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General Discussion => Post-FIRE => Topic started by: sol on January 22, 2019, 09:15:35 PM

Title: sol fails at retirement
Post by: sol on January 22, 2019, 09:15:35 PM
Forgive me, fellow forum members, for I have disappointed you almost as much as I have disappointed myself.  I have failed at retirement.  I am going back to work, 151 days after retiring.

I did not want another job.  I do not need the money.  I love retirement and the freedom it brings.  Nevertheless, I am about to sign another I-9 and will be receiving a regular paycheck.  I'm not happy about it.

But everyone has a price, right?  A former coworker sent me a lead, a local company looking for someone with my unusual skill set, and out of professional courtesy I went in to talk to them.  I told them up front that I was retired, and not looking for another job.  I told them I couldn't possibly work anything resembling full time, and they said okay.  I told them I wanted to work from home at least four days per week, and they said okay.  I told them I couldn't commit to more than a few weeks of employment, and they said okay.  So I told them I wanted a 35% raise over the previous wage I had already walked away from, and they grumbled about it but they said okay to that too.

So later this week I'm going back to work, part time, for a three week commitment with the option to extend.  I anticipate working approximately 60 hours and clearing a few thousand dollars total, a negligible amount of money for a recent retiree who is near his expected lifetime peak net worth.  It will make no material difference in my family finances.  I'm still undecided on how I feel about this situation.
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: MrUpwardlyMobile on January 22, 2019, 09:18:29 PM
Call the retirement police ASAP and report yourself. 

No seriously though. Sounds a bit more like youíre getting paid for a short term hobby.
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: kei te pai on January 22, 2019, 09:28:44 PM
Cant you think of anything else you want to do?
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: ysette9 on January 22, 2019, 10:16:51 PM
Say twelve Hail Marys and commit to sinning no more after this gig is up.
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: EscapeVelocity2020 on January 22, 2019, 10:31:51 PM
Sounds like great news, early retirement doesn't mean you'll stop working (https://www.mrmoneymustache.com/2015/04/15/great-news-early-retirement-doesnt-mean-youll-stop-working/)...

Quote
I find that when people earn their freedom from money constraints, they usually donít stop working. Instead they start doing their best work. Looking at many of societyís highest achievers right now, the world leaders and founders of the most productive companies, I see mostly people who have already made it. And yet are still working because it means something to them.

So Sol, go out there and enjoy your best 60 hours of meaningful work of your life!  I'll even let you continue to call yourself retired if you want to, since it's apparently Mustachian to, unless you actually *gasp* use the money someday.  Maybe 30 years from now I'll have to stop calling you retired...
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: okits on January 22, 2019, 11:03:41 PM
Congratulations on your new job!  ;)

Are you able to rationalize your failed retirement by donating your wages to a worthy cause?  That might help with any complicated feelings.

Iím downshifted and working less for financial necessity than for the good it can do and for personal satisfaction.  Itís not a utopia but a positive workplace culture and decent coworkers are nice to have (when one is not broke one can insist on that).  And having a 20 hour work week kicks some serious ass.  👍

Looking forward to hearing how it goes!
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: SpreadsheetMan on January 23, 2019, 12:25:23 AM
Well, it really is your call. The beauty of being FI is if you want to do a bit of work you can, but completely on your own terms.

When I leave my current job I'll call myself retired, but I won't be averse to picking up a bit of work from time to time as long as it doesn't involve too much commitment (or any BS at all).
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: steveo on January 23, 2019, 12:58:46 AM
Sol - you are a legend. See how it goes. It will be funny if you find that you like the money coming in.
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: happy on January 23, 2019, 01:19:33 AM
Ask @Exflyboy to talk you down....no wait, that might not work.
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: Linea_Norway on January 23, 2019, 01:25:05 AM

But everyone has a price, right?  A former coworker sent me a lead, a local company looking for someone with my unusual skill set, and out of professional courtesy I went in to talk to them.  I told them up front that I was retired, and not looking for another job.  I told them I couldn't possibly work anything resembling full time, and they said okay.  I told them I wanted to work from home at least four days per week, and they said okay.  I told them I couldn't commit to more than a few weeks of employment, and they said okay.  So I told them I wanted a 35% raise over the previous wage I had already walked away from, and they grumbled about it but they said okay to that too.


Yes, everyone has a price. But also a bunch of conditions to make the job more easy to tolerate. It sounds like you got all your conditions fulfilled. Good for you.

I can understand that someone wants to fatten his retirement stash. I that the real reason behind doing this? Or has it something to do with needing a sense of purpose and using your professional skills.
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: Linea_Norway on January 23, 2019, 01:41:47 AM
https://forum.mrmoneymustache.com/welcome-to-the-forum/this-might-be-the-first-book-published-describing-how-to-fire/msg2269754/#new

Look at the article in the first post, at point 4:

4. Busy beats idle. No hammock strung between the palm trees for our man Belmont. ďBy all means, if you retire, find some useful and soul satisfying activity to absorb your hours,Ē he wrote.

That might mean spending time with hobbies, he added, or finding the right kind of paying job. ďWork while in retirement is healthful just as is exercise and recreation. But the work must be wholesome, interesting,Ē he explained. If you donít enjoy it, youíve just traded one rat race for another.
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: Frankies Girl on January 23, 2019, 02:01:52 AM
Why tho? Do you really need the validation from a work/job situation so much? Unless... this is also a humblebrag thing as well? I'm not saying this to be critical, but it is very very attractive to show off a bit about how amazing and awesome you are, especially when you have others that are so desperate for you and your talents that they'll pay practically any price to get a tiny piece of you. It also can be very, very dangerous (not specifically to you Sol since I'm pretty sure you're a introspective enough person to realize all the ramifications)

If you feel this is worth the loss of free time and the hassle of reallocating brain space to working on the job and tasks they give you because of the ridiculous amount of money/perks AND you also enjoyed the work itself, that's great. But I also am not sure about even why you entertained the notion/interviewed in the first place. Considering the emphasis on money, it worries me that you may be hung up on valuing your free time vs work time in a dollar amount score-keeping way where you might have felt at loose ends with not being productive enough or something that drew you into this new job?

I literally can't even name a realistic number that would make me want to go back to actual work, but I might be flattered into doing something not even considering money/pay. I have done my former skillset stuff for free actually when asked for a charity and a few other causes I support. But then I do remember the first year after I FIREd, it was a bit bumpy for me to refocus my path/future without actual work being the main day to day and redefining my own self/worth as well.

It is very seductive to be pursued for your talents.
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: deborah on January 23, 2019, 02:52:32 AM
Calling @Exflyboy to respond.
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: pbkmaine on January 23, 2019, 04:02:00 AM
SHAME on you!
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: trollwithamustache on January 23, 2019, 07:34:03 AM
I didn't have any sympathy until you got the to the i-9.  You should be a 1099 consultant, not an employee!
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: MrOnyx on January 23, 2019, 07:58:31 AM
We're defining 'failure' pretty broadly if you're only going back on your own terms, and because you want to rather than because your portfolio has failed and you need the money. A little extra cash increases your chance of success/not needing to go back in 20 years. I know that mentality leads to OMYS, but it's still true in moderation.
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: desk_jockey on January 23, 2019, 08:01:52 AM
Congratulations Sol!   Iím happy for you.   I read the world ďfailureĒ as being tongue-in-cheek.

Iím happy for you if youíre taking the job for a new intellectual challenge, personal interest or even just to see what it would be like working as a contractor.    If you are taking the job for the money, then I hope itís earmarked for spending on something that you would be hesitant to do/buy if the expense was to fall within your normal SWR planning.

Personally, I hope to stay professionally engaged with new challenges for a few months each year for the foreseeable future of my FIRE.

Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: Lews Therin on January 23, 2019, 08:21:14 AM
Have you earmarked that money for anything?
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: I'm a red panda on January 23, 2019, 08:27:10 AM
Just don't fail at FI, and you're good.
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: HAPPYINAZ on January 23, 2019, 08:29:30 AM
You said you love the freedom of retirement, don't need the money, and are not happy that you are signing up for this job.  So I am wondering why are you doing it? 
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: Paul der Krake on January 23, 2019, 08:34:29 AM
I thought we were in this together. I feel betrayed.
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: Dicey on January 23, 2019, 08:51:47 AM
Some people work all year and take one vacation.

Sol is vacationing all year, save for a brief burst surge spasm of working.

I think it's a great way to keep your skills sharp. If you don't need the money (and I believe you), why not earmark (hee) it for a charitable cause you really care about? For example, I can see you holding a sign, "Will Work briefly For Water". Just stay away from freeway off ramps, please.

Go, sol!
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: lexde on January 23, 2019, 09:03:12 AM
RETIREMENT POLICE
ARREST REPORT

Name: sol
Booked: Wednesday, January 23, 2019
Charge(s): WWR - Working While Retired
Narrative: Defendant is charged with first offense WWR. Held out to MMM forum members that he had retired, then took a part time position based on leveraging his knowledge and financial independence to *WORK* while retired. Retirement police code of law states strictly that any activities following an announcement of retirement MUST be unchallenging and/or performed for no- or negligible-wages only. Released with a warning for first offense.

Release date: 12/23/2019 11:03EST
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: MasterStache on January 23, 2019, 09:07:55 AM
Au contraire.

See before having FU money and being able to RE, you likely didn't have the financial means and thus courage to ask for what you really wanted. Now you have complete and total control. Sure doesn't sound like failure to me ( :   
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: oldmannickels on January 23, 2019, 09:10:47 AM
called it!
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: Paul der Krake on January 23, 2019, 09:27:56 AM
RETIREMENT POLICE
ARREST REPORT

Name: sol
Booked: Wednesday, January 23, 2019
Charge(s): WWR - Working While Retired
Narrative: Defendant is charged with first offense WWR. Held out to MMM forum members that he had retired, then took a part time position based on leveraging his knowledge and financial independence to *WORK* while retired. Retirement police code of law states strictly that any activities following an announcement of retirement MUST be unchallenging and/or performed for no- or negligible-wages only. Released with a warning for first offense.

Release date: 12/23/2019 11:03EST

(https://media1.giphy.com/media/140BQZMYDNbN5K/giphy.gif?cid=3640f6095c48956d5a43334963715276)
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: lexde on January 23, 2019, 09:34:34 AM
RETIREMENT POLICE
ARREST REPORT

Name: sol
Booked: Wednesday, January 23, 2019
Charge(s): WWR - Working While Retired
Narrative: Defendant is charged with first offense WWR. Held out to MMM forum members that he had retired, then took a part time position based on leveraging his knowledge and financial independence to *WORK* while retired. Retirement police code of law states strictly that any activities following an announcement of retirement MUST be unchallenging and/or performed for no- or negligible-wages only. Released with a warning for first offense.

Release date: 12/23/2019 11:03EST

(https://media1.giphy.com/media/140BQZMYDNbN5K/giphy.gif?cid=3640f6095c48956d5a43334963715276)
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: sol on January 23, 2019, 10:08:16 AM
I knew I could count on all of you for a laugh, and a thoughtful pause.

Cant you think of anything else you want to do?

Many many things, which I have been doing for the past five months.  I have been able to restart long dormant hobbies, devote myself to a regular workout regime, and finish a bunch of projects around the house that I had been putting off.

But I'm also a family man, with daily responsibilities, so all of things I want to do have to fit into little six hour windows in the middle of weekdays.  I want to hike the Pacific Crest Trail too, but that's not exactly on my agenda until after my kids are grown.

Are you able to rationalize your failed retirement by donating your wages to a worthy cause?  That might help with any complicated feelings.

Even before I retired, I donated half of my 2018 wages to charity.  It was a condition of delaying my retirement from civil service (which also feels like charity sometimes) for as long a I did.  Since then, I have taken on a variety of volunteer gigs and "donated" my time and expertise to rescuing programs that desperately needed effective leadership.  I have found these efforts to be both more difficult and simultaneously more rewarding than just cutting a bunch of $1,000 checks.  Giving away money is quick and easy, when you have a lot of it.  Stepping into a floundering local situation to personally try to save the cause feels more altruistic to me than just burying them in cash.

I can understand that someone wants to fatten his retirement stash. I that the real reason behind doing this? Or has it something to do with needing a sense of purpose and using your professional skills.

The money is entirely inconsequential.  It will be a few thousand dollars at most, roughly a single month's spending from a stash that I expect to last more than 50 years.

The reasons for taking the job are complicated.  I'm trying to make a list:

1.  I have a PhD in this one little thing, and there aren't all that many people who do this one little thing who aren't already doing it full time.  When a local company needs an extra person to do that thing for a while, they have a hard time scaling up.  So part of the reason for taking the job is that I'm helping them out of a jam, and these are people that I like and respect.  Of course, I also gouged them on the price a little bit because I knew they were in a jam, so apparently I don't like and respect them too much.

2.  Related to #1, working even a few weeks here and there is a good way to keep myself relevant in the field in case I ever do decide to go back to work.  I don't plan to ever have another full time job, but then again I also didn't plan to have a part time job and yet here we are.  It's nice to keep your options open, I guess?

3.  I like feeling useful.  They called me because I was good at certain parts of the job (and not others, obviously) and we talked about the work in a way that made me feel worthwhile and respected for my professional expertise, and like all people I am not immune to flattery.  I really like the part of the job where you sit around and tell people how to do it, and I didn't like the part of the job where you sit in front a big fancy computer and actually grind through the steps.  For the next three weeks I'll get to do a little of both, but they mostly hired me to do the fun parts.

None of these reasons are related to money.  My investment accounts have already gained and lost more dollars in three hours of this morning's trading than I will make for three weeks of work.

it is very very attractive to show off a bit about how amazing and awesome you are

You think I'm attractive!  Hooray!  Sorry girl, I'm married.

In this case, this particular company needed short term backup because they sort of dug themselves into a hole.  My former federal colleagues who are now furloughed can't do the work for ethical reasons, but I'm not a fed anymore.  For reasons beyond everyone's control, I'm about the only person who CAN step up.

And we're both clear on this being a short-term gig, at this price.  They couldn't afford to pay me this hourly wage as a full time employee, not without causing havoc with their other employees.  But as a short term patch, it makes sense for them to overpay.

Considering the emphasis on money, it worries me that you may be hung up on valuing your free time vs work time in a dollar amount

I knew that taking this job would put a dent in my leisure activities, so my partner and I sat down and discussed what it would take to pull me out of retirement.  Aside from the reasons listed above, we came up with a list of criteria that would make the job seem tolerable for a few weeks, including the hour cap, working from home, and an hourly wage.

When I told him how much I wanted, the phone went quiet for a few seconds and then he said he'd have to call me back.  I was pretty sure he wouldn't be able to swing it, so when he called back and agreed to it I was surprised enough that I literally said "Really?!" right into the phone.  I would have been happy to turn it down if he had tried to counteroffer a lower amount.  So the money clearly wasn't irrelevant, but seems more about feeling valued than about the inconsequential addition to my investment accounts.

Have you earmarked that money for anything?

I worked for most of 2018, and all of that income was earmarked 50% for savings and 50% for charity.  I walked away from that job, because I felt I had filled both of those buckets beyond the brim, for now.  This money is likely to be my only earned income for the year, so I'll probably end up putting it all into my Roth IRA.  I might peel off a grand for something fun that I wouldn't otherwise buy, like a new bike, but then I'll still put the full amount into the Roth up to the limit of my earned income.  So it's kind of like I'm using that money as an excuse to transfer funds from one type of savings account to another.
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: Exflyboy on January 23, 2019, 10:17:49 AM
Why does this all feel strangely familiar?

My only constructive comment is that when I did this it was THE most fun work I have ever done.. Why? well because the office politics or backstabbing and trying to one-up your colleagues is as real as ever.. The only difference is.. You don't give a shit.

I can now see why the Romans built the Colosseum. What could be more fun than a family friendly Saturday night outing to watch "The game"? Highly entertaining.. Now they pay YOU to watch!..:)

I would have gone back for another go but mine was a travelling job and the BS Healthcare would have me out of network with zero coverage almost all the time.... Too big of a risk for me at my great age!

So can you put all this money into their 401K plan and thus "take it" tax free?
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: radram on January 23, 2019, 10:20:58 AM
Forgive me, fellow forum members, for I have disappointed you almost as much as I have disappointed myself.  I have failed at retirement.  I am going back to work, 151 days after retiring.

I did not want another job.  I do not need the money.  I love retirement and the freedom it brings.  Nevertheless, I am about to sign another I-9 and will be receiving a regular paycheck.  I'm not happy about it.

But everyone has a price, right?  A former coworker sent me a lead, a local company looking for someone with my unusual skill set, and out of professional courtesy I went in to talk to them.  I told them up front that I was retired, and not looking for another job.  I told them I couldn't possibly work anything resembling full time, and they said okay.  I told them I wanted to work from home at least four days per week, and they said okay.  I told them I couldn't commit to more than a few weeks of employment, and they said okay.  So I told them I wanted a 35% raise over the previous wage I had already walked away from, and they grumbled about it but they said okay to that too.

So later this week I'm going back to work, part time, for a three week commitment with the option to extend.  I anticipate working approximately 60 hours and clearing a few thousand dollars total, a negligible amount of money for a recent retiree who is near his expected lifetime peak net worth.  It will make no material difference in my family finances.  I'm still undecided on how I feel about this situation.

Might I also recommend you insist on 100% wage deposit into their 401k up until you reach the max. I doubt they would match, but why not ask. That is what I did when I took a 3 week fill-in job at my prior place of employment. It keeps all other financial plans and income levels the same. That was very important to me due to the ACA income rules.
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: sol on January 23, 2019, 10:38:24 AM
Might I also recommend you insist on 100% wage deposit into their 401k up until you reach the max.
So can you put all this money into their 401K plan and thus "take it" tax free?

Sadly, I will not be eligible for the 401k as a part time employee in my first year.  I'd have to work more than 20 hours per week, and frankly I'd rather just pay the taxes than commit to working that much.

I did increase my hourly wage ask to compensate for the lack of TSP matching funds and pension contributions I was previously earning as fed.

I might be able to accrue the same benefit with a traditional IRA, depending on how our income shakes out for the year.  All of the tax planning is complicated by our plans to sell a rental house this year, which I expect will generate ordinary income tax rates against our accumulated depreciation.

It doesn't really matter, though.  We're talking about a few hundred dollars here or there.  I blew almost $200 last week taking my parents out to dinner on a whim.  Being rich is pretty great, I highly recommend it.  You get to focus your spending on things that are really important to you, with much less concern about the dollar price of things.
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: infromsea on January 23, 2019, 11:07:45 AM
Coincidence???

https://www.madfientist.com/tony-interview/

Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: CCCA on January 23, 2019, 11:21:47 AM
I think it sounds like a good idea.  It doesn't sound like much of a commitment and you might actually like it.  Always good to have options, even if you don't need them.
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: Jon_Snow on January 23, 2019, 11:36:39 AM
(http://www.quickmeme.com/img/16/1663bb5158721e7f7f88fc81a583b0b86ab49fee27a04964d5fb145b28fe6899.jpg)
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: Linea_Norway on January 23, 2019, 11:38:59 AM
So what you do is a little, well priced consultancy gig to help out a company that you want to help out. And you are the only one available who can do it. Sort of charity, but getting paid for it. Nice of you to help them out. And it might be nice for you to polish your skills a bit.
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: okits on January 23, 2019, 01:18:41 PM
When I told him how much I wanted, the phone went quiet for a few seconds and then he said he'd have to call me back.  I was pretty sure he wouldn't be able to swing it, so when he called back and agreed to it I was surprised enough that I literally said "Really?!" right into the phone.  I would have been happy to turn it down if he had tried to counteroffer a lower amount.  So the money clearly wasn't irrelevant, but seems more about feeling valued than about the inconsequential addition to my investment accounts.

To do when sol re: retires: work on poker face.  :D

Are you able to rationalize your failed retirement by donating your wages to a worthy cause?  That might help with any complicated feelings.

Even before I retired, I donated half of my 2018 wages to charity.  It was a condition of delaying my retirement from civil service (which also feels like charity sometimes) for as long a I did.  Since then, I have taken on a variety of volunteer gigs and "donated" my time and expertise to rescuing programs that desperately needed effective leadership.  I have found these efforts to be both more difficult and simultaneously more rewarding than just cutting a bunch of $1,000 checks.  Giving away money is quick and easy, when you have a lot of it.  Stepping into a floundering local situation to personally try to save the cause feels more altruistic to me than just burying them in cash..

I remembered your 2018 wage donations and your past advocacy for charitable giving (vs. optional personal consumption).  👍 Iíve done volunteer work that almost anyone could do, and volunteer work that few people have the background to do, and the latter is a great use of oneís time.  Good on you for getting some programs back on the right track (obviously a difficult enough task that the larger organization is struggling to do it with the staff and skills they currently have).

I knew I could count on all of you for a laugh, and a thoughtful pause.

I am certain you will be forever reminded of your recidivism.  Hopefully we are funny enough to be worth it!  😄
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: Mr. Green on January 23, 2019, 04:44:35 PM
I did a two month stint at at Publix after I FIREd. Now my sister's fiance is starting a company and he's going to pay me for a week of work. If it works out it might turn into a recurring deal a few weeks a year with me travelling to conferences as tech support. As a person that loves learning and has total control of his time, I jump at the chance to get paid to learn something new that I'm interested in knowing more about. I would have done the grocery job and this upcoming one for free just because I'm interested in the knowledge. It's a wonderful perk of "retirement." If anything it enables me to have these kinds of experiences because my schedule is not dictated by a job.

The bursts of work and learning are also very fun now that my default state is a much more relaxed pace of life.
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: DreamFIRE on January 23, 2019, 05:33:44 PM
Sol states, " I anticipate working approximately 60 hours"

OMG.  And you thought this 60 hours of work warranted creating a thread about how you failed at FIRE???

Why not simply post in your cohort thread like most people do about something so insignificant?  Plenty of people do side gigs and will put in a lot more hours than that.  That's insignificant.
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: sol on January 23, 2019, 05:59:30 PM
OMG.  And you thought this 60 hours of work warranted creating a thread about how you failed at FIRE???

We get it, you hate me but you can't resist stalking my forum posts just to argue with me.  You're my unrequited frenemy.  Someday they'll make a sitcom about us.
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: DreamFIRE on January 23, 2019, 06:26:22 PM
OMG.  And you thought this 60 hours of work warranted creating a thread about how you failed at FIRE???

We get it, you hate me but you can't resist stalking my forum posts just to argue with me.  You're my unrequited frenemy.  Someday they'll make a sitcom about us.

I don't "hate" anyone on here.  But I did find it ironic that you said I was stalking your forum posts when it seemed to be the other way around, such as this post that you responded to:
https://forum.mrmoneymustache.com/investor-alley/aaaaand-the-bear-market-is-over/msg2256813/#msg2256813

This is the first "sol" thread I've ever responded to as far as I can recall.  I've never read your journal if you have one.

When I read the subject, I thought it might be more serious.  But then, I've seen plenty of "click bait" on the interwebs, so I'm not surprised.
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: Mr. Green on January 23, 2019, 11:52:01 PM
I took Sol's post to be more in jest than serious. Maybe I'm just imagining that.
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: sol on January 24, 2019, 12:00:51 AM
I took Sol's post to be more in jest than serious. Maybe I'm just imagining that.

You're right on.  DF  is just bent out of shape because we have argued in other threads, and his sense of humor may have shriveled a little as a result.

It takes a very specific type of person to chime on a thread like this one with a reply like that one.  I'm not letting it get me down, though.  After all, I have to get up and go to work tomorrow.
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: dividendman on January 24, 2019, 12:39:12 AM
I failed too. But my work is more serious and i've been doing it for 5 months now after 1 year off (when i thought i'd never work again). The work was just too much money, too close to home, and something interesting...

But, I might quit again soon. Sigh, went from FIRE class of 2018, to graduating early in 2017, only to take a year off and be working again in 2019!

Good to know that even the mighty Sol can fail :D

Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: Linea_Norway on January 24, 2019, 01:21:42 AM
I did a two month stint at at Publix after I FIREd. Now my sister's fiance is starting a company and he's going to pay me for a week of work. If it works out it might turn into a recurring deal a few weeks a year with me travelling to conferences as tech support. As a person that loves learning and has total control of his time, I jump at the chance to get paid to learn something new that I'm interested in knowing more about. I would have done the grocery job and this upcoming one for free just because I'm interested in the knowledge. It's a wonderful perk of "retirement." If anything it enables me to have these kinds of experiences because my schedule is not dictated by a job.

The bursts of work and learning are also very fun now that my default state is a much more relaxed pace of life.

Sounds like a good deal, a few weeks a year, making yourself useful for money doing interesting tasks. In Norwegian we would say "krydre hverdagen din", "Spicing up your days".

According to my FIL who has been FIREd for decades, you stay attractive for such incidental jobs in your field for about 5 years after FIRE. He thinks it requires a lot of investing (visiting conferences, reading professional magazines, doing projects) to stay up to date in your profession and that is something you don't want to spend your time on during FIRE. So after a few years, people won't take you as seriously anymore as they did in the beginning.
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: couponvan on January 24, 2019, 05:42:02 AM
You are just going on a smoke break from FIRE.  :-) 

Too bad about not being able to stash something into the 401(k), but 60 hours of work shouldn't cause any blips in maximum benefits/major tax liability.  I like the 35% pay increase.  It's like getting paid for 80+ hours of work for old Sol!

Unless you have full plans in FIRE, I think it's pretty hard to be FIRE when all your friends are still working....No one can play during those 6 hours a day you are off every day.  Sitting around watching soap operas doesn't seem your style.

Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: MasterStache on January 24, 2019, 06:14:12 AM
I took Sol's post to be more in jest than serious. Maybe I'm just imagining that.

You're right on.  DF  is just bent out of shape because we have argued in other threads, and his sense of humor may have shriveled a little as a result.

It takes a very specific type of person to chime on a thread like this one with a reply like that one.  I'm not letting it get me down, though.  After all, I have to get up and go to work tomorrow.

+1

Trolls will be trolls. Good luck on your first day of your new job. (-;
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: solon on January 24, 2019, 06:18:16 AM
You'll just take less money out of your retirement accounts. So really you ARE growing your retirement balance.
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: Malcat on January 24, 2019, 06:37:49 AM
I took Sol's post to be more in jest than serious. Maybe I'm just imagining that.

Yep, obvious joke click-bait title that no one whose been on this forum for more than a week would assume was anything serious.

Well negotiated sol, it's a great example of just how much negotiating power most people leave on the table for fear of losing out on income opportunities.

So few people realize just how far companies are willing to offer if you just keep saying "no".

It's sad that for most people, it's really once they don't need them that the best job opportunities pop up. It's not impossible, but quite tricky to recreate this kind of advantage while still in accumulation phase.
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: UnleashHell on January 24, 2019, 07:56:52 AM
The retirement police are looking at you funny.
not as funny as dreamfire but you can't have everything huh?
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: soccerluvof4 on January 24, 2019, 07:59:00 AM
Can we put Sol picture up in the Wall of shame? lol haha.... Hey , Just for kicks I started delivering pizzas a few hours /few days a week after almost 4 years for fun. Not making what you are but having fun and the tips really are good. So in another week or so I will be done with that venture but always wanted to see how one of those franchises operated so gives me a good inside view.
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: MrOnyx on January 24, 2019, 08:14:01 AM
Can we put Sol picture up in the Wall of shame? lol haha.... Hey , Just for kicks I started delivering pizzas a few hours /few days a week after almost 4 years for fun. Not making what you are but having fun and the tips really are good. So in another week or so I will be done with that venture but always wanted to see how one of those franchises operated so gives me a good inside view.

I mean I'd be willing to do that post-FIRE, too, if they offered free pizza as a perk.
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: nereo on January 24, 2019, 08:16:51 AM

It doesn't really matter, though.  We're talking about a few hundred dollars here or there.  I blew almost $200 last week taking my parents out to dinner on a whim.  Being rich is pretty great, I highly recommend it.  You get to focus your spending on things that are really important to you, with much less concern about the dollar price of things.

ah... another nugget of wisdom from Sol.  I'm definitely following along...
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: soccerluvof4 on January 24, 2019, 08:21:19 AM
Can we put Sol picture up in the Wall of shame? lol haha.... Hey , Just for kicks I started delivering pizzas a few hours /few days a week after almost 4 years for fun. Not making what you are but having fun and the tips really are good. So in another week or so I will be done with that venture but always wanted to see how one of those franchises operated so gives me a good inside view.

I mean I'd be willing to do that post-FIRE, too, if they offered free pizza as a perk.



I took home a Free Large Pizza as a matter of fact yesterday. 6 Cheese and Pepperoni. Kids were ecstatic. I skipped a slice!
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: nereo on January 24, 2019, 08:40:10 AM
Can we put Sol picture up in the Wall of shame? lol haha.... Hey , Just for kicks I started delivering pizzas a few hours /few days a week after almost 4 years for fun. Not making what you are but having fun and the tips really are good. So in another week or so I will be done with that venture but always wanted to see how one of those franchises operated so gives me a good inside view.

I mean I'd be willing to do that post-FIRE, too, if they offered free pizza as a perk.



I took home a Free Large Pizza as a matter of fact yesterday. 6 Cheese and Pepperoni. Kids were ecstatic. I skipped a slice!
At what point does adding yet another kind of cheese cease to improve the overall flavor of the pie?  I get why three-cheese can best a single cheese (particularly when that cheese is just mozzarella - good for texture but not a heavyweight in taste).  There has to be a law of diminishing returns on cheese diversity, no?
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: nereo on January 24, 2019, 08:45:29 AM

But I'm also a family man, with daily responsibilities, so all of things I want to do have to fit into little six hour windows in the middle of weekdays.  I want to hike the Pacific Crest Trail too, but that's not exactly on my agenda until after my kids are grown.

Section hike it with your kids in the meantime, even if its just one kid for a particular section.  Amazing bonding time.  That's what my spouse did with her dad on the AT, and its one of her fonder memories of her young teenage years.
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: Boofinator on January 24, 2019, 09:12:10 AM
Can we put Sol picture up in the Wall of shame? lol haha.... Hey , Just for kicks I started delivering pizzas a few hours /few days a week after almost 4 years for fun. Not making what you are but having fun and the tips really are good. So in another week or so I will be done with that venture but always wanted to see how one of those franchises operated so gives me a good inside view.

I mean I'd be willing to do that post-FIRE, too, if they offered free pizza as a perk.

Be careful what you wish for: I had a roommate in college who worked for Pizza Hut, and brought home the scratch pizzas every night. I thought I had hit the jackpot for the first couple of weeks. A few weeks later, Pizza Hut pizza no longer filled me with joy, but hey, still free pizza, right? By the end of the first semester, the smell of Pizza Hut pizza was nauseating, and it is by far my least favorite pizza to this day.
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: nereo on January 24, 2019, 09:28:06 AM
Can we put Sol picture up in the Wall of shame? lol haha.... Hey , Just for kicks I started delivering pizzas a few hours /few days a week after almost 4 years for fun. Not making what you are but having fun and the tips really are good. So in another week or so I will be done with that venture but always wanted to see how one of those franchises operated so gives me a good inside view.

I mean I'd be willing to do that post-FIRE, too, if they offered free pizza as a perk.

Be careful what you wish for: I had a roommate in college who worked for Pizza Hut, and brought home the scratch pizzas every night. I thought I had hit the jackpot for the first couple of weeks. A few weeks later, Pizza Hut pizza no longer filled me with joy, but hey, still free pizza, right? By the end of the first semester, the smell of Pizza Hut pizza was nauseating, and it is by far my least favorite pizza to this day.
in my late teens and early 20s I had almost constant free pizza through my job, and since I was broke/cheap I ate it almost every day at least once.  It took a decade before I could even smell delivery pizza without losing my appetite.
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: lexde on January 24, 2019, 09:29:39 AM
I took Sol's post to be more in jest than serious. Maybe I'm just imagining that.
Me too. Hence my Retirement Police report. :-)
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: MasterStache on January 24, 2019, 10:02:34 AM
Can we put Sol picture up in the Wall of shame? lol haha.... Hey , Just for kicks I started delivering pizzas a few hours /few days a week after almost 4 years for fun. Not making what you are but having fun and the tips really are good. So in another week or so I will be done with that venture but always wanted to see how one of those franchises operated so gives me a good inside view.

I mean I'd be willing to do that post-FIRE, too, if they offered free pizza as a perk.

Be careful what you wish for: I had a roommate in college who worked for Pizza Hut, and brought home the scratch pizzas every night. I thought I had hit the jackpot for the first couple of weeks. A few weeks later, Pizza Hut pizza no longer filled me with joy, but hey, still free pizza, right? By the end of the first semester, the smell of Pizza Hut pizza was nauseating, and it is by far my least favorite pizza to this day.
in my late teens and early 20s I had almost constant free pizza through my job, and since I was broke/cheap I ate it almost every day at least once.  It took a decade before I could even smell delivery pizza without losing my appetite.

Hmm, I worked at a pizza joint during High School and for some time afterwards. I still love the pizza to this day. Now I am hungry for pizza!
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: MasterStache on January 24, 2019, 10:08:19 AM
I want to hike the Pacific Crest Trail too, but that's not exactly on my agenda until after my kids are grown.

I would love to do this. But I am in the same boat with the kids. For a while I lived vicariously through my buddy from High School (no kids and recently divorced at the time) who hiked the PCT. He finished a couple hundred miles short because of injury. A guy he hiked a chunk of it with went missing after they parted ways. He has been missing since Oct 2017. I keep hoping he will pop up In Canada or Mexico or something.   
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: couponvan on January 24, 2019, 10:16:11 AM
I want to hike the Pacific Crest Trail too, but that's not exactly on my agenda until after my kids are grown.

I would love to do this. But I am in the same boat with the kids. For a while I lived vicariously through my buddy from High School (no kids and recently divorced at the time) who hiked the PCT. He finished a couple hundred miles short because of injury. A guy he hiked a chunk of it with went missing after they parted ways. He has been missing since Oct 2017. I keep hoping he will pop up In Canada or Mexico or something.   

Hmm... I don't think I'd go hiking with your buddy from High School. Just to be on the safe side.
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: sol on January 24, 2019, 10:20:04 AM
Me too. Hence my Retirement Police report. :-)

Which is still my favorite post in this thread.  Nicely done.

I want to hike the Pacific Crest Trail too, but that's not exactly on my agenda until after my kids are grown.
I would love to do this. But I am in the same boat with the kids. 

I'm planning on doing the section between 90 and 2 this summer with some friends of mine.  Assuming I can retire again before then.  You're all invited.
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: MasterStache on January 24, 2019, 10:55:28 AM
I want to hike the Pacific Crest Trail too, but that's not exactly on my agenda until after my kids are grown.

I would love to do this. But I am in the same boat with the kids. For a while I lived vicariously through my buddy from High School (no kids and recently divorced at the time) who hiked the PCT. He finished a couple hundred miles short because of injury. A guy he hiked a chunk of it with went missing after they parted ways. He has been missing since Oct 2017. I keep hoping he will pop up In Canada or Mexico or something.   

Hmm... I don't think I'd go hiking with your buddy from High School. Just to be on the safe side.

There are a lot of missing hikers. The guy was hiking by himself at the time, which isn't something I would enjoy doing.
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: MasterStache on January 24, 2019, 10:57:16 AM
I want to hike the Pacific Crest Trail too, but that's not exactly on my agenda until after my kids are grown.
I would love to do this. But I am in the same boat with the kids. 

I'm planning on doing the section between 90 and 2 this summer with some friends of mine.  Assuming I can retire again before then.  You're all invited.

Damn sounds like fun. Maybe you can start a journal and I can live vicariously through you? ( :
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: SwordGuy on January 24, 2019, 11:22:53 AM
Saw someone refer to FIRE as Financially Independent, Recreationally Employed.   
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: nereo on January 24, 2019, 11:23:13 AM

I'm planning on doing the section between 90 and 2 this summer with some friends of mine.  Assuming I can retire again before then.  You're all invited.

Section J of the PCT is 75 miles of rugged mountain country with nearly 16,000 feet of elevation gain. Discover spectacular mountain country and alpine lakes as you travel north. This tough route is a true challenge for every backpacker!
16,000 feet of elevation gain.  Holy crap.  Sounds amazing.
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: sol on January 24, 2019, 01:19:17 PM
16,000 feet of elevation gain.  Holy crap.  Sounds amazing.

That's nothing.  Climbing Rainier involves going from 5k to 14k and back over a single weekend, and I do that every year.  I've camped in that crater.  Last summer I spent a month climbing to 20,310 feet and it was worth every painful step. 

Saw someone refer to FIRE as Financially Independent, Recreationally Employed.   

Today I was recreationally employed for about 90 minutes, my first official day back at work.  It was actually pretty good, because they needed my advice and I feel like they totally got their money's worth out of me.  It was a productive 90 minutes.  Even charging them ridiculous hourly rates works out fine for everyone, when they really only need you for a few hours at a time.  They get high level advice without keeping a high level employee on payroll, and I get a big hourly wage for tiny amounts of work.
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: Greyweld on January 24, 2019, 01:22:57 PM
Saw someone refer to FIRE as Financially Independent, Recreationally Employed.   

Ah, so *this* is what I'm shooting for!
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: Eric on January 25, 2019, 11:05:51 AM
Considering the emphasis on money, it worries me that you may be hung up on valuing your free time vs work time in a dollar amount

I knew that taking this job would put a dent in my leisure activities, so my partner and I sat down and discussed what it would take to pull me out of retirement.  Aside from the reasons listed above, we came up with a list of criteria that would make the job seem tolerable for a few weeks, including the hour cap, working from home, and an hourly wage.

When I told him how much I wanted, the phone went quiet for a few seconds and then he said he'd have to call me back.  I was pretty sure he wouldn't be able to swing it, so when he called back and agreed to it I was surprised enough that I literally said "Really?!" right into the phone.  I would have been happy to turn it down if he had tried to counteroffer a lower amount.  So the money clearly wasn't irrelevant, but seems more about feeling valued than about the inconsequential addition to my investment accounts.

Hahaha.  This is great!  And hey, if you're going to fail, failing on your own terms is the only way to do it.
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: pdxvandal on January 25, 2019, 11:51:44 PM
Sol, you still rock. Make some cash, spend it on some of your real wants and go back to the FIRE world. I probably live within 5 miles of you, so DM me if you want to chat over coffee/barley sodas. Enjoy the current PDX economy!
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: Bateaux on January 26, 2019, 06:26:44 PM
16,000 feet of elevation gain.  Holy crap.  Sounds amazing.

That's nothing.  Climbing Rainier involves going from 5k to 14k and back over a single weekend, and I do that every year.  I've camped in that crater.  Last summer I spent a month climbing to 20,310 feet and it was worth every painful step. 

Saw someone refer to FIRE as Financially Independent, Recreationally Employed.   

Today I was recreationally employed for about 90 minutes, my first official day back at work.  It was actually pretty good, because they needed my advice and I feel like they totally got their money's worth out of me.  It was a productive 90 minutes.  Even charging them ridiculous hourly rates works out fine for everyone, when they really only need you for a few hours at a time.  They get high level advice without keeping a high level employee on payroll, and I get a big hourly wage for tiny amounts of work.

Sol, I'm in awe of your stamina.   I've bagged some of the easier Colorado 14ers and done sections of the CDT, AT and other trails.  I wish you a sucessful PCT hike.  I hope to be an AT thru hiker in 2020.  Triple crown dreams haven't died yet.  I still have a little time.  It's one of my biggest drivers to FIRE. 
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: FreshlyFIREd on January 27, 2019, 03:56:57 AM

... I did not want another job.  I do not need the money.  I love retirement and the freedom it brings ... I'm not happy about it ... A former coworker sent me a lead, a local company looking for someone with my unusual skill set, and out of professional courtesy I went in to talk to them ...


It is not my intention to troll. I too am recently retired (1.5 years). I still have a linkedin account - so I keep up with whats happening by snooping on peeps in my former occupation. Because of this snooping, I have seen a few opportunities that I would have loved to have (if I was still employed - but I am not employed). That chapter in my life is over - sometimes - I need to remind myself of this. For me to move ahead, I cannot look behind. As I read your comments, we find ourselves in exactly the same position "...  I did not want another job.  I do not need the money.  I love retirement and the freedom it brings ... I'm not happy about it ..." This part makes me confused why we have different outcomes - I'm still retired and you are not.

Again not intending to troll - just an honest question: (I did google it and could not find an adequate answer) Is someone considered a professional if you are no longer employed (retired and not actively pursuing employment in that field)? The answer to this question is related to "professional courtesy". If someone is no longer a professional, do they continue to extend "professional courtesy".

And I get that people want to work part time. And I get that it's nice to have more income. Just pointing out that professional courtesy may keep you working forever???

Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: MasterStache on January 27, 2019, 06:36:49 AM

... I did not want another job.  I do not need the money.  I love retirement and the freedom it brings ... I'm not happy about it ... A former coworker sent me a lead, a local company looking for someone with my unusual skill set, and out of professional courtesy I went in to talk to them ...


It is not my intention to troll. I too am recently retired (1.5 years). I still have a linkedin account - so I keep up with whats happening by snooping on peeps in my former occupation. Because of this snooping, I have seen a few opportunities that I would have loved to have (if I was still employed - but I am not employed). That chapter in my life is over - sometimes - I need to remind myself of this. For me to move ahead, I cannot look behind. As I read your comments, we find ourselves in exactly the same position "...  I did not want another job.  I do not need the money.  I love retirement and the freedom it brings ... I'm not happy about it ..." This part makes me confused why we have different outcomes - I'm still retired and you are not.

Again not intending to troll - just an honest question: (I did google it and could not find an adequate answer) Is someone considered a professional if you are no longer employed (retired and not actively pursuing employment in that field)? The answer to this question is related to "professional courtesy". If someone is no longer a professional, do they continue to extend "professional courtesy".

And I get that people want to work part time. And I get that it's nice to have more income. Just pointing out that professional courtesy may keep you working forever???

Perhaps relevant:
http://www.mrmoneymustache.com/2015/04/15/great-news-early-retirement-doesnt-mean-youll-stop-working/ (http://www.mrmoneymustache.com/2015/04/15/great-news-early-retirement-doesnt-mean-youll-stop-working/)
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: pecunia on January 27, 2019, 08:41:24 AM
Sixty hours?  That's just one five day 12 hour a day week.

It certainly is another argument for FI and having FU money.  I'm getting close.  I remember practically begging for jobs and the employer always having the upper hand.  I love seeing the tables turned on the management types.  Swivel chair commandos didn't win this time.

Sol - Your regret is positive reinforcement to the rest of us.
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: sol on January 27, 2019, 10:19:18 AM
Is someone considered a professional if you are no longer employed (retired and not actively pursuing employment in that field)? The answer to this question is related to "professional courtesy". If someone is no longer a professional, do they continue to extend "professional courtesy".

In this case, I think "professional courtesy" is not very dissimilar from regular old courtesy.  I can do a nice thing for somebody.

In general, an early retiree is going to leave their job near the peak of the corporate utility, as what is traditionally called "mid-career".  You're experienced enough to not be a new guy who needs training, but you're not so old and stagnant that employers are taking a risk on you having outdated skills.  In your entire life, you will never be more desirably employable than you are the day after you RE.

I suppose it depends on what you do for a living.  Entrepreneurs and small business owners like dentists are clearly in a different boat.  But if you work construction, or provide some kind of professional services to larger organizations, then as soon as you declare yourself retired you become part of a potentially available labor supply to orgs that need to scale up for some reason.  If you're a linesman for example, and you retire the week before a major storm hits and linesman from all over the country are flying to your area for repairs, it probably wouldn't be surprising if they call you up and ask you to help out.  Or if you work retail for the holiday season, or a cpa during tax season.  They know you're available, and capable.  And you can probably get a short term raise.  That's kind of the boat I'm in.

So I don't worry about calling myself a professional as a condition of helping out.  My old boss sent me a text message with the contact info for a short term gig.  I could have told her "fuck off, I'm retired" but these people genuinely needed a little help, and by going in to talk to them I also make my former employer look good.  I'm fostering cooperation between the public and private sectors. 

And I got a big raise in order to do it. Also key is the fact that I'm not bound to any particular working schedule that might interfere with my retired life.  Working 20 hours per week is pretty easy, when you get to pick which 20 it is.  Personally, my most productive computer hours seem to be 9pm to 11pm, when the rest of my day is over.

Quote
Just pointing out that professional courtesy may keep you working forever???

If the work was sufficiently interesting and I found it meaningful, I would have no problem turning this into a longer term arrangement.  I'd probably have to cut it down to more like 10 hours per week.  As long as you have the option to not work in any given week, and to walk away whenever you want, then I don't think it will really feel like work.  Maybe I'm wrong, and I'll phase out of this in a few more days.  Time will tell.
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: ender on January 27, 2019, 10:57:36 AM
Having some earned income opens up some federal tax credits too.

You likely will get EITC of some amount, though you may have enough investment income to stop that if you have taxable investments.
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: v8rx7guy on January 27, 2019, 11:10:34 AM
I fully support this.  I don't know if I would do it though, personally.  I shouldn't really care about what my friends and family would think, but deep down I would know that they're thinking that the "early retirement " I've always been talking about achieving has either failed or not exactly what I've been telling them it is.  Maybe I should care less what other people think, or maybe it will be different when I'm actually FIREd, but I think for me I would strive to maintain the allure of early retirement in the eyes of friends and family that know the sacrifices I made to get there.
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: Paul der Krake on January 27, 2019, 11:43:57 AM
Having some earned income opens up some federal tax credits too.

You likely will get EITC of some amount, though you may have enough investment income to stop that if you have taxable investments.
Yeah, it only takes $3,000 of unearned income, which translates to something like 200k of taxable VTSAX to be ineligible for the EITC. It's possible to qualify if you were low-ish wage earner who saved almost all their money in tax-advantaged accounts, but I don't think that's many people.

I fully support this.  I don't know if I would do it though, personally.  I shouldn't really care about what my friends and family would think, but deep down I would know that they're thinking that the "early retirement " I've always been talking about achieving has either failed or not exactly what I've been telling them it is.  Maybe I should care less what other people think, or maybe it will be different when I'm actually FIREd, but I think for me I would strive to maintain the allure of early retirement in the eyes of friends and family that know the sacrifices I made to get there.
Meh, if you're trying to impress people, regularly leave the country for months at a time between your "jobs".
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: nereo on January 27, 2019, 11:44:48 AM
I fully support this.  I don't know if I would do it though, personally.  I shouldn't really care about what my friends and family would think, but deep down I would know that they're thinking that the "early retirement " I've always been talking about achieving has either failed or not exactly what I've been telling them it is.  Maybe I should care less what other people think, or maybe it will be different when I'm actually FIREd, but I think for me I would strive to maintain the allure of early retirement in the eyes of friends and family that know the sacrifices I made to get there.

I've learned that the less I care and worry about what other people think of my choices, the happier I am.  I've also stopped mentioning FIRE to anyone who doesn't ask about it - and that's ended a lot of the earlier scrutiny when I tried hard to get people to stop wasting their money.
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: Malcat on January 27, 2019, 12:03:54 PM
I fully support this.  I don't know if I would do it though, personally.  I shouldn't really care about what my friends and family would think, but deep down I would know that they're thinking that the "early retirement " I've always been talking about achieving has either failed or not exactly what I've been telling them it is.  Maybe I should care less what other people think, or maybe it will be different when I'm actually FIREd, but I think for me I would strive to maintain the allure of early retirement in the eyes of friends and family that know the sacrifices I made to get there.

I've learned that the less I care and worry about what other people think of my choices, the happier I am. 

Yep, especially since no one really cares, not beyond a casual curiosity or vague sense of judgement.

We really don't occupy the thoughts of other people much.

The only people who think much about you are those who love you and those who hate you. Those who love you only care that you are happy and those who hate you don't matter.

The rest don't really give more than half a fuck in passing now and then, so don't worry about what they think.
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: calimom on January 27, 2019, 01:37:45 PM
Look at it this way:With your additional earnings you can buy that Vitamix you've been coveting.

:)
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: nereo on January 27, 2019, 02:02:21 PM
Look at it this way:With your additional earnings you can buy that Vitamix you've been coveting.

:)
Or a hundred pairs of Darn Tough socks
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: Lews Therin on January 28, 2019, 07:13:29 AM
Or a lifetime supply of 10$ processors instead of a vitamix.
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: Bateaux on January 28, 2019, 09:05:41 AM
Sol, why don't you just start a new site and take on MMM.    Yes, he had global fame now and even with the divorce likely a fat bank account.  You do more to keep this site humming along now than MMM himself.   Maybe he posts anonymously, but hardly ever active.
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: nereo on January 28, 2019, 09:07:25 AM
Sol, why don't you just start a new site and take on MMM.    Yes, he had global fame now and even with the divorce likely a fat bank account.  You do more to keep this site humming along now than MMM himself.   Maybe he posts anonymously, but hardly ever active.
sounds suspiciously like...work.
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: sol on January 28, 2019, 09:58:04 AM
Sol, why don't you just start a new site and take on MMM.   

I have given serious thought to starting a blog, but I wouldn't expect it to ever compete with MMM.  I've even gone so far as to secure a domain and put up an empty landing page.  The next step is just to starting writing there instead of here.

But I have some serious emotional obstacles to overcome.  I feel like a new blog needs a more organized launch event than just me randomly deciding to write a bunch of stuff.  I feel like it needs some sort of coherent theme, and an introductory post, and then probably two or three follow up posts before I give anyone the URL.  So far my desire to create something good has stopped me from creating anything at all.

My second obstacle is deciding just how much of my life to share.  MMM has been absolutely eviscerated for sharing even the most basic details about his family.  Strangers have shown up at his home.  People mocked his divorce.  He's had to hire lawyers to deal with some of the site's content (including some which was my fault, so this is a very real concern for me).  My life has always been an open book, but now I have a spouse and children and their lives are not mine to share, as hilarious as I think that would be.  So as much as I feel comfortable with the online persona that has developed with this account, putting all of that content into one easily-archived place represents a significant risk.  I probably need to come up with some firm ground rules for myself before I just start sharing whatever falls out of my fingertips.

Obstacle number three is that most of my time on the forum in the past six months has been related to politics, not finances, and that's a much harder topic for me to write about.  I'm a particular kind of scientist, trained to turn complex and messy real world problems with poorly defined parameters into exact quantitative answers with too many decimal places.  My one useful talent in life is in building mathematical models, and I'd like to write about that process as it relates to a variety of topics.  Including but not limited to personal finance.  The modern political era, so focused on narratives built on outright lies, flies in the face of everything I believe in.  "Alternative facts" are like the Spanish Inquisition to me, and I'm angry about it.  But if you're going to start a blog with any hope of reaching people, it's probably bad business sense to start off on day one by telling 30% of your potential audience that they are apparently too stupid to read anything that follows.  Even on this forum, there are people with whom I have had both insightful conversations about the stock market and raging shouting matches about climate change, and to me these problems are best addressed using similar tools.  Yet ideology trumps logic too often, and I haven't yet figured out how to reach those people.  So, the blog sits empty, afraid to even try.

I agree that starting a blog is probably a more financially profitable use of my time than working, at this point.  It would never clear the hundreds of thousands that MMM does, but lots of blogs make a few thousand dollars per year with minimal monetization and it would be virtually no additional work beyond the hundreds of hours I already spend here.  But I don't really need the money, so I wouldn't be doing it for the dollars.  For me, the attraction of what MMM has built isn't the income the site brings but the influence.  He's an online "thought leader", a kind of public intellectual, and he has the power to use his words to shape and influence whole swaths of the population to make a better world.  That's far more attractive to me than money I would just end up donating to charity anyway. 

At this point in my life I would rather write blog posts twice a week for an audience of one million and get paid zero, than for an audience of 50 and get paid $1000 per post.  And yes, I realize that a new blogger has an audience of zero and gets paid zero, but you get my point.  The attraction of growing a blog isn't in the money.

...

And now I've written an entire blog post on the MMM forum instead of my own blog.  Again. 
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: toganet on January 28, 2019, 10:36:29 AM
16,000 feet of elevation gain.  Holy crap.  Sounds amazing.

That's nothing.  Climbing Rainier involves going from 5k to 14k and back over a single weekend, and I do that every year.  I've camped in that crater.  Last summer I spent a month climbing to 20,310 feet and it was worth every painful step. 



I envy you West-Coasters -- to get 20k elevation in my neck of the woods I have to summit five times!
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: onlykelsey on January 28, 2019, 10:54:42 AM
In general, an early retiree is going to leave their job near the peak of the corporate utility, as what is traditionally called "mid-career".  You're experienced enough to not be a new guy who needs training, but you're not so old and stagnant that employers are taking a risk on you having outdated skills.  In your entire life, you will never be more desirably employable than you are the day after you RE.

I'm 32 and anecdotally experiencing this.  I'm not FIRE but even in Manhattan with full-time childcare expenses I am worth about ~6 years of expenses plus ~300K in equity, and am re-evaluating.  I have been pleasantly surprised at how many doors are (tentatively) re-opening.  Maybe I can work in a summer PCT hike at my new gig.

Hope you're having fun!
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: robartsd on January 28, 2019, 11:41:51 AM
Look at it this way:With your additional earnings you can buy that Vitamix you've been coveting.

:)
Dang! You beat me to it!

sol, push for the big time - try to earn $12,000 in 2019 so you can max both your Roth IRA and your wife's Roth IRA this year! I'm pretty sure it only takes $12,000 in wages - you can pay the taxes on those wages with other money.

And now I've written an entire blog post on the MMM forum instead of my own blog.  Again. 
No reason you can't go back to your forum posts and copy them to your blog (except that it seems like work). Of course you could outsource some of the work required.
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: Bateaux on January 28, 2019, 01:15:03 PM
Sol, why don't you just start a new site and take on MMM.   

I have given serious thought to starting a blog, but I wouldn't expect it to ever compete with MMM.  I've even gone so far as to secure a domain and put up an empty landing page.  The next step is just to starting writing there instead of here.

But I have some serious emotional obstacles to overcome.  I feel like a new blog needs a more organized launch event than just me randomly deciding to write a bunch of stuff.  I feel like it needs some sort of coherent theme, and an introductory post, and then probably two or three follow up posts before I give anyone the URL.  So far my desire to create something good has stopped me from creating anything at all.

My second obstacle is deciding just how much of my life to share.  MMM has been absolutely eviscerated for sharing even the most basic details about his family.  Strangers have shown up at his home.  People mocked his divorce.  He's had to hire lawyers to deal with some of the site's content (including some which was my fault, so this is a very real concern for me).  My life has always been an open book, but now I have a spouse and children and their lives are not mine to share, as hilarious as I think that would be.  So as much as I feel comfortable with the online persona that has developed with this account, putting all of that content into one easily-archived place represents a significant risk.  I probably need to come up with some firm ground rules for myself before I just start sharing whatever falls out of my fingertips.

Obstacle number three is that most of my time on the forum in the past six months has been related to politics, not finances, and that's a much harder topic for me to write about.  I'm a particular kind of scientist, trained to turn complex and messy real world problems with poorly defined parameters into exact quantitative answers with too many decimal places.  My one useful talent in life is in building mathematical models, and I'd like to write about that process as it relates to a variety of topics.  Including but not limited to personal finance.  The modern political era, so focused on narratives built on outright lies, flies in the face of everything I believe in.  "Alternative facts" are like the Spanish Inquisition to me, and I'm angry about it.  But if you're going to start a blog with any hope of reaching people, it's probably bad business sense to start off on day one by telling 30% of your potential audience that they are apparently too stupid to read anything that follows.  Even on this forum, there are people with whom I have had both insightful conversations about the stock market and raging shouting matches about climate change, and to me these problems are best addressed using similar tools.  Yet ideology trumps logic too often, and I haven't yet figured out how to reach those people.  So, the blog sits empty, afraid to even try.

I agree that starting a blog is probably a more financially profitable use of my time than working, at this point.  It would never clear the hundreds of thousands that MMM does, but lots of blogs make a few thousand dollars per year with minimal monetization and it would be virtually no additional work beyond the hundreds of hours I already spend here.  But I don't really need the money, so I wouldn't be doing it for the dollars.  For me, the attraction of what MMM has built isn't the income the site brings but the influence.  He's an online "thought leader", a kind of public intellectual, and he has the power to use his words to shape and influence whole swaths of the population to make a better world.  That's far more attractive to me than money I would just end up donating to charity anyway. 

At this point in my life I would rather write blog posts twice a week for an audience of one million and get paid zero, than for an audience of 50 and get paid $1000 per post.  And yes, I realize that a new blogger has an audience of zero and gets paid zero, but you get my point.  The attraction of growing a blog isn't in the money.

...

And now I've written an entire blog post on the MMM forum instead of my own blog.  Again.


Understandable Sol.  I'm still a huge MMM fan.  I just think you have so much to offer.  You wouldn't need to steal any FIRE from MMM.  We need a site that uses logic, history, science and human decency to show why we aren't in that 30 percent.  Why many of us are now and many more will be millionaires that started from humble beginnings.  How we climb huge mountains, hike trails thousands of miles and live like most others don't.  Maybe we don't hide behind an internet handle on your site.  Maybe we openly disclose to our bosses, coworkers, friends and family our actual net worth.  We attack the bullshit excuses many have as to why they can't do what we're doing.  I started tracking my net worth as a teen in the 80s, while working farm jobs for less than minimum wage.  I bought my first funds in the early 90s in my 20s.  I'm of average intelligence and a blue collar worker.  I have no formal financial training.  I also made many financial mistakes along the way, most before the internet became widespread.  I've learned as much since finding MMM in 2014 as I have in all those previous years. It took all those decades to aquire wealth of one million dollars.  I've doubled that in the last five.  Mentally, I'm still a farm kid shoveling for less than minimum wage.   Here, shit I correspond with accomplished people that I've got no business to have as peers.  Do it Sol.  Do it for the 70 percent.
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: soccerluvof4 on January 28, 2019, 02:17:06 PM
Sol, why don't you just start a new site and take on MMM.   

I have given serious thought to starting a blog, but I wouldn't expect it to ever compete with MMM.  I've even gone so far as to secure a domain and put up an empty landing page.  The next step is just to starting writing there instead of here.

But I have some serious emotional obstacles to overcome.  I feel like a new blog needs a more organized launch event than just me randomly deciding to write a bunch of stuff.  I feel like it needs some sort of coherent theme, and an introductory post, and then probably two or three follow up posts before I give anyone the URL.  So far my desire to create something good has stopped me from creating anything at all.

My second obstacle is deciding just how much of my life to share.  MMM has been absolutely eviscerated for sharing even the most basic details about his family.  Strangers have shown up at his home.  People mocked his divorce.  He's had to hire lawyers to deal with some of the site's content (including some which was my fault, so this is a very real concern for me).  My life has always been an open book, but now I have a spouse and children and their lives are not mine to share, as hilarious as I think that would be.  So as much as I feel comfortable with the online persona that has developed with this account, putting all of that content into one easily-archived place represents a significant risk.  I probably need to come up with some firm ground rules for myself before I just start sharing whatever falls out of my fingertips.

Obstacle number three is that most of my time on the forum in the past six months has been related to politics, not finances, and that's a much harder topic for me to write about.  I'm a particular kind of scientist, trained to turn complex and messy real world problems with poorly defined parameters into exact quantitative answers with too many decimal places.  My one useful talent in life is in building mathematical models, and I'd like to write about that process as it relates to a variety of topics.  Including but not limited to personal finance.  The modern political era, so focused on narratives built on outright lies, flies in the face of everything I believe in.  "Alternative facts" are like the Spanish Inquisition to me, and I'm angry about it.  But if you're going to start a blog with any hope of reaching people, it's probably bad business sense to start off on day one by telling 30% of your potential audience that they are apparently too stupid to read anything that follows.  Even on this forum, there are people with whom I have had both insightful conversations about the stock market and raging shouting matches about climate change, and to me these problems are best addressed using similar tools.  Yet ideology trumps logic too often, and I haven't yet figured out how to reach those people.  So, the blog sits empty, afraid to even try.

I agree that starting a blog is probably a more financially profitable use of my time than working, at this point.  It would never clear the hundreds of thousands that MMM does, but lots of blogs make a few thousand dollars per year with minimal monetization and it would be virtually no additional work beyond the hundreds of hours I already spend here.  But I don't really need the money, so I wouldn't be doing it for the dollars.  For me, the attraction of what MMM has built isn't the income the site brings but the influence.  He's an online "thought leader", a kind of public intellectual, and he has the power to use his words to shape and influence whole swaths of the population to make a better world.  That's far more attractive to me than money I would just end up donating to charity anyway. 

At this point in my life I would rather write blog posts twice a week for an audience of one million and get paid zero, than for an audience of 50 and get paid $1000 per post.  And yes, I realize that a new blogger has an audience of zero and gets paid zero, but you get my point.  The attraction of growing a blog isn't in the money.

...

And now I've written an entire blog post on the MMM forum instead of my own blog.  Again.


Understandable Sol.  I'm still a huge MMM fan.  I just think you have so much to offer.  You wouldn't need to steal any FIRE from MMM.  We need a site that uses logic, history, science and human decency to show why we aren't in that 30 percent.  Why many of us are now and many more will be millionaires that started from humble beginnings.  How we climb huge mountains, hike trails thousands of miles and live like most others don't.  Maybe we don't hide behind an internet handle on your site.  Maybe we openly disclose to our bosses, coworkers, friends and family our actual net worth.  We attack the bullshit excuses many have as to why they can't do what we're doing.  I started tracking my net worth as a teen in the 80s, while working farm jobs for less than minimum wage.  I bought my first funds in the early 90s in my 20s.  I'm of average intelligence and a blue collar worker.  I have no formal financial training.  I also made many financial mistakes along the way, most before the internet became widespread.  I've learned as much since finding MMM in 2014 as I have in all those previous years. It took all those decades to aquire wealth of one million dollars.  I've doubled that in the last five.  Mentally, I'm still a farm kid shoveling for less than minimum wage.   Here, shit I correspond with accomplished people that I've got no business to have as peers.  Do it Sol.  Do it for the 70 percent.






Well said @Bateaux ! and I echo the sentiment
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: CCCA on January 28, 2019, 03:00:32 PM
(https://emoji.tapatalk-cdn.com/emoji3544.png)RETIREMENT POLICE(https://emoji.tapatalk-cdn.com/emoji3544.png)
ARREST REPORT

Name: sol
Booked: Wednesday, January 23, 2019
Charge(s): WWR - Working While Retired
Narrative: Defendant is charged with first offense WWR. Held out to MMM forum members that he had retired, then took a part time position based on leveraging his knowledge and financial independence to *WORK* while retired. Retirement police code of law states strictly that any activities following an announcement of retirement MUST be unchallenging and/or performed for no- or negligible-wages only. Released with a warning for first offense.

Release date: 12/23/2019 11:03EST
this is great
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: Dicey on January 28, 2019, 04:54:44 PM
Sol, I love your writing, and your presence on this site. I selfishly do not want to lose you.

I think it's crucially important to consider your privacy and that of your family. It can't be regained once it's lost, as Pete can attest. I also expect Mrs. Frugalwoods might have some regrets after publishing her book. Dog knows, they did not
and do not need the money, and neither do you.

JD Roth at Get Rich Slowly has some good info about what it takes to write a solid blog. He sold his and then bought it back again, so he's been through a lot over the years.
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: pecunia on January 28, 2019, 05:48:41 PM

---------SNIP---------

At this point in my life I would rather write blog posts twice a week for an audience of one million and get paid zero, than for an audience of 50 and get paid $1000 per post.  And yes, I realize that a new blogger has an audience of zero and gets paid zero, but you get my point.  The attraction of growing a blog isn't in the money.

...

And now I've written an entire blog post on the MMM forum instead of my own blog.  Again.

What will it hurt to give it a try?  If it doesn't work or you get tired of it, shut it down.  It would be your blog. 
I would highly restrict the personal matters as you mentioned.  I saw the multiple entries on the divorce.  I even made one.

Would the blog have to be focused on one subject?  I don't see why.

You have things to teach and many of us could benefit from the things you could teach.  You could even do a tutorial on mathematical modeling.  that might be fun to learn when you don't have to.  You could rant about some political issue of the day and maybe viewpoints would be changed.  The input from the blog could possibly form the basis of a book.  It would be a book edited by thousands of readers before it was even published. 
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: LoanShark on January 28, 2019, 06:55:59 PM
Sounds like a fun opportunity to me....enjoy!
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: Linea_Norway on January 28, 2019, 11:55:22 PM

---------SNIP---------

At this point in my life I would rather write blog posts twice a week for an audience of one million and get paid zero, than for an audience of 50 and get paid $1000 per post.  And yes, I realize that a new blogger has an audience of zero and gets paid zero, but you get my point.  The attraction of growing a blog isn't in the money.

...

And now I've written an entire blog post on the MMM forum instead of my own blog.  Again.

What will it hurt to give it a try?  If it doesn't work or you get tired of it, shut it down.  It would be your blog. 
I would highly restrict the personal matters as you mentioned.  I saw the multiple entries on the divorce.  I even made one.

Would the blog have to be focused on one subject?  I don't see why.

You have things to teach and many of us could benefit from the things you could teach.  You could even do a tutorial on mathematical modeling.  that might be fun to learn when you don't have to.  You could rant about some political issue of the day and maybe viewpoints would be changed.  The input from the blog could possibly form the basis of a book.  It would be a book edited by thousands of readers before it was even published.

I have heard podcasts about writing blogs that say that a blog has to come from something that interests you. You should be motivated to write it, not thinking about reaching a big audience. So writing the blog for 50 people without expecting income would be a good start.
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: CCCA on January 29, 2019, 12:26:47 AM

---------SNIP---------

At this point in my life I would rather write blog posts twice a week for an audience of one million and get paid zero, than for an audience of 50 and get paid $1000 per post.  And yes, I realize that a new blogger has an audience of zero and gets paid zero, but you get my point.  The attraction of growing a blog isn't in the money.

...

And now I've written an entire blog post on the MMM forum instead of my own blog.  Again.

What will it hurt to give it a try?  If it doesn't work or you get tired of it, shut it down.  It would be your blog. 
I would highly restrict the personal matters as you mentioned.  I saw the multiple entries on the divorce.  I even made one.

Would the blog have to be focused on one subject?  I don't see why.

You have things to teach and many of us could benefit from the things you could teach.  You could even do a tutorial on mathematical modeling.  that might be fun to learn when you don't have to.  You could rant about some political issue of the day and maybe viewpoints would be changed.  The input from the blog could possibly form the basis of a book.  It would be a book edited by thousands of readers before it was even published.


I enjoy reading your posts on the forum and would be interested in your blog, if it ever comes to fruition.  I did a bit of a soft launch of my site just creating things and sharing individual things here without any sort of organized launch.
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: Moonwaves on January 29, 2019, 03:00:16 AM

---------SNIP---------

At this point in my life I would rather write blog posts twice a week for an audience of one million and get paid zero, than for an audience of 50 and get paid $1000 per post.  And yes, I realize that a new blogger has an audience of zero and gets paid zero, but you get my point.  The attraction of growing a blog isn't in the money.

...

And now I've written an entire blog post on the MMM forum instead of my own blog.  Again.
...You should be motivated to write it, not thinking about reaching a big audience. So writing the blog for 50 people without expecting income would be a good start.
Funny, I came to say the same thing. Well, more to ask, really: How would you feel about writing for an audience of 50 and getting paid zero?

I've been blogging since 2006, some years more, some years less and still keep to what I understood blogging to be then: an online diary. That's incredibly boring for a lot of people (reflected in my stats - I generally have around 50 hits per day but that includes spambots) but it has still been one of the best things I have ever done. The years I have posted less tend to be the years where I was hearing or reading a lot of people saying a blog has to be x, y, or z, or that you have to identify a specific type of blogger and that kind of thing. Knowing that none of that was what I was doing became inhibiting. Apparently I'm not the only one to have thoughts like that and now there's a whole back to the blog movement (http://picklemethis.com/2019/01/18/the-back-to-the-blog-movement/) starting as a result (they even have a hashtag) :). All this to say that if you want to start a blog, just post something. You don't have to have a big launch or a plan for the first 100 days or anything else. Nothing wrong with doing that but you don't have to. And copying old discussion forum posts to form the basis of blogposts is perfectly acceptable. I did that when I wanted to write my debt story up in a place that I "owned" (I did check with the discussion forum owner in question that it was ok and as far as I know there is nothing in the rules here stating your words don't remain yours after posting here).

Edited to fix quotes.
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: sol on January 29, 2019, 08:24:35 AM
How would you feel about writing for an audience of 50 and getting paid zero?

I already do that here!  That part is easy.  I'm here nearly every day, pounding away at a keyboard, just because I like doing it.  There's no need to bother with a blog to do that.  And unlike many of the other retirees here, I actually spend more time here since I retired than I did while working.  I was never much of a forum user when I was at work.

Some of you folks are like an over-eager girlfriend, though.  We just exchanged numbers and all of a sudden you're planning out the lives of our future children.  You have visions for the future that I don't share, at least not yet.


Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: nereo on January 29, 2019, 08:32:27 AM
Some of you folks are like an over-eager girlfriend, though.  We just exchanged numbers and all of a sudden you're planning out the lives of our future children.  You have visions for the future that I don't share, at least not yet.
Oberon if its a boy, Luna if it's a girl....
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: Eric on January 29, 2019, 11:39:42 AM
Sol -

As someone who recently started a blog, after owning the domain for 2+ years, after ~4 years of writing google doc "posts" to only myself, and of course many posts on this very forum, it's not as big of deal as you're making it out to be.  First, no one cares.  Like really, new blogs are a dime a dozen and most go dark after less than 6 months.  Until you have a fair amount of content, you're basically talking into the void.  Even if you're the best most entertaining writer in the world (and you might be), it will take a fair amount of time.  Second, you can reveal as much or as little about yourself as you'd like.  You could still blog as "Sol".  No reason to put your real name or picture or anything else out there if you don't want to.  Take a look at Dr Doom's site (www.livingafi.com) as a great example of an anonymous blog.  Of course you could always start anonymously and reveal more over time if you feel like it.  No need decide from post #1.  You also get to relay your experiences and include as much or as little as you like.  If you don't want to tackle mental issues on the blog, then don't.  Or at least wait until you get your feet wet.

So sure, you could outline your first 6 months of posts with a plan of how to promote and grow.  But it's hardly necessary.  You could just write one post, and then another one after that, and see where it goes.  I can assure you that a plan is wholly unnecessary.  lol  And really, starting off alienating much of your audience is what may actually draw readers.  Plenty of people read MMM just because they hate him and want to complain about what he writes.

Anyway, echoing others that if you want to do it, you should just start.  The commitment is only as big as you want it to be.  Of course, the real concern is that you're opening yourself up to *actually* fail at retirement, since everyone knows writing a blog means that you screwed up your retirement planning and need money.  :)
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: BPA on January 29, 2019, 06:09:01 PM
Thanks so much for "failing" and providing a great deal of entertainment, sol.

Between the IRP report and the Vitamix comments, I couldn't stop laughing as I read it.



Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: Dicey on January 30, 2019, 06:53:36 AM
Some of you folks are like an over-eager girlfriend, though.  We just exchanged numbers and all of a sudden you're planning out the lives of our future children.  You have visions for the future that I don't share, at least not yet.
Oberon if its a boy, Luna if it's a girl....
Wait! Could this be a Pokemon Love Story?
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: ExitViaTheCashRamp on January 30, 2019, 09:31:14 AM
Some of you folks are like an over-eager girlfriend, though.  We just exchanged numbers and all of a sudden you're planning out the lives of our future children.  You have visions for the future that I don't share, at least not yet.

 I'd like to be the first to complain about the lack of updates and new content on your blog. As a loyal fan, I deserve better treatment. If things don't improve, you cannot expect us to hang around forever with this breadcrumbing you are doing now.
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: sol on January 30, 2019, 09:36:06 AM
I'd like to be the first to complain about the lack of updates and new content on your blog. As a loyal fan, I deserve better treatment. If things don't improve, you cannot expect us to hang around forever with this breadcrumbing you are doing now.

Join my Patreon today for early access to tomorrow's posts today!  Subscribers get exclusive content and behind-the-scenes access!

j/k, I don't have a patreon.  or a blog.
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: nereo on January 30, 2019, 11:11:19 AM
I'd like to be the first to complain about the lack of updates and new content on your blog. As a loyal fan, I deserve better treatment. If things don't improve, you cannot expect us to hang around forever with this breadcrumbing you are doing now.

Join my Patreon today for early access to tomorrow's posts today!  Subscribers get exclusive content and behind-the-scenes access!

j/k, I don't have a patreon.  or a blog.
Thank goodness!  Where do I send my $9.99 monthly auto-reoccurring subscription fee?
Title: sol fails at retirement
Post by: ysette9 on January 30, 2019, 01:07:28 PM
You people are so spendy!

In seriousness, I do support someone I admire on Patreon, but I think it is at $3/month. That is for someone who just graduated and is starting out in life. No offense to Sol, as much as I admire his contributions here, I’m pretty sure he doesn’t need my monthly support. However, given that you are FI and I am not yet, care to contribute to my get-ysette-to-FI donation campaign? I promise to contribute posts of dubious quality occasionally to the MMM forums in return.
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: Exflyboy on January 30, 2019, 09:01:19 PM
You people are so spendy!

In seriousness, I do support someone I admire on Patreon, but I think it is at $3/month. That is for someone who just graduated and is starting out in life. No offense to Sol, as much as I admire his contributions here, Iím pretty sure he doesnít need my monthly support. However, given that you are FI and I am not yet, care to contribute to my get-ysette-to-FI donation campaign? I promise to contribute posts of dubious quality occasionally to the MMM forums in return.

I would support you @ysette9 but there is this GoFundme thing for a wall of some kind...:)
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: UnleashHell on January 31, 2019, 04:19:20 AM
^ Well he already went back to work so he is a FIRE failure and Suze Ormand et al will be proven.right and no one can FIRE...EVER! Nope it just can't be done.



SOL = Suze Ormand Lover.

Got it.
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: MrOnyx on January 31, 2019, 04:23:23 AM
^ Well he already went back to work so he is a FIRE failure and Suze Ormand et al will be proven.right and no one can FIRE...EVER! Nope it just can't be done.



SOL = Suze Ormand Lover.

Got it.

He's been a traitor all along! How did we not spot the clues?
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: Dicey on January 31, 2019, 05:04:34 AM
^ Well he already went back to work so he is a FIRE failure and Suze Ormand et al will be proven.right and no one can FIRE...EVER! Nope it just can't be done.



SOL = Suze Ormand Lover.

Got it.

He's been a traitor all along! How did we not spot the clues?
Pretty sure his lack of capitalization means he's anti-SO. It's the clue within the clue.
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: soccerluvof4 on January 31, 2019, 06:21:17 AM
"Just ask Sol" perfect!
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: sol on January 31, 2019, 12:45:57 PM
He doesn't have to "do" anything but look purty

Despite the forum avatar with big ears, I am a pretty normal looking dude.  I am too old to have the cabana boy glow, and too poor to have a personal style team keeping me looking my best (like Suze does).  Besides, I suspect that I talk too much to have any job that requires being looked at.

As an update on my short-term retirement gig:  this isn't really working out.  I put in about six hours last week as part of the spin-up process, but then Mon/Tues/Weds I worked zero hours.  Apparently I'm just not that motivated to sit at a desk and think extra hard.  Monday was a school holiday so I had kids home all day that prevented me from working.  Tuesday I was involved in some local police activity that kind of used up my day.  I had some free time on Wednesday that I could have worked, but decided to go play ukulele with some peeps instead.  I'm a bad employee, it seems.

But I'll try to put in a few hours today, because I told them I would help and I can't just leave them hanging.  It's just become crystal clear to me that at any remotely reasonable price I'm not keen on working again.  They could offer me $100/hour and I'd be ambivalent about it.  The conversation I've been having with myself goes something like "I should really really work a little today, but honestly I'd rather go for a run and then spend some time in the woodshop.  And my fish tank really needs to be cleaned, and it's sunny so I was considering taking my dogs to the dog park this afternoon before it starts raining again...  maybe tomorrow?"

So far, tomorrow keeps becoming tomorrow again and I haven't done anything.  The money is just so inconsequential.  What's a few hundred dollars here or there at this point?  My investment accounts fluctuate thousands (and sometimes tens of thousands) of dollars every day, so the financial incentive behind devoting my day to someone else's work isn't even a rounding error in my nest egg totals. 

So I'm probably going to wind down this side-gig as soon as I can, probably later next week.  It's been cutting into my daily agenda too much.  How did I ever manage to find 40 hours per week to do this stuff?
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: nereo on January 31, 2019, 01:53:23 PM
Really intrigued by both of your experiences, Sol & Spartana. Ramping up enthusiasm was one thing I had not put much through into when considering the possibility of contract work further down the road.  At the same time I see how it could be difficult for me.  I spent months in the field only to return to an office where I'm supposed to analyze and write everything up.  And after going months in the fresh air, it's really, really hard for me to just sit down adn focus on the spreadsheet in front of me, even when I know I can leave as soon as I've finished whatever daily task I'm working on, even though my future is at least somewhat influenced by doing the work quickly and efficiently. 
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: okits on January 31, 2019, 02:41:10 PM
As an update on my short-term retirement gig:  this isn't really working out.  I put in about six hours last week as part of the spin-up process, but then Mon/Tues/Weds I worked zero hours.  Apparently I'm just not that motivated to sit at a desk and think extra hard.  Monday was a school holiday so I had kids home all day that prevented me from working.  Tuesday I was involved in some local police activity that kind of used up my day.  I had some free time on Wednesday that I could have worked, but decided to go play ukulele with some peeps instead.  I'm a bad employee, it seems.

But I'll try to put in a few hours today, because I told them I would help and I can't just leave them hanging.  It's just become crystal clear to me that at any remotely reasonable price I'm not keen on working again.  They could offer me $100/hour and I'd be ambivalent about it.  The conversation I've been having with myself goes something like "I should really really work a little today, but honestly I'd rather go for a run and then spend some time in the woodshop.  And my fish tank really needs to be cleaned, and it's sunny so I was considering taking my dogs to the dog park this afternoon before it starts raining again...  maybe tomorrow?"

So far, tomorrow keeps becoming tomorrow again and I haven't done anything.  The money is just so inconsequential.  What's a few hundred dollars here or there at this point?  My investment accounts fluctuate thousands (and sometimes tens of thousands) of dollars every day, so the financial incentive behind devoting my day to someone else's work isn't even a rounding error in my nest egg totals. 

So I'm probably going to wind down this side-gig as soon as I can, probably later next week.  It's been cutting into my daily agenda too much.  How did I ever manage to find 40 hours per week to do this stuff?

Conclusion: being FIREd rocks, having the obligations of a job sucks.

sol, my friend, thanks for taking one for the team and making sure the above is true.  😄
At least we get to congratulate you a second time on retiring!
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: ysette9 on January 31, 2019, 04:20:47 PM
Perhaps this is a lesson for all of us who think that making a little extra $ during retirement via consulting or side gigs or whatever would be easy. I can see that after pulling the plug it could be very tough to bully your brain back into the work mindset, even if it is just for a few hours here and there.

My parents retired a couple of years back and before so, my father had talked with some excitement about going back as a consultant. I think he was salivating at the $$$ possibilities that experienced consultants can make. In reality they have adapted amazingly well to the life of not getting out of bed until 8, traveling several months out of the year, and doing whatever the hell they please. I haven't heard talk of consulting in any manner in quite some time.
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: sol on January 31, 2019, 04:48:02 PM
I took my dogs to the dog park with my dad this afternoon.  He is also retired, and he had some good advice for me.

He said it doesn't make any sense to think about the hourly wage you could make by working.  Work is never again going to be measured in dollars, at this point, so if my only motivation to do this particular work is the hourly wage they're offering then I shouldn't be doing it at all.  And that in this case, I have to do this particular project because I said I would, regardless of the money. 

And it kind of makes sense to me.  I've taken on a variety of "work" type projects in my retirement, things that consume large chunks of my time on a recurring interval in exchange for supporting some organization or cause that I believe in and want to advance.  They tend to cost me money, instead of paying me money, but I do them enthusiastically anyway because that's how I want to spend my time.  This paying side job, by contrast, pays me much more per hour than my old 9-5 ever did but I just can't seem to find the motivation to give it more than the bare minimum of effort.  It's like the value of my work is no longer measured in dollars. 

Now that I've figured that out, it seems silly that I let someone talk me into doing work I didn't really want to do just because it had dollars attached.  That was dumb.  I should be looking for work that I want to do, regardless of whether it pays or not.  The money side of life is solved already.

Interestingly, the few such opportunities that I have found since retiring pay nothing at all in terms of dollars, but do come with considerable social capital.  That still makes them feel worthwhile to me in a way that exceeds just the utility of the work itself.  They flatter my sense of self-importance with titles that make me seem responsible, and they put me in touch with networks of people in my community who are eager for me to succeed in those positions.

Seeing that written out has reminded me that I used to enjoy similar benefits at my old job.  Many people, here and on other retirement blogs, have written about finding their new "identity" in retirement, as if their former job helped define their sense of self worth and they didn't know who they would be without it.  I never thought of myself as one of those people, in part because I sometimes had conflicts with my agency and was eager to get away from that office, but I now realize that outside of the confines of my agency and my immediate coworkers, working there did confer a certain kind of social status with people in the outside world.  Like people usually respect doctors even when they are not at work, so what is a doctor after he has retired and isn't a doctor anymore?  Being a government scientist isn't quite the same, but it's not worth nothing.  Before I got married, it still helped me pick up chicks.

So I'm happy to report that my retirement volunteer gigs, which do not pay me any dollars, have more than compensated for any perceived loss of social status in my retirement.  I still get to feel useful and "important", whatever that means, and I get to work on things that I really believe in.  My experiment with "un-retiring" by taking this part time gig in exchange for a 35% raise over my former federal pay grade, however, has turned out to be a failure.  I see that the work is useful, but I don't really believe in it the same way and the money isn't motivating me at all. 

MMM's blog posts back me up on this one.  He used to write about how people kept trying to pay him for work he wanted to do anyway, like helping out friends with construction projects or welding or whatever, and the forum discussed those opportunities as examples of how it's easy to make a little money in retirement without really trying.  I blew it, though.  I didn't find a way to get paid for the work I wanted to do anyways, I let money tempt me into doing work I wasn't really interested in.  MMM's blog wasn't clear enough that I got the message:  don't work for money, work because you want to do the work and if they pay you for it then that's fine, but don't let that be the reason you're doing it.

If I wanted to work for money, I should have stayed at my old job.  I walked away from that desk for a reason, and then five months later I sort of forgot about that reason.  Oops.  If there's a lesson here it's that once you hit FI, money should no longer be a factor in your decision making.  It just interferes with finding the right answers.


Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: robartsd on January 31, 2019, 05:24:49 PM
As an update on my short-term retirement gig:  this isn't really working out.  I put in about six hours last week as part of the spin-up process, but then Mon/Tues/Weds I worked zero hours.  Apparently I'm just not that motivated to sit at a desk and think extra hard.  Monday was a school holiday so I had kids home all day that prevented me from working.  Tuesday I was involved in some local police activity that kind of used up my day.  I had some free time on Wednesday that I could have worked, but decided to go play ukulele with some peeps instead.  I'm a bad employee, it seems.
You mean you're failing at failing retirement.
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: Bateaux on January 31, 2019, 07:10:46 PM
Sol, I just read your comments from today.  Powerful stuff, almost like you were speaking directly to me. Forget the blog, just keep feeding us here.  I have no doubt that once I quit work, I'm done.  There isn't much that I'd do for money, that would pay me as much or require as little effort as what I'm doing now.  I'm likely sticking it out till August 2020.  So many things are calling me though.  My house in Florida that I want to continue to remodel, as in with my own hands.  Long hiking trails and big mountains.   Oceans to sail and rivers to paddle.  It's going to be more Fat FIRE, but with common sense.  Once I taste that freedom, trading hours for dollars will seem insane.
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: BicycleB on January 31, 2019, 07:56:06 PM

If I wanted to work for money, I should have stayed at my old job.  I walked away from that desk for a reason, and then five months later I sort of forgot about that reason.  Oops.  If there's a lesson here it's that once you hit FI, money should no longer be a factor in your decision making.  It just interferes with finding the right answers.

You DID fail!

Good thing you can learn from your experience. Allegedly.

:)
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: WalkaboutStache on January 31, 2019, 10:52:35 PM


Now that I've figured that out, it seems silly that I let someone talk me into doing work I didn't really want to do just because it had dollars attached.  That was dumb.  I should be looking for work that I want to do, regardless of whether it pays or not.  The money side of life is solved already.

[...]

So I'm happy to report that my retirement volunteer gigs, which do not pay me any dollars, have more than compensated for any perceived loss of social status in my retirement.  I still get to feel useful and "important", whatever that means, and I get to work on things that I really believe in.  My experiment with "un-retiring" by taking this part time gig in exchange for a 35% raise over my former federal pay grade, however, has turned out to be a failure.  I see that the work is useful, but I don't really believe in it the same way and the money isn't motivating me at all. 


I actually see the 2 things above differently.  First, it was not dumb because you learned what you did in a reasonably painless way.  You lost 3 weeks to an exercise that taught you that work for money only is no longer your thing and will never be again.  You avoided committing to a much longer period in the future, and inoculated yourself against it.  Had you not taken this gig, next time someone threw a bigger figure at you for a longer period you may feel tempted, or maybe even a little regretful (brains are funny) and gone for a 3 month lesson instead of a 3 week one.  And you got some discretionary cash from it, and built more social capital on the forum by reflecting on your experience so that others don't need to learn that lesson in the same way.

So, your un-retirement was not a failure.  It was a bit like dating a popular girl in high school because you had a chance, and then realizing she is not that good of a human (with apologies to you popular high schoolers of years past and present - I just needed a handy stereotype to make a point).  If you do it again for a fistful of money you don't need, then you can say this was a failure.

Here's to more walks with your dad whenever the fancy strikes you.
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: ExitViaTheCashRamp on February 01, 2019, 04:45:48 AM
Tuesday I was involved in some local police activity that kind of used up my day.

 This is the blog post I can't wait to read. Come in Agent Sol - report !

 I think your 'government scientist' cover is blown.
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: Financial.Velociraptor on February 01, 2019, 07:48:52 AM
The internet retirement police are going to have to give you walk.  You just failed at failing at retirement!
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: RelaxedGal on February 01, 2019, 07:55:36 AM
I took my dogs to the dog park with my dad this afternoon.  He is also retired, and he had some good advice for me.

[snip]

If I wanted to work for money, I should have stayed at my old job.  I walked away from that desk for a reason, and then five months later I sort of forgot about that reason.  Oops.  If there's a lesson here it's that once you hit FI, money should no longer be a factor in your decision making.  It just interferes with finding the right answers.

THIS is why I would love it if you had a blog, or Heck, a journal here.  Somewhere to collect these great insights so I don't have to dig for them.  I also loved
https://forum.mrmoneymustache.com/mini-money-mustaches/anyone-fire-in-conjunction-with-having-a-child-first-or-later-born/msg2260379/

And I'd love updates on your electric car and solar panels; as a user of both I need some more confirmation bias to feel good about myself.
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: Roots&Wings on February 01, 2019, 12:26:43 PM
THIS is why I would love it if you had a blog, or Heck, a journal here.  Somewhere to collect these great insights so I don't have to dig for them.  I also loved
https://forum.mrmoneymustache.com/mini-money-mustaches/anyone-fire-in-conjunction-with-having-a-child-first-or-later-born/msg2260379/

And I'd love updates on your electric car and solar panels; as a user of both I need some more confirmation bias to feel good about myself.

Indeed, every post from sol is a ray of forum sunshine. I'm now wondering if sol is actually pronounced "suul" in the Spanish sun way, or "saul" in the name way, or some other hidden meaning.

Congrats on the failed retirement and seeing the light again!
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: Abe Froman on February 01, 2019, 01:48:04 PM
Here's to more walks with your dad whenever the fancy strikes you.

... and if you care to share those, that would be cool. I find some of the more interesting threads are those where father or mother are imparting words of wisdom and the subsequent churn of thought shows up on message forums or blogs.
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: okits on February 01, 2019, 06:52:26 PM
I took my dogs to the dog park with my dad this afternoon.  He is also retired, and he had some good advice for me.

[snip]

If I wanted to work for money, I should have stayed at my old job.  I walked away from that desk for a reason, and then five months later I sort of forgot about that reason.  Oops.  If there's a lesson here it's that once you hit FI, money should no longer be a factor in your decision making.  It just interferes with finding the right answers.

THIS is why I would love it if you had a blog, or Heck, a journal here.  Somewhere to collect these great insights so I don't have to dig for them.  I also loved
https://forum.mrmoneymustache.com/mini-money-mustaches/anyone-fire-in-conjunction-with-having-a-child-first-or-later-born/msg2260379/

And I'd love updates on your electric car and solar panels; as a user of both I need some more confirmation bias to feel good about myself.

Just click on a userís name and then ďread postsĒ.  Has the added benefit of making it easier to notice if theyíre particularly funny or grumpy on a certain day.  😜
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: Paul der Krake on February 01, 2019, 09:02:13 PM
Every stake you claim I'll be watching you.
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: okits on February 01, 2019, 09:42:17 PM
Every stake you claim I'll be watching you.

Oh, sure, you just had to go and make it weird.  :P
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: Mr. Green on February 07, 2019, 07:34:07 AM
My investment accounts fluctuate thousands (and sometimes tens of thousands) of dollars every day, so the financial incentive behind devoting my day to someone else's work isn't even a rounding error in my nest egg totals.
This is a great description for how inconsequential money has become for me, and people in general I imagine, in retirement. You don't think retiring was like flipping a switch. I used to do this for money and now they're offering me so much more for such a small amount of work! Surely that's worth just a little bit of my time. But it was like flipping a switch. You won the game and dollars have become irrelevant. They might as well be paying you in seashells, as far as the motivation goes. I actually took a full-time job again and realized two weeks in it was a huge mistake. I couldn't be that person anymore. It was a weird experience, but eye opening.
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: markbike528CBX on February 07, 2019, 10:08:58 AM
My investment accounts fluctuate thousands (and sometimes tens of thousands) of dollars every day, so the financial incentive behind devoting my day to someone else's work isn't even a rounding error in my nest egg totals.
This is a great description for how inconsequential money has become for me, and people in general I imagine, in retirement. You don't think retiring was like flipping a switch. I used to do this for money and now they're offering me so much more for such a small amount of work! Surely that's worth just a little bit of my time. But it was like flipping a switch. You won the game and dollars have become irrelevant. They might as well be paying you in seashells, as far as the motivation goes. I actually took a full-time job again and realized two weeks in it was a huge mistake. I couldn't be that person anymore. It was a weird experience, but eye opening.

Since FIREing I've suspected that I would have the same issues as sol and MrGreen, but hadn't articulated things quite as clearly as they have above.
I spent the last two years at work stareing at my FIRE spreadsheet, wondering "WTF am I doing here".    I've never been a great employee, so not only "couldn't be that person anymore" , I never was that person to start with.  Going into a new work environment like that seems problematic.
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: EscapeVelocity2020 on February 07, 2019, 01:55:53 PM
A thought at this point - FI means that you don't need to work but you are used to the routine so you can kind of do whatever you want.  At best you eventually get a package, at worst you get reprimanded.  Most of the time, in my experience, you get all sorts of interesting opportunities (like my wife being a SAHP then returning to work as a teacher, and standing up for other teachers that are too worried to speak up because they need the income).  For me, well, I'm living in Paris working at a French company for a year on other people's money, so that's kinda fun. 

But it sounds like ER is a one-way trip (or at least preferably, from the perspective of the ER'ed).  Like many others, I would probably get offers to work for better money or work under even more liberal circumstances, but once you taste freedom, the idea of work loses its thrall.  I felt a similar thing when I first started to travel for work and realized I didn't have to be in an office M-F.  I now bill my time in planes as time in the office.

There might be alternate income-possible arrangements that work after FIRE - like blogging something meaningful or creating a small business or Etsy shop (soap perhaps?), but traditional work (like what an engineer like me or a public employee like Sol) are probably off the table. 

It seems like a step change between FI and ER.  Although it's probably a tiny niche, but it would be interesting to hear more about what folks think.  For me, I personally lament that, once folks FIRE, they are reluctant to define the fact that ER meant finding income producing work that was more fulfilling than their first career.  Either they are lumped in to 'returned to work' crowd or they are self described as being retired but accidentally making the 'passive income' they need to stay ER.

There seem to be very few, very young, really retired people.
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: Malcat on February 07, 2019, 02:02:40 PM
A thought at this point - FI means that you don't need to work but you are used to the routine so you can kind of do whatever you want.  At best you eventually get a package, at worst you get reprimanded.  Most of the time, in my experience, you get all sorts of interesting opportunities (like my wife being a SAHP then returning to work as a teacher, and standing up for other teachers that are too worried to speak up because they need the income).  For me, well, I'm living in Paris working at a French company for a year on other people's money, so that's kinda fun. 

But it sounds like ER is a one-way trip (or at least preferably, from the perspective of the ER'ed).  Like many others, I would probably get offers to work for better money or work under even more liberal circumstances, but once you taste freedom, the idea of work loses its thrall.  I felt a similar thing when I first started to travel for work and realized I didn't have to be in an office M-F.  I now bill my time in planes as time in the office.

There might be alternate income-possible arrangements that work after FIRE - like blogging something meaningful or creating a small business or Etsy shop (soap perhaps?), but traditional work (like what an engineer like me or a public employee like Sol) are probably off the table. 

It seems like a step change between FI and ER.  Although it's probably a tiny niche, but it would be interesting to hear more about what folks think.  For me, I personally lament that, once folks FIRE, they are reluctant to define the fact that ER meant finding income producing work that was more fulfilling than their first career.  Either they are lumped in to 'returned to work' crowd or they are self described as being retired but accidentally making the 'passive income' they need to stay ER.

There seem to be very few, very young, really retired people.

I wouldn't agree with this because the vast majority of my family members have had full careers in retirement. Some in related fields, some in totally different fields, but almost none of them retired and then never did paid work again.

Sol said from the beginning that it wasn't work he wanted to do and he was lured back by how much value *they* put on his work, not how much value *he* put on doing it.

I think RE is a one way street, for sure, away from doing work you don't actually want to do. That doesn't mean there is no paid work after RE, Pete does tons of it.

Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: EscapeVelocity2020 on February 07, 2019, 02:15:57 PM
I wouldn't agree with this because the vast majority of my family members have had full careers in retirement. Some in related fields, some in totally different fields, but almost none of them retired and then never did paid work again.

Sol said from the beginning that it wasn't work he wanted to do and he was lured back by how much value *they* put on his work, not how much value *he* put on doing it.

I think RE is a one way street, for sure, away from doing work you don't actually want to do. That doesn't mean there is no paid work after RE, Pete does tons of it.

Whoa there hairless cat, I think we mostly agree :)
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: Mr. Green on February 07, 2019, 02:59:57 PM
It seems like a step change between FI and ER.  Although it's probably a tiny niche, but it would be interesting to hear more about what folks think.  For me, I personally lament that, once folks FIRE, they are reluctant to define the fact that ER meant finding income producing work that was more fulfilling than their first career.  Either they are lumped in to 'returned to work' crowd or they are self described as being retired but accidentally making the 'passive income' they need to stay ER.
Like anything else in life, there are always shades of gray that inevitably leave people arguing about the color. I'm sure there are people who "retire" to other paid work and planned to do that all along, whether it's another career or something more fungible like a blog. I'm sure there are young people who flat out retire as well. My wife and I are in that camp right now. We're taking a 5-7 month tour of the US this year and considering travelling internationally next year.

My dad always said, "If you go out of your way to help people, money is a natural byproduct of that." Money is simply a medium we use as a store of value. No longer receiving money simply means ceasing to add value to other people's lives. It's hard to add literally no value to anyone's life while living your own, which is why FIRE'ees so frequently find themselves still making money. If anything we're more likely to earn money because we can give others what most people can't, their time. And because that resource is more scarce than money, people feel inclined to reward someone else's time donation with, surprise surprise, money!

I'm sure if Sol volunteered for something that he enjoyed doing and some money eventually came along with it, he'd gladly take it. But the key is he was already spending his time doing something he wanted to be doing. The money was an accident.
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: EscapeVelocity2020 on February 07, 2019, 03:35:04 PM
Like anything else in life, there are always shades of gray that inevitably leave people arguing about the color. I'm sure there are people who "retire" to other paid work and planned to do that all along, whether it's another career or something more fungible like a blog. I'm sure there are young people who flat out retire as well. My wife and I are in that camp right now. We're taking a 5-7 month tour of the US this year and considering travelling internationally next year.

My dad always said, "If you go out of your way to help people, money is a natural byproduct of that." Money is simply a medium we use as a store of value. No longer receiving money simply means ceasing to add value to other people's lives. It's hard to add literally no value to anyone's life while living your own, which is why FIRE'ees so frequently find themselves still making money. If anything we're more likely to earn money because we can give others what most people can't, their time. And because that resource is more scarce than money, people feel inclined to reward someone else's time donation with, surprise surprise, money!

I'm sure if Sol volunteered for something that he enjoyed doing and some money eventually came along with it, he'd gladly take it. But the key is he was already spending his time doing something he wanted to be doing. The money was an accident.

I think you, like me, would be thrown paid gigs because they ensnare us.  Being FI, sometimes I offer people money because I know it gives me some power over them.  And most times that is the most valuable thing money can do for me anymore.  Of course I'm older now, so I'm pretty conservative on paying others because I don't need anything other than basics like help cooking and exercising better.
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: Malcat on February 07, 2019, 04:06:47 PM
I wouldn't agree with this because the vast majority of my family members have had full careers in retirement. Some in related fields, some in totally different fields, but almost none of them retired and then never did paid work again.

Sol said from the beginning that it wasn't work he wanted to do and he was lured back by how much value *they* put on his work, not how much value *he* put on doing it.

I think RE is a one way street, for sure, away from doing work you don't actually want to do. That doesn't mean there is no paid work after RE, Pete does tons of it.

Whoa there hairless cat, I think we mostly agree :)

Ugh!
How dare you!!!

I am NOT a hairless cat! That's a Cornish Rex thankyouverymuch and Cornish Rex not only have hair, but super soft and wavy hair. I'm not some oily Sphynx!

I have never been so offended IN MY LIFE.
*storms off and slams door*


(... actually, Sphynx cats are by far the friendliest of all cats. They're lovely animals.)

Lol, as for my disagreeing with you, my posts often come off as more defiant than they actually are. If you read what I wrote with a more lackadaisical tone of vague disagreement for the sake of conversation, then that's closer to my meaning.
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: EscapeVelocity2020 on February 07, 2019, 04:26:59 PM
Ugh!
How dare you!!!

I am NOT a hairless cat! That's a Cornish Rex thankyouverymuch and Cornish Rex not only have hair, but super soft and wavy hair. I'm not some oily Sphynx!

Holy crebs (and yes I read the whole reply and am not getting emotional).  We (being mostly my wife) have a short haired retriever and get the comment 'did you shave your dog' quite often.  It would be nice to fly off into a rage most time, am I right?

And also, I love cats!  But my wife wanted a dog too. 

Sorry, way off topic, but fun thanks Malkynn!
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: Dicey on February 08, 2019, 10:45:52 AM
My investment accounts fluctuate thousands (and sometimes tens of thousands) of dollars every day, so the financial incentive behind devoting my day to someone else's work isn't even a rounding error in my nest egg totals.
This is a great description for how inconsequential money has become for me, and people in general I imagine, in retirement. You don't think retiring was like flipping a switch. I used to do this for money and now they're offering me so much more for such a small amount of work! Surely that's worth just a little bit of my time. But it was like flipping a switch. You won the game and dollars have become irrelevant. They might as well be paying you in seashells, as far as the motivation goes. I actually took a full-time job again and realized two weeks in it was a huge mistake. I couldn't be that person anymore. It was a weird experience, but eye opening.
This ^. For me, once I had "enough", I have lost all desire and motivation for money or to spend any of my (very precioussss) time to earn more money. It is not even a tiny blip on my radar and it's not something I seek in any form. I want to spend my limited time doing things I enjoy or that help others without any regard to earning money. If I wouldn't do it for free, I wouldn't do it for money. You could offer me a million bucks to spend a month in an office and I'd turn it down. You could offer me nothing to spend a year in Antarctica shoveling penguin poop and I'd be on the first plane out.  The only thing I want is more time...lots and lots of time to do the things I want to do.

ETA of course if you offered me a million to spend a year in Antarctica I'd take it. However, so far since I've been ER there hasn't been anything (yet) that pays that I am willing to trade even a second of my time doing for money.

I'd like to quote something that @Jon_Snow wrote in his journal that sums it up better than I can:

"I'd like to think that all of us here are going to do what brings us the most happiness at whatever point in our lives we are at. Hell, if I thought I might be happier helming a construction crew for six months, banking 80k or so, and then slipping back into my current FIRE mode....I WOULD. But honestly, I can't imagine a job scenario, regardless of money, that would bring the the joy....yes, JOY....that my current existence does. "
I completely agree. Zero desire to earn money, but paradoxically, increased desire to give to causes we care about. DH and I flip houses slowly for fun, but we do it mostly to keep ourselves busy. Due to his mom and her pal Al Z. Heimer living with us, we can't go anywhere or do many of the things we want to do. We love the challenge of taking an ugly house and using our bodies and minds to solve scores of riddles to create a safe, warm haven for a new family. The money we make gets socked away for future travel and allows us to be more generous than we could before. We also have the luxury of taking our time and doing it right, which someone who does this for a living doesn't experience without angst. But a genuine j-o-b for moi? #getthefuckouttahere!
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: whywork on February 09, 2019, 03:46:51 PM
Reasons that make us work

When young, we think we work because we need money to survive
In middle age, the work stress makes us feel we want to save enough and FIRE
Post FIRE, the reasons are sense of purpose and don't want to lose chance of making more money (even when we know we may not be able to spend it)

If we knew this early (that we will anyway be working for ever), then we could do better by avoiding higher paying stressful jobs in middle age and enjoy the moment more
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: BicycleB on February 09, 2019, 03:56:38 PM
I've also found that my desire for more time now goes beyond "not working a job for money" with me. I turn down lots of offers to do things that I'm not really that interested in that others are paying for because they cut into my "time". For instance someone offered me a cruise trip for free recently and I turned it down (I'm not interested in cruising). If I won one in a contest or something, I'd donate to someone. Same with many other venues that would suck up my time. I also don't sell anything I want to get rid of but donate things instead (including some expensive thing like cars and sports equipment). I don't care about the money at all but I do care about the time I'd have to spend on selling those things. Plus I feel it may help others in a small way. 

While I don't have a lot of money by the standards of most of the people on these boards, I have enough and rather optimize time (and relationships, family, friends etc) then spend that time trying to earn something I don't need more of - money.

All of the above quotes are gold, but especially this
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: pecunia on February 09, 2019, 04:50:58 PM
Reasons that make us work

When young, we think we work because we need money to survive
In middle age, the work stress makes us feel we want to save enough and FIRE
Post FIRE, the reasons are sense of purpose and don't want to lose chance of making more money (even when we know we may not be able to spend it)

If we knew this early (that we will anyway be working for ever), then we could do better by avoiding higher paying stressful jobs in middle age and enjoy the moment more

I've known people who work only for health insurance.  I worked with a fellow who had retired once and his wife developed Cancer.
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: happy on February 11, 2019, 09:18:19 PM
[


I've also found that my desire for more time now goes beyond "not working a job for money" with me. I turn down lots of offers to do things that I'm not really that interested in that others are paying for because they cut into my "time". For instance someone offered me a cruise trip for free recently and I turned it down (I'm not interested in cruising). If I won one in a contest or something, I'd donate to someone. Same with many other venues that would suck up my time. I also don't sell anything I want to get rid of but donate things instead (including some expensive thing like cars and sports equipment). I don't care about the money at all but I do care about the time I'd have to spend on selling those things. Plus I feel it may help others in a small way. 

While I don't have a lot of money by the standards of most of the people on these boards, I have enough and rather optimize time (and relationships, family, friends etc) then spend that time trying to earn something I don't need more of - money.
[/quote]

Onya Spartana
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: sol on February 12, 2019, 10:20:50 AM
I also understand how easy it is to take a job like @sol did when you feel you are helping someone and have unique skills they need and they are waving large sums of money in your face.

Yea, that hasn't worked out so well.  Remember when I was saying I expecting to work roughly 20 hours per week for three weeks?  I think I've worked a total of 14 hours instead of the 60 I was expecting. 

It snowed!  The kids were home all day, and there was sledding to do and hot chocolate to make.  I had to shovel the driveway.  Netflix called to me.  I had to get a haircut.  My volunteer gigs needed my attention.  I went skiing.  I just couldn't be bothered to sit down and dig into spreadsheets.  Sooooo boring.

In theory my three weeks are now up, but I will need to spend a few more hours to complete the handoff and wrap up my temporary working arrangement.  I'm sure they will be disappointed I didn't get more done and I do feel a little bad about that, but on the other hand I did more than zero which is what was going to happen without me so they still came out ahead on the deal.  Even if they're well and truly dissatisfied, we'll just wrap things up and all move on with our lives.  It's not like I want to keep working for them.
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: Linea_Norway on February 12, 2019, 10:37:10 AM
It snowed!  The kids were home all day, and there was sledding to do and hot chocolate to make.  I had to shovel the driveway.  Netflix called to me.  I had to get a haircut.  My volunteer gigs needed my attention.  I went skiing.  I just couldn't be bothered to sit down and dig into spreadsheets.  Sooooo boring.

At least now you understand again why you had retired. Working while there are good skiing conditions just sucks. We had a week with very nice weather on both Friday and Monday and lots of rain on Saturday and Sunday. At last on Friday DH and I quit are jobs really early and went skiing. But Monday was spent inside. ;-(
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: nereo on February 12, 2019, 11:46:14 AM
I look forward to the next time (estimated to be in 6-12 months) when you again "fail" at retirement.

In all seriousness though, this thread has been a pretty awesome reminder of the value of time over money once you have 'enough'.
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: nereo on February 12, 2019, 12:26:22 PM
I'll keep my IRP badge, Jack boots and whip at the ready...
oh my...
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: pecunia on February 13, 2019, 12:49:15 PM

-SNIP-

In theory my three weeks are now up, but I will need to spend a few more hours to complete the handoff and wrap up my temporary working arrangement.  I'm sure they will be disappointed I didn't get more done and I do feel a little bad about that, but on the other hand I did more than zero which is what was going to happen without me so they still came out ahead on the deal.  Even if they're well and truly dissatisfied, we'll just wrap things up and all move on with our lives.  It's not like I want to keep working for them.

This reminds me of something I learned as a kid.  My mom asked my dad to paint something.  He didn't want to.  So he painted it and did an awful job.  It was like kindergarten coloring outside the lines.  When he was done he showed it to my mom with a big smile on his face and a gleam in his eye showing how proud he was of the work that was done.  She looked it over and smiled back politely.  I don't recall her ever asking for another painting job.

I guess I learned a few things from my dad.
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: arebelspy on February 28, 2019, 09:36:52 PM
I also understand how easy it is to take a job like @sol did when you feel you are helping someone and have unique skills they need and they are waving large sums of money in your face.

Yea, that hasn't worked out so well.  Remember when I was saying I expecting to work roughly 20 hours per week for three weeks?  I think I've worked a total of 14 hours instead of the 60 I was expecting. 

It snowed!  The kids were home all day, and there was sledding to do and hot chocolate to make.  I had to shovel the driveway.  Netflix called to me.  I had to get a haircut.  My volunteer gigs needed my attention.  I went skiing.  I just couldn't be bothered to sit down and dig into spreadsheets.  Sooooo boring.

In theory my three weeks are now up, but I will need to spend a few more hours to complete the handoff and wrap up my temporary working arrangement.  I'm sure they will be disappointed I didn't get more done and I do feel a little bad about that, but on the other hand I did more than zero which is what was going to happen without me so they still came out ahead on the deal.  Even if they're well and truly dissatisfied, we'll just wrap things up and all move on with our lives.  It's not like I want to keep working for them.

How did it wrap up?

Did they ask you to sign on again?
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: sol on February 28, 2019, 10:49:49 PM
How did it wrap up?

With me standing in a downtown office building and chuckling "better you than me." 

It's sort of freeing to look at a fucked up professional situation and NOT be the one responsible for dealing with it.  You can see it more objectively, and say "this is not my problem, I am under no obligation to fix it, and there are no consequences to me if it all goes up in flames."  Maybe I'm just not a team player anymore, but it's kind of shocking how invisibly stress-inducing that whole professional world is.  It's almost like you can't see it, when you're in the middle of it, but as soon as you're outside it's really obvious what a toll it takes on everything in your life. 

Quote
Did they ask you to sign on again?

They did, for another short term project.  Probably only a week's worth of work, and it's stuff that I'm far more interested in than what I was doing (or not doing, as it turned out) for them before.  It would be work I could do wholly from home, and that I feel uniquely qualified to contribute to.  And it's much lower pressure.

They're still trying to figure out if I'm allowed to do it, though.  There are a variety of restrictions on what kinds of things I can do after separation from my old job, for ethical and security reasons.  I told them up front that I was actually interested in this one, but that I wouldn't be the least bit bothered if it didn't work out for one reason or another.  Retirement agrees with me, and I'm not eager to ruin it.
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: arebelspy on February 28, 2019, 10:53:52 PM
Well played.

Thread title is misleading. Should be "sol succeeds at retirement".
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: Dicey on February 28, 2019, 11:16:40 PM
Thanks for the update!
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: RetiredAt63 on March 02, 2019, 11:06:01 AM
Well played.

Thread title is misleading. Should be "sol succeeds at retirement".

Maybe he could retitle it:

"sol fails succeeds at retirement"


As is obvious, I didn't retire early by forum standards.  You couldn't pay me enough or find a fascinating enough job to lure me out of retirement.
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: Travis on March 20, 2019, 09:26:09 PM
Well played.

Thread title is misleading. Should be "sol succeeds at retirement".

Sol Realizes that Retirement is Exactly Where he Ought to Be.
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: Moustachienne on March 24, 2019, 11:05:30 PM
This is a great thread!  After a year or so of full on retirement, DH finagled his way into a 2-3 day a week job that lets him engage with interesting technical problems and play with sophisticated equipment.  Since we don't need the money in any way, he keeps 75% of his pay for his hobbies and 25% goes into our "family fun" slush fund, sort of my pay for setting him up with lunches a couple of times a week. :)

At about the same time I was offered the chance to take on a consulting type gig.  I could see exactly how to do it, the people are great, the goal is worthy, and there would have been some pleasure in writing recommendations I wouldn't have to implement but I turned it down with no hesitation.  My brainstorming, workshopping, consulting, cajoling, strategic planning days are OVER.

Like Sol, DH and I are both winning at retirement!
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: Dicey on March 25, 2019, 12:09:48 AM
This is a great thread!  After a year or so of full on retirement, DH finagled his way into a 2-3 day a week job that lets him engage with interesting technical problems and play with sophisticated equipment.  Since we don't need the money in any way, he keeps 75% of his pay for his hobbies and 25% goes into our "family fun" slush fund, sort of my pay for setting him up with lunches a couple of times a week. :)

At about the same time I was offered the chance to take on a consulting type gig.  I could see exactly how to do it, the people are great, the goal is worthy, and there would have been some pleasure in writing recommendations I wouldn't have to implement but I turned it down with no hesitation.  My brainstorming, workshopping, consulting, cajoling, strategic planning days are OVER.

Like Sol, DH and I are both winning at retirement!
I love this story. Good for you!
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: soccerluvof4 on March 25, 2019, 05:14:09 AM
Sol , Welcome back to the Fire'd side of things. I was trying a little experiment and I might again if things get stale but after a week I walked away because they asked me to do more. I have 2 at home yet and going on four years are gig so far is working too. I found it tough working and asking myself Y am I doing this right now. But like I said I cant say I wouldn't do it again but If i do it wont be till next fall. And even then it would be doubtful. Its a win because its a learning experience for ya!!
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: Aelias on March 27, 2019, 09:24:17 AM

It snowed!  The kids were home all day, and there was sledding to do and hot chocolate to make.  I had to shovel the driveway.  Netflix called to me.  I had to get a haircut.  My volunteer gigs needed my attention.  I went skiing.  I just couldn't be bothered to sit down and dig into spreadsheets.  Sooooo boring.


This gave me a chuckle.  This slow trickle of puttering and day-to-day to do's is exactly how I'm envisioning retirement. 

I can't be expected to sit down and work!  I need to go to the library today! And the pharmacy! Also, it's granola-making day! And tomorrow is entirely out because I'm going to swim laps! And the weather is going to be nice soon!  Can't miss that!

It's hard to overstate how much I'm looking forward to this.
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: londonbanker on March 27, 2019, 06:13:46 PM
Who goes to a courtesy interview if they have zero intention to go back to work? I mean TRULY zero intention!
If I were in your shoes, I would ask myself what is the real reason I accepted to speak with that company in the first place. Whatever that reason is, you should make no apologies for accepting another job.
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: sol on March 27, 2019, 06:28:35 PM
Who goes to a courtesy interview if they have zero intention to go back to work? I mean TRULY zero intention!
If I were in your shoes, I would ask myself what is the real reason I accepted to speak with that company in the first place. Whatever that reason is, you should make no apologies for accepting another job.

I did ask myself that question.  And I relayed some of the answers in this thread. 

Ultimately, I thought it might be interesting.  It was not.  So I don't do it anymore.
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: arebelspy on March 27, 2019, 07:05:15 PM

It snowed!  The kids were home all day, and there was sledding to do and hot chocolate to make.  I had to shovel the driveway.  Netflix called to me.  I had to get a haircut.  My volunteer gigs needed my attention.  I went skiing.  I just couldn't be bothered to sit down and dig into spreadsheets.  Sooooo boring.


This gave me a chuckle.  This slow trickle of puttering and day-to-day to do's is exactly how I'm envisioning retirement. 

I can't be expected to sit down and work!  I need to go to the library today! And the pharmacy! Also, it's granola-making day! And tomorrow is entirely out because I'm going to swim laps! And the weather is going to be nice soon!  Can't miss that!

It's hard to overstate how much I'm looking forward to this.

It's good while it is.

For me, I could only do so much of it.

And I don't consider myself type A, or a high achiever, but rather lazy. But still, I need more purpose.

Still working on that.
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: sol on March 27, 2019, 07:19:12 PM
But still, I need more purpose.

We all need purpose.  Mine just isn't to be found in spreadsheets.
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: arebelspy on March 27, 2019, 07:41:29 PM
But still, I need more purpose.

We all need purpose.  Mine just isn't to be found in spreadsheets.

I don't think my purpose is there either, especially doing spreadsheets for someone else's purposes.

However, in an amusing coincidence, I was just wondering about that about ten minutes ago.

A few threads ago someone mentioned "flow" and the only time I can recall achieving that state is when working on various FI or Real Estate spreadsheets, and up until 2am without realizing how late it had gotten.

Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: Linea_Norway on March 28, 2019, 12:59:23 AM
But still, I need more purpose.

We all need purpose.  Mine just isn't to be found in spreadsheets.

I don't think my purpose is there either, especially doing spreadsheets for someone else's purposes.

However, in an amusing coincidence, I was just wondering about that about ten minutes ago.

A few threads ago someone mentioned "flow" and the only time I can recall achieving that state is when working on various FI or Real Estate spreadsheets, and up until 2am without realizing how late it had gotten.

Yes! Often when I was working on my extremely complicated FIRE spreadsheet at work, I would forget the time completely and would suddenly work up a lot of flexitime hours.

Now I have a much simpler version that doesn't need quite as much maintenance, so I seldom get into that flow again. Both :-) and :-(.
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: Aelias on March 28, 2019, 01:03:26 PM

It snowed!  The kids were home all day, and there was sledding to do and hot chocolate to make.  I had to shovel the driveway.  Netflix called to me.  I had to get a haircut.  My volunteer gigs needed my attention.  I went skiing.  I just couldn't be bothered to sit down and dig into spreadsheets.  Sooooo boring.


This gave me a chuckle.  This slow trickle of puttering and day-to-day to do's is exactly how I'm envisioning retirement. 

I can't be expected to sit down and work!  I need to go to the library today! And the pharmacy! Also, it's granola-making day! And tomorrow is entirely out because I'm going to swim laps! And the weather is going to be nice soon!  Can't miss that!

It's hard to overstate how much I'm looking forward to this.

It's good while it is.

For me, I could only do so much of it.

And I don't consider myself type A, or a high achiever, but rather lazy. But still, I need more purpose.

Still working on that.

I can understand that.  I'm not FIREd yet - probably another 8 years or so. I suspect many people who know me would call me a Type A / high achiever, but I have a deep yearning to not be that anymore.  To decide that I've climbed the ladder high enough and jump off.  If for no other reason than to answer the question, "What would I do if I didn't have to do anything?"

I don't think I can remember a time when I didn't have external motivators driving me forward.  I really want to know what truly internal motivation feels like.  I suspect there will be a good bit of puttering / detox time while that takes hold.
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: sol on March 28, 2019, 01:32:46 PM
I suspect there will be a good bit of puttering / detox time while that takes hold.

I really don't like the word "puttering".  I think it carries a very negative connotation for most people, an implicit assumption that whatever you're doing is somehow less important, or less admirable, or otherwise less worthy than something not called puttering.  I violently reject that assumption.

I like working in my yard and garden, and building things in my garage, and do not accept that they are any less meaningful just because I'm not being paid to do them.  I have found these activities to be personally rewarding.  I look forward to spending a few hours each day by myself, improving my immediate living environment in tiny but additive ways.  I like doing that work surrounded by all of my previous improvements, because I get to enjoy the fruits of those labors even as I continue to labor.

My former professional workday, by contrast, was often a complete waste.  It was easy to spend an entire 8 hour day and basically accomplish nothing of lasting value, and to not even enjoy the process of doing nothing useful.  I hated mandatory online training courses, and filling out timecards, and requesting permission to requisition office supplies.  I hated being obligated to respond to email chains that did not require my response for any other reason than that someone wanted me to take time out of my life to give them my attention, usually just to acknowledge them without actually offering them anything.  I hated group progress report meetings where everyone reported on what they had done, but no one listened to what anyone had done.  All of THAT nonsense was more accurately labeled "puttering", a complete waste of my life energy.

My day-to-day life activities now do not feel like puttering, they feel like life.  Buying and preparing food.  Tending my garden.  Going on bike rides with my kids.  Chatting with my neighbors, going for haircuts and dentist appointments, leisurely dinners with my parents, these are the very fibers of life's tapestry.  Nothing I ever did in a cubicle feels half as important to me, now, as these sorts of mundane daily activities. 

Which is kind of shocking to me considering how absolutely critical I felt my job was, when I had a job.  I think it's really easy to contemporaneously post-rationalize your job, to convince yourself that all of that stress and obligation is worthwhile because your job is important.  But now that I've given it up, it just looks silly to live like that.  No one's job is really that important.  There is always someone else willing to do it in your place, and if not then it's probably a job that doesn't need doing.
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: Exflyboy on March 28, 2019, 02:01:07 PM
I suspect there will be a good bit of puttering / detox time while that takes hold.

I really don't like the word "puttering".  I think it carries a very negative connotation for most people, and implicit assumption that whatever you're doing is somehow less important, or less admirable, or otherwise less worthy than something not called puttering.  I violently reject that assumption.

I like working in my yard and garden, and building things in my garage, and do not accept that they are any less meaningful just because I'm not being paid to do them.  I have found these activities to be personally rewarding.  I look forward to spending a few hours each day by myself, improving my immediate living environment in tiny but additive ways.  I like doing that work surrounded by all of my previous improvements, because I get to enjoy the fruits of those labors even as I continue to labor.

My former professional workday, by contrast, was often a complete waste.  It was easy to spend an entire 8 hour day and basically accomplish nothing of lasting value, and to not even enjoy the process of doing nothing useful.  I hated mandatory online training courses, and filling out timecards, and requesting permission to requisition office supplies.  I hated being obligated to respond to email chains that did not require my response for any other reason than that someone wanted me to take time out of my life to give them my attention, usually just to acknowledge them without actually offering them anything.  I hated group progress report meetings where everyone reported on what they had done, but no one listened to what anyone had done.  All of THAT nonsense was more accurately labeled "puttering", a complete waste of my life energy.

My day-to-day life activities now do not feel like puttering, they feel like life.  Buying and preparing food.  Tending my garden.  Going on bike rides with my kids.  Chatting with my neighbors, going for haircuts and dentist appointments, leisurely dinners with my parents, these are the very fibers of life's tapestry.  Nothing I ever did in a cubicle feels half as important to me, now, as these sorts of mundane daily activities. 

Which is kind of shocking to me considering how absolutely critical I felt my job was, when I had a job.  I think it's really easy to contemporaneously post-rationalize your job, to convince yourself that all of that stress and obligation is worthwhile because your job is important.  But now that I've given it up, it just looks silly to live like that.  No one's job is really that important.  There is always someone else willing to do it in your place, and if not then it's probably a job that doesn't need doing.

Yes, yes and yes!

I too took a few assignments post FIRE, and I really enjoyed them (especially the paycheck$). Ultimately I realised however, those hobby jobs cut down on my fleaxibility to change my mind on a whim and go do something different.

In other words I was voluntarily chaining myself back to the treadmill.

My recent trip overseas was a prime example of this. Literally on a whim I asked DW if she'd be OK if I went off on a three week tropical diving vacation by myself?.. She said yes..:)

That kind of "heck yeah lets do this today" with (almost) no responsibilities holding me back was the true meaning of freedom..:)

As long as you have enough $$ to fund such a whimiscal lifestyle of course..:)
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: sol on March 28, 2019, 03:21:35 PM
Being FIREd means I can putter to my heart's content and not worry a bit about optimizing my time or my energy.  What a lovely way to spend a beautiful spring day!

It sounds to me like you ARE optimizing your time and energy.  Any day's activities that can be described as "lovely" sounds pretty optimized to me.

The whole point of financial independence is that you get to choose how to spend your time, for what is probably the first time since your early childhood.  You've worked hard under constrictive conditions to achieve that sort of freedom, and once you have it you're instantly set free.  For some people, that means pouring themselves back into some other form of labor, and that's fine.  For others, that means sitting in a favorite chair re-reading favorite novels for eight hours every day.  Those are both perfectly "optimized" schedules if they are what you genuinely most want to do. 

The western world's focus on "productivity" instead of happiness now seems to me to be a grossly distorted way of looking at things, for the benefit of economic prosperity and the employers who seek to make money from your labor.  The Puritan work ethic seems to suggest we should all suffer endlessly, not for the glory of God but for the glory of the State.  Fuck that noise, man.  My life is mine to live, finally, and if I want to spend my day making furniture and cleaning out flower beds instead of making powerpoint presentations and cleaning up data tables then that's what I'm going to do, and I will feel not an ounce of guilt for making the world a better place instead of making my employer another dollar.
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: arebelspy on March 28, 2019, 03:37:46 PM
I 100% agree with you sol.

And I personally have no need to feel productive, ever.

But I also don't enjoy gardening, or video games, or most things that involve "puttering."

I'm looking forward to not having toddlers at some point, as I think doing jigsaw puzzles once in awhile could be a good puttering activity.
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: Dicey on March 28, 2019, 03:45:21 PM
So far today, I've skipped breakfast, done a jigsaw puzzle, had leftovers for lunch, and am about to take a shower and get dressed 2:45 pm. Oh, I have one load of laundry going, and we're having guests for dinner. Tacos. Easy-peasy.

Rough day, but I can handle it.
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: sol on March 28, 2019, 04:18:08 PM
So far today, I've skipped breakfast, done a jigsaw puzzle, had leftovers for lunch, and am about to take a shower and get dressed 2:45 pm. Oh, I have one load of laundry going, and we're having guests for dinner. Tacos. Easy-peasy.

Rough day, but I can handle it.

So far today, I had a fantastic morning mocha in my kitchen with a view of the mountain, and then shoveled potting soil with my dad for an hour.  We had 12 yards delivered a few days ago, and the pile isn't quite gone yet.  Then I showered off the dirty and pulled one of my kids out of school to go see a pediatric dentist, where I amazed the staff by solving their Rubik's cube.  We had lunch, worked on Kindergarten homework together, made a pinewood derby car, and played in the yard until the neighbors came home from school and they all went over there to play together.

I can't find a single thing on that list I would replace with a single hour of cubicle time, at any reasonable price.  You could offer me $100/hour to give up any single hour of today and I would chuckle gently right in your face. 

What's another $100 at this point?  Another thousand?  I have decades worth of my expenses saved up already, and the whole idea of sacrificing a day like this to add another infinitesimal increment to that total just seems ridiculous.
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: arebelspy on March 28, 2019, 04:30:21 PM
So far today, I had a fantastic morning mocha in my kitchen with a view of the mountain, and then shoveled potting soil with my dad for an hour.  We had 12 yards delivered a few days ago, and the pile isn't quite gone yet.  Then I showered off the dirty and pulled one of my kids out of school to go see a pediatric dentist, where I amazed the staff by solving their Rubik's cube.  We had lunch, worked on Kindergarten homework together, made a pinewood derby car, and played in the yard until the neighbors came home from school and they all went over there to play together.

I can't find a single thing on that list I would replace with a single hour of cubicle time, at any reasonable price.  You could offer me $100/hour to give up any single hour of today and I would chuckle gently right in your face. 

What's another $100 at this point?  Another thousand?  I have decades worth of my expenses saved up already, and the whole idea of sacrificing a day like this to add another infinitesimal increment to that total just seems ridiculous.

Beautiful.

I definitely agree, I wouldn't sell any of my time. But that also doesn't mean I'm enjoying every minute. I'm glad you seem so content.
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: sol on March 28, 2019, 09:17:45 PM
I wouldn't sell any of my time. But that also doesn't mean I'm enjoying every minute. I'm glad you seem so content.

Are you struggling with retirement, rebs?  Want to tell us about it?

I've found a variety of ways to voluntarily add the good kind of stress to my life.  I have two (maybe three, depending on how you count them) different volunteer gigs going, which each require a few hours per week and keep me feeling very connected to my community and my neighbors.  I get to help people solve problems, and hold positions of imaginary authority that feed my ego.  I play music recreationally with two different groups of people, but not more than once per week.  And I devote waaay more time to being a parent than I used to, which feels like a worthy use of my limited remaining lifespan even at moments when I'm pretty unhappy about it.

I don't need to "enjoy every minute of it" but taken together I never feel idle or lazy.  I don't think I've had a single moment of identity crises since retiring, the way so many people seem to mention struggling with once they step away from what was previously their life's work.  I still have my PhD even if I'm not "using" it, and I still identify as a scientist even though no one is paying me to do science anymore.  Because how could I not?  I felt like a scientist long before I ever got a job, and I still feel like a scientist now that I've retired.  My former job as a federali always felt kind of like a (paid) volunteer gig, something I lent my talents to but not something that defined who I was as a person.  I spent years in graduate school becoming a scientist through and through, before I got hired as one.

But I suspect other professions have different perspectives.  Teachers, for example, might feel that their classroom personality was the defining feature of their identity, just like cops often feel that their policing mentality is the defining feature of theirs.  But you can still be that thing that you were, as part of who you are, even after you're not getting paid to do it anymore.
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: Aelias on March 29, 2019, 09:33:43 AM
Perhaps the difference is that for some people, day-to-day activities such as gardening, cooking, parenting etc. ("puttering" does sound dismissive, now that you mention it) satisfy the need for a feeling of purpose, and for others they don't.  It makes sense that purpose is going to look different for everyone. In addition to varying by person, I would imagine that what satisfies as purpose probably changes over a lifetime.  My feeling from interactions with happy older people is that  purpose gets smaller and closer to home over time, and as a result, contentment grows.

From my seat in cube world, it's hard to know what will feel like enough purpose in retirement.  I'm a lawyer.  Although there are plenty of non-purposeful activites in my job, I would say that there is usually at least one interaction every work day where I feel like I contributed to doing the right thing for someone, even if it was in a small way.  I am super fortunate to have a unicorn job like that and it definitely wasn't always that way.  I need to think hard about to what extent it is a part of my identity, as sol suggested.  I'm genuinely not sure. Although, I do plan to always keep my license active because you never know when it's going to come in handy.

But even though my job feels important, it doesn't make me feel . . . peaceful.  That feeling tends to come with things like watching my kids play, eating good food, being in beautiful places, creating things, reading, having good sex.  I don't have that feeling as much as I would like right now.  My hope is that retirement will include more opportunities to pursue that feeling.  And maybe, at some point, peacefulness becomes its own purpose.
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: BigHaus89 on March 29, 2019, 10:47:49 AM
Thanks for all the posts sol. I envision myself having a similar type of retirement life in a few years. Do you have any professional certifications that you still maintain, or is it just the PhD?
Title: Re: sol fails at retirement
Post by: BicycleB on March 29, 2019, 11:00:26 AM
Beautiful.

I definitely agree, I wouldn't sell any of my time. But that also doesn't mean I'm enjoying every minute. I'm glad you seem so content.

Makes a lot of sense to me. @arebelspy, best wishes.

Really appreciating the thoughtful kaleidescope of FIRE experiences in this thread. Very happy for Sol also.