Author Topic: How would you spend your time if you had a year off?  (Read 4898 times)

mmmfan500

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How would you spend your time if you had a year off?
« on: October 31, 2019, 05:25:51 AM »
This is assuming you aren't already retired early and spending your days exactly how you want. I'm finishing up a career and going to take at least a year in Central and South America. My only plan as of now is to get my PADI Divemaster and Instructor certifications. Learning Spanish, coding, and videography are also on the list.

What would you do?
Have you taken a sabbatical/gap year/extended holiday? If so, what were the highlights? Regrets?

Curious to hear any and all thoughts on this!

Linea_Norway

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Re: How would you spend your time if you had a year off?
« Reply #1 on: October 31, 2019, 07:49:48 AM »
DH and I are going to do this next year, although I plan to not return to work after that.

We plan to sell our home, it is currently out for sale. Sell some of the big furniture. Renting a cheapish place to live, maybe in different occasions through the year. And then go on many outdoor/hiking/testing/cycling trips, mainly in our own country, or in Europe. We are not planning to to one major big project, as that requires a lot of organization and possibly stress. The whole idea is to be active a lot, and get lower stress and do the stuff we want to do most. But we like to have some place to return to between the trips.

Raenia

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Re: How would you spend your time if you had a year off?
« Reply #2 on: October 31, 2019, 08:09:50 AM »
I would spend a lot more time cooking, baking, and canning, and DIY around the house.  Catch up on my reading list (current count 81, and growing faster than I can read).  Re-learn French.  Host a weekly board game night, maybe get back into D&D.  Focus on creative pursuits - get back into music, writing, and art.

Goodness, I don't think a year would be long enough! :P

harvestbook

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Re: How would you spend your time if you had a year off?
« Reply #3 on: October 31, 2019, 08:36:10 AM »
I'm basically doing that now. Reading, watching lots of movies, gardening, fishing, chores around the house. A little more service work. Really, not much has changed, since I'm self-employed in a creative field. I do love the freedom. People say there's a danger of boredom if you're not grinding yourself to a nub for the capitalist expansion, but I don't feel that at all.

use2betrix

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Re: How would you spend your time if you had a year off?
« Reply #4 on: October 31, 2019, 10:01:09 AM »
In 2017 we (wife and myself) took two, 4 month sabbaticals (with 4 months of work in between).

Sabbatical 1: 2 months backpacking through SE Asia. Thailand, Laos, Singapore, Cambodia, Vietnam. 3 weeks and 3000 miles on a motorcycle through Baja. Phoenix to Cabo and back. We camped on the beach every other night.

Sabbatical 2: 2 month, 8000 mile North American road/camping trip with our 4Runner and Off-road camper with rooftop tent. Our 3 month old German shepherd was also with us. We slept in the tent every night but 3. We did Michigan/norther peninsula, WI, Black Hills, Banff, Jasper, Yellowstone, Continental divide down then hopped off at Ouray, Grand Canyon, etc. Then we spent about a month with family.

I’m a contractor and longing for my next layoff as we’re beyond ready. My contract was extended already from mid 2020 to mid 2021. As much as we want to take time off, while working we save enough each month, to support 2-3 months of sabbatical traveling. So we’ll keep working until laid off or FIRE. 100% content with either option (though I feel I would prefer another sabbatical before FIRE.)

If I was laid off tomorrow we would hit the road for at least 6 months. We now have an enclosed fiberglass 17’ Casita camper that is way way better than our previous set ups. We would end our lease on our apartment and just travel full time until we start work again, wherever that would be.

Alternatepriorities

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Re: How would you spend your time if you had a year off?
« Reply #5 on: October 31, 2019, 11:51:40 AM »
After 8 years of full time work at the small company I joined after university they ran into financial problems and decided to cut everyone's pay 12.5%... I'd spent those 8 years spending like a mustachian though Pete hadn't coined the term yet and most of my coworkers were closer to paycheck to paycheck. One of them told me the pay cut would cost him his house... I wanted to see the world and had been moving in that direction anyway so I went to management pointed out that there were 9 people in engineering and production and I was the most expensive. I told them I'd resign if they restored everyone's pay. I finished my projects, packed a carry on backpack and set out hitchhiking across North America.

After a couple months visiting family and seeing some parts of Alaska that I never had the time or money to see when I was growing up I caught a plane to Australia and spent almost two months there. I used a rental relocation to see the outback with a couple of strangers I met on Gumtree. There's highway out there so straight you can play a game of monopoly between turns... Then I caught a flight to Nepal and spent seven weeks backpacking there. The trek to Everest base camp and around the Annapurna peaks were highlights of the trip. Six weeks in western Europe turned into ten traveling with friends who joined me there and visiting friends who live there. After that my brother met me in Tanzania and we climbed Kilimanjaro. I finished the trip living on a sail boat in FL with my brother for a month. It was one of the best years of my life.

MonkeyJenga

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Re: How would you spend your time if you had a year off?
« Reply #6 on: October 31, 2019, 01:23:17 PM »
I took a sabbatical. Gave up my apartment so I had no rent and traveled the US volunteering on political campaigns. Between elections, I visited friends and family. Lots of walking, biking, photography, and napping. Oh and dating. Lots of dating.

Now I'm on another sabbatical. No dating, but aggressive friend-making. Hiking, dancing, voter outreach, some photography. I thought I would keep coding, but turns out I don't enjoy it enough to do outside of a job. I also stopped dragging my DSLR around and use my good-enough phone camera for pictures.

spartana

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Re: How would you spend your time if you had a year off?
« Reply #7 on: October 31, 2019, 02:50:41 PM »
I took a 2 year gap year to do some grungy backpacker travel overseas. I was already FI so that made a big difference even though I went back to work for 4 years when I returned before pulling the full RE plug.

 I lived very cheaply staying in hostels and using public transit, or just my feetsies. Rented shared furnished places in different locations if staying somewhere for a month or more. Really enjoyed it and the whole minimalist lifestyle of not really owning anything. Gave me a better look at how little I needed to be happy and also a stronger desire to RE and to have greater freedom.

Fi(re) on the Farm

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Re: How would you spend your time if you had a year off?
« Reply #8 on: October 31, 2019, 05:44:39 PM »
So, I have an autistic adult daughter who lives at home and is having some pretty severe issues that is impacting everything else in life. I would take a year off to straighten out her issues and find some space to breath. As it is right now, my husband works half time and I work a reduced schedule but we're still on track to fire in 4 years.

habanero

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Re: How would you spend your time if you had a year off?
« Reply #9 on: October 31, 2019, 05:49:06 PM »
so I went to management pointed out that there were 9 people in engineering and production and I was the most expensive. I told them I'd resign if they restored everyone's pay.

Dude (or gal) this is probably the most awsome thing I've read in long time.

mmmfan500

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Re: How would you spend your time if you had a year off?
« Reply #10 on: October 31, 2019, 06:51:57 PM »
I would devote myself more to getting increasingly influential guests on my podcast, Leadership and the Environment
I started listening to your podcast and browsing your site, you've got some awesome stuff going on! Thanks for sharing.
In 2017 we (wife and myself) took two, 4 month sabbaticals (with 4 months of work in between).
Awesome! That's the sort of schedule I hope to have in the future: work as long as I'm enjoying it (or in your case, between layoffs) then take a pause to do something totally different and adventurous.
Then I caught a flight to Nepal and spent seven weeks backpacking there. The trek to Everest base camp and around the Annapurna peaks were highlights of the trip.
I love Nepal! I may have to go back during my sabbatical.

All great thoughts so far. Thanks for sharing, you've certainly given me new ideas to maximize my "time off."

Steeze

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Re: How would you spend your time if you had a year off?
« Reply #11 on: October 31, 2019, 06:59:20 PM »
There is a foreclosure next to my grandparents house. I would buy it and spend the year renovating it while living with my grandparents. Would learn a lot and get to spend precious time with my papa.

lollylegs

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Re: How would you spend your time if you had a year off?
« Reply #12 on: October 31, 2019, 07:48:07 PM »
I took a paid year off a couple of years ago. it was wonderful! and it really helped me see that I will enjoy retirement. I had lots of big plans but what actually happened was that for the first 6 weeks I just slept and dozed on the lounge. Once I caught up on sleep I spent the rest of year reading heaps of books, doing lots of sewing and quilting, decluttering the house, having long lunches with friends and pottering about the house.

Over that year I lost almost 40lbs without much effort at all as I had time to cook & go for walks. I think being away from the work stress really helped. I have been back full time for 2 years and all the weight is back on and my sleep is crappy again - i look so much healthier in photos of me after that year.

I'd recommend it - was a great trial retirement and helped me set a deadline for retirement.
 

mmmfan500

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Re: How would you spend your time if you had a year off?
« Reply #13 on: October 31, 2019, 09:44:09 PM »
I'd recommend it - was a great trial retirement and helped me set a deadline for retirement.
That's a great way to think about it: a trial retirement. I like that.

Loretta

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Re: How would you spend your time if you had a year off?
« Reply #14 on: November 01, 2019, 04:27:29 AM »
I would try to de stress, make all the medical appointments I keep putting off because of work, and try to get my health and sleeping back in order.  And maybe a road trip west and south to visit some friends and relatives I don’t see now. 

MrsPennyPincher

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Re: How would you spend your time if you had a year off?
« Reply #15 on: November 01, 2019, 05:48:27 AM »
I would catch up on home projects, my reading list, spending time with my son, walking with friends, gardening, exercise. Take a road trip in the summer, see the national parks... The list goes on and on so a year might be not enough!

Linea_Norway

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Re: How would you spend your time if you had a year off?
« Reply #16 on: November 01, 2019, 06:14:44 AM »
Some years ago, maybe 8 years now, we took 13 weeks/3 months off, during the summer. DH has so many overtime to use up that it didn't cist him anything. I gave up two months salary.
We spend the period renovating our main bathroom all by ourselves. That took five weeks in total. But we didn't do the whole job at once. We also went on many trips, among which the coast to coast walk in Britain, some days in Italy in a nice old town, one of the classic walks in the Norwegian mountains together with a group as a one time experience, salmon fishing on the last day of the season where we both caught salmon. And some time at our cabin.

Sugaree

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Re: How would you spend your time if you had a year off?
« Reply #17 on: November 01, 2019, 06:24:53 AM »
This is assuming you aren't already retired early and spending your days exactly how you want. I'm finishing up a career and going to take at least a year in Central and South America. My only plan as of now is to get my PADI Divemaster and Instructor certifications. Learning Spanish, coding, and videography are also on the list.

What would you do?
Have you taken a sabbatical/gap year/extended holiday? If so, what were the highlights? Regrets?

Curious to hear any and all thoughts on this!

I could have written this exact response.  My plan for retirement is to move to Central America and teach diving and/or work as a divemaster. 

2Birds1Stone

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Re: How would you spend your time if you had a year off?
« Reply #18 on: November 01, 2019, 06:54:53 AM »
I'm doing this right now.

Ages 32/28, we have a mid six figure portfolio.

Taking a 12 month trip. Starting in Portugal in March, working our way east through Europe over 6 months. Then heading to SE Asia in the fall for another 5-6 months.

Total budget for the trip is $35-36k. The biggest cost is the lost income, as we've averaged $150k/yr gross over the past 5 years.

You can always make more money, but you can never buy this time back.

horsepoor

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Re: How would you spend your time if you had a year off?
« Reply #19 on: November 01, 2019, 08:04:44 AM »
I would finally finish the xeriscaping in my front and side yard.  We've been in the same house almost 10 years, and I've done a ton, but can't seem to get one area that is out of site, out of mind, finished.

But mainly I would do a deep dive into improving my riding and studying dressage.  Try to ride 3-5 horses a day, up my fitness level and just improve as much as possible, train with as may instructors as funds allowed, and even spend a month training in Portugul if it was within my hypothetical budget.

use2betrix

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Re: How would you spend your time if you had a year off?
« Reply #20 on: November 01, 2019, 10:43:32 AM »
I think that every person with plans to retire much earlier than the standard timeline should really try and take at least a 3-6 month sabbatical at some point before they pull the trigger.

Taking time off gives a person to truly experience “early retirement.” Without doing that, it’s hard to truly know how you will handle it. There are so many unknowns.

When I finished my project in 2017 and my wife and I booked 1 way tickets for Asia, my mom told me, “I wouldn’t be surprised if you go stir crazy and are back in two weeks ready to go back to work.” I 100% agreed with her and had no idea what to expect. I hadn’t had more than 2 weeks off consecutively in around 6-8 years. I am very very schedule oriented and love my habits and my routines.

When I got to Asia and we had a chance to unwind, I was amazed to find out I could actually RELAX. The anxiety was lower than ever, I wasn’t stressed, everything was great. So great that while on that trip, we planned our Baja trip for as soon as we returned (mentioned in my above post).

Sabbaticals are a great lesson to truly find yourself in your adult life. Many adults have never had long bouts of time off to see what they want to do.

Maenad

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Re: How would you spend your time if you had a year off?
« Reply #21 on: November 01, 2019, 12:26:14 PM »
Sleep. A lot. Totally Rip Van Winkle it.

DH and I are tentatively planning RE next spring, and expect that the first year will be catching up on sleep and creating a housecleaning schedule. Our careers leave us so mentally and physically tired at the end of the day that we're just drained.

And before you say it, yes, it is rather depressing. The only reason we haven't taken a sabbatical is because we're so close to the end.

Hirondelle

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Re: How would you spend your time if you had a year off?
« Reply #22 on: November 01, 2019, 02:14:24 PM »
Sabbaticals are a great lesson to truly find yourself in your adult life. Many adults have never had long bouts of time off to see what they want to do.

Agree with you very much here. I sometimes feel sad for the folks here or IRL that don't know what they'd like to do outside of work. There's so much cool stuff out there that's not your boring job!



To OP: I took a year off after finishing up my masters. It was amazing. Traveled SE Asia for 5-6 months, then I felt like I wanted to be more challenged and I actually ended up teaching English there for another 5 months. Would still vote that as the best decision I ever made. As I spent half my time working (20h/week, no stress) it barely cost me anything and it was an easy sell to employers once I came back. When I finish my current contract I hope to do something similar again, where I combine a long trip with doing something useful (divemaster is one of my considerations!).

While doing this I met many, many others doing similar things.

Some just travel. Some get their divemasters or a TEFL/TESOL and start teaching. Some get on working holiday visas in Australia, New Zealand or Canada. Some do some volunteering/WOOFING, sometimes for several weeks, sometimes for several months. And then there's the folks who just go around and travel unless they're tired of it and/or run out of money.

Note; all these people are relatively young (20s, 30s and a handful 40s) and have no kids.

bacchi

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Re: How would you spend your time if you had a year off?
« Reply #23 on: November 01, 2019, 02:25:44 PM »
My 1+ year sabbatical happened early in my working life during the dot com crash.

After mailing out a bazillion resumes and getting no response, I slept in, played some computer games, volunteered a lot, climbed some mountains, smoked some dope, and generally fucked around. It was awesome.

Schaefer Light

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Re: How would you spend your time if you had a year off?
« Reply #24 on: November 01, 2019, 04:06:59 PM »
Sabbaticals are a great lesson to truly find yourself in your adult life. Many adults have never had long bouts of time off to see what they want to do.

Agree with you very much here. I sometimes feel sad for the folks here or IRL that don't know what they'd like to do outside of work. There's so much cool stuff out there that's not your boring job!
I agree, but it's tough for people who work long hours and have little vacation time to figure this out before retirement.

use2betrix

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Re: How would you spend your time if you had a year off?
« Reply #25 on: November 01, 2019, 05:01:15 PM »
Sabbaticals are a great lesson to truly find yourself in your adult life. Many adults have never had long bouts of time off to see what they want to do.

Agree with you very much here. I sometimes feel sad for the folks here or IRL that don't know what they'd like to do outside of work. There's so much cool stuff out there that's not your boring job!
I agree, but it's tough for people who work long hours and have little vacation time to figure this out before retirement.

Between jobs is a great time to do it. Most people don’t spend their entire career at the same job. If someone is diligently working towards FIRE, when they are ready to leave a job, they could do the sabbatical before the other starts, or leave a job you want to leave, without another lined up at all.

Both of my sabbaticals were after layoffs. One was entirely planned and expected, the other one I was 4 months into a 5 year contract when they laid off all approximately 5000 employees with nothing but a phone call saying, “come in and pick up your things, we’re shutting the doors.”

JoshuaSpodek

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Re: How would you spend your time if you had a year off?
« Reply #26 on: November 01, 2019, 09:27:44 PM »
Quote from: mmmfan500
I started listening to your podcast and browsing your site, you've got some awesome stuff going on! Thanks for sharing.

Any time. If you've had environmental values you've meant to act on, I hope it helps, and that you'll spread the word if so.

mistymoney

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Re: How would you spend your time if you had a year off?
« Reply #27 on: November 02, 2019, 07:47:01 AM »
In 2017 we (wife and myself) took two, 4 month sabbaticals (with 4 months of work in between).

Sabbatical 1: 2 months backpacking through SE Asia. Thailand, Laos, Singapore, Cambodia, Vietnam. 3 weeks and 3000 miles on a motorcycle through Baja. Phoenix to Cabo and back. We camped on the beach every other night.

Sabbatical 2: 2 month, 8000 mile North American road/camping trip with our 4Runner and Off-road camper with rooftop tent. Our 3 month old German shepherd was also with us. We slept in the tent every night but 3. We did Michigan/norther peninsula, WI, Black Hills, Banff, Jasper, Yellowstone, Continental divide down then hopped off at Ouray, Grand Canyon, etc. Then we spent about a month with family.

I’m a contractor and longing for my next layoff as we’re beyond ready. My contract was extended already from mid 2020 to mid 2021. As much as we want to take time off, while working we save enough each month, to support 2-3 months of sabbatical traveling. So we’ll keep working until laid off or FIRE. 100% content with either option (though I feel I would prefer another sabbatical before FIRE.)

If I was laid off tomorrow we would hit the road for at least 6 months. We now have an enclosed fiberglass 17’ Casita camper that is way way better than our previous set ups. We would end our lease on our apartment and just travel full time until we start work again, wherever that would be.

Sounds great! what is your permanent living situation? own/rent/nothing permanent, etc. 

Hirondelle

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Re: How would you spend your time if you had a year off?
« Reply #28 on: November 02, 2019, 10:36:10 AM »
Sabbaticals are a great lesson to truly find yourself in your adult life. Many adults have never had long bouts of time off to see what they want to do.

Agree with you very much here. I sometimes feel sad for the folks here or IRL that don't know what they'd like to do outside of work. There's so much cool stuff out there that's not your boring job!
I agree, but it's tough for people who work long hours and have little vacation time to figure this out before retirement.

Sure it is. I'm not blaming anyone. Although I think for many of us here (in contrast to the paycheck to paycheck people from my office) there are at least some options for unpaid leave/sabbatical or a couple of weeks between jobs. There's no reason why you wouldn't take some time to figure out at 50% of FIRE what you wanna do by the time you get to 100%. I think it may also alleviate some OMY syndrome as people will get more of an urge to do what they really want.

driftwood

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Re: How would you spend your time if you had a year off?
« Reply #29 on: November 04, 2019, 06:03:20 AM »
I'm sitting in Iraq right now on a deployment so that definitely influences my response. Also divorced with two kids, and my work schedule when I'm home really restricts my time with my kiddos except on weekends. So...

One whole year?! Go 50/50 on time with my kids between myself and their mother. Enjoy being a 'stay at home Dad'. We live in CO so summer break would be a bunch of exploring/road trips/camping on weekdays.

While they're in school - play and work on skills, like archery skills, climbing skills, handstand skills.

Take one or two long motorcycle road trips - Banff in late summer, not sure about the second.

Also, invest a lot of time/energy in creating meaningful friendships/community, especially with people who have kids my kids' age.

I should do all of the above now, but scaled down to the time I have outside of work. But work exhausts me and I don't get as much of the above done as I'd like.

PGSD

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Re: How would you spend your time if you had a year off?
« Reply #30 on: November 04, 2019, 10:51:31 AM »
I was laid off several years ago and decided to take a year off. I sold my house and moved to a very small, cheap, rental house a few blocks from the beach (San Diego, OB). I cut most of my electronics (stored my laptop and TV) and walked or biked most everywhere. I also made it a point to have no clocks or watches as I didn't want to worry about what time it was.

The first few weeks I slept, a lot, as I decompressed from the stressful work environment. After that, I read tons of books and generally relaxed. Like someone else mentioned above, I lost 20 pounds and woke up "whenever" with almost nothing I had to do each day. Mostly it was fantastic.

One major drawback I found was I didn't have friends to hang out with during the week as they all worked. I can't figure out a nice way to say it but, the people in my beach area that didn't work weekdays were mostly pot-heads and drunks.

I'm pretty much at my FIRE number but that year off showed me that I need to figure out the social aspect of being off when everyone else is working before taking the leap into retirement. 

 

Tester

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Re: How would you spend your time if you had a year off?
« Reply #31 on: November 05, 2019, 09:42:45 AM »
First, I would sleep 3 months.
Second, write the game I promised my kid 4 years ago.
Exercise daily.
Start a blog with examples related to testing software, the blog and examples completely developed on AWS.

Alternatepriorities

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Re: How would you spend your time if you had a year off?
« Reply #32 on: November 05, 2019, 11:53:39 AM »
I love Nepal! I may have to go back during my sabbatical.

I'd definitely do that again.

In the 6.5 years since I finished my sabbatical/first retirement I've only had about one year of work that could be described as "a career". I've had some good years part time employment and self employment though. I'll probably never have a corner office, but I also won't spend my 30's and 40's in a cubical!

If you want to see photos from the trip I shared a lot of them on my blog, but I haven't kept it up lately.
« Last Edit: November 05, 2019, 12:00:09 PM by Alternatepriorities »

Alternatepriorities

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Re: How would you spend your time if you had a year off?
« Reply #33 on: November 05, 2019, 11:56:22 AM »
so I went to management pointed out that there were 9 people in engineering and production and I was the most expensive. I told them I'd resign if they restored everyone's pay.

Dude (or gal) this is probably the most awsome thing I've read in long time.

Thanks! I know my coworkers appreciated it because they hung my cubical name card over the world map in the front office and kept a pin in whatever country I was visiting.

chouchouu

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Re: How would you spend your time if you had a year off?
« Reply #34 on: November 07, 2019, 04:39:30 AM »
I've always wanted to boat and train it from Sydney to London via the trans Siberian. I took time off with the kids before they were school aged, just spent extended summers in Europe staying with friends and family. I like slow travel training it around and spending time in each place.

Malcat

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Re: How would you spend your time if you had a year off?
« Reply #35 on: November 07, 2019, 04:51:54 AM »
Oh god...knowing me, if I had no scheduled employment I would probably do something dumb like get another graduate degree, start a business or two, and co-author a book.

Thankfully, even though I'm dropping down to only one day a week, it's enough to keep me occupied and out of too much trouble.

I pretty much have to keep working to some degree indefinitely otherwise I get way too productive.

habanero

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Re: How would you spend your time if you had a year off?
« Reply #36 on: November 07, 2019, 05:24:37 AM »
via the trans Siberian.

Know a few people who did the trans-Siberian. The overall theme is that it's fun to plan it and to talk about it afterwards, but doing it not so much. Only exception being a guy who spoke fluent russian, jumped on and off with stopovers (a challenge in itself at the time) and traveled in cattle class and had a blast by drinking with and speaking to random russians en route.

Maenad

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Re: How would you spend your time if you had a year off?
« Reply #37 on: November 07, 2019, 08:07:12 AM »
I pretty much have to keep working to some degree indefinitely otherwise I get way too productive.

OK, that line made me laugh harder than it probably should have.

AnnaGrowsAMustache

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Re: How would you spend your time if you had a year off?
« Reply #38 on: November 10, 2019, 04:01:41 PM »
I've only worked a few months this year. It wasn't really planned - terrible job situations. I haven't been overly productive, but I have managed to lose a lot of weight, get far less stressed, get far healthier, and start concentrating on what I would like to do for the next few years. I count that as a win.

Buffaloski Boris

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Re: How would you spend your time if you had a year off?
« Reply #39 on: November 10, 2019, 05:51:31 PM »
In about a year or two or three I'll tell you when I pull the plug.

I have a to do list from hell.  I suspect I'll be busier when I take my permanent sabbatical than I am now.  One big change will be Getting More Sleep. Another will be whipping the house and garden into shape and honing my cooking skills. 

Malcat

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Re: How would you spend your time if you had a year off?
« Reply #40 on: November 11, 2019, 04:08:52 AM »
I pretty much have to keep working to some degree indefinitely otherwise I get way too productive.

OK, that line made me laugh harder than it probably should have.

It's so true though...

gatortator

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Re: How would you spend your time if you had a year off?
« Reply #41 on: November 11, 2019, 04:43:35 PM »
go here:  https://www.sipuebla.com/   or here https://www.donquijote.org/learn-spanish-latin-america/mexico/guanajuato/

 with the goal of getting my Spanish strong enough that I start to dream and think in Spanish.  Become B1 level proficient.

teltic

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Re: How would you spend your time if you had a year off?
« Reply #42 on: November 12, 2019, 06:45:42 AM »
I've been debating for a long time whether to take a 1 year sabbatical or push to FIRE... 3 Years away... The math tells me to push through... But I'm honestly burned out of work. To the point I'm willing to take a large pay it to do something more meaningful...

Anyway, but maybe I just need a break and test the FIRE lifestyle?

I'd take the first 2-3 months off and decompress. Lots of Netflix, gym, and hanging out with friends. Then I'd probably do a 2-3 month trip to europe.... Then take time to explore interests and find something I could potentially do for a career? But maybe the point of sabbaticals is to get away from career related things. Bah I don't know! Explore and find meaningful work... Meaning to my life.

Doing volunteer trips would be cool too! Maybe live in a country to learn the language?

I just got off a 2 week vacation, and I simply do not want to get out of bed. Fuck corporate finance.

Linea_Norway

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Re: How would you spend your time if you had a year off?
« Reply #43 on: November 12, 2019, 07:41:20 AM »
I've been debating for a long time whether to take a 1 year sabbatical or push to FIRE... 3 Years away... The math tells me to push through... But I'm honestly burned out of work. To the point I'm willing to take a large pay it to do something more meaningful...

Anyway, but maybe I just need a break and test the FIRE lifestyle?

I'd take the first 2-3 months off and decompress. Lots of Netflix, gym, and hanging out with friends. Then I'd probably do a 2-3 month trip to europe.... Then take time to explore interests and find something I could potentially do for a career? But maybe the point of sabbaticals is to get away from career related things. Bah I don't know! Explore and find meaningful work... Meaning to my life.

Doing volunteer trips would be cool too! Maybe live in a country to learn the language?

I just got off a 2 week vacation, and I simply do not want to get out of bed. Fuck corporate finance.

Sound like you are ripe to take a long sabbatical. You could also consider in the years that you have left after the time off, to start working part time. Working 80% gives you a 50% longer weekend.

Lmoot

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Re: How would you spend your time if you had a year off?
« Reply #44 on: November 12, 2019, 07:40:21 PM »
I took 8 months off of working full time as a 30th bday present to myself. I worked part time at a zoo, worked as a tour guide at a tourist attraction, visited family overseas, read a lot, and lazed about.

If I had a year off today, right before I would buy a project house and spend time fixing that up, go on long-distance hikes on national scenic trails, do some much needed yard work on my rental property, help out more with my special needs niece and nephew, learn new skills....

teltic

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Re: How would you spend your time if you had a year off?
« Reply #45 on: November 13, 2019, 05:57:51 AM »
Buying a fixer upper would be a fun project to do!

Knowing you can contribute 90% of your paycheck to your 401k... Would you delay your decision to take a sabbatical to take advantage of maxing out 2020s 401k (probably 2020 April? )? I could max my HSA and Roth before pulling out of the workforce?? Or am I thinking too hard on this and should just pull the plug when I'm ready.

I could potentially have low tax brackets in 2020 and 2021 of I wait to break off mid 2020, then come back mid 2021...

Ishmael

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Re: How would you spend your time if you had a year off?
« Reply #46 on: November 13, 2019, 06:56:39 AM »
I've got my FIRE plan ready, so it would be the same as that:

A Typical Year of FIRE
======================

Year Round:
-----------
  - Cooking
  - Exercise (yoga?) & Meditation
  - Gaming - board games, D&D
  - Regular visits to nearby city in my camper-van-to-be to meet friends

January/Feb/Mar:
---------------
  - Writing, coding, electronics, cosplay crafts, etc.
  - Planning garden and yard projects
  - Skating/sledding/etc
  - Curling?
  - Painting miniatures, etc.
  - Perhaps a vacation to a warmer place, or interesting event in another city?
 
April/May/June:
---------------
  - Gardening prep & planting
  - Fishing - LOTS 
  - Yard projects - prep work and design
  - Firewood - gathering, splitting
  - Travel to visit brother
 
July:
-----
  - Camping / Vacationing
  - Yard Projects - implementation
  - Festivals and events
  - Biking
 
August:
-------
  - Main camping vacations
  - Festivals and events
  - Biking

September:
----------
  - School settling in
  - Wilderness camping trip (local)
 
October:
--------
  - Fall backcountry camping trip (1 week)
  - local geek convention
  - Halloween
 
November:
--------
  - Large vacation? (biannual)
  - Hunting?
  - Firewood - Cutting
  - Beer/Winemaking

December:
---------
  - Christmas

nereo

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Re: How would you spend your time if you had a year off?
« Reply #47 on: November 13, 2019, 07:05:15 AM »
It's funny this topic came up, because my spouse and I were asking ourselves this very question.

Assuming we kept our daughter in daycare at least a few days per week I would work on some home improvement projects that we are currently planning on outsourcing.  And I would spend about three weeks doing nothing but getting my shop in the order I wish it could be in (including several 'shop builds' like a better router table, outfeed and assembly tables, plus storage and a dust-collection system).

It's a bit telling that I'd rather do that than do a bunch of slow-travel.  our jobs have us away from home quite a bit, often in touristy-locations, so staying home and having the time to do stuff is the greatest appeal to me right now.

mmmfan500

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Re: How would you spend your time if you had a year off?
« Reply #48 on: November 19, 2019, 01:25:41 PM »
go here:  https://www.sipuebla.com/   or here https://www.donquijote.org/learn-spanish-latin-america/mexico/guanajuato/

 with the goal of getting my Spanish strong enough that I start to dream and think in Spanish.  Become B1 level proficient.
Thank you for these links! It just so happens that Puebla is where I am planning to go. I may do this school....
I've been debating for a long time whether to take a 1 year sabbatical or push to FIRE... 3 Years away... The math tells me to push through... But I'm honestly burned out of work. To the point I'm willing to take a large pay it to do something more meaningful...
It sounds like you're not loving your work...I think you should do the sabbatical! You may find that you are, in fact, ready for FIRE or maybe pick up some online income and you will be FIRE! It sounds to me like you're close enough to make the plunge.

raincoast

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Re: How would you spend your time if you had a year off?
« Reply #49 on: November 19, 2019, 03:13:19 PM »
A few years ago, I had some time off between finishing law school and starting my clerkship. I took a 3 month solo backpacking trip to Southeast Asia, staying in cheap hostels and riding public transport. In hindsight I mostly remember the fun, but it was also one of the most difficult things I've ever done. I had traveled before, but mostly for shorter periods in developed countries. The trip made me re-adjust a lot of my expectations about comfort and my needs. When you travel that long you also get disconnected from your routine at home - the road becomes your routine. When I finished the trip, I didn't really care so much about getting back to my stuff at home - I just wanted to drink tap water.

If I had a year off now, I would probably spend 3-4 months road-tripping around northwestern North America, and then spend the winter at home focusing on novel writing and spending time with my friends. I've managed to get to an 8th draft while working full-time, but the thought of uninterrupted time to research and write is so tempting.