One of the funny things about being retired early is that people are always suggesting jobs that you can do. People say, “Oh, you should get a job as a golf course ranger,” or “With your extra time, you could get a side hustle flipping houses”. Many people focus on what you have given up – a job – and forget all that you gained.
Many articles about retirement start the same way. Even if the headline suggests the article focuses on “What To Do After You Quit Working” – the writer will often start with the idea of taking a part-time job to help with their retirement finances. If you Google “working in retirement” you will get and incredible 182 million links served up.
Despite these suggestions, almost 60% of the early retirees that responded to a question I asked on Early Retirement Forums felt that working – even part time – was a BAD idea for a new retiree. I wrote this post about part time work after FIRE two years ago when people asked me if I was going to work in retirement. My approach is that there are exponentially more things I’d like to do that don’t pay money, than there are that do pay money.
That said, there is no single answer for everyone. I recently read this article about the King Willem-Alexander of the Netherlands, who has been secretly working as a KLM airline pilot for the last twenty years. Good for him. He clearly doesn’t need to work, but gets enjoyment out of it. Similarly, my wife picked up a part time job at a local boutique after our son left for college last fall. It works for her, although now our son is coming home for the summer. A friend of hers also works at a boutique, but takes the summer time off of work.
What is / will be your approach to part-time work in FIRE?
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