Losing Motivation in Work - 5 Years To Go - Suggestions?

Non-investing personal finance issues including insurance, credit, real estate, taxes, employment and legal issues such as trusts and wills
Topic Author
MrCheapo
Posts: 170
Joined: Tue Dec 22, 2020 3:43 pm

Losing Motivation in Work - 5 Years To Go - Suggestions?

Post by MrCheapo »

I could retire now at 50 but I want to work on until 55 as the health care benefits improve dramatically and the pension I receive quite a bit as well. Those 5 years mean the difference between a great retirement and a very good retirement.

5 more years gets me from 75% company health insurance premium coverage to 100%.
5 more years gets me a $5K pension not a $2.5K pension
5 more years get me another $750K in income.

So the benefits of staying on are huge.

I have a very flexible job where I essentially define my own directions, but quite frankly, I've lost all motivation. Maybe its COVID but I suspect its just the feeling that the end is in sight.

Any suggestions on how to make the next five years enjoyable and not just getting up and counting down the days?
Last edited by MrCheapo on Mon May 10, 2021 3:56 pm, edited 1 time in total.
bwalling
Posts: 270
Joined: Thu Nov 25, 2010 1:04 pm

Re: Losing Motivation in Work - 5 Years To Go - Suggestions?

Post by bwalling »

Mostly replying to "star" the thread. I'm trying to make it until this time next year (very large bonus due) before retiring. And, it is painful.
Gundy
Posts: 30
Joined: Tue Dec 15, 2020 4:08 pm

Re: Losing Motivation in Work - 5 Years To Go - Suggestions?

Post by Gundy »

5 years is a VERY . . LONG . . TIME.

Quit now is best.

I retired too early. Best move I ever made.
I'm a man! I'm 40!
Topic Author
MrCheapo
Posts: 170
Joined: Tue Dec 22, 2020 3:43 pm

Re: Losing Motivation in Work - 5 Years To Go - Suggestions?

Post by MrCheapo »

@bawling, I hear you man. It is painful not just border.
Gundy wrote: Mon May 10, 2021 3:10 pm 5 years is a VERY . . LONG . . TIME.

Quit now is best.

I retired too early. Best move I ever made.
I'd like to but five years means 100% health insurance covered rather than 75%.
Five years means a $5000 a month pension instead of a $2500 a month pension.
Five years means I'll earn an additional $1M in salary (about $750K after taxes).

Not to mention I'm in the prime of my earning time and at 50 have ample time even if I retire at 55 (god willing of course).
Last edited by MrCheapo on Mon May 10, 2021 3:15 pm, edited 1 time in total.
fatcoffeedrinker
Posts: 331
Joined: Mon Mar 23, 2020 2:03 pm

Re: Losing Motivation in Work - 5 Years To Go - Suggestions?

Post by fatcoffeedrinker »

bwalling wrote: Mon May 10, 2021 3:03 pm Mostly replying to "star" the thread. I'm trying to make it until this time next year (very large bonus due) before retiring. And, it is painful.
+1

Trying to make it to fall 2022 or at latest, the end of year 2022. But I plan to give notice at the end of this year and then go into transition mode, so it will be much different next year, however long I stay. So my real countdown is December/January.
Vanguard Fan 1367
Posts: 2078
Joined: Wed Feb 08, 2017 3:09 pm

Re: Losing Motivation in Work - 5 Years To Go - Suggestions?

Post by Vanguard Fan 1367 »

I don't know what your work is. For me taking courses to become more proficient in my work helped me to enjoy it and overcome burnout.
John Bogle: "It's amazing how difficult it is for a man to understand something if he's paid a small fortune not to understand it."
surfstar
Posts: 2640
Joined: Fri Sep 13, 2013 12:17 pm
Location: Santa Barbara, CA

Re: Losing Motivation in Work - 5 Years To Go - Suggestions?

Post by surfstar »

MrCheapo wrote: Mon May 10, 2021 3:14 pm @bawling, I hear you man. It is painful not just border.
Gundy wrote: Mon May 10, 2021 3:10 pm 5 years is a VERY . . LONG . . TIME.

Quit now is best.

I retired too early. Best move I ever made.
I'd like to but five years means 100% health insurance covered rather than 75%.
Five years means a $5000 a month pension instead of a $2500 a month pension.
Five years means I'll earn an additional $1M in salary (about $750K after taxes).

Not to mention I'm in the prime of my earning time and at 50 have ample time even if I retire at 55 (god willing of course).
You'll also be one day older each day you go into (or WFH) work. You'll never be able to retire as young as today.
Golden Handcuffs.

Can you go to part time? 50-80% or something? Longer weekends? We'll be in a similar situation and it will be a question of time vs money. DW just told me that a distant work colleague suddenly passed from a heart attack over the weekend. 50s. Not overweight.

50-55 will be the youngest (AKA PRIME) 5 years you have left on this planet. Choose accordingly.
User avatar
greg24
Posts: 4048
Joined: Tue Feb 20, 2007 10:34 am

Re: Losing Motivation in Work - 5 Years To Go - Suggestions?

Post by greg24 »

Don't look at it as 5 more years. Look at every day as One More Day. If you can survive tomorrow, do it again the day after.
Dandy
Posts: 6524
Joined: Sun Apr 25, 2010 7:42 pm

Re: Losing Motivation in Work - 5 Years To Go - Suggestions?

Post by Dandy »

I would consider a possible 40 year retirement too long. Make sure you have some activities/hobbies/interests that will engage you and hopefully some friends that are also retired. Maybe charity work? If, after careful thought, you think you will not get bored or lazy - go for it.
260chrisb
Posts: 808
Joined: Wed Apr 28, 2010 7:26 pm

Re: Losing Motivation in Work - 5 Years To Go - Suggestions?

Post by 260chrisb »

MrCheapo wrote: Mon May 10, 2021 2:59 pm I could retire now at 50 but I want to work on until 55 as the health care benefits improve dramatically and the pension I receive quite a bit as well. Those 5 years mean the difference between a great retirement and a very good retirement.

I have a very flexible job where I essentially define my own directions, but quite frankly, I've lost all motivation. Maybe its COVID but I suspect its just the feeling that the end is in sight.

Any suggestions on how to make the next five years enjoyable and not just getting up and counting down the days?
I'm not sure how to get you motivated. I'm less than a year away myself and have some of the same issues. I think some of it is Covid fatigue. Keep in mind that very few can retire at 50 so stop thinking about it. Five years is a LONG time to be counting down the days and at 55 having a great retirement is a worthy goal.
lostinjersey
Posts: 272
Joined: Thu Nov 18, 2010 3:29 pm

Re: Losing Motivation in Work - 5 Years To Go - Suggestions?

Post by lostinjersey »

Do you need all the extra money? Or do you have enough as is?

You can always earn more money (well, until you physically can’t, but that’s not your situation). You won’t always have more time, and the early years are the good years when it comes to retirement.
fortunefavored
Posts: 389
Joined: Tue Jun 02, 2015 8:18 pm

Re: Losing Motivation in Work - 5 Years To Go - Suggestions?

Post by fortunefavored »

I was in the same boat 5 years ago and I wish I had better advice for you - it was awful, but golden handcuffs are named that for a reason.

Having a supportive spouse helped. Taking regular vacations helped. Try to make shorter non-work related milestones to look forward to ("In 2 months we'll go camping" "In December we'll go to France" etc.)

Making changes at work didn't do much. I tried new roles, down leveling, ditching management responsibilities, etc. It was still a death march - part of it was loathing for the industry in general (and how it is managed at the executive level) so minor tweaks just were not significant in how I felt about the work.
Topic Author
MrCheapo
Posts: 170
Joined: Tue Dec 22, 2020 3:43 pm

Re: Losing Motivation in Work - 5 Years To Go - Suggestions?

Post by MrCheapo »

fortunefavored wrote: Mon May 10, 2021 3:42 pm I was in the same boat 5 years ago and I wish I had better advice for you - it was awful, but golden handcuffs are named that for a reason.

Having a supportive spouse helped. Taking regular vacations helped. Try to make shorter non-work related milestones to look forward to ("In 2 months we'll go camping" "In December we'll go to France" etc.)

Making changes at work didn't do much. I tried new roles, down leveling, ditching management responsibilities, etc. It was still a death march - part of it was loathing for the industry in general (and how it is managed at the executive level) so minor tweaks just were not significant in how I felt about the work.
Thanks.

Your comments about making changes at work not doing much is my concern. I can't see how I'm going to get through this in 5 years. Even shortening it to 2.5 years means I'm leaving $1.5K a month pension behind 15% health care benefits etc.
User avatar
rob
Posts: 3613
Joined: Mon Feb 19, 2007 6:49 pm
Location: Here

Re: Losing Motivation in Work - 5 Years To Go - Suggestions?

Post by rob »

Is your employer open to some time off without pay while keeping the time in pension etc? If so break into 6 month blocks with a month or so off... of 1/3 year increments with 2-3 weeks in between - you get the idea.... If your employer is still work from home then I would delay that until back in office.

The interest level is hard... I get ya.... side projects that are interesting etc.
| Rob | Its a dangerous business going out your front door. - J.R.R.Tolkien
fortunefavored
Posts: 389
Joined: Tue Jun 02, 2015 8:18 pm

Re: Losing Motivation in Work - 5 Years To Go - Suggestions?

Post by fortunefavored »

MrCheapo wrote: Mon May 10, 2021 4:01 pm
fortunefavored wrote: Mon May 10, 2021 3:42 pm I was in the same boat 5 years ago and I wish I had better advice for you - it was awful, but golden handcuffs are named that for a reason.

Having a supportive spouse helped. Taking regular vacations helped. Try to make shorter non-work related milestones to look forward to ("In 2 months we'll go camping" "In December we'll go to France" etc.)

Making changes at work didn't do much. I tried new roles, down leveling, ditching management responsibilities, etc. It was still a death march - part of it was loathing for the industry in general (and how it is managed at the executive level) so minor tweaks just were not significant in how I felt about the work.
Thanks.

Your comments about making changes at work not doing much is my concern. I can't see how I'm going to get through this in 5 years. Even shortening it to 2.5 years means I'm leaving $1.5K a month pension behind 15% health care benefits etc.
Well, one difference is I needed the money to make the plan work. It sounds like you're just wanting to optimize.. if I was in your shoes, I'd be figuring out what I REALLY needed for a secure retirement.. then aim for that date (which should be shorter) - and then every quarter/year after that is gravy. Again, break things up into small chunks of time.. 5 years sounds daunting, but a couple months at a time is not as bad (or at least, easier to mark off than counting down 1,825 days.)
starboi
Posts: 75
Joined: Fri Apr 23, 2021 11:33 am

Re: Losing Motivation in Work - 5 Years To Go - Suggestions?

Post by starboi »

Not to be a downer, but what happens if company lays you off in year 4.9?
SteadyOne
Posts: 436
Joined: Fri Mar 22, 2019 5:26 pm

Re: Losing Motivation in Work - 5 Years To Go - Suggestions?

Post by SteadyOne »

If it’s not a government job how do you know that your current employer will be there to deliver on what is in fact just promise?
“Every de­duc­tion is al­lowed as a mat­ter of leg­isla­tive grace.” US Federal Court
Mathew675
Posts: 42
Joined: Fri Mar 10, 2017 9:57 am

Re: Losing Motivation in Work - 5 Years To Go - Suggestions?

Post by Mathew675 »

I think you are looking at it wrong, how much do you need to spend in retirement? Can you cover that expense now at a safe withdrawal rate given your current pension vested and savings? Yeah more is better but enough is enough.
Golf maniac
Posts: 816
Joined: Wed Dec 27, 2017 2:02 pm
Location: Florida

Re: Losing Motivation in Work - 5 Years To Go - Suggestions?

Post by Golf maniac »

I was in your shoes 10 years ago. Getting up on Monday’s we’re really tough. I absolutely hated my job. What I tried to do was focus on other things. I did my job but I started exploring what I would do after I retired. I took more vacations, I structured my week ends that I had at least some time to do something I enjoyed. As my name says, I played a lot of golf as it was a stress reliever for me. Even nine holes after work in the summer was a stress reliever. It funny, after I retired golf changed, I didn’t need it to relieve stress and it became more social and more of a fun game.

I would try to hang in there and get your maximum benefits if at all possible. Think of it not as 5 years but look at it in 3 months segments. Always have something to look forward to in that 3 month segment, whether a week end away or something you enjoy. Just say, okay, I need to get to August 2021. Then continue to move the date as you reach each milestone. Best of luck, in 5 years you will not be able to stop smiling.
User avatar
galawdawg
Posts: 2417
Joined: Thu Dec 14, 2017 12:59 pm
Location: Georgia

Re: Losing Motivation in Work - 5 Years To Go - Suggestions?

Post by galawdawg »

You mentioned in a thread last year about possible early retirement that you have:

600K in a MM account.
$100K in various bond funds
$800K in various equity accounts (i.e. SP500)
$1M in 401k retirement accounts ($100K targeted 2025 and $900K for 2035 or later accounts).

So you have over $2.5 million.

And you can retire now at age 50 with a $30k COLA adjusted annual pension and 75% employer paid health coverage or at age 55 with a $60k COLA adjusted annual pension and 100% employer paid health coverage. In the meantime, you earn $200k annually.

Is it possible that your efforts to avoid 'leaving money on the table' are having a negative effect upon your outlook, your motivation, and your drive?

Here's my suggestion: try changing your perspective. You have significant wealth, many options including the ability to retire now, and whether you retire now or later you have a pension and employer-paid health coverage. You are in a position that may not be uncommon among some Bogleheads but is not the norm for 99% of society. The average retirement savings for a person your age is about $100k and very few will be eligible for an employer pension.

So rather than waking up each morning with dread, perhaps you might think about all of the blessings that you have and face each day with a thankful attitude. I have found that counting my blessings (literally writing them down if necessary) will completely change my outlook about the situation and I can approach it with a positive and energetic attitude.

Hope that gives you food for thought! :beer
fatcoffeedrinker
Posts: 331
Joined: Mon Mar 23, 2020 2:03 pm

Re: Losing Motivation in Work - 5 Years To Go - Suggestions?

Post by fatcoffeedrinker »

Golf maniac wrote: Mon May 10, 2021 4:33 pm I was in your shoes 10 years ago. Getting up on Monday’s we’re really tough. I absolutely hated my job. What I tried to do was focus on other things. I did my job but I started exploring what I would do after I retired. I took more vacations, I structured my week ends that I had at least some time to do something I enjoyed. As my name says, I played a lot of golf as it was a stress reliever for me. Even nine holes after work in the summer was a stress reliever. It funny, after I retired golf changed, I didn’t need it to relieve stress and it became more social and more of a fun game.

I would try to hang in there and get your maximum benefits if at all possible. Think of it not as 5 years but look at it in 3 months segments. Always have something to look forward to in that 3 month segment, whether a week end away or something you enjoy. Just say, okay, I need to get to August 2021. Then continue to move the date as you reach each milestone. Best of luck, in 5 years you will not be able to stop smiling.
This is what I do. Look forward to what you have planned for non-work events. We're going for a long camping weekend for Father's Day. Then Maui for 10 days in mid-July. Then we'll plan something for Labor Day to look forward to. And I'm trying to be more active on weekends with the reopening now happening so that the weekdays are bookended by fun things.
User avatar
JoeRetire
Posts: 8315
Joined: Tue Jan 16, 2018 2:44 pm

Re: Losing Motivation in Work - 5 Years To Go - Suggestions?

Post by JoeRetire »

MrCheapo wrote: Mon May 10, 2021 2:59 pm Any suggestions on how to make the next five years enjoyable and not just getting up and counting down the days?
When you wake up each day, remind yourself that you are staying for the health care benefits and the pension.

We each get to decide what is important to us. And we all gain motivation from different factors.
Just remember: it's not a lie if you believe it.
SR7
Posts: 67
Joined: Fri May 15, 2020 4:06 am
Location: Down Under

Re: Losing Motivation in Work - 5 Years To Go - Suggestions?

Post by SR7 »

Start by planning and then taking a nice vacation. I also find a bit of exercise after work clears my head and puts me in a different mind set, this is much better and healthier than a stiff drink.

You are probably planning some hobbies and activities in retirement, maybe it’s time to kick these off now, after work or on the weekend. Maybe some charity work.

Focus on getting motivated for life, then let that flow into work. In five years pull the plug and walk out the door and ramp up all the hobbies you have started and the new friendship groups you created.
I studied Physics not Finance, so best to ignore anything I say about money.
User avatar
Toons
Posts: 14062
Joined: Fri Nov 21, 2008 10:20 am
Location: Hills of Tennessee

Re: Losing Motivation in Work - 5 Years To Go - Suggestions?

Post by Toons »

"Any suggestions on how to make the next five years enjoyable and not just getting up and counting down the days"

When you wake up,
Treat the day as though it is your last day on Earth.
Act Accordingly.





:wink:
"One does not accumulate but eliminate. It is not daily increase but daily decrease. The height of cultivation always runs to simplicity" –Bruce Lee
Mr. Rumples
Posts: 1246
Joined: Sun Aug 25, 2019 7:16 am

Re: Losing Motivation in Work - 5 Years To Go - Suggestions?

Post by Mr. Rumples »

When I had five years left, I made table with 60 boxes. Every month I would fill one in. Then, I would use my accumulated leave to take every Wednesday afternoon off...really it was just three hours since I came in at 7:00 and would leave at 12:00.

But I also liked the folks I worked with so that helped. It also helped that having been there for over two decades when I got bored, all I had to do was wait for someone to bring me a problem to solve or work on. Being willing to help and share knowledge helped me get onto special projects; I was eventually asked to handle a special project that no one wanted - I loved it and it carried me for the last two+ years.
Last edited by Mr. Rumples on Mon May 10, 2021 5:11 pm, edited 2 times in total.
rich126
Posts: 2763
Joined: Thu Mar 01, 2018 4:56 pm

Re: Losing Motivation in Work - 5 Years To Go - Suggestions?

Post by rich126 »

This is really common in the government. I've seen people with countdown counters years ahead of time. I'd suggest not think in terms of years but just take a week at a time.

Any chance to transfer to a new office?

I'm not sure how this could be applied here but I used to ski a lot but wasn't good and didn't like heights. At times from the top of the slope I'd look down at the trail and the village at the bottom and would go "Oh, geez." Then I would just keep my attention to 20 or so yards in front of me (enough not to cause any accidents) and before I knew it, I was at the bottom.

Can you reduce your schedule? I'm currently working three 9 hr days and it is great. By the time work really aggravates me, it is my weekend. And since my weekend is now 4 days, it is easy to forget everything annoying and start fresh the next week. Obviously I'm losing some pay but since I have no debt right now, I can still max out my savings and have enough to make do.
Thesaints
Posts: 4112
Joined: Tue Jun 20, 2017 12:25 am

Re: Losing Motivation in Work - 5 Years To Go - Suggestions?

Post by Thesaints »

Any work is a lot more bearable for the person who does not need to work.
THY4373
Posts: 1461
Joined: Thu Mar 22, 2012 3:17 pm

Re: Losing Motivation in Work - 5 Years To Go - Suggestions?

Post by THY4373 »

OP I am nearly in the same boat as you. I am bit older (51) and my retiree health benefits are all or nothing at 55 but otherwise we are two peas in a pod so to speak on this. I have 3.5 years left more or less and my motivation has really left me. I personally haven't found a solution yet but I am considering changing teams to mix things up as I have been doing the same thing more or less for 10 years while also possibly downshifting some. I am also considering some external development as mentioned my others which has helped me get motivated in the past but work is pretty intense of late and I have a kid heading to college which I am doing a lot of work with on the side to get him prepped and all that.

I think part of my recent issues is the lack of vacation in two years. I have been doing 2-3 international trips a year and that has kept me going but none since June 2019. This fall is looking up however and that is helping some now.
congruentsea
Posts: 20
Joined: Sat Dec 15, 2018 1:01 pm

Re: Losing Motivation in Work - 5 Years To Go - Suggestions?

Post by congruentsea »

I am in the same place as many others in this thread. Maybe not 5 yrs away but hopefully <2yrs. Glad to see other perspectives and coping strategies.

As others have suggested, I tend do better when I can break things down in smaller increments or have something to look forward to. My wife says work in between vacations.
Topic Author
MrCheapo
Posts: 170
Joined: Tue Dec 22, 2020 3:43 pm

Re: Losing Motivation in Work - 5 Years To Go - Suggestions?

Post by MrCheapo »

Thank you. That was very insightful and I agree counting blessing is a great idea.

As to why I continue to work? Because as an immigrant I have no family here so if god forbid I need extended care in my old age I'm going to have to pay for it. I don't want to be a burden on my children so I hope to make enough to write away that situation.
galawdawg wrote: Mon May 10, 2021 4:49 pm You mentioned in a thread last year about possible early retirement that you have:

600K in a MM account.
$100K in various bond funds
$800K in various equity accounts (i.e. SP500)
$1M in 401k retirement accounts ($100K targeted 2025 and $900K for 2035 or later accounts).

So you have over $2.5 million.

And you can retire now at age 50 with a $30k COLA adjusted annual pension and 75% employer paid health coverage or at age 55 with a $60k COLA adjusted annual pension and 100% employer paid health coverage. In the meantime, you earn $200k annually.

Is it possible that your efforts to avoid 'leaving money on the table' are having a negative effect upon your outlook, your motivation, and your drive?

Here's my suggestion: try changing your perspective. You have significant wealth, many options including the ability to retire now, and whether you retire now or later you have a pension and employer-paid health coverage. You are in a position that may not be uncommon among some Bogleheads but is not the norm for 99% of society. The average retirement savings for a person your age is about $100k and very few will be eligible for an employer pension.

So rather than waking up each morning with dread, perhaps you might think about all of the blessings that you have and face each day with a thankful attitude. I have found that counting my blessings (literally writing them down if necessary) will completely change my outlook about the situation and I can approach it with a positive and energetic attitude.

Hope that gives you food for thought! :beer
bltn
Posts: 1152
Joined: Mon Feb 20, 2017 9:32 pm

Re: Losing Motivation in Work - 5 Years To Go - Suggestions?

Post by bltn »

galawdawg wrote: Mon May 10, 2021 4:49 pm You mentioned in a thread last year about possible early retirement that you have:

600K in a MM account.
$100K in various bond funds
$800K in various equity accounts (i.e. SP500)
$1M in 401k retirement accounts ($100K targeted 2025 and $900K for 2035 or later accounts).

So you have over $2.5 million.

And you can retire now at age 50 with a $30k COLA adjusted annual pension and 75% employer paid health coverage or at age 55 with a $60k COLA adjusted annual pension and 100% employer paid health coverage. In the meantime, you earn $200k annually.

Is it possible that your efforts to avoid 'leaving money on the table' are having a negative effect upon your outlook, your motivation, and your drive?

Here's my suggestion: try changing your perspective. You have significant wealth, many options including the ability to retire now, and whether you retire now or later you have a pension and employer-paid health coverage. You are in a position that may not be uncommon among some Bogleheads but is not the norm for 99% of society. The average retirement savings for a person your age is about $100k and very few will be eligible for an employer pension.

So rather than waking up each morning with dread, perhaps you might think about all of the blessings that you have and face each day with a thankful attitude. I have found that counting my blessings (literally writing them down if necessary) will completely change my outlook about the situation and I can approach it with a positive and energetic attitude.

Hope that gives you food for thought! :beer
I think this is excellent advice.

You have the freedom to retire when you want to. By working a job electively for the next five years, you are providing yourself a much more secure financial future with a higher financial quality of life. And a feeling of control with your job, knowing that you can quit when you want.

It seems that with this backloading of benefits, the company values their competent, experienced employees. My son in law, a software engineer for a FAANG, is feeling pressure from his company as it continues to bring in young replacements for his colleagues who seem encouraged to leave. And he is in his mid 30 s. Realize how important it is to be valued at your job.
User avatar
gobel
Posts: 173
Joined: Mon Feb 08, 2021 4:50 pm

Re: Losing Motivation in Work - 5 Years To Go - Suggestions?

Post by gobel »

MrCheapo wrote: Mon May 10, 2021 2:59 pm 5 more years gets me from 75% company health insurance premium coverage to 100%.
5 more years gets me a $5K pension not a $2.5K pension
5 more years get me another $750K in income.
When do these start? ie if you retire today, do they start today? That's 5 years of extra pension and healthcare.

However, if they both start later no matter when you retire, then estimate how many years of collecting (eg 30 years) and multiply out the difference to see how much you are giving up. If that number is big enough, you will find motivation.

(IMO don't count item 3 though, since after all you are working for those 5 years of wages. It's the benefits that count as the bonus)
mvitulano
Posts: 4
Joined: Wed Apr 28, 2021 8:20 pm

How to take a mini retirement

Post by mvitulano »

I may do a separate thread about this with more financial details. I have twice in my life taken mini-retirements. First, I quit my job after saving up some money and cashing out PTO. Then I rented out my apartment by placing an ad and drawing up a sublet agreement. I stored my belongings in boxes a friend’s basement while keeping the apartment furnished. Then I traveled for three months. The second time, I did this I quit my job, and gave up the lease on my apartment, and traveled for 1.5 years. Anyone else?
Last edited by mvitulano on Mon May 10, 2021 8:30 pm, edited 1 time in total.
J295
Posts: 2943
Joined: Sun Jan 01, 2012 11:40 pm

Re: Losing Motivation in Work - 5 Years To Go - Suggestions?

Post by J295 »

Galawdawg offers valuable comments and direct response to the question.

Not responding directly to your question on how to make the next five years enjoyable but will note that when I retired eight years ago at 53 I did not let the insurance tail wag the dog, and I was completely comfortable with giving up the revenue from my peak earning years in exchange for my time.
Last edited by J295 on Mon May 10, 2021 9:42 pm, edited 1 time in total.
trufflepig
Posts: 22
Joined: Wed Dec 02, 2015 9:31 pm

Re: Losing Motivation in Work - 5 Years To Go - Suggestions?

Post by trufflepig »

I'm in a similar situation and have had a really hard time motivating myself at work. I appreciate some of the suggestions offered here - keep them coming! I recently dropped my hours from 40/week to 32/week and am hoping that will help but it's a little too early to tell. Another option could be a role where you can mentor younger people and get some sense of accomplishment from their success. I know my feeling of accomplishment from completing tasks/projects is um....waning.

I think the only real answer is just coming to an acceptance and appreciation that for most, a job is a means to an end, and you could easily have one that is worse. Easier said than done....
forkhorn
Posts: 189
Joined: Fri Mar 14, 2014 9:00 pm

Re: Losing Motivation in Work - 5 Years To Go - Suggestions?

Post by forkhorn »

I'm not seriously considering quitting but financially it's almost certainly possible. I'm a fed, so I do still think about the golden handcuffs over a decade in the future, but I increasingly think about non-financial reasons I keep putting up with the work frustrations, such as:

Setting an example for my young kids.
Confidence that people need what I can do, and I do it pretty well.
Lack of confidence that I would not resort to being lazy (I'm in my mid 40s and don't know who we'd hang out with during the week).
Enjoying the workplace camaraderie / work friends.

Perhaps you can find some non-financial reasons as well. If not, I wouldn't wait 5 more years to get perhaps an extra $25k/year ($30k - taxes, plus a few k extra for the additional health insurance subsidy) if you're already set.
MathWizard
Posts: 4820
Joined: Tue Jul 26, 2011 1:35 pm

Re: Losing Motivation in Work - 5 Years To Go - Suggestions?

Post by MathWizard »

I've lost quite a bit of motivation, and I think has a lot to do with losing the social aspect of work over the last year.

I've spent over a year in my basement, managing employees and having meetings on Zoom/WebEx , working in isolation, and really seeing almost nobody but my wife and kids.

The lack of casual conversations which are not completely work related can easily lead to burn out.

If you're vaccinated, I'd suggest visiting people, and a vacation to clear your head. You may come back with a better sense if purpose.

My family is organizing a reunion in a little over a month, and I am really looking forward to it.
tibbitts
Posts: 13957
Joined: Tue Feb 27, 2007 6:50 pm

Re: Losing Motivation in Work - 5 Years To Go - Suggestions?

Post by tibbitts »

MrCheapo wrote: Mon May 10, 2021 2:59 pm I could retire now at 50 but I want to work on until 55 as the health care benefits improve dramatically and the pension I receive quite a bit as well. Those 5 years mean the difference between a great retirement and a very good retirement.

5 more years gets me from 75% company health insurance premium coverage to 100%.
5 more years gets me a $5K pension not a $2.5K pension
5 more years get me another $750K in income.

So the benefits of staying on are huge.

I have a very flexible job where I essentially define my own directions, but quite frankly, I've lost all motivation. Maybe its COVID but I suspect its just the feeling that the end is in sight.

Any suggestions on how to make the next five years enjoyable and not just getting up and counting down the days?
Are you not motivated because you have other things you want to be doing? Or because you don't see anything at work that needs to be done? Or because you can see things that need to be done but don't feel capable of doing them? I worked at my last job for ten years, and until the last few months I felt I was pretty motivated. Certainly I felt motivated five years out. We can't know your work situation to provide any insight as to why you're not motivated, so you have to provide some idea of that.
Escapevelocity
Posts: 597
Joined: Mon Feb 18, 2019 8:32 am

Re: Losing Motivation in Work - 5 Years To Go - Suggestions?

Post by Escapevelocity »

I'm 54 years old and will be retiring next Spring. looking at this question in a cold hard light, for me, I reached the point on the corporate ladder around age 46-47 where it became apparent that I had reached my potential in terms of influence and level of authority in my organization and subsequently gradually and steadily lost interest.

I've been LITERALLY counting the days until retirement for the past 7 years.....every.....single.....day.

In a perfect world, I would have pivoted into a new company or even a new career. The reality is that companies build mechanisms (golden handcuffs) that economically incentivize you to stick it out and then inertia sets in. I take full responsibility for this and do not blame anyone or my employer. This proved to be a great decision financially speaking as my net worth doubled in the last 4 years of my career even as my job effectiveness dwindled due to increasing pay, stock options and RSUs buoyed by a huge and fortunate timing of my company's stock price.
chazas
Posts: 241
Joined: Wed Nov 01, 2017 1:22 pm

Re: Losing Motivation in Work - 5 Years To Go - Suggestions?

Post by chazas »

I can completely relate to this. I’m 60 and realistically those last few years will make things much more certain - no pension or retiree healthcare, just another $800k or even $1m in brute savings if I can stay disciplined. My ex and I were pretty set but divorce happened. So now it means the difference between an acceptable retirement and a really nice one. But my career has peaked, and I’m burned out. No idea how long I’ll actually be able to make it.
WhyNotUs
Posts: 1988
Joined: Sun Apr 14, 2013 11:38 am

Re: Losing Motivation in Work - 5 Years To Go - Suggestions?

Post by WhyNotUs »

In addition to LawDogs prescription, I would add that it is a great time to start advancing personal interests that will lead to a happy retirement. Someone with great success is likely to have dedicated time and effort to their work and may have had under-developed interests due to their work focus. A friend of mine just hit the stage in his first guitar concert, another just had their first art show, some people will start to deepen faith or a meditation practice. All of those can happen while working and over the next few years you can build capacity and a network for having fun in retirement.

Fortunately, for you, you could also retire :happy
I own the next hot stock- VTSAX
WyomingFIRE
Posts: 92
Joined: Wed Sep 12, 2018 10:44 am

Re: Losing Motivation in Work - 5 Years To Go - Suggestions?

Post by WyomingFIRE »

deleted
Last edited by WyomingFIRE on Sun May 16, 2021 4:14 pm, edited 1 time in total.
simas
Posts: 997
Joined: Wed Apr 04, 2007 5:50 pm

Re: Losing Motivation in Work - 5 Years To Go - Suggestions?

Post by simas »

MrCheapo wrote: Mon May 10, 2021 2:59 pm I could retire now at 50 but I want to work on until 55 as the health care benefits improve dramatically and the pension I receive quite a bit as well. Those 5 years mean the difference between a great retirement and a very good retirement.

5 more years gets me from 75% company health insurance premium coverage to 100%.
5 more years gets me a $5K pension not a $2.5K pension
5 more years get me another $750K in income.

So the benefits of staying on are huge.

I have a very flexible job where I essentially define my own directions, but quite frankly, I've lost all motivation. Maybe its COVID but I suspect its just the feeling that the end is in sight.

Any suggestions on how to make the next five years enjoyable and not just getting up and counting down the days?
Find something that brings you joy and be doing it/engaged in it.
MishkaWorries
Posts: 949
Joined: Wed Aug 14, 2019 4:39 pm

Re: Losing Motivation in Work - 5 Years To Go - Suggestions?

Post by MishkaWorries »

MrCheapo wrote: Mon May 10, 2021 2:59 pm Those 5 years mean the difference between a great retirement and a very good retirement.
Your answer is in there. Do you want a great retirement or a really good retirement? Is five more years worth the increase in the quality of retirement?

On one hand it's only 5 years. You'll be surprised at how fast it goes. Especially if you are taking concrete steps towards retirement. From 50-55 was just like 35-50. After 55 a stated to feel the years a little bit but not enough to change my lifestyle.
We plan. G-d laughs.
Nowizard
Posts: 3383
Joined: Tue Oct 23, 2007 5:33 pm

Re: Losing Motivation in Work - 5 Years To Go - Suggestions?

Post by Nowizard »

It is natural, I think, to begin to feel tired and looking forward to the next phase of life when approaching the ability to retire or the desire to do so. It is a mixed bag of greater awareness of all the things you no longer want to do and the beginning of planning for what comes next. One important aspect is to overwhelm the increasing desire to get away to something else and recognize that you can do the physical work without the same emotional commitment to it. Moving to PT, if possible, is one option, but begin to plan for the next phase, implementing it in ways that are possible, including things as simple as leaving work somewhat earlier, purchasing fewer work clothes or other things that might not even be noticed by colleagues. Others have made more immediate suggestions regarding actual retirement, but it is also important to have a general idea of what you are going to, not just what you are getting away from.

Tim
User avatar
Reb Tevye
Posts: 162
Joined: Sun Aug 17, 2014 11:54 am
Location: On the roof

Re: Losing Motivation in Work - 5 Years To Go - Suggestions?

Post by Reb Tevye »

fortunefavored wrote: Mon May 10, 2021 3:42 pm Try to make shorter non-work related milestones to look forward to ("In 2 months we'll go camping" "In December we'll go to France" etc.)
This. 110%.
If you could retire now, then everything you save and earn month-by-month is gravy.

Eat some of the gravy and spend some of the gravy.

Buy an e-bike and go ebiking every weekend for the next month.
Join some vaccinated MeetUp groups.
Help get people with no car to vaccination sites.
Book a GREAT weekend somewhere within 1-3 hrs drive for each of the next 6 months TOMORROW.
Buy a pressure washer today.
Go kick the tires on an RV that you aren’t going to buy yet.

Basically, act as much like a retiree now as you can.
"So, what would have been so terrible if I had a small fortune?"
poker27
Posts: 889
Joined: Mon Apr 01, 2013 2:48 pm

Re: Losing Motivation in Work - 5 Years To Go - Suggestions?

Post by poker27 »

Not in your situation today, but if you are already FI, what are you going to spend the extra $ on? First class travel? Vacation house? Hobbies? If the answer is 'you dont know', or 'nothing', you should consider retiring now. Money is useless, unless you spend/enjoy it.

If I was close ish to retirement, WFH, and needed to keep the motivation... I would rent a beach front condo, or something in the mountains, to keep it fresh and interesting
DSBH
Posts: 219
Joined: Tue Jul 21, 2020 3:31 pm
Location: Texas

Re: Losing Motivation in Work - 5 Years To Go - Suggestions?

Post by DSBH »

MrCheapo wrote: Mon May 10, 2021 2:59 pm I could retire now at 50 but I want to work on until 55 as the health care benefits improve dramatically and the pension I receive quite a bit as well. Those 5 years mean the difference between a great retirement and a very good retirement.

5 more years gets me from 75% company health insurance premium coverage to 100%.
5 more years gets me a $5K pension not a $2.5K pension
5 more years get me another $750K in income.

So the benefits of staying on are huge.
...
You may have up to 40 or more years of retirement after 55, and I think it’s worth 5 more years on investing in work to make it a great retirement. In the next 5 years you can plan for 40+ years of financial and physical health, and pick up a few hobbies for before and after retirement, and/or whatever makes you happier. If I were in your shoes I would count my blessings and keep working for 5 more years.
John C. Bogle: "Never confuse genius with luck and a bull market".
mr_brightside
Posts: 390
Joined: Sat Oct 17, 2020 3:23 pm

Re: Losing Motivation in Work - 5 Years To Go - Suggestions?

Post by mr_brightside »

sorry can't help you

I just informed my boss I'm outta here at the end of the month. (early 50s...been with this megacorp 20+ years)

every day I wake up I'm a little bit happier. every time I think of some stressor I remind myself : 'not my problem anymore...'

finances look good -- wife is 110% on board so we'll figure it out. good luck --

-----------------------------------------------------
humbledinvestor
Posts: 208
Joined: Mon Jul 14, 2014 3:37 pm

Re: Losing Motivation in Work - 5 Years To Go - Suggestions?

Post by humbledinvestor »

You are in a good spot overall OP.

I am 50 and losing motivation. But I have no choice but to keep going until 65. My finances got wrecked in a divorce. Just to get your level of wealth it will take me until 60 (if markets perform). If not I have to push it until 65. But I still have it good, could be worse. My parents brought us here as immigrants when they were 50. They had no money to speak of and had to work in tough jobs for 15 years to make it. There was no choice.

In my opinion 5 years will fly by! Enjoy life when not at work, and work to the best of your ability during work hours.

As some said earlier - enjoy each day and take it one day at a time.
Post Reply