Author Topic: In pursuit of Camaraderie... post FIRE  (Read 3640 times)

tungsten

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In pursuit of Camaraderie... post FIRE
« on: August 16, 2018, 05:33:25 PM »
Hello all,
I'm a few years away from FIRE myself, but I've been giving a lot of consideration to what life will be like on the other side.  I'm kind of a workaholic who is always putting off vacation and working late-  I do this, not because I want Megatech to be more profitable, but because I feel a certain dedication to my team- that is to say we have a sense of camaraderie.  Upon further introspection I've decided that for myself the sense of camaraderie is one of the most important things in life.  Camaraderie can bond people who are otherwise very different.  It bonds people as a function of time and shared circumstance and is incredibly strong- we often see it in people who serve in the military, people who work dangerous or remote jobs together, adventurers, athletes etc. I think it can be particularly strong in these examples because trust and dedication can be imperative for survival (except for sports, but what are team sports if not a substitution for tribal warfare?).  Again, these are just some of the more obvious examples.

Where can one find a strong sense of camaraderie post FIRE?  Where have you found it?
Tungsten

BigMoneyJim

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Re: In pursuit of Camaraderie... post FIRE
« Reply #1 on: August 16, 2018, 06:08:36 PM »
On forums.

But then I'm kind of the opposite of you. Outside of FIRE-related communities you might be looking for more work-like or team-like activity than I.

One of my fears is that I'll become a bit of a crazy hermit, so I'm going to put some effort into getting out more and meeting and talking to people, but I'll be perfectly happy doing my on thing by myself and talking to my pets.

gerardc

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Re: In pursuit of Camaraderie... post FIRE
« Reply #2 on: August 16, 2018, 09:23:19 PM »
Maybe in places where the majority of people are not working (vacation destinations). They're usually more open and less focused on their own personal advancement. Cheap places would be a plus for camaraderie because then as you said, you come to rely on other people help for survival. So a hostel in Thailand? :P

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Re: In pursuit of Camaraderie... post FIRE
« Reply #3 on: August 16, 2018, 10:08:57 PM »
I've experienced wonderful camaraderie in these places:
- volunteering in a meaningful and perhaps intense setting (in my case, as a hospice volunteer caregiver.) there were lots of support meetings, trainings, and retreat days, etc. for the hospice volunteers.
- volunteering in a school
- personal growth-type classes and
- meet-ups for my personal interests (could be hiking, art, whatever floats your boat)

tungsten

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Re: In pursuit of Camaraderie... post FIRE
« Reply #4 on: August 17, 2018, 01:35:27 PM »
I'm actually a fairly introverted person, which maybe is part of the reason I enjoy the camaraderie that comes with more intense situations.  It sort of forces me to socialize with people and provides the common ground that is sometimes difficult to find through awkward small talk and voluntary casual social situations.  I'm otherwise happy to be alone with my plants and my guitar.  Becoming a hermit post-fire is a little tempting, but I know I'd miss feeling like I'm part of a team doing something meaningful for the world.  Before my professional career, I taught science to middle school kids in the national forest with a bunch of my peers.  We were all in our 20's working in a remote area. It was a fantastic work hard/play hard environment.  We lived on nothing and earned very very little but it was so much fun, and ten years later we are all still friends, though we have diverged geographically and otherwise since.

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Re: In pursuit of Camaraderie... post FIRE
« Reply #5 on: August 17, 2018, 05:03:30 PM »
I'm an introvert too. I agree that authentic connection (intimacy, even) with others is one of the most meaningful parts of life.  Silent meditation retreats are, strangely, fabulous for a sense of connection with other retreatants. No talk, small or otherwise, needed (ok, maybe a little!) Nor a stressful work situation...

gerardc

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Re: In pursuit of Camaraderie... post FIRE
« Reply #6 on: August 17, 2018, 06:52:07 PM »
I'm actually a fairly introverted person, which maybe is part of the reason I enjoy the camaraderie that comes with more intense situations.  It sort of forces me to socialize with people and provides the common ground that is sometimes difficult to find through awkward small talk and voluntary casual social situations.

What intense situations? I also tend to shut down in situations where there is no point or the point is just to have fun (parties, restaurant) but I light up if there's a goal (sports, treasure hunts, hikes)... I like games. Of course you can always gamify anything, and that does work for me.

Evgenia

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Re: In pursuit of Camaraderie... post FIRE
« Reply #7 on: August 17, 2018, 06:58:53 PM »
Hmm - it's been easier for us post FIRE, possibly because we never cared for our coworkers terribly much to begin with, and did not fit in or heavily identify with our job roles or companies. We worked to live, that sort of thing, and always had hobbies.

Post FIRE (we're a few months into year four), we've just ratcheted up the time we already spent on non-work people and things: our neighbors, our neighborhood association (which in a city means a neighborhood, and that neighborhood is the size of many large cities), board game nights, craft communities (home brewing, gardening, knitting, sewing), my dance group. We see a LOT more folks than we could when we had to work. In addition, I continued my agricultural side gig and, though I often work alone, I sometimes crew up for larger jobs, and that's a more literal form of team work.

tungsten

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Re: In pursuit of Camaraderie... post FIRE
« Reply #8 on: August 17, 2018, 07:13:19 PM »
The more intense situations I was referring to were other things that I've found camaraderie in such as technical mountaineering, long distance hiking on the Appalachian Trail and Pacific Crest Trail, long motor cycle trips with friends, long bicycle tours.  Over the past few years I've discovered the value of being in one place for an extended period of time though, and the skills and relationships that allows one to build. I've enjoyed reading where everyone else gets a sense of camaraderie

Malkynn

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Re: In pursuit of Camaraderie... post FIRE
« Reply #9 on: August 19, 2018, 07:32:26 AM »
Camaraderie comes from tackling shared challenges with people.
Take up social activities which involved shared challenges: volunteering, courses, certain hobbies, sports, etc.

Having a challenge in common is generally even more bonding than having similar interests and attitudes.

dude

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Re: In pursuit of Camaraderie... post FIRE
« Reply #10 on: August 22, 2018, 10:32:57 AM »
Hello all,
I'm a few years away from FIRE myself, but I've been giving a lot of consideration to what life will be like on the other side.  I'm kind of a workaholic who is always putting off vacation and working late-  I do this, not because I want Megatech to be more profitable, but because I feel a certain dedication to my team- that is to say we have a sense of camaraderie.  Upon further introspection I've decided that for myself the sense of camaraderie is one of the most important things in life.  Camaraderie can bond people who are otherwise very different.  It bonds people as a function of time and shared circumstance and is incredibly strong- we often see it in people who serve in the military, people who work dangerous or remote jobs together, adventurers, athletes etc. I think it can be particularly strong in these examples because trust and dedication can be imperative for survival (except for sports, but what are team sports if not a substitution for tribal warfare?).  Again, these are just some of the more obvious examples.

Where can one find a strong sense of camaraderie post FIRE?  Where have you found it?
Tungsten

Mountaineering, ice climbing, rock climbing, backcountry snowboarding (esp. multiday trips for all the aforementioned), Brazilian jiu jitsu (esp. if you compete), training/working out with a partner/partners. These are the things that fulfill me now pre-FIRE, and I intend/expect for them to provide even more post-FIRE.

WalkaboutStache

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Re: In pursuit of Camaraderie... post FIRE
« Reply #11 on: August 23, 2018, 01:41:49 AM »
Camaraderie comes from tackling shared challenges with people.
Take up social activities which involved shared challenges: volunteering, courses, certain hobbies, sports, etc.

Having a challenge in common is generally even more bonding than having similar interests and attitudes.

Particularly team sports.  Dragon boating, team cycling (maybe), soccer, rowing.

ardrum

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Re: In pursuit of Camaraderie... post FIRE
« Reply #12 on: August 23, 2018, 10:10:47 AM »
I'm a trail ultrarunner, and I've found participating and volunteering at these events offers many opportunities for getting a sense of camaraderie.  The culture of this sport/event is such that everyone is basically rooting for and supporting everyone else.  It feels totally distinct from road marathons/events.

Malkynn

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Re: In pursuit of Camaraderie... post FIRE
« Reply #13 on: August 23, 2018, 05:16:55 PM »
Camaraderie comes from tackling shared challenges with people.
Take up social activities which involved shared challenges: volunteering, courses, certain hobbies, sports, etc.

Having a challenge in common is generally even more bonding than having similar interests and attitudes.

Particularly team sports.  Dragon boating, team cycling (maybe), soccer, rowing.

Personally I found volunteering much more bonding than team sports. I think it depends on your personality. People need to find their own thing.

Dicey

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Re: In pursuit of Camaraderie... post FIRE
« Reply #14 on: August 25, 2018, 11:59:27 PM »
I'm a lifelong reader, so when I wanted to make new friends, I started volunteering with the Friends of the Library.  Now I'm on two library boards. I'm a volunteer usher at our regional theater and I belong to a woman's auxiliary group that supports the same theater. I am co-chair of my town's annual volunteer day, and I am the treasurer for a local politician's campaign. Oh, and I'm putting on a fund raising event for nearly 100 people in two weeks. Plus, my MIL haz ALZ and lives with us. My local thrift shop wants me to volunteer there as well. Oh, and DH and I are flipping a house right now. it's a total gut job. I've been FIRE almost six years. I am never bored.

AlwaysBeenASaver

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Re: In pursuit of Camaraderie... post FIRE
« Reply #15 on: September 06, 2018, 01:00:58 PM »
I agree with others that the volunteer communities can offer you the camaraderie you're seeking. I suggest you start investigating volunteer opportunities in your community. Since you're still working you may not have time right now for a weekly volunteer shift, but many organizations also have 1-time needs that you could try out. I suggest you try different organizations out and see what you like participating in and the people involved in that organization. I've been FIREd a few years and volunteer with several organizations, some more than others, and each is very different as far as the atmosphere and how much or little time you spend with the other volunteers and paid-staff members.

WalkaboutStache

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Re: In pursuit of Camaraderie... post FIRE
« Reply #16 on: September 06, 2018, 07:53:19 PM »
The new article may help.  I am not saying start your own space, but maybe look for a maker space and take some classes.

Peony

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Re: In pursuit of Camaraderie... post FIRE
« Reply #17 on: September 06, 2018, 08:06:31 PM »
Following!

infromsea

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Re: In pursuit of Camaraderie... post FIRE
« Reply #18 on: September 07, 2018, 06:59:34 AM »
Hello all,
I'm a few years away from FIRE myself, but I've been giving a lot of consideration to what life will be like on the other side.  I'm kind of a workaholic who is always putting off vacation and working late-  I do this, not because I want Megatech to be more profitable, but because I feel a certain dedication to my team- that is to say we have a sense of camaraderie.  Upon further introspection I've decided that for myself the sense of camaraderie is one of the most important things in life.  Camaraderie can bond people who are otherwise very different.  It bonds people as a function of time and shared circumstance and is incredibly strong- we often see it in people who serve in the military, people who work dangerous or remote jobs together, adventurers, athletes etc. I think it can be particularly strong in these examples because trust and dedication can be imperative for survival (except for sports, but what are team sports if not a substitution for tribal warfare?).  Again, these are just some of the more obvious examples.

Where can one find a strong sense of camaraderie post FIRE?  Where have you found it?
Tungsten

You are wise to "start looking" for that replacement now.

Having retired from 24 years in the military, I'll tell you that the unit camaraderie is THE thing I miss the most, the shared experiences, overcoming hardships as a team, having those "you remember that time..." stories to share over and over again... I've gone from the military culture to "find meaning/camaraderie on your own", like "all the other civilians do".

I don't think it's as important for many people, they get what they need from the workplace, even if it's not a "hard core" camaraderie environment, it must be just enough for the majority of folks. It's smart that you've identified your motivator and can seek that out in forms other than the workplace. I'm still on the hunt and have considered becoming a police officer/fireman just to get back into a more "serious" fold. Things I have tried:

- Certification groups, they have monthly meetings (they can be a bit "stuffy" though, shirt and tie affairs..)

- Veterans groups (Many of these are dying out though, they are too formal and many just want to pretend they are still in a military structure, or spend time drinking/smoking/dying)

- The men's group at my wife's church (I'm not religious and don't attend church but the men's group has reached out and invited me to things, it's a cohort near my age/maturity level so I participate in things)

- A local meditation group (this one is new for me, still feeling it out, kind of wo-wo...)

- Facebook groups/meetups (I HATE facebook but, it's where a lot of folks "ARE" these days so I joined the MMM and FI local groups and have been to a meetup and plan to continue this interaction)

- Co-worker space (after MMM's article, I looked up local co-worker space since I work from home anyway, this might be a valuable addition to my routine)

Other ideas I've had/are in work:

- Volunteering at various events (I do this in some ways, but many orgs quickly want to monopolize your time and that turns me off)

- Becoming an EMT, I think this might be the closest thing to military service, other than policeman or fireman, seriously considering this now

- Teaching (I have a couple of side gigs teaching, I expect them to create some camaraderie and I look forward to seeing the results of those in the cohorts)

I will say this, for those who are not retired, you might think you won't miss the workplace, even if you don't enjoy the small talk/other BS that it involves, it's wise to do this type of thinking ahead (how to fill the gaps). The way I explain it to my wife is that we have "different sized buckets" when it comes to interacting with others. She can take a LOT more than me. When I was working a "real job" I was ready to choke folks by Tuesday, she's not there until Friday. Once I left the day to day rat race, I found that I needed to get some interaction or my bucket didn't "fill" at all, making me restless and a little edgy. Getting your "sources" in place now, that will likely make the transition easier.

So, just a few ideas. Where are you located? You mention the AT, are you East Coast?

Cheers,

Tim

« Last Edit: September 07, 2018, 11:20:05 AM by infromsea »

Fishindude

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Re: In pursuit of Camaraderie... post FIRE
« Reply #19 on: September 09, 2018, 01:51:12 PM »
Older guys are welcomed with open arms into service organizations like; Rotary, Lions, Kiwanis, etc. because they tend to have a lot more free time than the working guys and can be a little more active and involved in club projects and activities.

fidreamer

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Re: In pursuit of Camaraderie... post FIRE
« Reply #20 on: September 27, 2018, 11:00:14 AM »
I can't believe how many new and fun people I have met since I left my job.  First I started playing pickleball in various spots where I have met dozens and dozens of new friends....some of which I hang out with on a regular basis now.  Meeting these folks has led me to other activities like book club at library.  I was talked into a line dancing class which I am terrible at but still enjoy because of the laughs.  I was recently invited to join a bike group and was talking to another about a hiking group.  I go to my local trivia night.  There are great people out there and fun things happening.  After I put myself out there a little bit opportunities to meet people were there.

Siwan

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Re: In pursuit of Camaraderie... post FIRE
« Reply #21 on: September 29, 2018, 10:56:49 AM »
Since I left full time work 4 years ago, I've:  volunteered at a performing arts hall, currently volunteer as the co-president of a high school drama booster club (my alma mater!), joined a craft beer Ale Trail community, bike ride two times a week, care for 2 adorable grandchildren (9 months and 3 years) which means I'm at a splash park, playground, library story times, sign language classes for babies, Busch Gardens, the local aquariums a few times a week, talking to other grandmas or moms, I work part-time as a concierge so I get to do all kinds of fun events with the local concierge association (zip lining, sail boat rides, fine dining, museums (The Dali is coming up), the list goes on.  Once you stop working, you will find things to do with people who have the same interests, I promise!!

Hikester

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Re: In pursuit of Camaraderie... post FIRE
« Reply #22 on: September 30, 2018, 08:58:37 PM »
Meetups, you can find many types of activities for every taste. There are also other apps similar to Meetup.

Metta

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Re: In pursuit of Camaraderie... post FIRE
« Reply #23 on: October 12, 2018, 06:59:17 AM »
I think once you find your passion in retirement you will also find your community, or you will make it. For me I ended up forming two writing groups (different purposes, different people) and joining several others. After a year and ten months away from my former job I once again have trouble with being over scheduled and needing to carve out time for other important thing.

For this political season I decided that it was important to me to help elect people with my values to government. That has not been as satisfying as the writing groups but it is still a source of camaraderie. Still I look forward to once again being free to obsess about my writing and my writing groups.

profnot

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Re: In pursuit of Camaraderie... post FIRE
« Reply #24 on: October 16, 2018, 07:46:36 PM »
I agree with others about volunteer work.

After decades of being on committees and taking on other roles involving meetings, I no longer do that.  I like project work.

Building and maintaining a website does not require more than a couple of meetings.
Events need volunteers for prep, day of, and strike. 
Speaking to a board about a specific topic.

By not being an officer and having to attend regular meetings, I can spend more time traveling.