Author Topic: Last Year - Pre Fire looking for advice  (Read 12033 times)

Frugal_is_Fab

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Last Year - Pre Fire looking for advice
« on: May 13, 2016, 01:57:54 PM »
Hi everyone,  I haven't posted in awhile but I could use some advice.   My husband and I are officially retiring spring 2017.  He will be 61 and I will be 56. Like many of you it took a bit for us to get on the same page but we are doing this now.

My husband is taking a voluntary layoff which begins in November 2016, he will then supervise the repairs to our home while being "unemployed" in our state.  When that ends we are selling our home and moving to an income tax free state.

I'm looking for some advice to cope with the next year.  I'm so tired from the work.  We've been in a merger which meant downsized staff, upsized demands and general choas.   Work is an absolute 0 in my scale of interest but I have to keep going a little longer.   Any tips? 
« Last Edit: May 13, 2016, 01:59:38 PM by Frugal_is_Fab »

Cassie

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Re: Last Year - Pre Fire looking for advice
« Reply #1 on: May 13, 2016, 03:03:10 PM »
I had a calendar and crossed off the days at work. I hung it on my office door. It was very motivating.

momcpa

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Re: Last Year - Pre Fire looking for advice
« Reply #2 on: May 15, 2016, 09:52:03 AM »
I'm looking at wrapping up my career early 2018, so.....

In our office set up, my office is kinda off to the side.   In one area near me, there is a big dry erase board that is rarely used.  I've started using one corner of it to indicate a couple things that are important to me right now.   One number is my goal weight, one number is the fastest time this 'older' lady had jogged 5 miles, and the third number is the number of days until I'm finished at work.   I haven't put any 'titles' along side these numbers.  I'm the only one who knows what they mean.  And actually no one has even asked who put them there, or what they are for.

I'm happy with the incentive these number give me every time I walk past them.  Every Monday I change the number-of-days-left number.   Good luck with your journey til the end!

Monkey Uncle

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Re: Last Year - Pre Fire looking for advice
« Reply #3 on: May 15, 2016, 10:46:39 AM »
If you're less than a year from FIRE, I'm guessing that you'd be able to make it if you lost your job tomorrow.  Especially given your ages and the fact that you aren't too many years from social security eligibility.  Keep that in mind when things get stressful at work.  You don't have to take any crap from anyone at this point in your life.
"Take this job and shove it" - David Allan Coe

AlwaysBeenASaver

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Re: Last Year - Pre Fire looking for advice
« Reply #4 on: May 17, 2016, 02:49:01 PM »
A few ideas:

If you have sick and/or vacation time, give yourself long weekends as often as you can. It's ok to end with zero sick/vacation time, you won't need it after FIRE!

If you're not waiting for a pension or other compensation tied to that particular job, maybe you can get a different job til FIRE.

Start pushing back on things at work - refuse overtime, when it gets too chaotic go take a walk. It takes a while for a company to let someone go, so probably by the time they decide you're "not a team player", you'll be ready to FIRE anyway.


bobechs

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Re: Last Year - Pre Fire looking for advice
« Reply #5 on: May 17, 2016, 04:07:55 PM »
A few ideas:

If you have sick and/or vacation time, give yourself long weekends as often as you can. It's ok to end with zero sick/vacation time, you won't need it after FIRE!

If you're not waiting for a pension or other compensation tied to that particular job, maybe you can get a different job til FIRE.

Start pushing back on things at work - refuse overtime, when it gets too chaotic go take a walk. It takes a while for a company to let someone go, so probably by the time they decide you're "not a team player", you'll be ready to FIRE anyway.

An oldie but a goodie, called 'retired on active duty' when I was younger.  Probably still is, I suppose.


Northwestie

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Re: Last Year - Pre Fire looking for advice
« Reply #6 on: May 17, 2016, 05:27:18 PM »
A few ideas:

If you have sick and/or vacation time, give yourself long weekends as often as you can. It's ok to end with zero sick/vacation time, you won't need it after FIRE!

If you're not waiting for a pension or other compensation tied to that particular job, maybe you can get a different job til FIRE.

Start pushing back on things at work - refuse overtime, when it gets too chaotic go take a walk. It takes a while for a company to let someone go, so probably by the time they decide you're "not a team player", you'll be ready to FIRE anyway.

An oldie but a goodie, called 'retired on active duty' when I was younger.  Probably still is, I suppose.

Seriously - what are they going to do?  Fire you?

Frugal_is_Fab

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Re: Last Year - Pre Fire looking for advice
« Reply #7 on: May 18, 2016, 12:40:14 AM »
Love your posts everyone.  I love the idea of "how much harm is there in going early at this point".   My boss with 4 kids in college , stay at home spendthrift wife, vacation home, cars on lease  etc got "laid off" today with severance.    Damn!  I'd trade place with him in a second and I'm sure he would trade places with me.   Work is funny that way.  Glad my husband's place handled this stuff on a voluntary basis.     If I could be "not team player" enough to get a layoff with severance and unemployment that would be so awesome!

Meanwhile I'll count the days and grit my teeth because hubby and I did make an agreement on the timeline for quiting and moving and I do need to honor the commitment I made to him unless I can get "laid off" in the meantime.

jan62

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Re: Last Year - Pre Fire looking for advice
« Reply #8 on: May 18, 2016, 02:09:51 AM »
I have small year calendars on the wall near my desk that go till the year I plan to retire (2020). Every Friday i cross off another week. Only the handyman knows what they are there for as he is very financially savvy - only person I talk finances to at work occasionally. One day I was having a really bad day and he told me to go and check my calendar - it does help :)

Dicey

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Re: Last Year - Pre Fire looking for advice
« Reply #9 on: May 18, 2016, 10:19:39 PM »
Oh boy, when I was in a similar position, I made a paper chain. Each link represented one working day. I festooned my office with it. Every day, I tore off a link. Nobody knew what it represented but me. I cannot tell you what a lifesaver it was. Figure out how many working days you have left, scrounge up some construction paper in happy colors and make your own chain of freedom. Bonus points if you can keep the secret all to yourself. Guaranteed to make you smile.

It also helps to remind yourself that you have an end in sight. Most of your colleagues won't be so lucky.
I did it! I have a journal!
http://forum.mrmoneymustache.com/journals/a-lot-like-this/
And hell yes, I am still moving confidently in the direction of my dreams...

Farmgirl

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Re: Last Year - Pre Fire looking for advice
« Reply #10 on: May 19, 2016, 05:59:04 AM »
I have two calendars.  One where I cross off each day and one that has the number of paydays remaining until FI written in pencil (very lightly) in the corner block. 
As I actually write this, it sounds so childish, but it helps me get through.

I love the paper chain idea.  But I think someone snooping around would get suspicious.

Dicey

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Re: Last Year - Pre Fire looking for advice
« Reply #11 on: May 19, 2016, 01:13:48 PM »
I love the paper chain idea.  But I think someone snooping around would get suspicious.
Well, my answer (had I actually been asked) would have been "I'm working toward a goal." If anyone inquired further, I'd have said it was a personal goal and smiled enigmatically without elaborating. Out of curiousity, how many actual working days are left?
I did it! I have a journal!
http://forum.mrmoneymustache.com/journals/a-lot-like-this/
And hell yes, I am still moving confidently in the direction of my dreams...

Trudie

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Re: Last Year - Pre Fire looking for advice
« Reply #12 on: May 19, 2016, 01:19:40 PM »
I take sick time in small amounts for semi-legit purposes.  Today I'm taking a couple of hours because I do have to get some scripts before a trip and also turn in my absentee ballot.  But, this also means I can get on my bike and ride for two glorious hours by myself.

+1 on taking the time you need.  My work is cyclical, but when it gets stressful I don't hesitate to take the occasional sick day if I am not getting the sleep I need or just need to re-group.  I cook healthy food, get rest, and do what is needed to restore equilibrium.

Metric Mouse

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Re: Last Year - Pre Fire looking for advice
« Reply #13 on: May 20, 2016, 08:28:40 AM »
Congrats on being so close! Good luck with the next few months. I hope they go well.
Give me one fine day of plain sailing weather and I can mess up anything.

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jim555

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Re: Last Year - Pre Fire looking for advice
« Reply #14 on: May 21, 2016, 01:34:00 PM »
The closer I got to my last day the slower the time got.  It felt like I was digging a tunnel out of Stalag 17, the last day I would pop to the surface and run.
Stay strong and carry on!

Mr.Tako

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Re: Last Year - Pre Fire looking for advice
« Reply #15 on: May 23, 2016, 10:03:31 AM »
Probably the best thing is to not think about it.  Find a project to keep you busy.  Work on that to keep your mind off retirement.  That usually helps the days go by faster for me.
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Mr. Green

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Re: Last Year - Pre Fire looking for advice
« Reply #16 on: May 24, 2016, 01:46:47 PM »
I used to have a daily countdown at work, though the large number can be discouraging if you're feeling down. I would recommend a weekly countdown if you have less than a year to go. The small number is more positive than tracking days and it doesn't put the thought in the forefront of your mind every day since you're not changing the number every day. Leading up to my thru-hike attempt (and FIRE-ing) I actually made one of those chains kids make for Christmas. I put a number on each one and every Saturday I tore one off. The physical object gave me something to look forward to at the end of each week but it didn't make me dwell on my time left. I kept the chain in a well trafficked spot in my house but not somewhere that it was constantly in my face.

But you can disregard all that if you don't like countdowns. :)
"DO IT!" --Shia LaBeouf

Dicey

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Re: Last Year - Pre Fire looking for advice
« Reply #17 on: May 25, 2016, 09:48:41 AM »
Lolz, Mr. Green, looks like we've got something else (besides FIRE ) in common. See my paper chain comment above. I like the idea of weekly links, too. In my case, my mindset was a little different. I made a 90-link chain and promised myself that at the end of 90 links, I'd be out of there. It worked and now, to quote Ernie Z, I'm "Wild, Happy and Free!"
I did it! I have a journal!
http://forum.mrmoneymustache.com/journals/a-lot-like-this/
And hell yes, I am still moving confidently in the direction of my dreams...

Mr. Green

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Re: Last Year - Pre Fire looking for advice
« Reply #18 on: May 26, 2016, 07:00:29 AM »
Lolz, Mr. Green, looks like we've got something else (besides FIRE ) in common. See my paper chain comment above. I like the idea of weekly links, too. In my case, my mindset was a little different. I made a 90-link chain and promised myself that at the end of 90 links, I'd be out of there. It worked and now, to quote Ernie Z, I'm "Wild, Happy and Free!"
Nice! I totally missed that. I started my countdown when my "days left" number was over 400. That would have taken some serious effort!
"DO IT!" --Shia LaBeouf

Dicey

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Re: Last Year - Pre Fire looking for advice
« Reply #19 on: May 26, 2016, 08:08:30 AM »
Not to mention the serious risk of paper cuts...
I did it! I have a journal!
http://forum.mrmoneymustache.com/journals/a-lot-like-this/
And hell yes, I am still moving confidently in the direction of my dreams...

wynr

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Re: Last Year - Pre Fire looking for advice
« Reply #20 on: June 03, 2016, 04:01:48 PM »
I have been counting down the weeks.  I guess it is time to start on the days... 23 working days left (if I don't take any additional days off).

wynr

Gremlin

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Re: Last Year - Pre Fire looking for advice
« Reply #21 on: June 04, 2016, 03:24:36 AM »
I have a spreadsheet and I use a "count back" which shows significant milestones.  For example, if I have x days to go, it pops up events that happened x days ago, usually two to five things every month.  Typically it makes me go "oh I remember that - doesn't feel so long ago at all."  And in an equivalent amount of time in the future I'll be done.

Mrs Gremlin thinks it's a little weird, but it works for me...

Dances With Fire

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Re: Last Year - Pre Fire looking for advice
« Reply #22 on: June 08, 2016, 06:23:46 AM »
Thanks to the OP and those of you who have posted here. Keep those ideas coming.

We are about 4-5 years from complete Fire and our work environment has also become increasingly chaotic and demanding. I am considering a part-time gig, but until then these tips are very helpful.

As a side note, another post recommended Ernie Z's retirement book and it has been a big help on dealing with a lot of these issues.

ShortInSeattle

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Re: Last Year - Pre Fire looking for advice
« Reply #23 on: June 09, 2016, 10:56:17 AM »
My advice is to set yourself a meaningful goal for your last year at work.

Do you want to leave your current job/desk in excellent shape, so you can leave with your head held high?
Do you want to pick a junior employee (or two) to mentor?
Do you want to be the person who is always honest, even when it's politically unpopular?

I think you could squeeze a lot of enjoyment out of that last year if you've got something cool in mind. After all, what's the worst thing they can do? Fire you?

SIS

Slee_stack

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Re: Last Year - Pre Fire looking for advice
« Reply #24 on: June 09, 2016, 12:35:36 PM »
My advice is to set yourself a meaningful goal for your last year at work.

Do you want to leave your current job/desk in excellent shape, so you can leave with your head held high?
Do you want to pick a junior employee (or two) to mentor?
Do you want to be the person who is always honest, even when it's politically unpopular?

I think you could squeeze a lot of enjoyment out of that last year if you've got something cool in mind. After all, what's the worst thing they can do? Fire you?

SIS
Been doing these since FI.  You don't need a pending RE date to adopt them!  You might find yourself with an unplanned RE date if you are too brutal on the last suggestion though...

tzukulika

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Re: Last Year - Pre Fire looking for advice
« Reply #25 on: June 09, 2016, 01:11:36 PM »
My prosaic advice : Teeth!!!=> make sure you get all your filings/dental work needed done. Coming back from dentist will make work more palatable, sort of speak.

Fishindude

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Re: Last Year - Pre Fire looking for advice
« Reply #26 on: June 09, 2016, 01:14:56 PM »
Takes some vacation days.
What are they going to do, fire you?

Thinkum

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Re: Last Year - Pre Fire looking for advice
« Reply #27 on: June 09, 2016, 01:24:40 PM »
What ever you do, don't become Schmidt, staring at the clock.




Also, you can do like my past coworker did and get all your medical care taken care of while you have insurance. Then make sure to take lots of 3 day weekends throughout the year. Lastly, try not to focus on it, remember to live your life outside of work. Time has a way of passing faster than we realize when we're not actively paying attention to it.
« Last Edit: June 09, 2016, 01:27:30 PM by Thinkum »

MKinVA

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Re: Last Year - Pre Fire looking for advice
« Reply #28 on: August 01, 2016, 06:57:28 PM »
Hope someone is still following this....I have a list of things to do at the office and at home. I too will be retiring next year...so have you cleaned out your email? Your file cabinet? Gotten rid of stuff stuck in drawers? How about at home? Since you are selling the home and moving have you cleaned out the pot cupboard? How about the linen closet? Sell your trinkets and stuff around the house? Extra furniture, bedding, etc.? Just keep moving forward!

Metric Mouse

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Re: Last Year - Pre Fire looking for advice
« Reply #29 on: August 01, 2016, 07:50:32 PM »
Since you are selling the home and moving have you cleaned out the pot cupboard?

Cleaning out the pot cupboard is probably a good way to also clean out the pantry and the fridge.
Give me one fine day of plain sailing weather and I can mess up anything.

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redbird

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Re: Last Year - Pre Fire looking for advice
« Reply #30 on: August 01, 2016, 08:49:31 PM »
I had a calendar and crossed off the days at work. I hung it on my office door. It was very motivating.

I did something similar. I also made a list of a bunch of different things I wanted to do while FIRE to help keep me motivated.

You can also try using up any vacation time if it doesn't pay out. My job paid out unused vacation time, so I had incentive to not use it.
FIREd! as of Sep 4, 2015

Nudel

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Re: Last Year - Pre Fire looking for advice
« Reply #31 on: August 09, 2016, 07:41:56 AM »
Calendar option is to consider keeping an Excel-type spreadsheet on your desktop. Put in the dates from now until FIRE with two rows of numbers. One will be the number of actual days until complete, the other is how many working days. You can also add in a feature that will highlight the cell with today's date. Keeping it digital also allows for quick updates if you take a vacation date and need to shift the numbers.

Frugal_is_Fab

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Re: Last Year - Pre Fire looking for advice
« Reply #32 on: August 13, 2016, 03:59:15 AM »
Hope someone is still following this....I have a list of things to do at the office and at home. I too will be retiring next year...so have you cleaned out your email? Your file cabinet? Gotten rid of stuff stuck in drawers? How about at home? Since you are selling the home and moving have you cleaned out the pot cupboard? How about the linen closet? Sell your trinkets and stuff around the house? Extra furniture, bedding, etc.? Just keep moving forward!

Thanks everyone for your advice.  I've been cleaning out at home which is cathartic.   Work will be easy to clean out ... should only take a week or so.   


Libertea

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Re: Last Year - Pre Fire looking for advice
« Reply #33 on: August 13, 2016, 04:13:21 PM »
I had a calendar and crossed off the days at work. I hung it on my office door. It was very motivating.
Oh, yeah, me too. 

OP, I am retiring (actually semi-retiring) in March, so pretty much same time frame as you.  I take great pleasure in crossing off each day on the calendar.  31 weeks and zero days until my last day.  Not that I'm counting. ;-)

Frugal_is_Fab

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Re: Last Year - Pre Fire looking for advice
« Reply #34 on: December 02, 2016, 08:01:36 PM »
Thanks again for the great advice.   My husband is retired now so we are getting closer.   Trying to get the pension paperwork right and get that started has been painful as well as getting the 401k into the Rollover IRA.  With 2017 approaching I will start the countdown you all suggested with the new year.  My plan is to get 100% of my pay into tax deferred or tax free accounts like Roth, 401k and HSA.  When I hit the max on all those accounts in 2017 I'm outta there.     Gonna live on the Pension payments in 2017.   My husband and I discussed the "split" and what he will give me for bills.  It will be about 10k per year more than I spent in  any of the last three years so I feel I will be still show a "profit" every month which  I'll put into a separate account just to see the plan in action.

Oh BTW, One of you mentioned having vacation paid out upon leaving.  That was my plan but it seemed the by taking the vacation while still an active employee I could keep my subsidized health care longer.   I have no intention of working on any of these vacation days as I'm not worried about a risk of getting fired.   So my vacation days will be like retirement days...when the last one is gone I'll put in my notice.

Cassie

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Re: Last Year - Pre Fire looking for advice
« Reply #35 on: December 03, 2016, 04:35:11 PM »
The first year felt funny and we were anxious about $ so only spent our pensions.  After that we loosened up because like you guys we are older and decided the time was now to travel and have more experiences. I am sure that you will settle in and find your comfort level.  Almost 5 years in now and have taken many great trips.

Metric Mouse

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Re: Last Year - Pre Fire looking for advice
« Reply #36 on: December 04, 2016, 04:00:07 AM »
Thanks again for the great advice.   My husband is retired now so we are getting closer.   Trying to get the pension paperwork right and get that started has been painful as well as getting the 401k into the Rollover IRA.  With 2017 approaching I will start the countdown you all suggested with the new year.  My plan is to get 100% of my pay into tax deferred or tax free accounts like Roth, 401k and HSA.  When I hit the max on all those accounts in 2017 I'm outta there.     Gonna live on the Pension payments in 2017.   My husband and I discussed the "split" and what he will give me for bills.  It will be about 10k per year more than I spent in  any of the last three years so I feel I will be still show a "profit" every month which  I'll put into a separate account just to see the plan in action.

Oh BTW, One of you mentioned having vacation paid out upon leaving.  That was my plan but it seemed the by taking the vacation while still an active employee I could keep my subsidized health care longer.   I have no intention of working on any of these vacation days as I'm not worried about a risk of getting fired.   So my vacation days will be like retirement days...when the last one is gone I'll put in my notice.

Awesome! Thanks for the update. Looks like your plans are working out well!
Give me one fine day of plain sailing weather and I can mess up anything.

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bobechs

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Re: Last Year - Pre Fire looking for advice
« Reply #37 on: December 11, 2016, 09:34:31 AM »
Since you are selling the home and moving have you cleaned out the pot cupboard?

Cleaning out the pot cupboard is probably a good way to also clean out the pantry and the fridge.

Probably so, but cleaning out the meth cupboard will really super-charge getting all the around the house trivia accomplished in record time.

Playing with Fire UK

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Re: Last Year - Pre Fire looking for advice
« Reply #38 on: December 17, 2016, 05:05:52 AM »
Oh BTW, One of you mentioned having vacation paid out upon leaving.  That was my plan but it seemed the by taking the vacation while still an active employee I could keep my subsidized health care longer.   I have no intention of working on any of these vacation days as I'm not worried about a risk of getting fired.   So my vacation days will be like retirement days...when the last one is gone I'll put in my notice.

Great idea.

Metric Mouse

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Re: Last Year - Pre Fire looking for advice
« Reply #39 on: December 17, 2016, 05:07:21 AM »
Since you are selling the home and moving have you cleaned out the pot cupboard?

Cleaning out the pot cupboard is probably a good way to also clean out the pantry and the fridge.

Probably so, but cleaning out the meth cupboard will really super-charge getting all the around the house trivia accomplished in record time.

Certianly wouldn't be taking nap breaks.
Give me one fine day of plain sailing weather and I can mess up anything.

MustacheMathTM

Frugal_is_Fab

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Re: Last Year - Pre Fire looking for advice
« Reply #40 on: December 22, 2016, 03:14:25 PM »
I have small year calendars on the wall near my desk that go till the year I plan to retire (2020). Every Friday i cross off another week. Only the handyman knows what they are there for as he is very financially savvy - only person I talk finances to at work occasionally. One day I was having a really bad day and he told me to go and check my calendar - it does help :)

Thought I'd put out one more post to everyone as we approach 2017.  I love all your suggestions about the countdown.  I'm starting the first day of 2017.    My husband is retired and started his pension already .   We talked about what I needed for bills and the amount I'm getting in my "allowance" is $10000 more annually than I spent in any of the last 3 years so I'm feeling pretty good.   I'm  putting 100% of my 2017 pay into tax sheltered vehicles Roth IRA, HSA and 401k.  and living off the pension only tracking how much "extra" accumulates.   As I approach the federal max for all my accounts, I can count down.    Once that paycheck only gives taxable income I'm done , so it will be really fun to "count down" as I approach my goal numbers.   Thanks for letting me "talk" about this virtually!  At work I'd just get jealousy and "not a team player" mentality.

Frugal_is_Fab

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Re: Last Year - Pre Fire looking for advice
« Reply #41 on: December 22, 2016, 03:35:33 PM »
The first year felt funny and we were anxious about $ so only spent our pensions.  After that we loosened up because like you guys we are older and decided the time was now to travel and have more experiences. I am sure that you will settle in and find your comfort level.  Almost 5 years in now and have taken many great trips.

Thanks Cassie,   I too have that nervousness about spending post fire and hope to relax into it after our move.   I know the point of ER is to get to do things before getting too old to enjoy.   

Playing with Fire UK

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Re: Last Year - Pre Fire looking for advice
« Reply #42 on: December 23, 2016, 12:37:40 AM »
The first year felt funny and we were anxious about $ so only spent our pensions.  After that we loosened up because like you guys we are older and decided the time was now to travel and have more experiences. I am sure that you will settle in and find your comfort level.  Almost 5 years in now and have taken many great trips.
Thanks Cassie,   I too have that nervousness about spending post fire and hope to relax into it after our move.   I know the point of ER is to get to do things before getting too old to enjoy.   

When you look at cfiresim, the risk always seems to be in the first few years. Unless your low level of spending is making you unhappy or you have health concerns, there is a mathematical advantage to doing cheaper things sooner and pricier things later.

Villanelle

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Re: Last Year - Pre Fire looking for advice
« Reply #43 on: December 23, 2016, 12:50:17 AM »
As another possible spin on the countdown, when I left my last job (which at the time wasn't supposed to be my Last job, but it looks like it might end up having been just that), I knew way in advance when my last day would be.  (We were moving overseas and for various reasons I gave my employer a *ton* of notice.)  I went back and calculated the total number of days I'd have been in that job from first day to last, and then tracked the % of days I'd completed.  I recalculated every week, or when I was especially frustrated of bored.  The numbers don't move all that quickly, especially if you've been in the job long term, but something about know that I'd completed 91.4% of the task that was doing X job was very satisfying and relieving and motivating for me. 

Frugal_is_Fab

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Re: Last Year - Pre Fire looking for advice
« Reply #44 on: December 23, 2016, 06:09:50 AM »
The first year felt funny and we were anxious about $ so only spent our pensions.  After that we loosened up because like you guys we are older and decided the time was now to travel and have more experiences. I am sure that you will settle in and find your comfort level.  Almost 5 years in now and have taken many great trips.
Thanks Cassie,   I too have that nervousness about spending post fire and hope to relax into it after our move.   I know the point of ER is to get to do things before getting too old to enjoy.   

When you look at cfiresim, the risk always seems to be in the first few years. Unless your low level of spending is making you unhappy or you have health concerns, there is a mathematical advantage to doing cheaper things sooner and pricier things later.

I think I'm still going to try to get over my fear of spending in the early years of ER contrary to your advice.  Like Cassie, I want to travel and the quality of that experience is better the younger you are.    I remember one trip to Paris when I was 35.   I meet an older couple at the airport and the wife was asking me for advice on what to do because he husband could no longer walk well.  I told them about various bus tour options I was aware of, but inside I was so happy I went to Paris at 35 because my husband and I had walked all over the city and that was a tremendous experience!   It would have been so much less of an experience if I was limited in mobility.    About a week ago I was in San Francisco and my husband and I walked all over the city, even the hills.   Thank God we can still do that!  I want to take advantage of good health while we have it.

Playing with Fire UK

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Re: Last Year - Pre Fire looking for advice
« Reply #45 on: December 23, 2016, 10:48:36 AM »
The first year felt funny and we were anxious about $ so only spent our pensions.  After that we loosened up because like you guys we are older and decided the time was now to travel and have more experiences. I am sure that you will settle in and find your comfort level.  Almost 5 years in now and have taken many great trips.
Thanks Cassie,   I too have that nervousness about spending post fire and hope to relax into it after our move.   I know the point of ER is to get to do things before getting too old to enjoy.   

When you look at cfiresim, the risk always seems to be in the first few years. Unless your low level of spending is making you unhappy or you have health concerns, there is a mathematical advantage to doing cheaper things sooner and pricier things later.

I think I'm still going to try to get over my fear of spending in the early years of ER contrary to your advice.  Like Cassie, I want to travel and the quality of that experience is better the younger you are.    I remember one trip to Paris when I was 35.   I meet an older couple at the airport and the wife was asking me for advice on what to do because he husband could no longer walk well.  I told them about various bus tour options I was aware of, but inside I was so happy I went to Paris at 35 because my husband and I had walked all over the city and that was a tremendous experience!   It would have been so much less of an experience if I was limited in mobility.    About a week ago I was in San Francisco and my husband and I walked all over the city, even the hills.   Thank God we can still do that!  I want to take advantage of good health while we have it.

Totally agree that (adventure) travel is a different game when you are younger. I don't think it's a requirement to spend less, or that it is best for everyone. I do think that if you are beating yourself up about spending less then you can give yourself a break.

If you are in good health you also have the option of doing travelling cheaper (you can travel on indirect flights, can walk rather than get taxis and stay in cheaper hotels that won't always have lifts). If travel is your thing you can slow travel and stay in AirBnB and shop at supermarkets rather than eat in restaurants.

However, none of this means that you NEED to spend less in your first few years. A counter argument is that you should go nuts in your first few years as you have the most chance of returning to high paying work if the markets go against you early on.

It's all about how you see the risk and how much you want to adjust your behaviour on the small chance that something could go wrong. I'm sure your plan has a high chance of success. People are unlikely to get themselves to FIRE without having the skills to weather the downside.

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Re: Last Year - Pre Fire looking for advice
« Reply #46 on: December 24, 2016, 06:03:36 AM »
I had a calendar and crossed off the days at work. I hung it on my office door. It was very motivating.

I started a calendar and knew the first of every month how many days, from about 625.  As it got closer, I updated the number every week.  Once it got down to the final 100, I had a chart I crossed off every day when I came in, for the amount of days.  Every Monday I crossed off three.  Long weekends were four.  And since I worked from home most Friday's the final six months, often it was four or five.


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Re: Last Year - Pre Fire looking for advice
« Reply #47 on: December 27, 2016, 08:13:45 AM »
I had a calendar and crossed off the days at work. I hung it on my office door. It was very motivating.

I started a calendar and knew the first of every month how many days, from about 625.  As it got closer, I updated the number every week.  Once it got down to the final 100, I had a chart I crossed off every day when I came in, for the amount of days.  Every Monday I crossed off three.  Long weekends were four.  And since I worked from home most Friday's the final six months, often it was four or five.



That must have felt so great.
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Re: Last Year - Pre Fire looking for advice
« Reply #48 on: January 31, 2017, 07:03:36 PM »
I had a calendar and crossed off the days at work. I hung it on my office door. It was very motivating.

I started a calendar and knew the first of every month how many days, from about 625.  As it got closer, I updated the number every week.  Once it got down to the final 100, I had a chart I crossed off every day when I came in, for the amount of days.  Every Monday I crossed off three.  Long weekends were four.  And since I worked from home most Friday's the final six months, often it was four or five.



That must have felt so great.

Thanks... just an update to everyone.  Hubby is enjoying retirement.  Someone told the bosses I was retiring and I got confronted on it so I admitted it was true.   I don't know what will happen but nothing changed so far and it's nice not to hide.   Five months to go... assuming I can choose my own exit date.   I'm up to putting 15% in HSA and 82% in 401k leaving less than $20 in my pay check.   I'm modelling what it will be like when all spending comes from other sources and I'm nailing it!   I set aside the funds I would need if I paid my own healthcare from our pension funds in a separate account and then pay all the bills with the remainder.   So far I spend 30% of the remaining pension
 funds for bills for January.

Playing with Fire UK

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Re: Last Year - Pre Fire looking for advice
« Reply #49 on: February 03, 2017, 12:05:00 AM »
Thanks for the update. Bit of a dick move to tell your bosses behind your back but if it's working out okay then no harm done. Are you retiring very early for your workplace?

I was thinking back to the paper chain. When I have a date I'm going to do it with paperclips. Same principal but slightly more subtle. Unless I have a telecommute position: if so I'm having a giant poster sized countdown clock and to hell with the excess paper.