Author Topic: What pushed you over the edge?  (Read 6679 times)

pdxbator

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What pushed you over the edge?
« on: October 12, 2016, 02:03:55 PM »
Hi Post-Fire'ers!

I'm wondering what pushed you over the edge to finally RE?

I have enough to live on and RE. I'm 43 and I thought I would work a few more years. After all I only work 4-8 hour days a week with a 3 day weekend. I get benefits and have a decent income still. However, lately work and all that I have to put up with has been super annoying. Is there something that finally broke the camel's back? Was it work? Was it family related? Or just a realization that you don't need more cash to be able to retire on.

Right now I go through mental spasms of putting in my two weeks and just going sayonara. But then I sometimes get some good things out of work such as socialization and doing a good job.

Financial.Velociraptor

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Re: What pushed you over the edge?
« Reply #1 on: October 12, 2016, 05:10:39 PM »
Hi Post-Fire'ers!

I'm wondering what pushed you over the edge to finally RE?

I have enough to live on and RE. I'm 43 and I thought I would work a few more years. After all I only work 4-8 hour days a week with a 3 day weekend. I get benefits and have a decent income still. However, lately work and all that I have to put up with has been super annoying. Is there something that finally broke the camel's back? Was it work? Was it family related? Or just a realization that you don't need more cash to be able to retire on.

Right now I go through mental spasms of putting in my two weeks and just going sayonara. But then I sometimes get some good things out of work such as socialization and doing a good job.

It started with the realization that I wasn't really gaining anything from additional years of work (your contributions move the needle 100% from year 1 to 2 but almost none in year 10+).  Once I came to the conclusion I wasn't willing to do my job for "free" it was only a small jump to realize I didn't want to do it for money either.

Mr. Green

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Re: What pushed you over the edge?
« Reply #2 on: October 12, 2016, 06:48:26 PM »
I FIRE'd in June to thru-hike the Appalachian Trail and the build a new house when I got back. I got injured on-trail so that dream remains a dream. The house is in progress, but is taking longer than anticipated. I thought I'd return to work for a few months while I was waiting and within a week I knew it was a mistake. Yesterday was my 11th day back and I turned in my letter of resignation. The changes that happen when you walk away are quite awesome. The word "rush" disappeared from my vocabulary. That's one of the biggest problems I had returning to work. It just wasn't possible to do the things I wanted to and spend 8 hours a day at work. I loved waking up when my body was ready, then spending an hour "warming up." I'd leisurely read articles on the internet I was interested in, cook, walk, hike, whatever I wanted, but always at my own speed. It was fantastic. A whole week went by where I hadn't done much of anything, yet I wasn't bored. For me, I found that 6 hours of solid work is really about all I could manage in a day if I wanted to wake up at 8am, warm up to the day, work, then have a quality dinner, and spend some time with my wife.

avrex

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Re: What pushed you over the edge?
« Reply #3 on: October 12, 2016, 11:19:22 PM »
Health

pdxbator

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Re: What pushed you over the edge?
« Reply #4 on: October 13, 2016, 11:59:49 AM »
Thanks everyone for your replies. It is quite a conundrum when exactly the right time to FIRE is. Sure I'm FI, but being in my 40s I have lots of years (hopefully!) of life ahead.

That means many things could change my current situation. What if the ACA changes so dramatically that healthcare becomes truly unaffordable? That could happen when I'm sometime in my late 50s and no one will want to hire me. With my current career I would lose touch with things very quickly. Just a couple years off the job and no one would want me since my skills would be gone.

The more I work though the more I feel like Iím not getting much out of it. I have been doing the exact same job for 9 years. Iím frankly bored and frustrated by all of it. My field of work is very specific and I canít just change jobs. I like where I live and donít want to uproot to somewhere else. Plus Iím finally getting 4 weeks of vacation a year, and only work 4 days a week. (That would sound so funny for a European!)

Upstate NYer

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Re: What pushed you over the edge?
« Reply #5 on: October 14, 2016, 06:36:01 AM »
I'm currently part time. My boss told me a month or two ago that I would have to cut back on my personal travel for next year, and I decided I was unwilling to do that. I'm finishing up in the first quarter of 2017.

John Doe

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Re: What pushed you over the edge?
« Reply #6 on: October 14, 2016, 03:14:29 PM »
I am currently right on that edge. While I have the financial ability to RE now at age 50, I am not sure I am 'ready'. I recently had a discussion with my employer that went something like this:

- I am looking for a reason to stay and can't find one
- I like the people I work with but there are really only a couple that I consider true friends
- my job is fine but will I have a hole in my life if I don't do  X each day? No
- I don't think I have been treated equitably by the company over the years, therefore I don't feel any loyalty to stay
-  so in about 6 months time let's go down to three days a week and see if that works.  If it does work I will leave in one year, if it doesn't work I will leave earlier

Response I got was quite positive and in fact my employer does not want me to leave. They asked what variable could be changed to perhaps alter my view and stay.  I said well there is only one variable they can control and that is compensation.  I really don't have a number in mind that would make me stay as I don't really need the money any longer, but I did indicate it would have to a big #. I had this conversation just as I was leaving for a few weeks vacation.  We shall see what the response is when I get back.  In the meantime I remain on the edge.
« Last Edit: October 14, 2016, 03:27:52 PM by John Doe »

Exhale

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Re: What pushed you over the edge?
« Reply #7 on: October 14, 2016, 09:31:43 PM »
Oh, wow - good for you. Keep us posted!

Cottonswab

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Re: What pushed you over the edge?
« Reply #8 on: October 14, 2016, 11:00:37 PM »
A robust plan for a better lifestyle, including contingency plans.

If you cannot realistically conceive of a better lifestyle, maintain the status quo.  If you can, then make a detailed plan to transition to that better lifestyle.

I do not hate my current job, but I would be happier not working full-time, when additional money is not needed to support the better lifestyle that I have conceived. 

arebelspy

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Re: What pushed you over the edge?
« Reply #9 on: October 14, 2016, 11:09:18 PM »
We pulled the plug a year early, before hitting our number.  The trigger was when it actually sank in that we could just...earn more money later, if we needed to, and we probably wouldn't need to.
I am a former teacher who accumulated a bunch of real estate, retired at 29, spent some time traveling the world full time and am now settled with three kids.
If you want to know more about me, this Business Insider profile tells the story pretty well.
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Exflyboy

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Re: What pushed you over the edge?
« Reply #10 on: October 14, 2016, 11:59:42 PM »
Getting up at 04:30am to drive 80 miles to make my 7am passdown meeting. Then to spend the next 10 hours defending my excellent staff against the abuses of the people I worked for, who happened to be narsisistic in nature.

One day (after I'd been reading MMM for 3 months and realised I was already FI) I just decided to start engineering my layoff. It didn't take much and we um .. came to a mutually acceptable separation arrangement..:)

I set a date, but 3 months before I reached it I was invited to leave... It was great..:)


Mr.Tako

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Re: What pushed you over the edge?
« Reply #11 on: October 15, 2016, 04:05:53 AM »
Job loss.  It was one of those situations where I was tasked to end my own job -- I closed the local office of a NYC based firm.

Once I completed the job I was given my own walking papers.

After that, I just decided I was done with working...

EscapeVelocity2020

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Re: What pushed you over the edge?
« Reply #12 on: October 15, 2016, 09:52:05 PM »
Clicking on the OP sig's link, I remember that journal (2014).  I had a reply in 2015 and still feel the same way.  I can 'RE' at any time and with the way the oil & gas industry has been, it's surprising I'm still employed!  But I'm not feeling pushed off any edge and I appreciate that.  My destiny is in my own hands.  Enjoy the ride!  Probably not the most Mustachian things, but I've used some of the extra money to cruise Hawaii, started a blog and shut it down (just wanted the experience but not willing to overshare), started a business with my son - having extra money (and being lucky not to have to use our health insurance or savings) and not worrying about being laid off is a pretty cool situation.  I also enjoy working hard and being crazy busy, and being able to spend freely facilitates many things.  Choosing to 'Early Retire' sounds so misguided, in hindsight.  Everyone has their own opinions, this is currently mine, probably because work has been working out so well post FI.  My wife has had more of a mixed bag with some OK years working and some OK years being a SAHP.

Good luck PDX, we could definitely have it worse...

lizzzi

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Re: What pushed you over the edge?
« Reply #13 on: October 16, 2016, 08:01:28 AM »
Left the workforce to take care of my husband (much older than I) and my mother, who were in a race to see who was going to die first. Family was able to keep them both at home until the end...neither ever had to go to a nursing home, which they both would have hated. When I could go back to work, realized I didn't have to and didn't want to. We were Mustachian before the term was even invented...and boy, has it paid off. It isn't about money so much, it's about freedom. Being able to live exactly the way you want, and FU to anybody who doesn't like it.

Exflyboy

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Re: What pushed you over the edge?
« Reply #14 on: October 16, 2016, 09:53:29 AM »
Left the workforce to take care of my husband (much older than I) and my mother, who were in a race to see who was going to die first. Family was able to keep them both at home until the end...neither ever had to go to a nursing home, which they both would have hated. When I could go back to work, realized I didn't have to and didn't want to. We were Mustachian before the term was even invented...and boy, has it paid off. It isn't about money so much, it's about freedom. Being able to live exactly the way you want, and FU to anybody who doesn't like it.

Awesome!...:)

AlwaysBeenASaver

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Re: What pushed you over the edge?
« Reply #15 on: October 16, 2016, 10:00:45 AM »
I had planned to quit sometime within the next couple of years, but what finally pushed me over the edge was one final bad decision by my manager - she'd been barely tolerable for about a a year and a half, since an incident in her personal life, but this final decision would have me wasting 4-6 months of time on something that would be redone within a year. I was unable to convince her this was not the right thing to do, so I immediately started researching FIRE (didn't know the term FIRE at the time.) That's actually how I found MMM. It took me about 3 months to read all the info I found, run the calculators, which verified the spreadsheets I had been using for myself, and get things in order. Then I waited another month for the stock plan end date. I ended up finishing the majority of the project that pushed me over the edge, but doing it while knowing what was coming made it bearable.

4tify

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Re: What pushed you over the edge?
« Reply #16 on: October 16, 2016, 01:00:58 PM »
I totally get where you're coming from. I'm 6 year older than you and just on the edge of FI. In fact, I probably could have pulled the trigger a year ago if I had decided to move, etc, but when I asked myself what I'd do for the next XX years I didn't have a solution. I don't 'hate' my job, but it is quite intense and frequently frustrating. (That may just be the definition of a job for all I know, although some lucky few seem to have found relative satisfaction!).

I have heard many people say that it's just as important (or more) to retire "to" something. Personally I don't have that worked out, so until then I'm stashing the paycheck and trying to get enough space to figure out the next step.

It sounds like--for you at least--that you have the time to look into that. I'm running 50 hours/wk or more which makes it tough. If I were you I'd spend some dedicated time working out what you'd like to do in the short/medium/long term. Talk to friends. Hire a person to sort it through (a life coach, or mellow therapist for instance). Might also check out moneyboss.com as he's thinking about this sort of thing too. :)

mandy_2002

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Re: What pushed you over the edge?
« Reply #17 on: October 17, 2016, 10:58:09 AM »
I had an annual meeting with the site leader where I worked who was a European employee in the US.  He asked me what I wanted to be doing in 5 years, and I told him my dream was to work internationally in just about any country using the expertise that I had built in the previous 8 years.  He (the European) said that expat assignments weren't happening anymore and I should choose something else.  You can't tell a person to just change her dream because the company won't support it.

I didn't tell him at the time, but that day at work is when I started my search for international options and my application to Peace Corps was submitted a few weeks later. 

RoseRelish

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Re: What pushed you over the edge?
« Reply #18 on: October 17, 2016, 11:01:22 AM »
We pulled the plug a year early because our young baby girl was so much fun to be with and work was getting in the way - and because we wanted to have a 2nd kid and be full-time, all-in parents.

And we feel we can make more money later, if needed.

Bolshevik Artizan

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Re: What pushed you over the edge?
« Reply #19 on: October 17, 2016, 05:17:26 PM »
Hi Post-Fire'ers!

I'm wondering what pushed you over the edge to finally RE?

I have enough to live on and RE. I'm 43 and I thought I would work a few more years. After all I only work 4-8 hour days a week with a 3 day weekend. I get benefits and have a decent income still. However, lately work and all that I have to put up with has been super annoying. Is there something that finally broke the camel's back? Was it work? Was it family related? Or just a realization that you don't need more cash to be able to retire on.

Right now I go through mental spasms of putting in my two weeks and just going sayonara. But then I sometimes get some good things out of work such as socialization and doing a good job.

It started with the realization that I wasn't really gaining anything from additional years of work (your contributions move the needle 100% from year 1 to 2 but almost none in year 10+).  Once I came to the conclusion I wasn't willing to do my job for "free" it was only a small jump to realize I didn't want to do it for money either.

Please excuse the double quote - I normally dislike it when people quote posts extensively - but these are both excellent and important points. I FIREd after 23 years when, on the one hand, it became clear that I could not write, have a family AND have a job; when the Finance team's harassment of my entire department extended to querying variances of 43c. in our favour on invoices; and when, more generally, the whole political mess that was my working life grew stale.

Important side factors - my father and uncle had both had serious hypertension in their late forties (I was 45); my wife's career was taking off, finally; and the excellent point about pensions made above. If folks have read my other posts they will know that a large % of my net worth is in pensions. If I get to 65-67, then yes I will have a pension (and I know I can withdraw early etc etc) but looking back I wish I'd gone all cash and minimal pensions.

BA

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Re: What pushed you over the edge?
« Reply #20 on: October 19, 2016, 10:39:53 AM »
It turns out the book "Work Less, Live More" (Nolo Press) is a bit like inception (from the movie of the same name).  Reading it planted the idea.  While working professionally, the biggest expense was taxes... which gets much lower when your income goes away.  Looking at books, running nest egg calculators, and going through expenses gradually brought the idea from reading a book into reality.