Do I miss having a career?

I was always one of those people who gave my job everything, and I did ok on the career ladder in my time. However, this was despite a real lack of self confidence and there were days where I doubted my abilities – I have been known to make myself sick over work, which looking back, was really stupid! Lots of people commented to me that they thought I would really miss working, as I learned to project a certain image to the outside world.

I was thinking about it the other day, and it occurred to me that you hear about people who struggle after retirement … sometimes feeling bored, or that they’re no longer contributing anything meaningful. Some people thought this would be me …

Other than the 18 months when I was teaching part time here, the last time I had a proper job was December 2018, so I thought I’d give my take on retirement so far.

Of course, we’re not doing retirement in a normal or conventional way (no change there then!), and there’s always lots to do here on the finca, but retirement it is (minus the pensions, happy to say we’re too young for those 😂). There’s absolutely no way we could’ve retired this early without making the move we did.

I started my first job at the age of 12, working in an off licence, and then at 15 combined that with working at Sainsburys at the weekends and in the holidays, and any spare time where there was no work at Sainsburys was spent temping. At 18 I left school and went to work full time, and other than a few months maternity leave in 1990 I’ve worked full time all the way through. I’ve been lucky enough to work with some fabulous people and companies over the years, and am grateful to certain people who have me so many opportunities. Now though, I think I’ve done my bit, paid my fair share of taxes etc!

So, what’s good about retirement … although we still set an alarm in the morning to sort the dogs and chickens, we could go back to bed if we really want to … napping in the afternoon is heaven … we can stay up until whatever time we like on a school night… (there are no school nights anymore) … we get to do things that we love and that make us happy … and, very importantly, we get to spend time together – something that was severely lacking in our old life. Then there’s being able to be a bit scruffy all the time, not having to wear makeup or high heels, having time to walk the dogs when it’s still light, having time to cook our favourite dinners … the list goes on! I think it can be summed up in one word … FREEDOM!

On the downside ….. hmmmm … well ….. errrrr … oh yea, there’s no monthly salary going in the bank 😂 Living off savings can be a bit nervie – you see it going down each month and never going up again 😂😂. But really, that’s it, the only negative I can think of!

Some people say they get lonely and bored after retirement. Well, I spent the last 15 years working on the road or at home as a rep, which can get soooo lonely. And as for being bored … my goodness, the world is your oyster! I’ve learned so many new things since we moved here, and restarted hobbies that I enjoyed years ago too – crochet, embroidery, cooking, reading, doing the blog, and that’s before we even consider all the farming side of our life! Before moving here I didn’t know how to look after trees, grow veg, rotavate, use a chain saw, put up fencing, look after chickens, preserve food ….

I would honestly not have time to go to work again now!

So my message to anyone who is struggling with retirement, or wondering what they will do with themselves when the day comes is this …

What are you waiting for??? It’s fabulous!

A famous quote: ‘It comes down to a simple choice really: get busy living or get busy dying’

My favourite animal – I couldn’t resist!

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