U.S. CitiesCity-Data Forum Index
Go Back   City-Data Forum > General Forums > Retirement
 [Register]
Please register to participate in our discussions with 2 million other members - it's free and quick! Some forums can only be seen by registered members. After you create your account, you'll be able to customize options and access all our 15,000 new posts/day with fewer ads.
View detailed profile (Advanced) or search
site with Google Custom Search

Search Forums  (Advanced)
Reply Start New Thread
 
Old 02-02-2015, 07:17 AM
 
Location: Los Angeles area
14,018 posts, read 17,763,041 times
Reputation: 32309

Advertisements

Quote:
Originally Posted by silibran View Post
.........

Once you are free at last, I think you tend to go over and over things that bothered you in your career. You revisit your own mistakes, and the injustices you experienced. I finally have told myself that I am not revisiting painful things like that. I don't want them in my head. I worked hard for my pension and SS, and I intend to go forward with positive thoughts.
So true. One way or another, we should seek to put the injustices behind us and move forward.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message

 
Old 02-02-2015, 08:23 AM
 
2,429 posts, read 3,229,527 times
Reputation: 3330
I confess, I don't even get the concept of -- thinking a person is or feels "useless" because they're not working.
If you don't want to work, or are burned out and need to not work, how does that have anything to do with usefulness, or uselessness?

Of course, it's ok to do nothing, or to not want to do anything. My goodness...you're burned out, stressed and need to save your health and sanity. It's sad that people even need to wonder about doing what's needed to save themselves. Do what you need to do....and you don't have to justify it or explain it to anyone.

Who knows how long it takes you to 'want' to feel like making commitments again. Heck, who knows how long it will be before you even feel like just getting to chores or errands you may have put off because work had you so tired and frazzled. It could be 6 months, a year, 2 years or NEVER!

First......put yourself -- your sanity and health first....and rest, relax, and decompress. No alarm clocks. AFTER a certain period of sleeping when you want, napping when you feel like it...your desire to do something should return. Now, that something COULD just be picking up social engagements you'd have to always beg off on, or travel you'd wanted to do.....it could be getting back to a hobby you'd let go.....it could be volunteering......it could be a part-time job. Who knows?

But all of this is AFTER you've recuperated from the career burnout and stress. It takes as long as it takes, and you don't have to justify it.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 02-02-2015, 09:26 AM
 
7,816 posts, read 4,407,202 times
Reputation: 11630
I so very well remember that last day before I started my "real job" -- not part-time, not temporary, not expendable, but the job I knew I'd be doing day in and day out for the next couple of decades. I felt exactly like a condemned prisoner being taken to jail! And I fully expect to feel exactly like a condemned prisoner being granted a reprieve at retirement.

ENJOY, EVERYONE!
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 02-02-2015, 10:24 AM
 
3,950 posts, read 3,271,733 times
Reputation: 11363
Studs Terkel wrote a book titled "working", he interviewed people from all walks of life and all types of work, thus offering the reader the experience of a conversational treatise on work. In the preface he mentions that the book is about violence, because work, in the words of so many, caused a type of violence that damages our spirit. Reading that book was my first clue that I wasn't the only person suffering from work.

My own burnout was complete at 62, over forty years of toiling in work not necessarily of my choosing. I, like others, worked to pay my way in life. It's really that simple, and in that process one would be fortunate to have any time to pursue those things that makes life a thing of joy. I see retirement as that time we lost bundled into a nice package of self directed days, all there for whatever you want to use them for. I love my slacker lifestyle now, I can find joy in every day simply for the fact that I can do what I want, when I want, and if that means nothing productive---So be it...
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 02-02-2015, 10:57 AM
 
7,816 posts, read 4,407,202 times
Reputation: 11630
Honestly, I don't mind my job... It's easy (some days I do literally nothing job-related), the pay is fine, the people are okay, there's a pension at the end of it. But it doesn't challenge nor fulfill me (it's a job and not a career), and at the end of the day -- despite there being still hours left in it -- I find I haven't the energy nor ambition to do anything but veg out in front of bad TV shows. There's something wrong with that! Of course weekends are filled with errands you can't run during the week or, as in my case, friends and activities there's no time for M-F, so the main objection I have to the 40 hour work week is that I feel I have to retire before I can embark on any projects -- something as simple as decluttering or cleaning out closets seems to require me to take several days off work. But maybe that's just me...

At any rate, I'm thankful for my job and wouldn't want to NOT work for a living and pull my own weight in this world (too many in this country are going that route)... But I'm also NOT dreading retirement!
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 02-02-2015, 11:19 AM
 
Location: Los Angeles area
14,018 posts, read 17,763,041 times
Reputation: 32309
Quote:
Originally Posted by rdflk View Post
I confess, I don't even get the concept of -- thinking a person is or feels "useless" because they're not working.
If you don't want to work, or are burned out and need to not work, how does that have anything to do with usefulness, or uselessness? ..............
The philosophical issue you raised is at the heart of many of these discussions about the non-financial aspects of retirement.

Our species evolved with the need to live in groups in order to help each other survive. From that starting point we have not yet lost, in my opinion, the need to have the company of our fellow human beings. And not just the company, but the need to be useful to one or more fellow human beings, because being useful has always been what being part of a group was all about.

Paid work is not the only path to that usefulness, of course. There are many paths. But let's stick with work for a minute, since that was your topic. At work, even if our work is not earth-shaking in its importance or significance, we are useful to other people; if we were not there to perform that work then someone else would have to be hired to do so. That is, we are doing something worthwhile, at least to the person or organization which is paying us.

I believe that most people like to, and have a need to, feel useful, either to another individual or to society. So if that desire, that need, is not met by something other than paid work, it is quite understandable how one could feel useless because he's not working.

Note that I wrote "most people" in the previous paragraph. Your post may be the proof that it is not "all people". I would imagine that either you meet the need to feel useful in activities outside the workplace, or that you do not have that need. It is possible to be "self-contained" in that area. I certainly enjoy lots of things that I often do by myself, such as going to a movie or reading. But if I didn't have a few things which make me feel useful to other human beings, I would feel like I was in a cage and needed to break out.

Therefore, what is a mystery to you is a self-evident truth to me.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 02-02-2015, 11:28 AM
 
7,816 posts, read 4,407,202 times
Reputation: 11630
Everyone needs a sense of meaningful existence. MOST find it in their work; I -- for one -- found it in unpaid caregiving for a beloved parent; others find it in volunteering/hobbies. However, we SHOULD all have to work to make a living (nothing should be handed to anyone free). But that's opening a whole other can of worms...
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 02-04-2015, 05:52 AM
 
Location: Los Angeles area
14,018 posts, read 17,763,041 times
Reputation: 32309
Quote:
Originally Posted by jertheber View Post
Studs Terkel wrote a book titled "working", he interviewed people from all walks of life and all types of work, thus offering the reader the experience of a conversational treatise on work. In the preface he mentions that the book is about violence, because work, in the words of so many, caused a type of violence that damages our spirit. Reading that book was my first clue that I wasn't the only person suffering from work.

My own burnout was complete at 62, over forty years of toiling in work not necessarily of my choosing. I, like others, worked to pay my way in life. It's really that simple, and in that process one would be fortunate to have any time to pursue those things that makes life a thing of joy. I see retirement as that time we lost bundled into a nice package of self directed days, all there for whatever you want to use them for. I love my slacker lifestyle now, I can find joy in every day simply for the fact that I can do what I want, when I want, and if that means nothing productive---So be it...
I plan to read the Studs Terkel book - I appreciate the recommendation. I think it's tragic that some people consider work a type of violence, and I think it's even more tragic that large numbers of people apparently hold that opinion. Ideally, in the words of Khalil Gibran, "Work is love made visible". Of course, Gibran was writing about an agrarian society of small villages and craftsmen, where the work of one's hands was tangible and visible and directly supported one's family.

It is inexpressibly sad that alienation has progressed to a point where work-as-violence could even be considered a viable general concept, but there is plenty of support for your and Studs Terkel's thesis in the pages of this Retirement Forum, where so many posters talk about their "prison sentences" and so forth.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 02-04-2015, 06:03 AM
 
526 posts, read 510,342 times
Reputation: 493
I used to approach each summer vacation with a list of things I wanted to accomplish. At the end of each summer I would look at the list and judge if I had been successful. Most of the time, I never got around to all of the things on the list.
Suddenly, one spring about ten or so years ago, I had a brilliant idea. I stopped making lists and decided that I was going to accomplish NOTHING during the summer. That way, if I accomplished anything, I would be more than successful and if I accomplished nothing I would be hitting my goal.
Guess what? The plan worked beautifully and I emerged from my vacation, happily willing to take on another year of school.
Ever since that time, I have been reveling in my success!
The pressure we feel to accomplish things (when we have nothing to accomplish at all) is put there by us and when we realize this, we can relax.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 02-04-2015, 06:39 AM
 
7,816 posts, read 4,407,202 times
Reputation: 11630
Well, there's a new and growing movement of "trust fund babies" (being supported by their aging parents who are apparently willing to work forever to do so) staying in school until they're 50 and otherwise "chasing their dreams" (usually as "artists"), along with assorted bums -- IMHO -- who consider themselves too good to work a boring or low-paying job, so that should be encouraging to some. Just one problem: who will pay taxes? You're extremely lucky if you can make a living doing what you love. In the absence of that, if you're a mature adult, you do whatever you have to to earn a living. Doing what you love for no money is not an option over the age of 18, at least in my world view. It isn't "fun," but it's necessary. My theory is that we should work from ages 20 to 40, retire and enjoy life from 40 to 60 (this is the time at which we're most vibrant; also when we're still raising kids, having the first grandkids, and caring for sick and elderly family members), then return to work at age 60 till -- whenever, so we have something to do with ourselves once our knees wear out and we can't be as physically active anymore, are parents are gone, our kids are grown, and perhaps our spouses have died. That would keep older people from sitting around feeling - and being - useless. It's backwards.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Please register to post and access all features of our very popular forum. It is free and quick. Over $68,000 in prizes has already been given out to active posters on our forum. Additional giveaways are planned.

Detailed information about all U.S. cities, counties, and zip codes on our site: City-data.com.


Reply
Please update this thread with any new information or opinions. This open thread is still read by thousands of people, so we encourage all additional points of view.

Quick Reply
Message:

Over $104,000 in prizes was already given out to active posters on our forum and additional giveaways are planned!

Go Back   City-Data Forum > General Forums > Retirement
Similar Threads
Follow City-Data.com founder on our Forum or

All times are GMT -6.

2005-2019, Advameg, Inc. · Please obey Forum Rules · Terms of Use and Privacy Policy · Bug Bounty

City-Data.com - Archive 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33, 34, 35 - Top