No Plans For Early Retirement?


While I definitely have been making quite detailed plans for what I would like to do in retirement, I am finding it much more fun just to say “My plans? – to do as little as possible.”   It’s a bit flip, but I’d rather not make it seem like I have this whole thing figured out, when I don’t.   In fact, when people ask, I truthfully follow up that in 6 months I’ll either say it was the smartest decision I’ve ever made, or I’ll be screaming “Fool!  What have you done?!”

I think it’s good to not pretend I have all of the answers, even if it makes me look a bit unprepared.  I don’t think anyone can truly know exactly what this lifestyle change will really mean, so why feign confidence and false bravado?

In addition to a change from directly accumulating wealth to spending it, early retirement will bring a loss of daily contact with work friends, a loss of job status & MegaCorp perks, and a loss of daily problems to solve.  I’m the kind of person that enjoys leading a team in developing strategies for solving complex problems. I’m not sure playing checkers in the park is quite going to fill that need.

Fortunately, a new study by Fidelity, indicates that almost 80% of recent retirees say it’s easier than they thought to live comfortably in retirement. The money is not as much of a concern as people might have thought and 85% say it’s the most rewarding time of their lives. (Only 10% say they are worried about being bored.  For that I have my “Not Bored List”, which I continue to build on).

Here’s a scary set of numbers from the same Fidelity study:  nearly 60% of husbands want to spend more time with their wives in retirement, but only 43% of wives want to spend more time with their husbands.  Ouch.  Hope that’s not us.

In that vein, it strikes me that it is mostly the wives of friends that ask me what I’m planning to do, so maybe they are nervous for my dear wife.  The guys don’t really seem to care, but the women can be very pointed in their “what ARE you planning to do?” questioning. 

Reminds me of this needlepoint I saw in an antique store.   Perhaps this is what my friends’ wives are worried about!

2013-11-09 - Retirement Stitching

11 thoughts on “No Plans For Early Retirement?

  1. I agree that the uncertainty is fine. Part of the fun is figuring things out along the way. I don’t know how you could have a really firm grasp on exactly what your life will look like after such a fundamental change to your day-to-day responsibilities and time commitments.

    When my mom retired around traditional retirement age, the home dynamic with my dad was definitely a challenge. He’s completely content not leaving the house for weeks (doing yardwork, reading books, listening to music, socializing online), and I think it drives her mad. Good luck!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. OMG…I am your mother. Not really, but my (early retired) husband is the same. His car needs gas once every 3 months! I am out and about 4-5 days a week. Guess different people need different things. And Mr&Mrs FS, it took me awhile to find a new rhythm. I just tried to be positive they the ups & downs of the transition.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. My wife is a bit of a homebody too. I like to be on the go and travel a lot. Work has been that outlet for me. I think she is afraid I’m going to drag her into my craziness when I start early retirement.

        Liked by 1 person

  2. You do bring up a valid concern/thought. I’m guessing the recent retirees referenced in the Fidelity study weren’t early retirees. There in lies the biggest difference. Retiring at the top of your game from MegaCorp could pose more of an emotional issue than you expect. That being said, I’m certain you will find other, more enjoyable and less stressful avenues to fill your need to solve complex issues. 🙂

    Mrs. Mad Money Monster


    1. I agree about the concern. I took a personality profile at work recently and it reminded me what a “driver-driver” approach to life I have. This blog and year-long countdown have been a good way to get my mind set, but we will all need to find our new focus in life.

      Liked by 2 people

  3. Hi, wanted to add in a bit more on my homebody husband and my need to be out & about. We have had a few disasters with him really NOT liking what I pulled him into. So I have become more choiceful in what we do together. Which means I am doing some things on my own…which is a new learning for me, actually. Going to a festival by myself because he wasn’t interested in going. Not just a work seminar, but a fun festival. In my mind, having fun without him at this type of thing was new. I guess I thought retirement was about doing these things together.

    And I am also letting him know some things we are trying and if he doesn’t like it, we won’t continue (e.x. our foodie dinner club…so far it’s been OK! But the “city flea market” is a not-do-again for him). It’s a balance between me time, he time (which is almost all home for him) and we time. And realizing that sometimes the we time is home time, too. Just sitting together on a rainy afternoon and reading is OK.

    He is also learning that joining me for the out & about makes me happy. So he has been willing to do a bit more as things haven’t been too bad. But not the Nutcracker – he will never agree to a ballet. (sigh)


    1. Some things I can do by myself and be perfectly happy (like going to a flea market), other things feel awkward to fly solo to (music festival). I actually made a list of 190 things I’d like to do (my “not bored list”), but I’m guessing only half of them would be too interesting to her. How are you liking flying solo at events?

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I agree with the awkward – I am not totally there yet. I’m contemplating the Nutcracker solo..not sure if I can do it! I did a psychic festival solo and I actually think it was better solo as I could stop at things of interest to me without him being bored. I’m doing some fun classes (cooking! even if he is the better cook) and seminars (fun topics) on my own. Would love your list of 190 things! I am a firm believer in search & reapply ideas.


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