Author Topic: Tomorrow I am telling my boss that I am retiring (and I am VERY nervous)  (Read 10304 times)

retiringearly

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Tomorrow I am telling my boss that I am retiring.  I will give her as much notice as she needs to make the transition smooth.  I finally came to the realization that the anxiety that hits me each and every day at work is no longer worth it.  I can live on 4% of my nest egg but the unknown it still scares me. 

This is also a radical life change for me.   My entire life (education and career) has been dedicated to getting ahead and making more money.  It is psychologically very difficult for me to walk away from all that.

I did a brief job search to see if anything sparked my interest but I really don't want to continue on this path, not even for a few more years.

Any advice?

Thanks!

CheapskateWife

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No advice particularly, as I'm still keeping my RE plans close until I'm closer to pulling the trigger.

What are you nervous about...his/her reaction, or committing to actually pulling the plug?  Is it the change?  What are you retiring to?

OK maybe I have some advice...consider a "get a life tree" where you map out all the things you want for your retired life.  Perhaps the exercise will calm your fears.

Mr. Green

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It gets easier as you start executing your spending plan and see that things are working like you expected them to. That change was scary for me to. You have to trust the math. If you have a plan and the math backs you up then you're doing everything you can do. There's always a risk no matter how low the withdrawal rate so be comfortable with the small possibility that you'll go back to work or cut expenses later to adjust.

RedmondStash

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Good for you! Conversations like that are never easy. You will probably feel much better when that talk is behind you.

Change is hard. But you are making change for a reason, to live a life you believe will be better. That's worth taking a chance for.

Good luck!

LifeHappens

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I'm transitioning from full time to part time consulting work and just gave notice on a contract yesterday. I was literally shaking while talking with the project director, so I sympathize with how nervous you must be!

Our brains are telling us we can't leave the security of that paycheck even though we know the money stuff is handled.

It sounds like you are burnt out and anxious, which is totally understandable. Give yourself some time to decompress before you make any decisions about your future. People report needing 6-12 months of "recovery" time after leaving a stressful job to really find their new normal.

Keep coming back here. There are lots of great people who will help you. You might want to start a journal for ongoing processing and support.

retiringearly

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I am not nervous about the conversation.  I am nervous about the life change.  I have been geared to follow my educational and career path for 49 years, it is scary to me to walk away from it.

Thanks for the comment about it getting easier as I execute my spending plan.

I also appreciate the encouragement.

I realize that I have been basically miserable for most (if not all) of my adult life due to my career.  It has paid well but I have never been happy.

My game plan is to volunteer more time at the animal shelter I already volunteer at.  Additionally, I want to find another non-profit to volunteer at.

tarheeldan

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I don't have any advice, since I don't have any experience to share, but I wanted to say good luck with everything!

I realize that I have been basically miserable for most (if not all) of my adult life due to my career.  It has paid well but I have never been happy.

Holy $h!t. But spending time and energy to help others / better the world sounds like a great way to change that!

Inaya

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Do you have a backup plan in place? I find that in any pursuit, my anxiety is much lower if I have a backup plan... and a backup plan for the backup plan. It's really backup plans all the way down. Even if it's something as simple as "If my spending is too high or returns too low, I can always get a temporary job." Always remember that FI is about flexibility, and that flexibility only increases once you FIRE.

retiringearly

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My backup plans include cutting spending and working as a seasonal tax preparer if I need a temp job.  I will explore more avenues for part-time jobs in the near future.

MrsPete

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Why are you nervous?  Really, what's the downside?  She'll say you can't quit?  I don't think so.

Elderwood17

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Why are you nervous?  Really, what's the downside?  She'll say you can't quit?  I don't think so.

Great point!  Realize you are solely in control of the decision.  Now, if the anxiety is really an internal wrestling about the decision, then take a step back and make sure this is the right decision at this time.   If you know you can quit at anytime, it sure makes it easier putting in another few weeks to make sure a lot easier!

Gondolin

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Congratulations!

If you're unhappy in your current work I think you'll be best served striking out on the unconventional path. Even if by some disaster things don't work out, the resulting potential hardship will still be a lot more palatable than spending 15-20 more years chained to your desk out of fear.

For someone of your resources, you're already living your worst life. There's no where to go but up!

acroy

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Badass and congratulations!
If you have skills and want to use them I'm sure you'll find work !
Let us know how it goes!

Linea_Norway

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My backup plans include cutting spending and working as a seasonal tax preparer if I need a temp job.  I will explore more avenues for part-time jobs in the near future.

Your backup plans sounds safe. So what are you still anxious about? I think you will have a fullfilled life with enough social interaction with your voluntering yob.
Please don't let your boss decide completely on when you will ER. Maybe she wants you to work for another year. Decide what your maximum is and let her choose within that range.  You need to be in control.

And remember that many people who have FIRED say they didn't do it early enough.

retiringearly

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Thanks for all the replies and input.

My anxiety has been running wild over the last year and a half.  I came to the realization that I have been dealing with anxiety due to work for my entire career.  I remember working at my first company 25 years ago and feeling the stress in my chest as I drove to work in the morning.   Life is too short to voluntarily do this to myself if I no longer have to.

Dexterous

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You're obviously an extremely strong person to deal with that for so long then!  Congratulations are in order, and it's about time to put that job behind you.

Linea_Norway

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Thanks for all the replies and input.

My anxiety has been running wild over the last year and a half.  I came to the realization that I have been dealing with anxiety due to work for my entire career.  I remember working at my first company 25 years ago and feeling the stress in my chest as I drove to work in the morning.   Life is too short to voluntarily do this to myself if I no longer have to.

Anxiety might also be a part of your personality noe. Please look up ways to learn how to relax. Otherwise you might still stress about some things after FIRE. I am working on that, too, but have still a way to go.

retiringearly

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Thanks again for all the insightful comments.

This is such a huge move for me that I am nervous about it.  I will get over that.

Cowardly Toaster

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So I recently tried to quit my job... and basically got talked into keeping it.

Here's my suggestion: hint that you found another job somewhere else at much higher pay or better opportunities. Give 2 weeks notice, or you risk entangling yourself and not being committed

FrugalShrew

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No advice, but lots of solidarity! I will be giving notice on Friday to leave for a new, much-lower-stress job.

SwordGuy

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If you are REALLY lucky your boss will fire you on the spot.

Then you can collect unemployment while you're a millionaire! 

Now, that's a real first world problem, eh?

Mr. Green

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If you are REALLY lucky your boss will fire you on the spot.
This made me LOL imaging the conversation.

"Hey, Boss! Just wanted to let you know that I'm giving my two week-" "YOU'RE FIRED!"

retiringearly

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If you are REALLY lucky your boss will fire you on the spot.
This made me LOL imaging the conversation.

"Hey, Boss! Just wanted to let you know that I'm giving my two week-" "YOU'RE FIRED!"

PLEASE WISH ME LUCK THAT THIS HAPPENS!

Why?  Because at my level the minimum severance pay is 6 months of salary.  That would be a hell of a going away present.

Firehazard

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Just start flinging some attitude, inspire them to fire you!

Seriously though, put a concrete end date on your notice period.  They WILL otherwise take advantage of you and drag things out.

Dicey

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Close your eyes, hold your nose and jump! The water's fine. Looking forward to tomorrow's report.

OTOH, this could be a perfect set-up for an epic FU Money Story. Is there any way to create one? Mostly kidding, glad freedom is just around the corner.

better late

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I am excited for you. Keep us posted how it goes, and how you're feeling afterward. The transition part after you give your notice can be kind of rotten, but you'll power through that and that work stress will slowly fade away. Cheering you on!

retiringearly

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I will post an update tomorrow after telling my boss.

As life would have it, I got an email tonight about an interview for a job I actually am interested in.  I am going to have a phone interview on Monday for it.  If it works out, great.  If it doesn't work out, that is just fine.

Thanks to everyone on this forum.  You have no idea how much confidence and strength you have given me.  I truly appreciate it.

Freedomin5

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Posting to follow. OP's experience really resonated with me. Glad to know I'm not alone -- sometimes I wonder if I'm the one who is not strong enough to put up with typical work crap, but the. I read stories like these and I realize I'm not the only one, and the work situation really does suck.

ToughMother

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I will post an update tomorrow after telling my boss.

As life would have it, I got an email tonight about an interview for a job I actually am interested in.  I am going to have a phone interview on Monday for it.  If it works out, great.  If it doesn't work out, that is just fine.

Thanks to everyone on this forum.  You have no idea how much confidence and strength you have given me.  I truly appreciate it.

I hope your notice goes smoothly, you crush the phone interview, and then bask in the fact you've created an abundance of choices for yourself!  Good wishes on all counts.

Maenad

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I totally understand. Last Saturday, sitting in a movie theater of all places, the sheer enormity of the life change involved in ER really hit me. I'm still ~2.5 years out, but the stache is getting big enough that it's starting to become "real" in a way it wasn't before. That big of a change can easily induce some anxiety, especially if you're a worrier (like I am).

Lots of luck today, you can do this!

StephenP

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Tomorrow I am telling my boss that I am retiring.  I will give her as much notice as she needs to make the transition smooth.  I finally came to the realization that the anxiety that hits me each and every day at work is no longer worth it.  I can live on 4% of my nest egg but the unknown it still scares me. 

This is also a radical life change for me.   My entire life (education and career) has been dedicated to getting ahead and making more money.  It is psychologically very difficult for me to walk away from all that.

I did a brief job search to see if anything sparked my interest but I really don't want to continue on this path, not even for a few more years.

Any advice?

Thanks!

Leaving what you do is never easy. I used to get nervous quitting, thinking my bosses would be angry. Turns out every time they were thrilled that I was moving on to bigger and better things.

Today, if one of my employees told me to leave because they were retiring, I'd throw a party for them. Retirement is something you earned, and the result of well managed finances. If your boss respects the work you did, they should be thrilled to see you move on to a better stage in life. So don't be worried, be excited he likely will be. If he's not, screw him. You worked, you saved, you earned it.

Congrats!

MVal

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I'm transitioning from full time to part time consulting work and just gave notice on a contract yesterday. I was literally shaking while talking with the project director, so I sympathize with how nervous you must be!

Our brains are telling us we can't leave the security of that paycheck even though we know the money stuff is handled.

It sounds like you are burnt out and anxious, which is totally understandable. Give yourself some time to decompress before you make any decisions about your future. People report needing 6-12 months of "recovery" time after leaving a stressful job to really find their new normal.

Keep coming back here. There are lots of great people who will help you. You might want to start a journal for ongoing processing and support.

Beautiful advice. My job isn't especially stressful and should be quite easy, but I am deeply unmotivated at work and find staying on task is almost physically painful, so I am getting stressed out due to feeling like a lazy failure. My 'stache is only about 25% to FIRE, so I really can't fly the coop yet, and this is depressing me. I've about decided to flip my savings goals over to after-tax investing until I have at least enough money to live on for two years and then do exactly what you mentioned, taking 6-12 months to just decompress and reset my life. I have a good job, but I have being doing it a long time and not getting any satisfaction out of it and I'm burnt out.  However, I do plan to carry out my goals for this year of hitting $70K in my 401K and $100K overall invested, which should give me a NW of $120K by the end of the year. Next year I will totally change up the plan by switching from an HSA to regular insurance so I can address some long overdue health issues and do maybe only a little over the match on the 401K. I'll still fund my IRA fully, but then the rest I'm going to just stockpile for an FU fund. I'm tired of staying in job that forces me to work from my weaknesses instead of my strengths and I definitely can't stick it out six more years at the current rate.

Kudos to the OP, though!! I so admire your decision and recognition of what really matters most to you!

sparkytheop

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Today is the day!  Good luck.

Sometimes hobbies can be hard for someone with the kind of drive you've mentioned.  I would volunteer at places, but also see what kind of skills you can work on where you can work toward an end product and feel that the time is "productive".  Some people just need to see a tangible result of their work.

Take a ceramics class.  See if there is a glass blowing studio nearby that has lessons.  Try woodworking (some community colleges have classes so you don't have to invest in all the big equipment--planers, jointers, shapers, lathes, etc).  Try quilting (not seen as a "man's hobby", but there are many men out there who quilt.  My grampa and great grampa were two of them, and as old farmers, they were as many as you can get...) 

One of my favorite quotes is "If your dreams don't scare you, they aren't big enough".  Looks like you're good there, and making the big dream happen will probably feel really good once you have a chance for it to all sink in.  Leaving a bad job is like having a light switch flipped.  It really is amazing what it can do for your health and happiness.

Mgmny

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If you are REALLY lucky your boss will fire you on the spot.
This made me LOL imaging the conversation.

"Hey, Boss! Just wanted to let you know that I'm giving my two week-" "YOU'RE FIRED!"

PLEASE WISH ME LUCK THAT THIS HAPPENS!

Why?  Because at my level the minimum severance pay is 6 months of salary.  That would be a hell of a going away present.

I've never been in a situation where this happened, and i know nothing about it, but would it better if you didn't quit today? Maybe just stop going into work or responding to emails like 2 days late? Stop showing up for meetings? Sorta, "ghost" your employer? Would you get the 6 months severance then?

Sure you'd probably burn that bridge, but you're retired, so who cares?

Really not sure if that's how the system works, seems flawed if that is the case?

Rosy

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So are you fired with benefits or did you retired just as planned:) Hope all went well today.
It is a major step, even when you have concrete plans - but, oh the freedom:) to live your life any way you see fit. Let independence reign forever. After 49 years it is high time you find joy in whatever you do - volunteering or working for pay, it's all good, as long as it is stress free and on your own terms.

mudstache

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I am 9-12 years away from FIRE, so I haven't started really thinking about the feelings, but I wish you well, and I hope you enjoy your new freedom!  You put in your time, and now you get to live your life.  Congratulations!

BrightFIRE

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For someone of your resources, you're already living your worst life. There's no where to go but up!

This is such a great way to put it and to think of it. You're already experiencing the worst, so there's nothing to fear but fear itself!

retiringearly

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UPDATE:  The conversation went incredibly well.  Very happy with my decision.  I told her to think about it and to let me know how much time she needs.  I said I would not check out and I am happy to stay as long as it takes.  She said she would not abuse that offer.  I did tell her I had an interview on Monday and that was the only thing that could make me leave sooner.  I told her the odds of 1) my getting an offer from the company and 2) my being willing to work for them were pretty remote.

Thanks again for all of the insight and comments.  You guys truly are spectacular.  I appreciate what I get from this forum on a deep level.

acroy

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Congratulations OP!
Hope it continues to go smoothly - best of luck

NoraLenderbee

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I've never been in a situation where this happened, and i know nothing about it, but would it better if you didn't quit today? Maybe just stop going into work or responding to emails like 2 days late? Stop showing up for meetings? Sorta, "ghost" your employer? Would you get the 6 months severance then?

Sure you'd probably burn that bridge, but you're retired, so who cares?

Really not sure if that's how the system works, seems flawed if that is the case?

If you stop showing up, it's "job abandonment" and it's treated the same way as quitting: no severance and not eligible for unemployment. But it would be nice if you get paid to stop showing up!

better late

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UPDATE:  The conversation went incredibly well.  Very happy with my decision.  I told her to think about it and to let me know how much time she needs.  I said I would not check out and I am happy to stay as long as it takes.  She said she would not abuse that offer.  I did tell her I had an interview on Monday and that was the only thing that could make me leave sooner.  I told her the odds of 1) my getting an offer from the company and 2) my being willing to work for them were pretty remote.


Well done. Now you get to relax this weekend knowing that is over, and start the process of unwinding from this job.

retired?

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I am not nervous about the conversation.  I am nervous about the life change.  I have been geared to follow my educational and career path for 49 years, it is scary to me to walk away from it.

Thanks for the comment about it getting easier as I execute my spending plan.

I also appreciate the encouragement.

I realize that I have been basically miserable for most (if not all) of my adult life due to my career.  It has paid well but I have never been happy.

My game plan is to volunteer more time at the animal shelter I already volunteer at.  Additionally, I want to find another non-profit to volunteer at.

We might be twins.  Training (i.e. education) and career have been geared towards earning $$ and hopefully doing something I like.  Lots of arseholes in my area.

My advice would have been to cultivate some hobbies and interests 6-12 months prior to resigning .... in case you hadn't been able to do that during your career. 

I found going from full-time to zero-time working to be a difficult adjustment.  The life tree is a good idea.  I read The Joy of Not Working.  Good book.

I also recommend doing nothing for 3-6 months and then perhaps getting a part-time job doing anything you enjoy with no concern for pay level.

Good luck!

retiringearly

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This is the first days in weeks that I have had no anxiety or stress.   No tightness in the chest.   Everything seems easier.  Life is good.

Mgmny

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This is the first days in weeks that I have had no anxiety or stress.   No tightness in the chest.   Everything seems easier.  Life is good.

It's really cool to see this happen "in real time" for someone!! Congrats!!

retiringearly

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  I read The Joy of Not Working.  Good book.

[/quote]

Thanks, I will pick it up at the library tonight, looks like a very timely book for me.