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Sandy Aubrey

If you can “retire” from your job early? Go for it. But be careful that you don’t lose your sense of value and purpose. People often become depressed when they retire. You can avoid that by still making contributions to society: business, charity, etc. To retire means to be put out of use. Don’t be put out of use. Be useful, resourceful, and keep adding value beyond your golden years.

nilson uy

hi, its really something that is different from not getting retired. We had the usual job routine we did everyday. Now that I am retired at 55. I got mixed feelings.. one is that I am happy because I feel free from my daily job obligations.. 2nd is that I feel quite uneasy because after the long long vacation of 6 months just after my retirement date, i just feel not relaxed, trying to figure out the big expense I did and the expected earnings that I should have received for the past 6 months. Sometimes I would say to myself, is this worth it. However, my faith in God took things positively though, I realized that It is really balanced. We dont serve and we dont get paid. In turn we must look forward for the coming days ahead. Make life easy and happy....


I've heard some people doing retirement in reverse. They still live frugally but do all the physical active interests that they want to do while they are fit and able. Then they settle down to a career and more mundane life as they got older. It sounds pretty smart to me.


I retired at the age of 26. I am now 47. I was injured and got an initial large settlement with residual payments every year for the rest of my life. At first it was like winning the lottery. I bought so many new cars it was stupid and a total waste of money. Half million dollar house, eating out every day. Traveled all over the world. You name it I just blew the money. I went through the money and ended up way in debt with credit cards. Youth and money did not go well for me. So now that I am older, I found I like the simple things. I have a small house in the country and all of my bills are paid off, finally.
I have never been married. No kids. I sleep in. Get up when I want. Play guitar. Play drums in the band at my church. Volunteer at the senior center, swim every day and smile at people I meet. What I learned is money can destroy you if you are not well grounded with who you are. I should have kept my job, friends and all the things that truly made me happy. Money is a tool, not a means for happiness. Money can’t buy you happiness, but it can buy you a really good pizza and beer.


I have two years and eight months to go before I retire - on the day I turn 55! What better gift could I give myself than "Freedom 55"? I am very much looking forward to it. Our mortgage will be paid off in less than a year, so housing expenses will be minimal. My husband is a scientist and jokingly says he will "never retire". Seriously though, he's going to work for another 10 years, so I will have lots of time on my hands! My family lives across the country (as do my two adult daughters) and I plan to travel there two to three times a year for a few months at a time. I'm also considering taking courses on pet grooming as I love animals and this would be a way to be around them (hubby is allergic so no pets for us). Other than that, my house will likely be immaculate and super organized!


For what it's worth I'll pass on my limited experience. I'm 40 years of age, and now after perhaps 25 years or so of study, sacrifice, work around the clock and generally 'doing without' to get ahead, I guess I'm able to carve out a modest retirement more or less. No retrenchment packages, wealthy spouses or rich relatives kicking the bucket put me in this position, I did this alone and without assistance. Nobody to blame but myself.

Which sounds all fine and dandy, right?

Only problem is, what now? (at this point I can relate a little to the chap above who came into some cash while he was younger, only without all the crazy spending). I don't consider myself too 'old' yet, am still quite healthy as far as I'm aware, yet things have become somewhat aimless and weird lately, hence me typing disorganised thoughts into blog comment boxes at 5 AM, after deciding to google 'what do I do in retirement' just out of morbid curiosity.

I realise I probably should be typing something more profound and helpful to others here, but at the moment I suspect all I can offer is that of a cautionary example. Money is a large part of the retirement equation, no doubt, but at least in my case, other less-tangible factors need to be identified and factored in.


Oh My God (OMG) - is this what I have to look forward to?... I'm reaching my retirement milestone in 6 months (57) and I'm at odds with what to do. I've been in the Oil Patch for 33 years and have traveled the world, seen stuff other people only hear about (public executions in Malaysia, Carnival in Rio, Winter Carnival in Quebec, New Years in Australia. What the hell do I do now???
Most things seem like antecedents compared to these things. I've been convicted of trafficking cocaine in 1979 and been to prison, worked my heart out after that; over a period of years, moved to a role of a senior executive in an multinational oil company. I own 3 homes, 4 Harley Davidson's, I help young people in transition (drug and alcohol resistance). Most people couldn't put in 100 years what I've managed to put in 56. The only thing that I can see to find my own road to redemption is continuing to help young people... however, I'm just some old dude with a few tattoos on a Harley to most of them, and it's a hard story to sell. Not sure which way to run...keep on working until I die maybe..............

Susan @ Wiltshire homes

Oh im dreaming of my retirement, 2 years to go with enough saved up to move to Majorca and enjoy the warm climate and sangria :)


Was cashiered just prior to sale of my company in 2000. Spent the next 18 months failing to get another suitable job so went to law school to "re-invent" myself. Graduated and passed the state bar, but again found no suitable positions. Started travelling: put 67,000 miles on my bicycle and lived for months at a stretch in Italy, Croatia, Russia, and even Nepal.

Still like to travel, but I prefer flying somewhere and renting a car rather than being a vagabond. That way my wife will come with me.

I live near the beach in Cali and keep fit by running 6 miles nearly every day. I assist my wife with ambitious home improvement projects like bathroom remodeling, but she's the boss and I have to work at her more methodical pace.

Day-to-day, I have trouble keeping busy. We have no children, we have no inclination whatsoever to join a church, we keep neighbors at arm's length, we have no interest in volunteering or in working some job to pass the time. We have plenty of money, but that's because we are frugal. Starting a business would probably jeopardize the sufficient nest egg we already have established and even so, I can't think of what I would do that would be sufficiently fulfilling. Anyway, most entrepreneurs are slaves to their businesses.

I know, boo hoo I am a spoiled s--t who doesn't know how good he has it. But why am I not happy?


Cyclesafe - You led an amazing life previously - are you so sure you are ready to hang it all up and "settle down?" I'm thinking maybe you're really not, and that that may be the source of your current discontent.

My father is in the midst of planning out an 1,100 mile bicycle ride over a route previously taken by Lewis and Clark. He's 76, and I don't expect him to slow down until he the day he dies. I'm trying my best to follow his example in my own retirement, in my own way.


Hey Tamara,

Yes, the ACA L&C route. Did part of that too. Inspiration for your father:

Met Earl while careening down Monitor Pass last year.

Thanks for the thoughts. I guess we all have our crosses to bear...

Retired Syd

Cyclesafe: My gut tells me you are experiencing hedonic adaptation. Something great, like winning the lottery or retiring, feels great in the beginning, simply because you are appreciating all the new benefits you are enjoying. But after a while, you wind up taking all this for granted, which is totally normal. Because this is your normal life now, it's not a novelty anymore.

I've actually been working on a post which I will publish in the next day or two on this exact subject. But I think the bottom line is that you might have to try one or many of the things that you don't feel so inclined to do right now, like say volunteering, just to see if maybe you're wrong about not wanting to do it. It might not be the exact right thing for you, but it may give you more information on what is the right thing to get you off the hedonic treadmill.

Just out of curiosity, were you happier when you were working, or when you were in law school, or when you were cycling exotic locals? When were you happiest in the past? That might give you some clues as to direction.


Looked up hedonistic adaptation. Interesting stuff.

Well, you may have a point. If one brainstorms only options of initially limited appeal, it behooves oneself to at least try some (or all) of them. One may indeed be pleasantly surprised. Nothing ventured....

To answer your question, I was always happy doing anything new and that was interesting and generally approved of by others. This was while working, at law school, and while traveling...

Fran Rundel

At 66, I retired from nursing (telephone triage at a pediatric clinic) this year. I am a Navy veteran and also have a degree in Library and Information Science. I am involved with a lot of music - several bands, choir and direct a summer community band. However, there are days when I am really floundering and bored. I have had lunch with friends, talked about retirement opportunitites with several other retirees, and read several helpful books, but I can't seem to pick any new things to do. I would like to travel, but my husband who is 75 is still working and is very busy. I would also like to move to a condo at some point, but my husband wants to maintain the "mansion" with all his toys and tools. Any ideas out there?


Gee, many of you worked for the government so you are lucky to have a pension. I've been dabbling in various investments, now my dad has passed on so my debts will be paid off. That means I can retire later this year at age 55.
After struggling so long trying to be an "entrepreneur", I realized there will be enough income for me to live off of if I don't want to work. My income will be modest and I still have to rent out my other bedroom.
Originally I was very motivated to make grand amounts of money to pay off my debts. But going over all the numbers I should be ok. Lately, I've been asking myself why do I have to try to get "rich" when I can lead a very modest lifestyle if I choose. In this case I too have wondered what I will do with myself as I have no spouse or kids.


Like everything else in life..Retirement is a state of mind..As Abe lincoln said "A man is about as happy as he makes his mind up to be"..Anothere old saying .."If you love what you do .Then you will never work a day in your life"..I think it is sad that people say ..Well now that i am "FREE" I can finally do what i have always wanted to do..Life is too short to spend most of it waiting to be retired to do the freedom thing..Reading these posts i find is sort of in a way sad for our society..Freedom 55 and all that stuff from the eighties..It created a insecurity in people that their great granparents never had..So my advice is ..By all means think of and take care of the future..But dont forget to ENJOY TODAY MORE..Because Tomorrow is not guarenteed to any of us..To me security is a house/condo no matter how humble Paid In full and enough to carry the other stuff food heat hydro and a little left over to travel a little..But #1 Dont worry be happy..


I was self employed just about all my working life .I loved what I did..Six years ago my married daughter that I raised on my own said ..Oh come on.Dad pack it in..So I sold the Biz paid off my Condo,.Had a good chunk of cash in the bank and nearly went stark raving mad.I was lost trying to fill in the hours..I found out that ,IF YOU ARE WHAT YOU DO..THEN YOU ARE NOT WHEN YOU DONT..As far as travelling goes .Well I did the Europe thing The Hawaii thing .The middle East thing..I was always glad to get the hell home..But I realize I am lucky compared to a lot of people..But theres a LOT to be said for enjoying what you do in life.


Also plan to commit my time to voluntary work Tom as in retirement I feel the passing on of experience is essential. In the fortunate position to be able to rely on a modest but healthy pension and have no desire for anything excessive.


I did 25 years in state govmint, went at 56, and am just starting year 5. At the end, I was fairly senior, so pension is adequate, but not limitless. Year 1 was bucket list, international, living large, which was okay, but not sustainable either in terms of wear and tear on the bod, or the finances, plus it got old. Eventually, it dawned on me I could be anyone or anything I wanted to be as long I accepted it would not pay well, so I've dabbled in several new careers, last month completed the 60 hr state certification course to become a driftboat fly fishing guide. I have concluded I need to winnow down a bit. So, I've picked 4 areas to be really good at. Woodworking, fly fishing, small boat sailing, Paleontology. I define those categories broadly, so last week's 5 day canoe trip involved a boat, a fly rod, and one of our pack is a paleo-biologist and I asked her questions. I do some volunteer work, but mostly just lending a hand when cheap dumb labor is needed.


If you love what you do ..Then you will never work a day in your life....."W O R K" is a four letter word you never should use..If you do then you are in the wrong job or the wrong business ,,And get rid of the word "Retire"..Try RECYCLE...And AGE ..Ha . I know 90 year olds that are younger than some 19 year olds I know..Age is a state of mind..


I just retired in June, at 57 yrs old. Moved to a new country. Sold my house. Married a yr and a half ago. Left my kids in the states. I am working on trying to figure out this retirement thing. Actual I don't like it. I will have to find some work. I made a quilt already since Later June. Lots of walking. Too much time.

Tom Allan

I will retire in 3 1/2 years & am preparing now. I will ride & work on my four motorcycles/scooters, ride & work on my four bicycles. Go to local two year college for master gardening, visit elderly folks in local homes, try to stay in physical shape, insure I pray everyday like now. I can't wait, take care my friends.

Happy in Wyoming

we started Appliance repair Tampa -

Hi there! This is my 1st comment here so I just wanted to give a quick shout out and say I genuinely enjoy reading through your blog posts. Can you suggest any other blogs/websites/forums that go over the same topics? Appreciate it!

James P

I plan on vacationing! A lot. I found an article here, that clarified what it would take to do so


I'm 53, my partner is 60. He has travelled the world with his job. We made plans 5 yrs ago to build our retirement home on the coast of NSW Aust. 5 minute walk to the beach, lake etc. The house was completed 3 yrs ago and since then we have spent our Christmas vacations there as well as a long weekend a month. We have made many friends of who some are retired. My partner planned to retire at the end of this year (after his daughters wedding) and I to retire in June as well. We are financially stable (hoping there's enough to see us through retirement)We will be moving 4hrs drive away from family & friends. He is now so worried about what we are going to do on a daily basis and the fact we are moving away from our children / grandchildren (this decision was made 5 yrs ago)he is driving me nuts asking the same question every day. I'v worked all my adult life,(sometimes 2 jobs at a time) running a business with my ex husband while bringing up two children as well as a part time job. I have worked part time since my divorce. For the last 20 yrs in the medical industry, the last 15 in the same job. I'm tired and no longer enjoying what I do and am busting to I retire. I keep getting told I'm to young to retire but my mind & spirit are no longer want to be here. I am so looking forward to becoming a lady of leisure, potting around the garden, cooking I love cooking & hoping to write a small cook book. I want to explore the area of our new home as well as travel through & around Australia. We do have some plans in place for some trips and the first one will be in 7 weeks time. I'm hoping this will give my partner a good taste of travelling in our leisure years. He is struggling so much with the thought of retiring & what to do he has recently gone into depression and is now having counselling. I too am scared of retiring and not having that regular income & sense of fulfilment in what we do. I wish he could just grab it and go with it and enjoy the rest of our time together in this lovely life we have made together.

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