & I find myself on the other side now looking to get going but feeling in a rut.

Thanks for listening.
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Old 04-28-2014, 11:00 AM
 
Location: Pennsylvania
16,334 posts, read 10,324,206 times
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I can sort of relate-only I planned to retire at 62. Ended up retiring at 64.


I'd planned to get a part time job-partly for money, partly for social contacts, partly to learn new stuff.


It's been over a year and no job with absolutely no interest in getting one. I've worked since I was 11 (summer jobs and/or after school when in session). I just love not working.

You might just pick one of those things and make it a goal. It is a major life change; probably the most drastic for a single person.
You could also make a list of stuff: things you used to do and may want to try again. Things you meant to do if you had the time (guess what: you've got the time now!). Things you might want to learn.

Don't know what your budget is. If some of those things are expensive, start saving. But there's a lot of stuff relatively cheap.


Explore. It's that time for you.
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Old 04-28-2014, 11:12 AM
 
741 posts, read 641,139 times
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At the age of 65 (in August) I'm an incredibly busy person, at work and away from work. I, too, am single. I've been a busy person my entire life. As I prepare for what I believe will be my retirement in a year and a half from now I'm starting to downsize my activity level. I'm worn-out. In another week I'll step down as President of a large condominium association where I've served for the past 10 years. That's my first step to minimize stress and unwanted activities. When I stop working full-time it's likely I'll still remain active in church activities and probably volunteer a day a week with a local charitable organization. I've thought about working part-time, as well; maybe just seasonally. But, mostly ... I just want to rest for a while. Re-charge my 'batteries' and take care of myself instead of others. Enjoying a reasonably healthy life before I start to experience more serious health issues is my goal. Best of luck.
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Old 04-28-2014, 11:14 AM
 
Location: Near a river
16,042 posts, read 18,964,817 times
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Many of us feel at sea at unexpected retirement. It's a shock to the system mentally and physically and all sorts of depression from mild to severe can set in, and/or a feeling of aimlessness. Anything you can do to structure your day—Monday is house cleaning and shopping, Tues and Thurs is this, Wed and Fri is that. For a single, weekends are probably hardest if you're alone. Reach out to someone, anyone, for a weekend activity. Men and women retirees are in my yoga class, I've made a friend there and we've started to do things together. Little by little, new life, said Beethoven. That's how it goes. Best wishes for yours.
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Old 04-28-2014, 11:15 AM
 
Location: We_tside PNW (Columbia Gorge) / CO / SA TX / Thailand
22,531 posts, read 39,903,732 times
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You need to get out more! Spring will eventually come.

I watched this also happen to people who would changes shifts and waste away the good part of the day 'adjusting'. (staying up late, then sleeping in.)

Get engaged in trying something that will challenge and help you grow (healthy, not in weight).

There are many types of community classes and volunteer opportunities that will get you out and moving. You don't ever have to get back into the 'achievement' mode. Just do something nice for someone everyday, and reward yourself with some exercise and a salad!

Join and exercise, biking, hiking, or swimming class.

Travel!
Remember those crummy days? It was pretty nice in many parts of the country during that time. I quite enjoyed my first retired winter I spent traveling from Dallas to Sacramento. I bought a camper van in Dallas and would travel 3 weeks / month and return home 1 week / month for a grad school program, and to feed the dog.
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Old 04-28-2014, 11:19 AM
 
Location: Prescott AZ
6,119 posts, read 9,068,748 times
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On a scale of 1-10 stress levels, retirement is probably an 11. My point is, don't be so hard on yourself. If you have enough money and don't have to work for cash, sit down, make a list of what you really like to do in life. What are your hobbies? Have you ever volunteered for anything? Would you like a pet? The questions go on and on.

In addition, I would say get ahold of "How to Retire Happy Wild and Free" by
Ernie Zelinski. Read it and make notes. This is the time of your life and it doesn't just "happen." It has to be formed and reformed and then you will see what its all about. Good Luck. Barb
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Old 04-28-2014, 11:20 AM
 
Location: New Mexico U.S.A.
25,310 posts, read 41,385,436 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hefe View Post
It's just a major transition point that came abruptly without warning & I find myself on the other side now looking to get going but feeling in a rut.
Travel - I traveled a lot in my employment, never liked it in the beginning, but I now miss it. There is so much to see in the US...

Volunteer - I've been helping out in a few volunteer programs. Some were interesting, some were not. I now take a lot of photos and video's for dog rescue places...

Hobby - Try some hobbies. Photography had been my hobby for over 50 years, but I was short of cash. New digital cameras make it very inexpensive.
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Old 04-28-2014, 11:30 AM
 
Location: NYC
2,803 posts, read 3,038,780 times
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How adventurous are you? I know someone who's been on a four month trip to the tip of Chile by ambulance. He is part of an adventure rally group with the ultimate goal of donating this ambulance to charity. There are rallies like this going on all the time around the world, from London to Mongolia, or London to Africa. This seems like just the time to do those things you never had a chance to because you were working.
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Old 04-28-2014, 12:10 PM
 
Location: NYC
2,896 posts, read 1,580,961 times
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Thanks for all the thoughtful comments, much appreciated. I think this poster really nailed where I am right now:

Quote:
Originally Posted by newenglandgirl View Post
Many of us feel at sea at unexpected retirement. It's a shock to the system mentally and physically and all sorts of depression from mild to severe can set in, and/or a feeling of aimlessness. Anything you can do to structure your day....
I didn't expect I would react to this with so much annui, but I hardly had time to think before I went from 60 to 5 mph. I think the idea of structure is the key perhaps to stop drifting, as much as I hate to acknowledge this

I think travel will come in the future. I had actually thought I would move overseas for the longest time & that is still a possibility, but I have a parent who is old & I feel I should hang around a bit longer. It is the first steps in some positive direction that I need to take. I like that idea of setting my own very specific schedule, perhaps that would be a transition phase from following a previously assigned work schedule.
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Old 04-28-2014, 12:24 PM
 
Location: Des Moines Metro
5,055 posts, read 6,007,041 times
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I've seen this situation happen several times with older friends.

It's not good to stay in your house for days on end, unless you have some very specific projects. One friend was learning Spanish and cleaning out a bedroom so that she could have a cousin come and stay with her dog while she went to Spain in the summer, for example. She had a study and work schedule set up and limited her time with TV and the internet. She had limited energy. It took her four hours to do what a lot of us could do in one, but that didn't matter! She was making daily progress.

Here's an idea: are there any clubs or volunteer activities that meet regularly (and interest you) that you could attend? Having a maybe a Tuesday lunch and a Saturday afternoon meeting would give some structure to your week without cutting into your "me" time as you brainstorm your next goals.

Don't get involved with anything that doesn't positively inspire you, but there might be something that helps keep up your zest for life.
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