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Grüsse from Germany

Posted: Sun Jan 06, 2019 12:08 pm
by Tiarellla
Dear all,

I am from Germany and just turned 45. During our Christmas holidays DH and myself spent many hours discussing our future plans. As none of family and friends is really interested in ERE, I asked Google and was happy to find this forum. I am looking forward to meeting like-minded people to have fruitful discussions. I want to get a clearer picture how possible futures could look like. And maybe additional motivation to start changes in our life :roll: .

We are in the lucky situation that the financial part is pretty much done:

- both of us have well paying jobs for 15+ years
- our level of living is moderate compared to our peer group allowing savings of up to 50% after tax
- we like DIY
- we invested in real estates early in our career
- (unfortunately) we do not have any children

For some years now we were discussing how to improve our work-life balance. DH already reduced to 35 hours and I plan to request part-time (maybe 30 hours) this year. Not sure how my employer will react, none of my colleagues did this before :shock: .

In our free time we spend quite some time in renovating and gardening of an old farmhouse. We like outdoor sports and literature, I am a bio-technologist and in my free time curious about (kitchen) science, nature and environment.

These are my biggest concerns and questions around ERE:

1. How to explain friends, family and community that you are no looser without a job (providing prestige)
2. How to avoid grudge by our peers that we have enough financial background to leave the tread mill
3. Do you have too much free time after complete ERE (we both are introvert and social work is no option) or better how to motivate yourself to do anything useful

Looking forward to discussions and feedback. It would be great if you could suggest some journals or threads to start.

Servus from Bavaria, Tiarellla

Re: Grüsse from Germany

Posted: Sun Jan 06, 2019 12:31 pm
by daylen

There are probably 50 threads discussing concerns 1, 2, and 3 on here somewhere. Search is your friend.

Bottomline: Find something to do and do it with intensity, then all your social problems will be solved. If you start questioning your own decisions, then others will start questioning them too.

So, who are you and what do you want to do? ERE is a tool for doing whatever that is.

Re: Grüsse from Germany

Posted: Sun Jan 06, 2019 1:38 pm
by DutchGirl
Wilkommen :-)

Indeed I think it would help to find worthwhile things to do, and to do them instead of your job.

An example might be to find volunteer work that suits you. For example, I read that you like renovating, the outdoors, and gardening, so I would think that you should look around for volunteer work for example in a garden or in/around a children's farm / play-farm. Or maybe you would like to keep walking paths in your area maintained (walking them, checking the markers, fixing the fences). You could be a handy-man somewhere in a retirement home (Altenheim) or whatever. Or you could help a community maintain their community garden.

I think there are lots of things where you can feel useful, where your presence is appreciated very much, and at the same time you're active, getting exercise, etc .

Re: Grüsse from Germany

Posted: Mon Jan 07, 2019 3:17 pm
by prognastat
Welcome to the forums.

A reason plenty of us are probably active here is because we don't tend to find many like-minded people to discuss this kind of lifestyle in our day to day lives so this is probably a struggle for many of us.

In relation to how others will feel about you pursuing ERE. Chances are many will judge you and either decide to pity you for living a "miserable" life denying yourself everything they think is necessary to enjoy life or they will be jealous that you've achieved something they didn't think was possible. The question here is is the relationship in question worth either working through or lying/obfuscating the truth about.

For people that will be in your life afterwards it might be worthwhile for them to at least be somewhat aware of your plans leading up to this(family and close friends). As for loose acquaintances and coworkers I fall in to the they don't need to know category and tend to avoid the topic.

Re: Grüsse from Germany

Posted: Tue Jan 08, 2019 10:41 am
by Tiarellla
Dear all,
thanks for all your feedback, indeed my issue is to get clarity what I want to do and if I get enough satisfaction out of this.
So far an important purpose of my life is to go everyday to work. Next to the money I get paid it is also the interaction with colleagues and customers I most of the time enjoy a lot. On the other site I hate to continuously prioritize what to do in my private time. And sometimes even lack energy to use my time for projects and activities.
In addition during last year some friends and colleagues died or got a severe illness. I am asking myself if I want to spend so much time of my life in my job. Therefore the idea to work part time to see if this would be a solution .
I started to read journals to find others who already did the transition to ERE and to find inspiration how this could look like.
With respect to my social life I would expect many changes. We would move, Munich is much too expensive to live without a good job. And as Dutchgirl mentioned I would spend some time to support our community, for environmental projects and maybe to support girls becoming more interested in math, engineering and sciences. And hopefully this would help me to meet other interesting people.

Re: Grüsse from Germany

Posted: Fri Jan 11, 2019 12:57 pm
by FRx
Willkommen. Ich lebte seit 4 Jahren in Göttingen und es war großartig.

I think that transition from identifying with the workforce to identifying with freedom of time and financial stability is a tough one for most of us. But you will eventually get through it. Your friends' perceptions will slowly adjust if you give them time. Some will have a tough time and that might be an opportune time to make new friends.

Are you guys still planning on kids or is that out of the question already?

Re: Grüsse from Germany

Posted: Sat Jan 12, 2019 3:07 am
by Tiarellla
@ FRx Happy to hear you liked to live in Germany :) , I think it is a good place to be. Yes getting children is out of question due to medical reasons.

Yesterday I viewed this TED talk explaining ER as a possibility to become time rich. It doesn´t mean to stop working but to have the possibility to do what you want, to work when and what you want and to take mini retirements from time to time. Sounds like a good explanation for me.

Re: Grüsse from Germany

Posted: Sun Jan 13, 2019 9:23 am
by Tiarellla
Today found a link where seasonal jobs at great places are offered: . I liked the idea much to do anything like that after ERE. E.g. dreaming about having for some months a part time job in a skiing resort allowing you to go skiing outside your job hours. And maybe even earning some money.