No Work

VintageUSA

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Hello DFO Friends:

Two weeks from tomorrow (after 37 years and two months), I will retire from full-time work.
Emotionally, spiritually, physically, and above all, financially, I think I'm ready.

But you don't know what you don't know !
I know people that love retirement and people that couldn't wait to get back to work.
Therefore, for you people with experience, or knowledge of others' experience, I will eagerly listen.

Among my four priorities (family, career, golf, and music) I have only time for three.
For the past six or seven years, I have put golf on the back burner.
Golf is already beginning to replace career as I have been sneaking off to the driving range trying to relocate a decent swing.
The band is still going well and the family is as good as it gets..................so the priorities are currently in minor transition.

Thanks for any help and thanks for allowing me to be a part of the DFO community for the last 3 years.

Best regards,
Richard
 

JazzDrumGuy

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Awesome - congrats!!! And play more golf, man! I've been playing nearly 40 years and I just love it! I only wish I could get my 7 & 11 year old boys away from damn video games and electric scooters to go out there, clear their brains, and figure out how to get a small white ball into a hole on the other side of the "park"! It's the ultimate interactive game - who knows what will happen, plus it requires time management, strategy and etiquette.......all cornerstones of life.
 

DanRH

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Of course everyone’s different. I retired 3 1/2 years ago and I love it. For me, I drive Uber in the mornings and evenings and keep busy managing our rental property. With Uber, it’s Totally flexible and I earn a little vacay or drum money. I excercise everyday with either riding my road bike or long walks. Again, like I said, it’s essential to stay busy. I can basically do anything I want but right now, it’s driving (which I love) playing, managing a rental property and being a thoughtful hubby.
 

MrDrums2112

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Congratulations! I have 6 or 7 years left to go (maybe a little more as right now I really enjoy what I do). When retirement day finally comes, however, I know I’ll miss it for the entire time it takes me to drive home, and then I’ll forget about it as quickly as I possibly can!!
 

shuffle

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I retired early for health reasons
I do what i want when i want
I still work at the lab p.t.,Tues and Weds for my former employer.
I still drabble in music and drumming but to a minimum.
Dont go out much these days.
All those yrs of playing was enough for me for crowds,drunks,barflys,club owners,little money.
So,enjoy yourself!
Congrats!
 

MrYikes

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Don't write a book. Don't do anything that keeps you sitting for more than 3 hours a day. Do play golf, anything that gets you up and out of the house. Slowing down is good. Stopping is not.
 

Hop

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Two weeks from tomorrow (after 37 years and two months), I will retire from full-time work.
Emotionally, spiritually, physically, and above all, financially, I think I'm ready.
I went for an early retirement that started June 1st, 2018! I worked at a very big company with substantial benefits and really fulfilling work, which made it a bit difficult to separate. I'd been there just shy of 29 years, however if you count the overtime (which I did of course, having saved all my paystubs from day 1), I was there for another 4.5 years.

Last few years were a bit challenging as my direct supervisor and manager really weren't the right choices for the department. They couldn't comprehend and didn't promote the projects I was trying to develop. I guess that happens when you have managers running a department in a field in which they have no experience in - but I guess upper management just assumes cogs are the same things as widgets, and if you're a "manager" you can manage anything (in my experience it just aint so!!!). I felt that I had a lot of gas in the tank, a lot to offer the company, but I just felt I was going to be forced to just ride the pine - which I wasn't prepared to do... In reality I could have totally coasted for a few more years to further increased my benefit package, but I think the frustration would have really wore me down mentally, so I opted to retire.

I moped around aimlessly for 6-months, half full of retirement regrets, then stepped up to living the dream that I had been planning to do in retirement - play drums! I found a rehearsal space 1-mile from my house and have been putting in 4-5-hours of practice a day. I am very focused with practice, applying some of the teaching techniques I learned while working at the big company... especially the goal setting and accountability, including keeping a daily practice journal. Having this kind of structure is helping me put my former working life in the rearview mirror. I have good/bad days with practice. Some days I wonder why in the heck I'm even attempting this, other days I come out totally elated, high as a kite. I guess it helps understanding how to manage your own expectations to limit those "bad" days and maximize the good ones.

My next big thing is to figure out where I'm going to buy a retirement house at. As much as I love the weather, I've just got to move out of high-tax crazy California...
The key buying criteria is that place must have room for a practice space - would love to get a basement like I've seen some of the members here have and get busy with building a studio.

EDIT: BTW - Congratulations on the milestone and enjoy your retirement!
 

rondrums51

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Good for you.

I retired from my college teaching gig in 2017, after 25 years. But I kept playing drums 2-3 nights a week, until back surgery slowed me down, and now I do 2-3-4 gigs a month.

It's hard to get out of the music business. Like Art Blakey once said, when he wasn't working, he felt "silly."

I feel the same way.
 

MBB

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Congrats! I am right behind you. Been working in some form since I had a paper route at 10 years old. Finally after college/grad school/a research career at UCSF I am happily going to be done in less than four months. Looking forward to it. No commute, no stress, and pot is legal. What can go wrong?
 

komodobob

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Congrats Richard. It's important to stay active and it sounds like you're keeping your calendar full. And while this can be the best time of your life, it's important to also have a purpose in life. Make the most of it.
 

SwivoNut

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I retired in 2006 and love the freedom of not having to go to work every day. I love fishing and figured that I'd be doing a lot of it during my retirement. Unfortunately I made myself too busy by starting a small business and joining a second band. There was a two year stretch when I only got out in my boat once. Alas, I was far busier than I wanted to be. After taking a hard look at my priorities I decided to quit the business and leave one of the bands. I currently play in a big band that rehearses or plays almost every week. That along with a 45 year old house on a one acre heavily wooded lot finds me with no shortage of things to do. Enjoy your retirement while you still can. Don't make yourself too busy but don't sit around too much either.
 

moodman

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It's great to have the parks, lakes and beaches sans crowds during the week, while most people are working.
Do keep structure to your day, and keep moving. It's use it or lose it getting old.
Working or not, every day is a gift.
At 72, I'm bustin' my butt and drivin' 5 hours a day to do it, working on an unfinished house. Working for yourself ain't work.
 

drummer5359

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September ninth was going to mark my tenth anniversary of retirement. I kept busy traveling with my wife, playing music, and both of us are involved in animal rescue. Four months ago a good friend of ours was stuck for a daylight bartender, she talked me into taking the part time gig. It is in the neighborhood where I grew up, I'm having fun with it. The additional income has gone into buying music gear, imagine that!


1565991783103.png


Enjoy your retirement, find something fun, and/or meaningful to do with your time.
 
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drumsforme

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Relax and enjoy, I retired in 2016 after 43 years in retail and sales. Fill your time with lots of activities and may you continue to remain healthy my friend !
 

Old Drummer

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I would encourage you to decouple work from earning money as well as to challenge the opposition between work and leisure. Although jobs have encouraged us to think in these ways, in reality most people work at something whether or not they are paid and meaningful work is often quite leisurely. Playing golf is fine, but that's primarily leisure. I think you need to find the work you want to do independent of the pay (which could be music).

An inspiration for me was an older guy I met when I was younger at an organizational meeting for a bicycling advocacy group. I frankly wondered why this old guy was there among the usual youngsters. As I got to know Burt, we became great friends, and as said he's been an inspiration.

Burt's story is that he was an urban planner working for the government when during his 50's he fell into a serious depression. Coming out of the depression, he quit his job (taking the earliest retirement possible) and vowed both to do only the work he believed in and never again to accept a cent in payment. This sent Burt onto a 30-year career as an unpaid volunteer in which he was busier and more influential than he had been in his career--and happier. Better, Burt never volunteered as soup kitchens or anything like that, not because he opposed that, but because he was determined to use his skills. Thus, he found himself advising kids in a bicycling advocacy group, on the state's mental health board, elected president of the associated neighborhood organizations, and so on. Burt and I used to have lunch together--but booking lunch with Burt usually required a 2-week notice. He was booked constantly, and as I discovered, often with mayors and other political leaders. He personally stayed in the background (he also vowed never to hold elective office) but he knew them all and they knew him.

Shortly before he died, Burt was compiling an oral history of the Jews in our smallish town. This was hardly a project with any market appeal, but that's partly why it appealed to Burt. He sought out things worth doing that the market wouldn't pay for--and had a 30-year volunteer career doing those things. Never drawing attention to himself, most people didn't even know him or know what he had accomplished. However, his funeral was attended by pretty much every local mover and shaker.

Most of us won't and can't take the route Burt took, but his route teaches us something. Work sometimes begins when you break free of a job and have the luxury to decide for yourself how best to use your skills.

Speaking for myself, maybe because my dad was a small businessman and I earned most of my money early on playing in bands, I've never been prone to equate work with a job. As much as possible, I've tried to do work I believed important and only secondarily tried to figure out how to get money. This orientation has unfortunately left me quite poor, but it hasn't been so bad. My main "career" for over 30 years was as a college professor, but as I look back, I realize that I never had a regular job in the field. All that work was temporary or part-time--the "gig economy" before it existed--and when it ended, I hardly noticed. I just didn't get rehired by the last college where I taught, but by then was planning for that job to end and was even surprised that it lasted as long as it did. I also didn't look for another teaching gig. For years and to some extent to this day, people ask me if I'm retired. I laugh and answer, "No, I'm part of the long-term unemployed." Retirement makes no sense to me.

Neither I suspect does retirement make sense to most musicians. True, as they get older and amass some funds or become eligible for pensions, they're less likely to take some gigs for the money. True too, eventually chops wither or for other reasons they can't play anymore. However, I don't think real musicians quit music simply because they're finally old enough for a pension. They continue to play because they want to.

So it is for work in general. Freedom from a job allows you to use your skills in the ways you want to use them; finding those ways is the challenge. Some people seem OK with a retirement focused primarily on leisure time consumption activities, but I doubt that those people are the happiest. I think you still do stuff--even stuff that can be construed as work--because you want to.

Good luck.
 

TrickRoll

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I’ve tried retiring a couple times. Just started back with my consulting business.

My observations/advice:

(1) make sure ‘things’ are in a good state before you retire. Replace devices at end of life, upgrade computers, upgrade/renovate the house, take care of car maintenance, etc. before the last paycheck
(2) don’t assume you will be comfortable downgrading your life-style to afford things over the long haul.
(3) certainly assume that your significant other will be a bit nervous about this change
(4) think long hard about how long you may live and what that will cost. My parents are in their mid 90’s and still going strong. Another 30 years will cost what?
(5) spend some time with Excel and model out some financial models...

Also, I thought that it would be great to spend more time on my music. I did get an album released, but gigs are few and far between, cats don’t want to rehearse, and the gigs have been so unsatisfying I think I may ‘retire’ from gigging! I don’t get too excited about keeping time in the corner at restaurants anymore. I will keep practicing and producing music, though.

At this point I am just as interested in spending more time with my wife, travel, and my cars. Disposable income is still nice to have.

I guess I also get more positive feedback working as a consultant than as a musician. But this is just my life, not yours.
 

Stickclick

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Retiring does not mean you don't work. Your life soon gets busy. But this time, you decide what you are going to do.
 

komodobob

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I would encourage you to decouple work from earning money as well as to challenge the opposition between work and leisure. Although jobs have encouraged us to think in these ways, in reality most people work at something whether or not they are paid and meaningful work is often quite leisurely. Playing golf is fine, but that's primarily leisure. I think you need to find the work you want to do independent of the pay (which could be music).

An inspiration for me was an older guy I met when I was younger at an organizational meeting for a bicycling advocacy group. I frankly wondered why this old guy was there among the usual youngsters. As I got to know Burt, we became great friends, and as said he's been an inspiration.

Burt's story is that he was an urban planner working for the government when during his 50's he fell into a serious depression. Coming out of the depression, he quit his job (taking the earliest retirement possible) and vowed both to do only the work he believed in and never again to accept a cent in payment. This sent Burt onto a 30-year career as an unpaid volunteer in which he was busier and more influential than he had been in his career--and happier. Better, Burt never volunteered as soup kitchens or anything like that, not because he opposed that, but because he was determined to use his skills. Thus, he found himself advising kids in a bicycling advocacy group, on the state's mental health board, elected president of the associated neighborhood organizations, and so on. Burt and I used to have lunch together--but booking lunch with Burt usually required a 2-week notice. He was booked constantly, and as I discovered, often with mayors and other political leaders. He personally stayed in the background (he also vowed never to hold elective office) but he knew them all and they knew him.

Shortly before he died, Burt was compiling an oral history of the Jews in our smallish town. This was hardly a project with any market appeal, but that's partly why it appealed to Burt. He sought out things worth doing that the market wouldn't pay for--and had a 30-year volunteer career doing those things. Never drawing attention to himself, most people didn't even know him or know what he had accomplished. However, his funeral was attended by pretty much every local mover and shaker.

Most of us won't and can't take the route Burt took, but his route teaches us something. Work sometimes begins when you break free of a job and have the luxury to decide for yourself how best to use your skills.

Speaking for myself, maybe because my dad was a small businessman and I earned most of my money early on playing in bands, I've never been prone to equate work with a job. As much as possible, I've tried to do work I believed important and only secondarily tried to figure out how to get money. This orientation has unfortunately left me quite poor, but it hasn't been so bad. My main "career" for over 30 years was as a college professor, but as I look back, I realize that I never had a regular job in the field. All that work was temporary or part-time--the "gig economy" before it existed--and when it ended, I hardly noticed. I just didn't get rehired by the last college where I taught, but by then was planning for that job to end and was even surprised that it lasted as long as it did. I also didn't look for another teaching gig. For years and to some extent to this day, people ask me if I'm retired. I laugh and answer, "No, I'm part of the long-term unemployed." Retirement makes no sense to me.

Neither I suspect does retirement make sense to most musicians. True, as they get older and amass some funds or become eligible for pensions, they're less likely to take some gigs for the money. True too, eventually chops wither or for other reasons they can't play anymore. However, I don't think real musicians quit music simply because they're finally old enough for a pension. They continue to play because they want to.

So it is for work in general. Freedom from a job allows you to use your skills in the ways you want to use them; finding those ways is the challenge. Some people seem OK with a retirement focused primarily on leisure time consumption activities, but I doubt that those people are the happiest. I think you still do stuff--even stuff that can be construed as work--because you want to.

Good luck.
Very nice story. It sounds like Burt built quite a legacy for himself. That, I think is the greatest thing a person can do for oneself and his community.
 


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