Poll

Compared to pre-FIRE, how much happier are you post-FIRE?

Much less happy
4 (2.8%)
Somewhat less happy
0 (0%)
About the same
11 (7.8%)
Somewhat happier
34 (24.1%)
Much happier!
92 (65.2%)

Total Members Voted: 141

Author Topic: Compared to pre-FIRE, how much happier are you post-FIRE?  (Read 55097 times)

Metta

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Re: Compared to pre-FIRE, how much happier are you post-FIRE?
« Reply #100 on: December 06, 2017, 11:28:22 PM »
There is another thread going on about whether FIRE is subject to hedonic adaptation:

http://forum.mrmoneymustache.com/welcome-to-the-forum/if-hedonic-adaptation-exists-what's-the-point-of-early-retirement/

For those who indicated that they are happier after FIRE, do you feel like it is something you will eventually adapt to, or do you feel like it has resulted in a real, permanent change to your happiness level?

It has almost been a year for me now (January 1 will be one year since I freed myself from the veal fattening pen.) I didn't want to comment earlier because I thought it had been too soon, but now I can say that I am definitely happier than I was. And here's the thing, I thought I was happy at my job, but clearly I wasn't. I didn't know what happiness felt like. As this FIRE year has progressed I find myself happier every month. Perhaps there will come a point where it tapers off, but I doubt it.

I have always believed that our happiness is in our own hands and that if we are unhappy we must take steps to resolve that for ourselves. What I didn't realize was that without freedom, I was limited in what steps I could take to improve my happiness. Freedom is the cure for hedonic adaptation.

So, so happy. I am so glad I FIREd. It was worth much more than what I paid for it.

gerardc

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Re: Compared to pre-FIRE, how much happier are you post-FIRE?
« Reply #101 on: December 08, 2017, 12:07:03 AM »
I have always believed that our happiness is in our own hands and that if we are unhappy we must take steps to resolve that for ourselves. What I didn't realize was that without freedom, I was limited in what steps I could take to improve my happiness. Freedom is the cure for hedonic adaptation.

So, so happy. I am so glad I FIREd. It was worth much more than what I paid for it.

Too much real life.



zinethstache

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Re: Compared to pre-FIRE, how much happier are you post-FIRE?
« Reply #102 on: December 12, 2017, 07:47:11 PM »
I was just commenting to DH how fun it is for us to plan each leg of our travels. Part of the enjoyment of FIRE is that we sold our home and now travel full time. We live in permanent 'vacation' mode. When I call to make reservations at campgrounds, I always talk to happy park managers and rangers, they have no idea we do this full time, they assume we are planning our vacation.

We had a very high maintenance home and now just take care of our truck and trailer. Neither are totally care-free mind you but I still associate them with 'vacation'. and their needs are minor compared to a home.

I have always loved sleeping in whatever RV we have, and I have now slept in this setup full time for a year and a half. I am not tired of it yet. Waking up to birds and slow moving diesel trucks coming and going never gets old.

I get to stay up late and sleep in almost every day! Like most folks, I'd gone to school or worked an early morning job my whole life. As soon as I was old enough, I worked summers, so was up early all year round. That means 40 or so years of early to bed early to rise. And now... I can do what I want! Pure Heaven:)

We get to spend time planning our next day's/week's/month's activities well in advance, so we don't feel rushed all the time.

Just last night I woke up at 3:30am wide awake. So I got up for an hour and worked on a blog article for my website. Never, ever would that have happened when I worked! If I had got up in the middle of the night while working, it would be only for work, and I would be fixing a broken web server!

I teach card making classes now and was chatting with a couple of students and their husbands. One couple both worked at the same company, he in IT (CRM Manager) and she was his customer. He asked me if I had gotten hired back on as a contractor for 3x the pay. I said No WAY, I am done working! I teach card classes now and it is a heck of alot more fun! I already earned my money... He was likely shocked at that, but it is true. I am totally done doing stressful work and being on call 7 x 24.

I am much, much more happy post FIRE!





BPA

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Re: Compared to pre-FIRE, how much happier are you post-FIRE?
« Reply #103 on: December 16, 2017, 07:51:02 AM »
4 months in. I'm happier for sure, but I still have a few stressy loose ends to tie up before I will feel the sense freedom I desire. Also I still don't have near enough time to do all the things I want to do, and I guess I haven't decompressed enough yet to convince myself that there's no rush.

I'm curios to hear from more people who commented before when they had recently FIREd with any updates regarding:

For those who indicated that they are happier after FIRE, do you feel like it is something you will eventually adapt to, or do you feel like it has resulted in a real, permanent change to your happiness level?

My 2-year FIRE anniversary is in two days.  It really has been "a real, permanent change to my happiness level." 

I remember four days after my last day, so December 22, 2015, I was sitting on my couch next to my boyfriend and I felt like I had taken Ativan.  And I have remained that relaxed the vast majority of the time since.  I don't feel stoned though, just relaxed.

I had such bad anxiety related to work that impacted my entire life.  Not anymore.  Even when stressful things do happen (like the work and consideration it took before and during the process of selling my home), I wasn't anxious like I would have been before.

I sleep well.  I often catch myself smiling like I didn't do before.  I can do the things I want to do when I want to do them.

Every day I am happy that my time is my own and I don't have to deal with the bullshit of having a job. 

Apple_Tango

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Re: Compared to pre-FIRE, how much happier are you post-FIRE?
« Reply #104 on: December 16, 2017, 08:40:24 AM »
I have some FU money and Iím in a career transition now. Iím not even close to fired, but right now am only sporadically consulting. I am finding that I need a project, structure, or a plan for the day to be happy. Otherwise I just sit down all day and waste my time. And maybe thatís because Iím in ďdecompressĒ mode still, but itís been 4 weeks and Iím realizing that I need to get out of the house and talk to more people!!! Iím applying for jobs, catching up on doctor and dentist appointments, and taking time to actually cook good meals, as well as going to the gym a few times a week. But Iím craving some more social stuff.

BPA

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Re: Compared to pre-FIRE, how much happier are you post-FIRE?
« Reply #105 on: December 16, 2017, 10:32:08 AM »
I have some FU money and Iím in a career transition now. Iím not even close to fired, but right now am only sporadically consulting. I am finding that I need a project, structure, or a plan for the day to be happy. Otherwise I just sit down all day and waste my time. And maybe thatís because Iím in ďdecompressĒ mode still, but itís been 4 weeks and Iím realizing that I need to get out of the house and talk to more people!!! Iím applying for jobs, catching up on doctor and dentist appointments, and taking time to actually cook good meals, as well as going to the gym a few times a week. But Iím craving some more social stuff.

I understand what you are saying that you feel you would be bored not working and are happier working (which is totally okay...SWAMI status is an enviable status to have), but you live with your mom and have a negative net worth right now, so honestly, your experiences to date so far are nowhere close to FIRE.

I am an extrovert and have found enough social stimulation without having a job luckily.


Apple_Tango

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Re: Compared to pre-FIRE, how much happier are you post-FIRE?
« Reply #106 on: December 16, 2017, 11:49:34 AM »
Oh for sure!. But I think my point still stands. When I have something planned for the day (either related to making money, or something social, or a project)  my day is much better! Right now Iím able to work whenever I want. Iím working a lot at the moment but I can chose to work with only the clients that interest me. Even though my total account balance is not anywhere close to firing, I imagine the attitude of  ďworking only when I chooseĒ is similar since I plan to keep my professional license until I die. Itís making me excited to experience the real thing! (In at least a decade lol)

frugal_c

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Re: Compared to pre-FIRE, how much happier are you post-FIRE?
« Reply #107 on: December 16, 2017, 07:33:51 PM »
I'm with you Apple Tango.  For me this whole stash thing is more for security and flexibility.  Much as I dislike working, I find that you need that tension to enjoy your time off. 

I had an experience where I was laid off for a bit.  Money wasn't a big issue as I had government benefits, I had a decent stash (about 6 years expenses) and there was a lower pay job offer available if needed.  I didn't enjoy the experience as much as I thought I would.  I actually found it to be work to keep myself entertained.  With a job you have so much time occupied that you appreciate a smaller set of activities.  Once you have all day for them it isn't enough.  Maybe it would have helped if I had more money or maybe it just takes longer to adjust.  I don't think that's it though.  I think some people are just wired such that they need to work.  Just maybe not for 40 hours a week.

BPA

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Re: Compared to pre-FIRE, how much happier are you post-FIRE?
« Reply #108 on: December 17, 2017, 07:43:51 AM »
There certainly are people who enjoy working and good for them.  That would have made my working life easier if I could have been one of them. I did enjoy my job for the first fifteen years.

However, the original question in this thread was directed at people who had been FIREd for at least six months so as to give others an idea of whether or not people were happier after FIRE or not.

While it is totally okay for others to have opinions about what they think it would be like for them, it is not an accurate representation. 

And do you have FU money if you have a negative net worth?  Maybe you can.  But I would think that the original MMM forums would have decreed not. 

Anyway, best of luck to Apple Tango. I'm glad you're jumping on the wagon at a young age. 

Apple_Tango

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Re: Compared to pre-FIRE, how much happier are you post-FIRE?
« Reply #109 on: December 17, 2017, 08:02:52 AM »
Regarding the FU money thing. I have enough cash to live without working for about 1 year. I am living at my momís now and paying rent but I donít have to- I could go off the grid in my RV and pay next to nothing on rent. If I did that Iíd probably be ok for 2 years just on my cash reserves if I stripped everything down to the bare bones. Like I said...Iím about 10 years away from actually being FI so I wonít be doing that.  But my current situation  allows me to work when I want, aka as much as possible to get to FI, and in the future I can also work as much as I want (hopefully way less). For me....I think I have FU money. I have been able to leave jobs that asked me to compromise my ethics, I have been able to stand up to my bosses, and voice my opinion because Iím not scared of loosing my job because I have a safety net of cash. sure itís only $20,000. But for me thatís all I need if I did an ERE style 1-2 years of living. Again...not going to do that lol. And if it really got down to that I would sell some of the things that have put me in debt. So iíd realistically have $45,000 or so. But who are you to say that I do or donít have FU money?
« Last Edit: December 17, 2017, 08:08:30 AM by Apple_Tango »

frugal_c

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Re: Compared to pre-FIRE, how much happier are you post-FIRE?
« Reply #110 on: December 17, 2017, 08:05:45 AM »
I just wonder if there isn't a selection bias here.  If somebody retires to find that they are bored they will likely go back to work.  Would this type of person be going to the mmm forum?  Just a thought, I certainly don't doubt that there are many who are retired and enjoying it.
« Last Edit: December 17, 2017, 08:07:34 AM by frugal_c »

Metta

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Re: Compared to pre-FIRE, how much happier are you post-FIRE?
« Reply #111 on: December 17, 2017, 09:54:27 AM »
There certainly are people who enjoy working and good for them.  That would have made my working life easier if I could have been one of them. I did enjoy my job for the first fifteen years.

However, the original question in this thread was directed at people who had been FIREd for at least six months so as to give others an idea of whether or not people were happier after FIRE or not.

While it is totally okay for others to have opinions about what they think it would be like for them, it is not an accurate representation. 


I agree that this is an inappropriate place for speculation about whether or not someone will enjoy Post-FIRE. The question here is whether people who have retired early on enough money to stay retired indefinitely enjoy it.

A long layoff, even if you have enough money for a year or two is not the same as FIRE and the reason comes down to freedom. It is not whether or not you do work that matters. Many of us in FIRE begin works of passion or donate time and labor generously to others. Some take occasional gigs as consultants. It doesn't really matter. What matters is the freedom to do what you want, when you want and know within a reasonable certainty that you will be ok.

BPA

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Re: Compared to pre-FIRE, how much happier are you post-FIRE?
« Reply #112 on: December 17, 2017, 10:32:10 AM »
And if it really got down to that I would sell some of the things that have put me in debt. So iíd realistically have $45,000 or so. But who are you to say that I do or donít have FU money?

Do you understand what the term "negative net worth" means?  You mention in your journal that you have a negative net worth. That means you owe more than what you could sell for cash. That means you can't sell all you own and expect to be out of debt.

It's logic like this that gives me the right to say, you don't have FU money.  You don't.  And especially for the purposes of this specific thread you have no credibility.

Sorry if that facepunch hurts, but you trying to represent your views as relevant to the discussion that has been taking place is ridiculous.

I just wonder if there isn't a selection bias here.  If somebody retires to find that they are bored they will likely go back to work.  Would this type of person be going to the mmm forum?  Just a thought, I certainly don't doubt that there are many who are retired and enjoying it.
 

That would be interesting.  I also wonder if there is some sort of correlation between OMY and going back to or missing work. 

BPA

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Re: Compared to pre-FIRE, how much happier are you post-FIRE?
« Reply #113 on: December 17, 2017, 10:36:05 AM »
There certainly are people who enjoy working and good for them.  That would have made my working life easier if I could have been one of them. I did enjoy my job for the first fifteen years.

However, the original question in this thread was directed at people who had been FIREd for at least six months so as to give others an idea of whether or not people were happier after FIRE or not.

While it is totally okay for others to have opinions about what they think it would be like for them, it is not an accurate representation. 


I agree that this is an inappropriate place for speculation about whether or not someone will enjoy Post-FIRE. The question here is whether people who have retired early on enough money to stay retired indefinitely enjoy it.

A long layoff, even if you have enough money for a year or two is not the same as FIRE and the reason comes down to freedom. It is not whether or not you do work that matters. Many of us in FIRE begin works of passion or donate time and labor generously to others. Some take occasional gigs as consultants. It doesn't really matter. What matters is the freedom to do what you want, when you want and know within a reasonable certainty that you will be ok.

I agree. It's the freedom that is the important ingredient.  I was a teacher and had two months off every summer. I did decompress, but it was nowhere near what FIRE has been like.