Author Topic: When non-mustaches ask you: What do you do?  (Read 11906 times)

DanLee

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When non-mustaches ask you: What do you do?
« on: May 13, 2017, 02:08:03 PM »
Hi there,

I'm Danny 27 from holland. And I have always been a truck driver and now semi retired. I only work 1 day a week because I still love my job, and because it hurts to eat from my stash.

Before I worked 80/90 hours a week, and only saw my family and friends in the weekend.

Bud now that I am retired, people ask me what do you do all day?
It's like they they can't imagine what to do with all that free time. I bike, cook, read a lot in the libary/internet,watch a movie at home with my wife. And play old videogames that I did not have time for when I was working so much. And there very cheap now:P. Kind of the same what other people do after work.

And when I meet new people they ask me what I do for work. Bud later they discover I only work one day. They ask what kind of study I do or they think I am on unemployment bennefits. And they get shocked and ask you how you do it, bud mostly they react kind of angry/talk down to you because you don't do anything for society.

I don't see MMM talk that much about it? Or is it that here in the netherlands people don't like non working people?

How do you deal with this after retirement? I just dont spend my time with these people.


Ozstache

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Re: When non-mustaches ask you: What do you do?
« Reply #1 on: May 14, 2017, 03:24:16 AM »
Initially, I felt a bit guilty about not working when everyone else my age was so I used to say I was having a career break. After a while, I started feeling guilty about being guilty and decided to ban all guilt and just tell people I'm retired. Yes, it often takes a bit more explaining but I'd rather do that and be honest with myself and them. If they end up having a issue with my ER, well that's their problem not mine. Be confident in who you are and what you've achieved!

CargoBiker

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Re: When non-mustaches ask you: What do you do?
« Reply #2 on: May 14, 2017, 04:38:53 AM »
I don't see MMM talk that much about it? Or is it that here in the netherlands people don't like non working people?

There may be some of this in play, but we deal with it in the U.S. as well.

I know in Swedish culture, it is frowned upon to make a lot of money, or be financially well off.  People tend to avoid talking about it, because of that.

Maybe it's similar in your country.
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DanLee

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Re: When non-mustaches ask you: What do you do?
« Reply #3 on: May 14, 2017, 06:32:24 AM »
People have it easier accepting it if you drive a fancy sports car and can tell about the big startup Company you sold.

I still drive my grandpa`s bike with those old mechanical brakes.

Goldielocks

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Re: When non-mustaches ask you: What do you do?
« Reply #4 on: May 15, 2017, 02:27:39 PM »
Gender roles come into play.

Typically, the people that have a weird idea that we must all "contribute to society all our days", seem to have a silent add ("unless you are a woman who has children or husband")...

I don't get it.

If I think I am talking to someone that has trouble with the idea of FIRE, I bring up how I needed to make time in my life for the opportunity to volunteer, join a club, etc, that I never could do while working. 

gardenarian

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Re: When non-mustaches ask you: What do you do?
« Reply #5 on: May 15, 2017, 02:48:56 PM »
I worked full time (and  more!) as a librarian for over 20 years, and I still work as a substitute 3-5 days per month - so I tell people I am a librarian.

I am female and still have a teenager at home, and I think it's true that people have lower expectations of moms than they do of men (whether they have kids or not.)

I get a lot of people advising me that I should volunteer with this or that organization. I occasionally volunteer, but usually it's a short term thing - like helping at the literary festival or local bike swap. I don't want any long term commitments and I don't want to sit on any committees - feels too much like work to me!
I do get negative judgement for my lack of volunteering, but I can live with it.
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pbkmaine

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Re: When non-mustaches ask you: What do you do?
« Reply #6 on: May 15, 2017, 02:55:34 PM »
Tell them you are a truck driver and work an irregular schedule. That will get them used to seeing you at odd times.

Bracken_Joy

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Re: When non-mustaches ask you: What do you do?
« Reply #7 on: May 15, 2017, 03:06:29 PM »
I'm a nurse who only works 1 day per week. I run into this sometimes with new friends. Honestly, I 'blame' it on my health occasionally. By saying things like "I just feel so much healthier when I work less". Which is true, haha, but makes me seem feeble perhaps. Otherwise, when people ask me what I do with my time, I am honest. I have a lot of hobbies to keep busy, my husband and I hike and camp and garden a lot, etc. I find most people who would be critical get very bored if I just start chattering excitedly about my garden ;) That heads off most of the issues.

In short: I have a good "elevator pitch" style excuse, totally avoiding financial aspects. I talk about what I am excited about, not how I got here. And I redirect the conversation to avoid it.
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Todge

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Re: When non-mustaches ask you: What do you do?
« Reply #8 on: May 16, 2017, 06:38:56 PM »
We FIRE's almost a year ago - I just tell people I'm retired. If they really seem to have a hard time comprehending that I'll add the rider "but we may go back to work once the kids are older and left home if the money doesn't last". That usually stops any facial ticks my initial statement set of in them.

MsRichLife

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Re: When non-mustaches ask you: What do you do?
« Reply #9 on: May 17, 2017, 03:52:27 AM »
In short: I have a good "elevator pitch" style excuse, totally avoiding financial aspects. I talk about what I am excited about, not how I got here. And I redirect the conversation to avoid it.

This is the approach I take. I talk about all the things I'm doing (spending time with my son, renovating a house, travelling, improving my health) and one of those topics seems to grab their attention and we'll discuss it further. There are a few people (typically older generation) who push to find out what I'm doing for work and I tell them I'm taking 12 months off work. I'm currently 6 months into FIRE and I'm not sure what I'll say at the end of that 12 months.

Bracken_Joy

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Re: When non-mustaches ask you: What do you do?
« Reply #10 on: May 17, 2017, 10:51:28 AM »
In short: I have a good "elevator pitch" style excuse, totally avoiding financial aspects. I talk about what I am excited about, not how I got here. And I redirect the conversation to avoid it.

This is the approach I take. I talk about all the things I'm doing (spending time with my son, renovating a house, travelling, improving my health) and one of those topics seems to grab their attention and we'll discuss it further. There are a few people (typically older generation) who push to find out what I'm doing for work and I tell them I'm taking 12 months off work. I'm currently 6 months into FIRE and I'm not sure what I'll say at the end of that 12 months.

"Freelancing" ;) Or "I have some passive income". If you own a rental it's even easier- doesn't matter if it's just a tiny part of your portfolio, pretend you're a real estate mogul =P

I do find it interesting that it tends to be the older generation that can't fathom life without work. IME, younger people roll with it a lot better, and are more willing to let the topic go. Sounds like you've found the same thing.
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soccerluvof4

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Re: When non-mustaches ask you: What do you do?
« Reply #11 on: May 17, 2017, 03:12:33 PM »
I simply tell people I am retired but thats not to say that if the economy takes a shit I wont look at doing something. My investments so far have done me well and its not like i retired rich or anything.  That answer seems to really work and they seem to accept that I am (or am not) rich and thats all they are usually snooping about.
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SwordGuy

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Re: When non-mustaches ask you: What do you do?
« Reply #12 on: May 17, 2017, 07:04:22 PM »
In short: I have a good "elevator pitch" style excuse, totally avoiding financial aspects. I talk about what I am excited about, not how I got here. And I redirect the conversation to avoid it.

That's very good advice!

Or, "Oh!  Work is just work.  I like to {fill in the blank}!  What do you like to do?"

We'll FIRE next spring.   

Sometimes I'll tell people I'm an artist.  (True.  Metalsmith, woodworker, potter.)   

Sometimes I'll tell people I'm a real estate investor.  (True.)   

Sometimes I'll tell people my most important job is adoring my wife.  (Very true!)   

Sometimes I'll tell people I'm an executor.  (True, but of a last will and testament, not the  kind who lops off people's heads.)   

Or an author.  (True.)

Or a software developer.  (True.)

We're all lots of things in life.   Don't let a job define you.   Define the person you want to be and then become that person.  Then own up to what you've made of yourself.


Ozlady

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Re: When non-mustaches ask you: What do you do?
« Reply #13 on: May 17, 2017, 07:09:52 PM »
i too struggle with this...but i find most people just want to snoop...

so i am trying out these 2  methods:

Qn:  wow ! you guys must be RICH...u can retire so young? (said with a smirk!)

Answer:  TOTAL SILENCE ...looks elsewhere ...

People find silence awkward so hopefully they will see my answer as "None of your bloody business"...

OR

Qn: wow! you guys must be RICH...u can retire so young? (said with a smirk!)

Answer: Oh yes !  Luckily i married a DH/DW who is good with investments..cos i am totally clueless!

Haven't try it out yet..what do you guys think?

Leisured

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Re: When non-mustaches ask you: What do you do?
« Reply #14 on: May 18, 2017, 06:52:02 AM »
Nothing new here; landowners have been living lives of leisure since the ancient world. Read widely, pursue the arts and sciences, volunteer.

o2bfree

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Re: When non-mustaches ask you: What do you do?
« Reply #15 on: May 18, 2017, 02:09:07 PM »
If you don't want to talk about what you do, just say, "I sell Amway!".

RyanAtTanagra

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Re: When non-mustaches ask you: What do you do?
« Reply #16 on: May 18, 2017, 03:43:00 PM »
I figure I'll just say 'I'm an X (what I used to do), but I'm taking a break right now'.  And when they ask how long of a break, 'depends on how long my savings lasts', which is true (hopefully forever).

Maurits28

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Re: When non-mustaches ask you: What do you do?
« Reply #17 on: May 18, 2017, 04:08:19 PM »
He Danny,

First of all congrats with your great results! 27 and FIRE. Impressive.

As a fellow Dutchman, I completely understand the reactions of Dutch people. Your job definitely defines who you are in Dutch culture. After meeting new people, the second question most of the time is, either where do you live, or what do you do for work. This in contrary to Latin American culture, where I have friends for many years, and we have never talked about our jobs. Ever. Very interesting.
When I talk to my Dutch friends about retiring early, they all think I want to retire at 62 or 60 or something. Most of them cannot grasp the possibility to stop at a much earlier age (I'm aiming to FIRE around 40). The rat-race is real.

Lots of other people in this thread already gave you excellent tips. One answer I read somewhere else on this forum I really liked. One guy would say that he is an 'Investment Manager'. Many times people already like that answer, what do they know that you are managing your own investments? If they keep asking, you can tell them you can work from home, as all the investments are managed online.

With the danger of saying something like all the condescending people you wrote about: Knowing that you are very good at achieving goals and setting targets, at 27 years old, I'm sure that at some point in your life you will want to define what your legacy will be in your life. What badass things will you do to leave the world a better place? That can be with your children, your family, your wife, in the neighborhood, church, any thing. Life is too awesome to only play video games :-).

Hartelijke groet!

DanLee

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Re: When non-mustaches ask you: What do you do?
« Reply #18 on: May 19, 2017, 03:43:48 AM »
I planned to play all the videogames I missed all those years bud now that I have all the time in the world. I spend most of my time reading and learning. The funny thing is I learn a lot more reading on the internet and in the library then what I learned in school. A lot of people think you can only learn things following a expensive study.

My plan for now is to visit my girlfriends parents in Nepal(we live together and we are not married because otherwise she would be my fiscal partner), and then visit my best friend in Australia already fired 1 year earlier now traveling the world.

I'm fixing up my 40 year old tax free honda cb100 motorcycle myself and travel europe.

I am able to retire early because in the netherlands you get 200% pay for working on sunday. And the tax system is made with a sweet spot for 20.000 before taxes. And we only have to pay 15% dividend taxes and we can even deduct that from our box 1 and 3 taxes.
And when I turn 67 (will probaly go to 72,5) I get AOW and the only thing you have to do is live in the netherlands for 50 years, and not dieing :-).


Linda_Norway

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Re: When non-mustaches ask you: What do you do?
« Reply #19 on: May 19, 2017, 04:14:55 AM »
Here is another congrats from a Dutch person. Well done in a high cost country.

I think it is in the culture to be expected to be productive: Ora et labora (bid en werk). People are probably also envious of you. I agree on the suggestion above that you think of some extra job title, like investor. But it is a pity that you can't just say the things as they are, even if you still have a parttime job. Could you do any kind of voluntary work, like for a sports club or some other local club, for example for once a week? Or a political party? Then you could contribute a little to society. (Not that I personally think you have to, but I understand your situation.)
« Last Edit: May 19, 2017, 11:56:11 AM by Linda_Norway »

Maurits28

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Re: When non-mustaches ask you: What do you do?
« Reply #20 on: May 19, 2017, 08:19:49 AM »
Ora et labora (bid en werk).

Great expression I forgot about! For the very few non-native Dutch / Latin speakers here: "Pray and work"

Jana

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Re: When non-mustaches ask you: What do you do?
« Reply #21 on: May 19, 2017, 09:14:19 AM »
"project manager"

Then I point to my husband. He's my project and I manage him...lol

Peter Gibbons

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Re: When non-mustaches ask you: What do you do?
« Reply #22 on: May 22, 2017, 03:24:04 PM »
I've been FIRE for 11 months now and really struggled with topic.  I have now settled on the following which works pretty well:

"I'm an engineer.  I recently left the corporate world and now offer my services as a consultant" ( this is true even when I don't have any active consulting gigs)

Bruizer

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Re: When non-mustaches ask you: What do you do?
« Reply #23 on: May 23, 2017, 12:11:21 PM »
I've been FIRE for 11 months now and really struggled with topic.  I have now settled on the following which works pretty well:

"I'm an engineer.  I recently left the corporate world and now offer my services as a consultant" ( this is true even when I don't have any active consulting gigs)

I like that!  I may use that too when I retire next month.


cheapass

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Re: When non-mustaches ask you: What do you do?
« Reply #24 on: May 24, 2017, 10:25:29 AM »
When I FIRE I'll probably just say I'm a portfolio manager or capital asset manager (my own).
Every single decision you make with money either shortens or lengthens your working career.

Frugal-Investor

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Re: When non-mustaches ask you: What do you do?
« Reply #25 on: May 24, 2017, 11:31:28 AM »
What I ACTUALLY do all day is to work in a handful of different roles: family member, community member (especially volunteering), athlete, investments manager, project manager, gardener, builder. Before I retired, I worked very difficult hours and traveled. And my areas of focus now almost entirely align with what I missed most when I was so oriented towards that work life. I still find it magical to spend time in the garden right after dawn where my biggest worry is forgetting where I set down my coffee mug and having my dog dig a hole near the asparagus.

When I hear that question, I try to understand where it is coming from. Is the question really about what ACTIVITIES fill my day? Then I answer in a literal way based on what I did yesterday or last week. Other times, I understand the question to be about my IDENTITY; since I'm not job-centered, how do I define myself? In those cases, I answer in terms of identity. I had difficult and high flying job that fed my competitive nature. Over time, I found myself less ambitious and needing more grounding and balance.  I'm very grateful for time now available for my family and to volunteer helping kids learn to read, etc. When I retired, I had a huge backlog of projects around the house that I'm still working through.

If I have the sense that the question comes from financial nosiness, I often respond by saying that I really like having an open schedule to do anything that I want. That such freedom was what motivated me to plan well and work very hard in a difficult field and save 1/2 of my and partner's income.

I haven't sensed an underlying question of: "what do you contribute to society now?" If I did get that question directly or indirectly, I think my answer would be something like this. When I was focused on my career, I did virtually nothing for my community other than pay taxes and vote. In fact, it felt like a selfish mode focused on advancement. Now that I'm retired, I put much more time and energy into my community.

Padonak

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Re: When non-mustaches ask you: What do you do?
« Reply #26 on: May 27, 2017, 10:08:41 AM »
A friend of mine inherited a couple of properties and retired in South East Asia at age 36.

I remember his conversation with one of the new guys (a friend of a friend).

-So, what do you do?
-I live.
-What do you mean you live?
-I live my life. I do whatever I want.
-  *-* ...ok

 

CanuckExpat

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Re: When non-mustaches ask you: What do you do?
« Reply #27 on: May 27, 2017, 09:46:46 PM »
I've been FIRE for 11 months now and really struggled with topic.  I have now settled on the following which works pretty well:

"I'm an engineer.  I recently left the corporate world and now offer my services as a consultant" ( this is true even when I don't have any active consulting gigs)

This is good to remember and steal :)

DTaggart

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Re: When non-mustaches ask you: What do you do?
« Reply #28 on: May 29, 2017, 03:56:34 PM »
When I FIRE I'll probably just say I'm a portfolio manager or capital asset manager (my own).

I think I'm going to go with "Personal Wealth Manager."

SumBum

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Re: When non-mustaches ask you: What do you do?
« Reply #29 on: May 31, 2017, 06:49:28 AM »
I really like the investment/portfolio manager idea!  The consultant route is a good one, too, but in my line of work (computers) I'd end up getting a job offer every time.

My brother and I always say to each other that we'll eventually be a "20 year overnight success".  Others only see the success and not the sacrifice behind it.  My bro and his wife own their own business and worked 70-80 hr weeks for a very long time to get it off the ground but people think it was easy for them.  I bought my car used 17 years ago, just took my first semi-real vacation in roughly 10 years, etc.  When I tell people I own rental properties, they assume I'm rich.

I'm not FIRE'd yet but the snarky side of me wants to drone on about every sacrifice I've made over the past decade or two that allowed me to RE if they try to guilt me.  I really do think a lot of it is envy that makes people belittle the success of another.  I love the crab bucket analogy, misery loves company, and so on.  If people don't give you credit for your success then they can ignore the fact that they've done nothing to be successful themselves.

I plan to volunteer more once my time is freed up and will be more than happy to contribute to society in the way that -I- want.   Tell them that working and paying taxes only contributes to the gov't and politicians' pockets.

RyanAtTanagra

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Re: When non-mustaches ask you: What do you do?
« Reply #30 on: May 31, 2017, 11:27:07 AM »
The consultant route is a good one, too, but in my line of work (computers) I'd end up getting a job offer every time.

Lol, I wouldn't use the consultant line either, for the same reason.  Unless I was ready to decline all offers from friends and family by saying I already had more work than I wanted (which would be true).

Leisured

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Re: When non-mustaches ask you: What do you do?
« Reply #31 on: May 31, 2017, 09:29:08 PM »
I like KhanAcademy, an online teaching site. It used to be poorly organised, but is now much better. Each lesson, online, lasts 10 to 15 minutes. I am studying Chemistry, but plan to study other things as well.

https://www.khanacademy

In the past I have watched lectures from academicearth.org.  They are good, but lectures are the usual 50 minute length.


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Re: When non-mustaches ask you: What do you do?
« Reply #32 on: May 31, 2017, 09:50:26 PM »
The consultant route is a good one, too, but in my line of work (computers) I'd end up getting a job offer every time.

Lol, I wouldn't use the consultant line either, for the same reason.  Unless I was ready to decline all offers from friends and family by saying I already had more work than I wanted (which would be true).

Just take the absurd rate at which you might consider an interesting offer (say work you find fun or meaningful), and then double it or triple it and quote them that. Presumably they will say no and you can walk away. And if they say yes.. well then you have a choice :)

Linda_Norway

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Re: When non-mustaches ask you: What do you do?
« Reply #33 on: June 01, 2017, 12:09:08 PM »
I just read an interview with a guy who lives of betting. He was asked the same question: what would you answer when people ask you what you do for a living. He says that answering that you live off betting makes people very suspisious and mistrusting towards you. Now he usually answers that he is a revisor. He says this makes people not asking any follow up questions.

pbkmaine

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Re: When non-mustaches ask you: What do you do?
« Reply #34 on: June 01, 2017, 12:10:28 PM »
I just read an interview with a guy who lives of betting. He was asked the same question: what would you answer when people ask you what you do for a living. He says that answering that you live off betting makes people very suspisious and mistrusting towards you. Now he usually answers that he is a revisor. He says this makes people not asking any follow up questions.

I would say that I am a statistician!

solon

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Re: When non-mustaches ask you: What do you do?
« Reply #35 on: June 01, 2017, 12:13:57 PM »
I'm looking forward to telling people I'm retired. If they can't understand, then I'll explain as much as required to get the point across.

mtn

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Re: When non-mustaches ask you: What do you do?
« Reply #36 on: June 01, 2017, 12:22:08 PM »
If I ever get there, I'll be telling people that I:

a: Work part time as an ice hockey ref, 
b: Manage my investments daily to optimize my portfolio (even though it would just be looking at them) 
c: Work part time as a _____ consultant (fill in the blank with something vague and BSish, i.e. "Risk orchestration")

cheapass

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Re: When non-mustaches ask you: What do you do?
« Reply #37 on: June 01, 2017, 12:52:18 PM »
I'm looking forward to telling people I'm retired. If they can't understand, then I'll explain as much as required to get the point across.

I kind of am looking forward to this as well. Seems like a great opportunity to let people know that it IS possible for most households with a little bit of planning and self-control.
« Last Edit: June 01, 2017, 01:35:21 PM by cheapass »
Every single decision you make with money either shortens or lengthens your working career.

solon

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Re: When non-mustaches ask you: What do you do?
« Reply #38 on: June 01, 2017, 01:33:44 PM »
I'm looking forward to telling people I'm retired. If they can't understand, then I'll explain as much as required to get the point across.

I kind of am looking forward to this as well. Seems like a great opportunity to let people know that it IS possible for most people with a little bit of planning and self-control.

Yeah, I love talking about it, and they're at least a little bit curious, so why not talk?

CanuckExpat

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Re: When non-mustaches ask you: What do you do?
« Reply #39 on: June 01, 2017, 10:38:47 PM »
I'm looking forward to telling people I'm retired. If they can't understand, then I'll explain as much as required to get the point across.

If you are very young, I don't recommend that strategy with border guards or other government / bureaucracy when they ask what you do!

Sometimes it's better to confirm to normal social expectations :)

Linda_Norway

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Re: When non-mustaches ask you: What do you do?
« Reply #40 on: June 02, 2017, 05:21:39 AM »
I'm looking forward to telling people I'm retired. If they can't understand, then I'll explain as much as required to get the point across.

I kind of am looking forward to this as well. Seems like a great opportunity to let people know that it IS possible for most people with a little bit of planning and self-control.

Yeah, I love talking about it, and they're at least a little bit curious, so why not talk?

I think for some people it might put their nose on the facts that they have lived their life in another way and that early pension is unachievable for them. It might hurt them a bit to see someone who reached it so long. And whether that is justified, I'm not sure. Yes, life is unfair and people get different chances in life, but a lot is also depending on choices you make personally. So, it is a combination.

RosieTR

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Re: When non-mustaches ask you: What do you do?
« Reply #41 on: June 07, 2017, 01:09:51 PM »
I'm looking forward to telling people I'm retired. If they can't understand, then I'll explain as much as required to get the point across.

This may take a lot of courage (depending on who's asking and your own personality) but I've had a couple of friends IRL do this and it was awesome! I have not FIRE'd just yet, but them being open about it led me to discuss my FIRE plans, which made us find something else in common besides the fun stuff we had initially gotten involved with. It's also interesting to hear about their paths, which have been different from mine.

cheapass

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Re: When non-mustaches ask you: What do you do?
« Reply #42 on: June 08, 2017, 08:19:46 AM »
I'm looking forward to telling people I'm retired. If they can't understand, then I'll explain as much as required to get the point across.

I kind of am looking forward to this as well. Seems like a great opportunity to let people know that it IS possible for most people with a little bit of planning and self-control.

Yeah, I love talking about it, and they're at least a little bit curious, so why not talk?

I think for some people it might put their nose on the facts that they have lived their life in another way and that early pension is unachievable for them. It might hurt them a bit to see someone who reached it so long.

"meh". People can make the choice to be offended or feel bad or any number of things.
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Re: When non-mustaches ask you: What do you do?
« Reply #43 on: June 13, 2017, 05:37:06 AM »
If you don't want to talk about what you do, just say, "I sell Amway!".
Best answer ever!

boarder42

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Re: When non-mustaches ask you: What do you do?
« Reply #44 on: June 13, 2017, 06:57:53 AM »
I'm looking forward to telling people I'm retired. If they can't understand, then I'll explain as much as required to get the point across.

I kind of am looking forward to this as well. Seems like a great opportunity to let people know that it IS possible for most people with a little bit of planning and self-control.

Yeah, I love talking about it, and they're at least a little bit curious, so why not talk?

i'm in this boat as well. Spread the word. maybe piss a few people off but who cares.  If 20% hear the message and make some changes for the positive, all the better.
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Mr. Green

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Re: When non-mustaches ask you: What do you do?
« Reply #45 on: June 13, 2017, 07:44:03 AM »
I like the "I'm unemployed" route. It's equally as true as "I'm retired" and it doesn't blow people's minds or generate angst because it violates some personal belief that no one can retire that young. Also, most people view the term "unemployed" in a negative light so there aren't usually additional questions. On the chance it heads in the direction of a job hookup I just say I'm not looking for a job at this time. If you're looking to be discreet about your wealth, this doesn't raise any flags either. People just assume you're poor because that's what they associate with the term "unemployed."
« Last Edit: June 13, 2017, 07:51:45 AM by Mr. Green »
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boarder42

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Re: When non-mustaches ask you: What do you do?
« Reply #46 on: June 13, 2017, 08:17:45 AM »
I like the "I'm unemployed" route. It's equally as true as "I'm retired" and it doesn't blow people's minds or generate angst because it violates some personal belief that no one can retire that young. Also, most people view the term "unemployed" in a negative light so there aren't usually additional questions. On the chance it heads in the direction of a job hookup I just say I'm not looking for a job at this time. If you're looking to be discreet about your wealth, this doesn't raise any flags either. People just assume you're poor because that's what they associate with the term "unemployed."

this wouldnt work well for me as we live a very upper middle class looking life from the outside on a very low budget compared to normal people .  we just optimize things.
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Mr. Green

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Re: When non-mustaches ask you: What do you do?
« Reply #47 on: June 13, 2017, 01:45:30 PM »
I like the "I'm unemployed" route. It's equally as true as "I'm retired" and it doesn't blow people's minds or generate angst because it violates some personal belief that no one can retire that young. Also, most people view the term "unemployed" in a negative light so there aren't usually additional questions. On the chance it heads in the direction of a job hookup I just say I'm not looking for a job at this time. If you're looking to be discreet about your wealth, this doesn't raise any flags either. People just assume you're poor because that's what they associate with the term "unemployed."

this wouldnt work well for me as we live a very upper middle class looking life from the outside on a very low budget compared to normal people .  we just optimize things.
You really think so? I'm not sure I know too many people who would have the balls to ask me how I'm unemployed and still paying for my lifestyle. That's even more taboo than saying "retired early."
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Re: When non-mustaches ask you: What do you do?
« Reply #48 on: June 16, 2017, 04:44:20 PM »
I'm in a funny place where my wife and I are thinking about adopting a kid at just about exactly the same time as we'll hit our FIRE number. Unfortunately, a social worker doing our home study won't accept any of the answers above ("I'm unemployed" or even "I'm retired" from a 32 year old would be huge red flags I'm sure) and if the process takes 2 years to get matched and another 6 months to finalize, I really don't want to keep working that whole time.

The most likely option is I'll try to go down to 3 days a week at my current job and just stick it out until the FMLA kicks in and we finalize, but does anyone have creative ideas for things I could "do" that a social worker would be ok with as a source of income that require as little actual "work" as possible?
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lizzzi

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Re: When non-mustaches ask you: What do you do?
« Reply #49 on: June 16, 2017, 05:01:18 PM »
I keep it vague, but tell the truth. "Oh, I've been out of nursing for a while, but I'm doing some reviews of historical novels for an international journal."  So that is my "thumbnail" or "elevator speech." People don't have to know that it's just occasional book reviews, and it's volunteer work. But it sounds impressive.

I spend my days reading, writing, drawing, singing with a choir, playing my harp, and walking outside with the dog a lot...I am every bit as busy as when I was in the workforce. But I'm living life pretty much on my own terms, and enjoying it a good deal...I don't usually share all this information with inquisitive people, because I don't want to make them feel bad, that I have a better quality of life than they do. And I'll admit it--I don't want them to judge me as being idle or lazy.