The Reluctant Journal

Where are you and where are you going?
1taskaday
Posts: 350
Joined: Wed Dec 04, 2013 11:45 am
Location: England

Re: The Reluctant Journal

Post by 1taskaday » Mon Mar 31, 2014 6:58 am

Hi DutchGirl,

Thanks for the advice. The dilemma is to work 20 hours a week until age 60 (-which makes me physically ill even thinking about being stuck at work until this age), OR work really hard now and get out by 50 or earlier if possible. I know I can handle the long work hours physically and mentally (as much as anyone can know the future), BUT I will moan now and again because I WANT To BE FREE NOW and can't be.

I am of the “Machiavellian” mindset, meaning that I think the "the end justifies the means".
I am going to reach FI, I just have to keep my head down and get on with it.

I have at last started some lateral thinking with regards to the money that I am paying my share of the mortgage down with.

I am a huge fan of Ermine's Simple living in Suffolk’s blog.He got out of work aged 52 by bulking his money into AVC's.This is tax relief investing which can be withdrawn at retirement in a tax free lump sum.It means that I could max out my AVC contributions and save myself approx.40% in tax on my overtime.A no-brainer really.

I think I will leave the mortgage overpayments for now and just build up cash as I learn more about these AVC's.I have set up an appointment with an AVC rep to find out more information.As I naturally trust nobody to decide on my health or savings, I have a lot of study to do.I know he will think I'm a bit nutty wanting to cut out of my "career" before or at 50,BUT that's half the fun of being original and a free thinker.

Really, why can't I just be satisfied with working 20 hours a week until I retire? and buying myself consumer luxuries to quell my unhappiness about having to work, (like most other normal people).

All I know is that I can't-I want to be free of work as much as I need to breathe air into my lungs.This passion of reaching FI is now my complete obsession and I will not rest until I achieve it.

Maybe in the future we will down size and sell properties.Now the market is at rock bottom where they are and it would be unwise to offload them.They are also potential "rent earners" when we have stopped working.

Now I need to mentally build myself up for a 16 hour shift ... as the sun shines outside ...

1taskaday
Posts: 350
Joined: Wed Dec 04, 2013 11:45 am
Location: England

Re: The Reluctant Journal

Post by 1taskaday » Tue Apr 01, 2014 1:47 pm

I am reading everything that I can get my hands on about AVC's and Defined Benefit pensions.

The big question is will I just set a date,on my 50th birthday and plan my finances for my exit from work on this date.I love the idea of this- CERTAINTY at last.

I do love a definite plan ... - think I have mentioned that somewhere before...

Will I buy back Defined Benefit (DB) pension years to boost my DB pension from work or will I purchase AVC's and take a bigger tax-free lump sum when I retire?

I have 4 years that I can "buy" back to boost my DB pension,(due to job-sharing) at a cost of 14,000 (after tax) per year. This would increase my yearly guaranteed pension payments when retired from my DB but I would not get a large tax free cash lump sum on retirement.

I suppose I will take advice from the rep guy that I will be meeting next week.

If I buy back DB pension years my money will be out of my control and locked in but I will get a higher guaranteed pension payment each year for the rest of my life.

I really cannot decide what to do, - except that I will stop overpaying my mortgage for now to avail of salary tax relief in pension payments.

I have approx 2,000 after-tax pay extra per month,(3,500 gross) for 58 months to put somewhere to enable me to retire at 50.

DutchGirl
Posts: 1118
Joined: Tue Sep 06, 2011 1:49 pm
Location: The Netherlands

Re: The Reluctant Journal

Post by DutchGirl » Tue Apr 01, 2014 11:06 pm

In the Netherlands, I would love the opportunity to pay less on my obligated pension plan and instead be able to put more money aside by myself. I do believe that I could do better than my pension provider. Also, I personally am building up too much pension - current promises are that if I work until age 67, I will have 3000 euros in fixed income once retired (adjusted for inflation!) while I currently manage to live on less than 2000 euros/month.

These last couple of years, "guaranteed" pension plans and the "guaranteed" retirement benefits paid by the government have seen a freeze due to the bad economy, meaning that people now actually get 10% less value than roughly 5 years ago due to not seeing any increases in payouts while of course inflation continued to happen.

Still, I don't know much about the UK. And you're not as far from official retirement age as I am, meaning that your "guaranteed" plan might actually be guaranteed indeed. I would try to compare how much the money will grow once in the DB pension versus how much it should grow in a AVC plan (err on the side of caution), plus I would take into account whether a one time lump sum payment will help you more than a "guaranteed" extra xxx pounds per month forever.

DutchGirl
Posts: 1118
Joined: Tue Sep 06, 2011 1:49 pm
Location: The Netherlands

Re: The Reluctant Journal

Post by DutchGirl » Wed Apr 02, 2014 1:13 am

PS. Of course there is also nothing against an approach where you do both if that works best for you - for example but 50,000 in the AVC over the years to get a lump sum; and put the remaining money towards extra DB pension years.

1taskaday
Posts: 350
Joined: Wed Dec 04, 2013 11:45 am
Location: England

Re: The Reluctant Journal

Post by 1taskaday » Sat Apr 05, 2014 3:02 pm

I think I had a "light bulb" moment to-day while preparing our Summer rental property for the season ahead.

Our combined pensions will give us 3,000 per 4 weeks when I hit 50 and retire-we will easily be able to live on this!This is a definite on two Defined Benefit pensions.

I don't know why I hadn't accepted this fact before, it just hadn't sunk in.
The mental circuits that my mind always takes me on, (for absolutely no reason), always amazes me, when often the answer is staring me straight in the face. What that is about I don't really know, maybe I just like mental anguish!!

In the intervening 54 months (who's counting) we just have to get our ducks in order and either sell or pay off any remaining mortgage debt.

I will start the maximum contribution to my AVC's that is allowed next week to build up my tax-free lump sum on retirement.

I will also build up the rest of my surplus salary into my cash savings for now and probably hit the mortgage with it.(Just like you advised DutchGirl).

If I get too impatient I can always take some leave of absence to bring me up to age 50.It would be better financially if I could just stick the course for the next 54 months but we will wait and see.

Paula at Afford Anything website has started an interesting experiment on a vacation rental property called "The AirBnb Experiment" to see which is more profitable a vacation rental versus a long-term lease.

I really can relate to her account of the amount of INTENSIVE labour involved in vacation rentals, and will follow her experiment with interest.

1taskaday
Posts: 350
Joined: Wed Dec 04, 2013 11:45 am
Location: England

Re: The Reluctant Journal

Post by 1taskaday » Sun Apr 13, 2014 5:21 am

Well I am now well on "the plan" and come hell or high water I am getting out in 54 months.

I am getting ready all my finances to allow this. This is a matter of coasting along for now as everything is in place.

But my main aim now (now that this is a done-deal or already in the bag ... Ha,Ha, ha,)is to make the next 54 months the most pleasurable that I can, while working.

I intend to look at my holidays and as well as taking my main ones, I am going to take 1 day off a week and try and work a 4 day week where possible. This will take a lot of planning but is possible if I organise things in great detail and put some effort into it.

A 4 day week with most week-ends off, getting paid the maximum that I can is the way to go!

There is no point continuing like I am as I have no quality of life .I am now trained up as much as I can be and can work in any area without a sweat. I can now take the leg off the pedal and coast.
All the energy that I have put into learning new “necessary” skills at work for the last 4 months, I can now put into improving the quality of my life –outside of work.

I have no aspirations or ambitions to climb higher at my workplace.
I have no requirement to meet anybody else’s standards of what I should be doing or not doing BUT MY OWN.
I am mentally free to say anything that I want or do anything that I want without fearing any repercussions for my future employment ambitions-I am FREE and this is a gift in on its self.

I have always believed that people should do the best that they can at whatever they do BUT I have never believed in "sucking up" or playing politics just to get ahead and I suppose that is why I have always been difficult to "manage" as an employee.

I will never just "go along" if I think something is unjust.

But the great thing about having an open mind is that my idea of injustice may be somebody else's idea of necessity or progress ... and therein lies the art of compromise I suppose...

Anyway I have already compromised too much of my life years and energy for money and I am not prepared to give anymore than absolutely necessary to be finally free of being on somebody else's clock...

IlliniDave
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Joined: Wed Apr 02, 2014 7:46 pm

Re: The Reluctant Journal

Post by IlliniDave » Sun Apr 13, 2014 7:31 am

1taskaday wrote:
...

I don't know why I hadn't accepted this fact before, it just hadn't sunk in.
The mental circuits that my mind always takes me on, (for absolutely no reason), always amazes me, when often the answer is staring me straight in the face. What that is about I don't really know, maybe I just like mental anguish!!

...
I've been wading through similar things myself, so you're not the only one!

One thing I like to do is make conservative assumptions, and when I stack those one atop the other I wind up with very pessimistic outlooks. Putting focus on them often obscures the more expected outcomes, so to speak. I'm reluctantly coming to accept that I probably am financially independent--I could probably survive without my career albeit it at a slightly tighter budget than I'd prefer.

For me there's also a certain comfort in believing the big decision is a ways out in the future. I'm still sticking with my plan to work a bit longer than 5 more years, but coming to grips with the fact that it's increasingly optional means every day getting up and going in is a freer choice than it has been in the past.

I'm lucky in that I like my job and the people I work with quite a lot. The pull of ERE for me, or at least ER, is that there's just some other things I need and want to be doing that are geographically mutually exclusive with my job.

But it's a pretty amazing moment when you discover what's been staring you in the face for some time.

Hankaroundtheworld
Posts: 470
Joined: Mon Feb 24, 2014 4:50 am

Re: The Reluctant Journal

Post by Hankaroundtheworld » Sun Apr 13, 2014 9:28 am

Hi, just read your journal, and it comes across as a real struggle to reach FI, may be that is different in reality, or it is my way of interpretation of your writing, but I constantly had this feeling "please stop this work that you hate", I think you are already quite far with FI, so do not waste those years by feeling trapped. Other than that, congratulations with your dedication to start ERE/ERM by 50, it is a good achievement :-) (same goals as me)

Regarding:
1taskaday wrote: Paula at Afford Anything website has started an interesting experiment on a vacation rental property called "The AirBnb Experiment" to see which is more profitable a vacation rental versus a long-term lease.

I really can relate to her account of the amount of INTENSIVE labour involved in vacation rentals, and will follow her experiment with interest.
I found her web-site like a screaming Advertisement that I remembered seeing when I lived in the USA (one of the reasons why I ditched TV, one of the good outcomes of having lived in USA). Of course, Paula has a good achievement, no doubt, but this "joining the revolution" thing, and the way she advertises herself is too overdone for my style. I like Jacob's ERE web site style a lot more.

1taskaday
Posts: 350
Joined: Wed Dec 04, 2013 11:45 am
Location: England

Re: The Reluctant Journal

Post by 1taskaday » Tue Apr 15, 2014 1:40 pm

IlliniDave,overall I like the people I work with too,I have no conflict with any one individual, but find people management a pain in the ass and a real DRAIN.

I have no ambition to become good at this as I know that the first chance that I get I am out of there. Maybe if I was ambitious it would be easier as I would be trying to impress my superiors...

I just have so many other (mainly outdoor) things that I would rather be doing that I get frustrated with the waste of time and life while working.

Hankaroundtheworld,surely you would have to admit that a majority of employees dislike or are totally ambivalent about their jobs, and just use it as an excuse to socialize and escape from their routine home life?
I am just being open and honest about how I feel about mine.

But I think this is just normal for the majority of people, especially after 15 years or more working at the same place.I do not require or crave any social contact outside my own life so therefore I don't even feel this small benefit from my workplace.

Either way I will never be reckless and pack it in until I have reached the level of financial independence that I will never have to do paid labour again. It will be worth it, I am making huge progress BUT I will moan away to my heart’s content on this journal because this is here to help me release all of my frustrations AND THEN CARRY ON with the plan.

Most people wouldn’t even dare to dream that they could retire permanently at 50 years BUT not only do I dare to have this dream, I will make it happen
To-day I have enacted a plan to increase the quality of my life, I have booked an annual leave day off every week for the next 11 weeks. This will take me up to my summer holidays of 3 weeks off. I intend to do this until I retire. A 4 day week at full pay, now that is definitely “coasting”.

saving-10-years
Posts: 509
Joined: Thu Oct 31, 2013 9:37 am
Location: Warwickshire, UK

Re: The Reluctant Journal

Post by saving-10-years » Thu Apr 17, 2014 3:56 am

Enjoying your journal. Some other things to think about.

1) Have you considered that you may be able to make money from things you enjoy when you retire at 50? Or by using parts of your skill set for some minor consultancy in areas which you are interested in? I have just been asked whether I would like to do a three day stint for my old employer (i.e. until last month employer) which will involve travel to a country I have never visited before. In am inclined to say Yes. Its short, its an adventure, its not work I normally do and its paid.
2) When you say that you will retire on half your pension is this because of the dreaded 'actuarial reduction' because you are retiring so early? It may be worth keeping an eye open for any 'deals' that your government employer is willing to make if the job shedding agenda continues. You may find that you can negotiate a better deal if you time things right.
3) Yes, AVCs are a no-brainer for an ERE type on a higher rate of tax. Especially with the changes in the last budget that mean you can take this as a lump sum later. High tax rate taken into account going in and low tax going out? Or no tax if its up to 25% of your pension pot. If not yet there then definitely save. This is what bought our little rental property.
4) Might be worth checking that you will have the correct contributions to get your full state pension if you retire early. I know that the rules could have changed a lot before you get there but its something to factor in to your longer term plans.

It sounds like we might have a lot of similarities. Please PM if you want to chat about specifics. Its nice to have someone in the UK who I can relate to. Good luck.

1taskaday
Posts: 350
Joined: Wed Dec 04, 2013 11:45 am
Location: England

Re: The Reluctant Journal

Post by 1taskaday » Sun Apr 20, 2014 3:50 pm

Hi Saving-10-years,I enjoy your journal as well and am eagerly following your journey in retirement, now that you are there. Thanks for all the tips.
Yes I will be severely punished for taking my pension at 50 and this is the earliest that I can take it. I will max out my AVC and have studied all about them in great detail. Believe me I always keep an eye out for any government redundancy offers available and will continue to do this.

I am a great fan of Ermine in Simple living in Suffolk website and have the exact same attitude as him about work. I really do not want to do any consultancy work or start an internet business when I leave my present employment.

I want to do nothing for money only filling my time with "fun" outdoor pursuits or travel. I am willing to live within my budget with the luxury of control over all my own time.
I think this is a great deal. I do not want to have to clock watch or adhere to ANY deadlines. I do not want to answer the phone (much or even at all), to anybody except numbers I recognise. I just want to drift through my days pursuing my own goals and interests.
Maybe this will change but I can actually fill all my time with my own interests and not much social interaction.

To-day was one of those brilliant days that come along once in a while. It was Easter Sunday one of the nicest times of the years,(especially when it falls late in the year). The promise of the long never-ending summer days ahead is so exciting especially when the weather is nice.

I am an absolute "wild water baby”, I love how I feel after being in the sea. The wilder and bigger the waves the better the feeling. Sometimes when I close my eyes I can actually see the next one rising into a powerful wall of water. I love the crashing sound as well. The water to-day was 10 degrees Celsius but did not feel even a bit cold. It is absolutely exhilarating to me and makes me feel so alive. I forget about everything when I'm in the sea and can just enjoy being “in the moment”, which is rare for a compulsive planner and thinker like me.

If to-day was a taste of even just 1 in 10 of my retirement days it will all be so worth it...

saving-10-years
Posts: 509
Joined: Thu Oct 31, 2013 9:37 am
Location: Warwickshire, UK

Re: The Reluctant Journal

Post by saving-10-years » Mon Apr 21, 2014 6:19 am

Sounds like you have this all sorted. I too started with the plan of no consultancy (and in terms of consulting - doing more of - the stuff I do now I intend to stick with that decision). But I've been tweaking that plan with thinking that if someone is willing to pay me to try something new in a country that I would not travel to otherwise. Then I'll give it due consideration. Its a) extra money to the investment fund and b) travel I don't pay for. Its almost and adventure ...

Logic is that once you retire you have lots of time available, so options to try new things can be taken up and experimented with on a low opportunity cost basis.

Thanks for the link to Ermine. Reading his recent posts about house costs and inflation calls to mind the period we were buying a house when the rate was 15% interest. Except husband worked for a bank and all bank employees had their interest capped at 5%. A welcome little perk. One which does not make you want to hug bankers when you think about it ...

I think you can bank on far more than 1 in 10 of retirement days being comperably good. (My experience so far).

1taskaday
Posts: 350
Joined: Wed Dec 04, 2013 11:45 am
Location: England

Re: The Reluctant Journal

Post by 1taskaday » Sun Apr 27, 2014 4:34 am

The day off a week (which just started last week) seems to have freed me up mentally and made me more "present" and creative. This will naturally come when I have more energy and am not drained from a full 5 day week plus overtime. I so love my time off especially if I have physical work to do outside and can be on my own.

I know as I age it is vital that I keep my muscular strength up and for me the easiest way to do this is physical work outside. Although it makes me physically tired, mentally it rejuvenates my soul. It is much easier than lifting weights in the gym but to supplement my progress I have started swinging my 16Kg kettle bell again as well.

The boring financial part is coming together as well even though I don't dwell on it much in this journal. Any opportunity that I get to do overtime I do. I am getting ready to pay the max I can into my AVC's which start soon. At this rate I can pay off my part of the mortgage in 2 years, by Dec 2015, max out my AVC's and work a 4 day week.

Not bad progress...

1taskaday
Posts: 350
Joined: Wed Dec 04, 2013 11:45 am
Location: England

Re: The Reluctant Journal

Post by 1taskaday » Wed Apr 30, 2014 11:27 am

One of the big issues at our workplace at the moment is staff shortages. We are down lots of people and expected to process the same workload.

This basically means that as many people cannot get the days off that they want, as the work still has to be done. This is all fine until staff want specific days off for weddings,christenings,flights etc. and they cannot get them.

This is a major reason why I want to retire early, as I think it is a major luxury in life to be able to plan freely without any restriction due to work. It means you can look for cheap flights and just book them and it also means that if you do plan anything at "peak-kids -off-school time" you always have that off. (This is a major restriction at my workplace as 80% of staff are females with school kids).

Now to me this is all very clear, I take what I can get (time-off-wise),and accept that this is just the trade-off while working full-time or at all. You are never going to get all the specific days off that you want. That’s life as a "work-slave”, accept it and move on.

But most of my work colleagues bitch and moan non-stop about this issue. They have kid events, weddings,week-ends away, flights for holidays etc,etc, that they just MUST attend.

They just cannot accept that they cannot get the days off that they want for every event (big or small) in their life. It drives me up the wall. Any strategy that each individual could do extra work to enable more off also falls flat as they feel they should not have to do this either???

Working in the Public sector withers me so much at times, they are so spoon-fed and show absolutely no initiative to helping themselves.

To me as I said, it’s really clear, if they want their time free to do as they like, why don't they do something about it?

When I point out the solution-that if they were not working or had the finances to “early retire” this would not be an issue, they tell me they would "die" if they were at home full-time (of boredom I presume,despite having such a full event schedule that I get to hear about NON-STOP) and would hate it.

Obviously bitching and moaning in collective groups, non-stop is a far superior existence to being free with nothing to bitch and moan about.

MOAN over...

1taskaday
Posts: 350
Joined: Wed Dec 04, 2013 11:45 am
Location: England

Re: The Reluctant Journal

Post by 1taskaday » Sun May 04, 2014 2:15 am

A funny thing has happened.

When I had my kids I realised very quickly that my freedom was at an end and they would be "very" attached to me(or my DH) for at least the first 10 years.

This was a very hard "adaption period" for me as I loved my freedom. But then I loved my kids more and as I had decided to have them-they were my responsibility and I was determined to put them first and do the best that I could raising them.

The most important thing to me (just my opinion for my kids),is that one parent be with them as much as possible-babyminders and crèches just did not do it "FOR ME".

So to alleviate my mental boredom,(because an INTJ needs to be sucking up information constantly and mentally "engaged"),I just studied a different professional qualification. I did this mostly from home,(I worked half time at my job), and am now qualified to work in my area and also another profession.

I chose to stay working in my own area (and not follow the 2nd profession), as it allowed me more time with my kids who are teens now. The not "unusual“path taken by females with their careers.

The dilemma now is that I have seen an ad for a job that will allow me try this "2nd profession" for a year with the same body that I am now working with. I will then be allowed to return to the job that I have now. I could not have imagined a more perfect advert if I had written it myself.

It would give me HUGE experience in this "2nd" profession while working under the same conditions that I now work under.

But the dilemma is why I would go for it when I can earn more money as I am, doing overtime-as far as I know there is no overtime with the new job. If my GOAL is early retirement the job I'm in will get me to retirement quicker, why am I even thinking of applying for it.

My DH thinks that I am nuts, and just afraid of failure...which is definitely part of it.

I have convinced "myself" that I hate my present job but it definitely has huge advantages, such as;

I can wear jeans and a t-shirt to work every day-in the 2nd job I would have to wear suits and heels (Yuck!!).
I never have any appointments/meetings at my present job-if I need to be somewhere with kids I can easily do this-with the 2nd job I may be in another city at a meeting. (My DH says he will manage this).

I will have to network and do "politics" in the 2nd job, mostly with management-in my present one, I do have to manage people but there is only politics with staff below my level not above.

I have an INTJ personality and cannot do "small-talk" or politics very easily. I hate attending any functions unless there is a task involved (to be achieved).If I have to attend even a family gathering, it sits in the diary staring at me-"like a ball and chain", until it is over. I love to be completely free of any appointments etc.

I suppose ultimately I am scared that I will fail and not be able for it...

DutchGirl
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Location: The Netherlands

Re: The Reluctant Journal

Post by DutchGirl » Sun May 04, 2014 2:33 am

Err... You can always apply and say no if you don't want to do it after all :-)

( I would try to learn more about the job than what the ad says, the job interview could be an opportunity to do that).

To me it sounds like an opportunity to improve your life and perhaps to grow some of your skills.

1taskaday
Posts: 350
Joined: Wed Dec 04, 2013 11:45 am
Location: England

Re: The Reluctant Journal

Post by 1taskaday » Sun May 04, 2014 4:56 am

Thanks DutchGirl for the reply and advice (again).

I knew when writing my "dilemma" what the reply from everyone would be-Nothing to lose, everything to gain, why not give it a go for the year?"

But the kernel of the issue is, “When in life do I get to sit on my butt and just BE?"

My aim in life is to become an "Ekhart Tolle" type, in "bliss" just sitting on a park bench BEING...

Why do I want to "climb another mountain"?
Why do I need additional skills?

All that energy and strife again, taking on a new challenge-what about "coasting"?

The thing that has attracted me to ERE, is that people on this forum realise the futility of not "living life to the full".
They realise filling the void within oneself with "consumer goods, career reputations or a hierarchical place in society"etc does not work.

Is filling the void with "new career challenges" just another escape mechanism from facing the basic truth, that in the end everything comes back to trying to find a state of "bliss" or contentment with NOTHING-meaning no EGO, no attatchment,no material possessions.

This is probably too heavy and deep for a lot of people, but my search in life is for peace of mind and contentment with nothing, just "BEING".

I suppose the only people that can answer this question are those who have retired and reached their state of "BLISS" not working for money, or seeking a social or societal reputation.
I have always said that I want to live in the "twilight zone”, outside "normal, conventional" society but yet not as a complete "drop-out".

I am not a "good citizen" and have no care to be one. I do not want to do any "good" causes or change society for the better.
I believe we are here to learn and develop on our own journey in an "internal" way, the ultimate goal,-entering a state of "bliss" or contentment with nothing.

Surely the addiction to challenging oneself eternally in life, is just another “balm” for a restless soul, and keeps us from finding a state of “bliss” or contentment with nothing...that in my humble opinion is the ultimate state to go through life in.

DutchGirl
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Location: The Netherlands

Re: The Reluctant Journal

Post by DutchGirl » Sun May 04, 2014 5:51 am

I probably should have clarified...

I was talking about skills that you need in life, not necessarily in the work force. If this new work challenges you to develop your social skills, I think that that is good, and you can enjoy those improved skills also when you're retired.

I also assumed you studied for this second career path because it interested you? Well, then perhaps spending one remaining year of your work career on this is more fun and could help you cope with the remaining years that you're just working to get to the ERE stage.

Of course I'm not sure whether that is what's happening to you. I don't know you, I don't know what those two job options actually are. But you don't know exactly what the new job would be like, either; that's why I said that you could at least apply for it. And you should ask questions during the job interview (if you're invited). You should try to make sure this job is something that you'd want to do.

Even if, in the end, they offer the job to you: if you feel it's not the best thing for you, I think you can decline and just continue at your current job. No harm done, right?

PS. I'm struggling with the question of whether or not to finish my very annoying PhD thesis, and one of the petty reasons to actually finish it would be to impress others and to be able to compete with the people that I was in high school with (which is 17 years ago). I mean... I aint perfect!

jennypenny
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Re: The Reluctant Journal

Post by jennypenny » Sun May 04, 2014 6:59 am

@1taskaday--Can you build in some time now to just let yourself 'be'? Do you have to wait until you can do it 24/7? Sometimes, it seems like people tend to pursue the work/FI part of ERE to the exclusion of all else thinking that the rest will come once that goal is accomplished. Maybe building in a hour or two of breathing room will give you the mental energy you need to try the new job. If your kids are teens (mine are, too), they are old enough to tell them that [pick a time] is your re-charge time, and unless the house is on fire you aren't to be disturbed.

I understand the hesitation about the 2nd job and your feelings about wanting a parent to 'be there' for the kids. I think the kids' needs change as they get older, though. When they're little, 'being there' means literally being with them as much as possible. Once they're teens, I think being there means having an open line of communication, being a sounding board, and keeping them from making big mistakes while letting them make little mistakes. None of those things requires being with them all of the time. Tell them that the new job will take more time, so they'll have to learn to prioritize what they need from you and speak up if a need isn't being met.

I'm working a lot right now, so my kids and I have to sit down once a week to work out how the coming week will work. They tell me what they need including gear/clothes, rides, homework help, or my attendance at something. We also work out who's responsible for different tasks during the week like garbage, the dogs, and cooking dinner (it's NOT always me) so that we don't waste precious time arguing during the week. If one of us has a particularly busy week, the other three will pick up the slack with the understanding that the favor will be returned. Honestly, my kids seem to like having a say in how the week will go and seeing that I'm trying to be there for all of them and not playing favorites.

All that said, I understand how hard it is to rock the boat when it's sailing along fairly smoothly.

saving-10-years
Posts: 509
Joined: Thu Oct 31, 2013 9:37 am
Location: Warwickshire, UK

Re: The Reluctant Journal

Post by saving-10-years » Mon May 05, 2014 2:07 am

@1taskaday
You say you get more with the current job with overtime but perhaps if you are interested enough in the new job and it pays enough to satisfy your savings plans then it might give you more space to 'just be' in the short term rather than having to wait. You are saving at a faster rate than your husband and this might balance things up? Its also worth considering that if it sounds like the perfect job to you then you could well be the perfect candidate to them? Worth asking whether they will give an extra holiday period (if necessary unpaid) so that you can have some time. Bottom line is that you don't have to take the job and that you know the things that will make you less happy (clothing restrictions). See what you can get from them to balance? Good luck.

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