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What are the downsides and drawbacks of retirement?

Discussion in 'Retirement' started by Startedin82, Aug 13, 2017.

  1. Startedin82

    Startedin82 Established commenter

    You make a great point @Xericist - yes you have plenty of time in retirement - but what to do with it?
  2. dzil

    dzil Occasional commenter

    Thank you for that advice Lizziescat, I am going to adopt that idea it sounds perfect for me.
  3. gymjack

    gymjack New commenter

    A big downside is all the decisions you have to make: when to get up, who you're going to see, what you're going to do .....it's exhausting
  4. gymjack

    gymjack New commenter

    Oh and another thing about retirement, you never get a day off.
  5. Alldone

    Alldone Senior commenter

    Schools going back tomorrow - I still get that nice warm feeling knowing that I won't have to go in. Now, lets see - time to look for some cheap flights. As @gymjack says, its exhausting. Of the three friends who retired with me two years ago, one flies out to Seville next week, one is in France touring the vineyards and another is is Italy in his motor-home.

    If anyone is interested in my earlier post about drinking too much alcohol, socially, as a downside of retirement - it is now 9 weeks since I had an alcoholic drink. I have lost 5kg and almost 2" from the waist.
    Shedman, eljefeb90, emerald52 and 4 others like this.
  6. Startedin82

    Startedin82 Established commenter

    I wonder whether that feeling of not having to go in to school ever wears off? (I've not had the "feeling" yet as I'm still working full time). Do retired Bank Managers or accountants get a similar feeling?
    Alldone likes this.
  7. davidmu

    davidmu Occasional commenter

    I found it very odd to be able to choose what to do each day after retiring. That first September I felt that I was AWOL when holidaying in the Peak District. Next week we are off to the Jurassic coast for ten days.
  8. Sundaytrekker

    Sundaytrekker Star commenter

    When I had a career break when my children were babies, it took me a year to stop thinking about the school day: assembly time, break time, home time etc and five years to stop thinking about the school year: half term, end of term etc. I think it will be similar with retirement.

    Do others get it after a long career? I expect so but the timetabled constraints of the school day and year are unique.
    Startedin82 likes this.
  9. Piranha

    Piranha Star commenter

    Yes, I think it is important to do something, but that depends on your own likes and dislikes. I kept the Maths going with some mentoring on a national scheme and helped run a summer school for gifted students - both voluntary. I also do some work for my local church. I have piano lessons, which gives me something routine to do each day. After a lifetime of being rubbish at sport, I thought I would try running and joined a local club which means I know have more friends of different age groups. Ran my third Marathon yesterday and am surprised at how good I feel today.

    Retirement is great.
  10. Startedin82

    Startedin82 Established commenter

    That's impressive @Piranha. I have run most of my adult life but have never done a full marathon - just halfs. Well done.
    frangipani123 and lindenlea like this.
  11. the hippo

    the hippo Lead commenter Community helper

    There has been quite a lot about retirement leading to the excessive consumption of alcohol. Well, my school in China is going through the nonsense of CIS accreditation and that is a big reason for having another drink (and then another one).
  12. stopwatch

    stopwatch Lead commenter

    I was lucky enough (debatable) to sample retirement in a 10 month spell in UK. I had come back in June 2015 and retired, but another job came up in April 2016 so I have come out to the ME for another 2 years. I will retire properly this Summer/June. I am already drawing my teachers pension.

    What did I learn from that 10 months?

    • It is nice sitting in your living room watching others go to work.
    • Stress levels generally go down/an increased sense of calmness
    • There is a lot more time to fill (although each day does go quickly)
    • You can choose what to do rather than following someone else's agenda
    • You don't have to be polite anymore to snotty people just because you teach their kids/they are your 'superior'
    • The seasons and the dark nights/mornings take on a different, nicer perspective.
    • Boredom can settle in quite quickly.
    • Money is tighter (for most people)
    • Less interaction with others (some days I only saw/spoke to my wife)
    • Loss of identity "I am a teacher - NOT!" "I am retired" doesn't feel quite as 'important' or significant
    • See retirement as your next career and that you have to work at it to make it work - it won't just happen.
    • Don't commit to anything major too early on - leave it at least 6 months to a year before making a definite decision as to what you want to do.
    • Accept that your retirement may have different phases as the years progress - and you will need to adapt and change. The reality is that, post 70 health may impinge on what you can do. Get any lively/active stuff done in the first 10 years and then, if you are still healthy and active you can continue doing so (There can't be anything worse than having the money and time to do stuff, but be unable, physically, to do it)
    • Plan what you are going to do each day/week - like you would have done at work - or you will end up doing nothing much.
    • Plan your finances well. You could live for another 20 to 30 years.
    • Read ' The New Retirementality' by Mitch Anthony. This looks at retirement in the modern age with longer life expectancy
    • Read 'The Happiness Project' by Gretchen Ruben which examines what happiness is and how to find it in simple things.
    • If you like your job - keep doing it - or something similar, but simpler in retirement. I intend continuing swim teaching and coaching when I get back to UK
    A bit of a long post, but I hope it helps :)
  13. eljefeb90

    eljefeb90 Senior commenter

    Great post! I think the recommendations are excellent. I would add that I have found that doing casual/seasonal work is a great way to maintain that human
    contact, as well as supplementing your income. The work is undemanding and stress -free and I can take it or leave it as I choose. I am a fairly recent retiree, but I know more or less how my year will pan out: Exam marking and university invigilating May-June; chasing up the electoral roll Sept-Oct. More invigilation in January and March as well as working about one third of my Saturdays invigilating or helping out at my local theatre.All of these roles I could continue well into my dotage and I earmark the money earned as disposable income, to be frittered away on holidays, meals out and new furniture etc.As I write, I am invigilating an exam and considering what to spend my £55 on.
  14. alfredrussell

    alfredrussell New commenter

    I retired 5 years ago at 58 after 34 years. I was lucky to get a voluntary redundancy package which gave a nice cushion. A colleague turned the opportunity down as he could not think what he was going to do. I actively looked for things to do during my last 4 months once the package was agreed. My pension is OK. I work as a steward with a local events company. I average 40 hours per month and have seen and worked at weird and wonderful events. I have a whole new set of colleagues. Very different from teachers but I have no responsibilities and great fun. I have done a few weeks sub teaching as favours to people I know. It includes a 6 week rescue session for an A2 class. Great fun to deal with intelligent 6th formers who want to work. It's the one bit of teaching I missed. I've been a film extra. I invigilate exams. I do a little tutoring. I cook, I see people. I go out with other retired colleagues whose number is increasing annually.
    I have reached the point where I see myself as a person who used to teach rather than a retired teacher.
    Downsides. Now, after 5 years. none other than a bit of financial planning required, none.
    Upsides. I'm busy, I enjoy my life, I've no stress. Most importantly, I am my own boss. With the retirement of friends, some former colleagues and some not, life is getting better.
  15. eljefeb90

    eljefeb90 Senior commenter

    @alfredrussell what an inspirational post!
    I swore that I would never set foot in a classroom again, not out of any great animus, but after 35 years giving it my best shot, I reckoned I had done enough. I love the feeling of being able to take up or turn down work as and when I like after all the micromanagement and time constraints of teaching.My pension pays the bills and gives us enough to live on. It is the ultimate financial safety net . It is so liberating not being a wage slave any more.
  16. Startedin82

    Startedin82 Established commenter

    The 'i' newspaper yesterday reported a survey of retirees from Prudential. This was a survey of retirees in general not teachers - all had retired in the last decade.

    I have no idea what the sample size was or the methods used to carry out the survey.

    18% reported being more stressed in retirement than when they were at work (newly retired women more likely to feel stressed than men). 13% say that their health has suffered since giving up work.

    Main let downs reported;

    1 Missing work colleagues - missing social interaction at work (35%)
    2 Loss of some of their identity since their work ended (20%)
    3 Financial issues - missing the pay packet (29%)
    4 Adult children still expecting cash subsidies (12%)

    I suppose that the survey also shows that the majority are very happy and content in retirement but I think it shows that for some retirement is not all it is cracked up to be.
  17. Alldone

    Alldone Senior commenter

    Just an update on my post #38. I'm now 14 weeks without an alcoholic drink. Down 10lbs in weight and two inches off the waist. Has made my running a lot faster. Now aiming to get a ripped six pack before Christmas!
    emerald52 and Sundaytrekker like this.
  18. Sundaytrekker

    Sundaytrekker Star commenter

    Well done, Alldone. That’s great progress.
    Alldone likes this.
  19. Piranha

    Piranha Star commenter

    Wow - it took me nearly a year to lose that much weight! But I only cut back on the alcohol rather than giving it up completely. I am now down to the weight I want to be, and am having to eat more to maintain it, which is rather nice. My running has also go a lot faster, but I put that down to practice, as I only started after I retired. My club has just won the county championship, and I actually managed to finish amongst the point scorers in three races. It feels good to finish ahead of runners half my age!
    Alldone likes this.
  20. Alldone

    Alldone Senior commenter

    That's fantastic - just shows you are never to late to start up running. I ran for most of my teaching career - think it kept me sane. When I used to enter 10K and half marathon races I can understand what you are saying about having to eat to keep the weight on as I had to do the same. My wife always used to say I was too skinny. Just run for enjoyment now - every other day.

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