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Old 12-12-2007, 10:24 AM
 
Location: NJ
152 posts, read 573,689 times
Reputation: 109

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I will be retiring in about 8 months and although I am not really afraid, I am a bit concerned. Although when I should be OK with SS and a pension plan that should provide - between the two - for a confortable, although not a rich income, I am concern about the psicological effect of the abrupt change in life style.

I have put 35 years of productive and satisfying work in a firm where I have grown professionally and emotionally; where I am appreciated and rewarded. But... I have to leave the future to the young and "phase out". The life style that I have experienced thus far, and that I have enjoyed, will be changed in a few month and I am concerned if I will be able to handle it.

Has anyone had this experience? How did you handle it?

Thanks.
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Old 12-12-2007, 11:19 AM
 
Location: DC Area, for now
3,517 posts, read 12,049,244 times
Reputation: 2141
For what it is worth, among the people I know who have retired and had a hard time with it, these are the characteristics they had:
No hobbies and real interests outside of work
Self-worth based almost solely on ranking at work (and usually not very realistic)
Strong need for outside-of-themselves structure in their life
They usually ended up coming back to work.

The many more people I know who are very happy in retirement have these characteristics:
Lots of varied interests and hobbies in life
Self-worth based on other than work things
Self-starters who don't need a structured life to keep busy (i.e., structure from outside sources)
Independent mind set
Good at entertaining themselves

Naturally, my acquaintances are a self-selected sample, but I do know a bunch of people who retired from my work place that aren't necessarily my friends.
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Old 12-12-2007, 11:59 AM
 
Location: Home is where the heart is
15,400 posts, read 25,819,531 times
Reputation: 18992
Excellent response! That deserves a rep point.

Acceptance helps. Sooner or later you are going to have to stop working... whether you choose to retire, are let go, or you work until you die. So if change is inevitable, decide to embrace it.
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Old 12-12-2007, 12:10 PM
GLS
 
1,985 posts, read 4,846,113 times
Reputation: 2408
Quote:
Originally Posted by rferd View Post
I will be retiring in about 8 months and although I am not really afraid, I am a bit concerned. Although when I should be OK with SS and a pension plan that should provide - between the two - for a confortable, although not a rich income, I am concern about the psicological effect of the abrupt change in life style.

I have put 35 years of productive and satisfying work in a firm where I have grown professionally and emotionally; where I am appreciated and rewarded. But... I have to leave the future to the young and "phase out". The life style that I have experienced thus far, and that I have enjoyed, will be changed in a few month and I am concerned if I will be able to handle it.

Has anyone had this experience? How did you handle it?

Thanks.
I agree with Tesaje in terms of the many new "non-work" areas you can begin building on.However, in the interim, the answer to your concerns may be in your post.You stated your concern was about an ABRUPT change in your lifestyle. Yet you use the term "phase out". This implies a GRADUAL change.

You might consider negotiating a gradual wind-down with your employer.
Could you come in 1 or 2 days a month as a consultant? Could you telecommute to review projects or processes? Could you mentor the young people coming in?

You obviously have 35 years of valuable experience and a positive attitude.
You might be able to structure a small dose of work (pick the areas you enjoyed the most) as a transition to the new hobbies you will be developing.

PS If your employer is too rigid to offer a flexible arrangement, consider another company in your area of expertise. If you don't care about the
extra spending money, find an organization where you can volunteer your skills. Try Googling retired executive organizations for ideas.
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Old 12-12-2007, 01:02 PM
 
1,831 posts, read 4,795,523 times
Reputation: 661
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tesaje View Post
For what it is worth, among the people I know who have retired and had a hard time with it, these are the characteristics they had:
No hobbies and real interests outside of work
Self-worth based almost solely on ranking at work (and usually not very realistic)
Strong need for outside-of-themselves structure in their life
They usually ended up coming back to work.
This is a good point. I could see this happening to me.

I've always had such a demanding career (then went back to school and switched to a different yet still demanding career) that work has pretty much become my life. Outside interests? Who has the time?

Now my interests have focused on retirement and, to help hasten that effort, I'm working more overtime to save more money. But, of course, that means more work.

I can't help but wonder ... what happens when I don't work anymore? Will I know what to do with myself?
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Old 12-12-2007, 01:07 PM
 
Location: southern california
55,660 posts, read 74,595,623 times
Reputation: 48157
doin it now 4 months into it. most folks dont like the big empty. but i am learning it has great value, you see a lot more at 25mph than at 120 mph.
big mistake of some retirees. withdraw from everything. then when somebody plows into that new car they just bought or trespasses and refuses to leave they go ballistic and get in a lot of trouble. keep taking daily dosage of baloney to keep your tolerance up. works for me.

Last edited by Huckleberry3911948; 12-12-2007 at 01:08 PM.. Reason: typo
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Old 12-12-2007, 06:52 PM
 
Location: Lovelock, NV - Anchorage, AK
1,195 posts, read 4,992,946 times
Reputation: 465
When we retire we will be doing some moving of items to a new location (snowbirds) I'm thinking that we will be so busy moving some items an catching up family we haven't seen in several years, I'm thinking the strangest thing in the beginning will be not having the stress of a 2-3 week vacation. We can stay until we stink or they kick us out or we get bored with the area and time to move on.
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Old 12-13-2007, 10:25 AM
 
Location: NJ
152 posts, read 573,689 times
Reputation: 109
Thanks to all of you for your advices. I know that once I get there (retire), I will handle it. It is just like when one is going to jump from the high board, at first you are afraid (of the unknown) but once you do it, you realize that it was better than you thought. I am sure my "new life" is going to be just as exciting as the one I am living now. Will let you know how it goes; seven and a half month to "blast off".
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Old 12-13-2007, 01:25 PM
 
Location: Looking over your shoulder
30,324 posts, read 27,784,053 times
Reputation: 81214
Volunteer at things you enjoy doing. There is always a need for a volunteer at hospitals, airports (helping travelers and giving directions), libraries, children’s daycare, etc. Keeping busy is one of the biggest keys to being happy when retired, and so many other people appreciate your helping them.

I forgot about reading books for the blind or elderly that are impaired and can’t. Visiting elderly care centers and talking with those people can bring much happiness to them. Helping at the Salvation Army centers with cooking, serving, or just cleaning up. Also becoming a big brother or big sister or agencies like those.
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Old 12-14-2007, 08:54 AM
 
Location: Forests of Maine
30,678 posts, read 49,430,310 times
Reputation: 19129
It is nice having the time to finally do whatever we want to do.

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