This is a guest post by Dave, who is also looking to retire no later than 45, but unlike Tim has no kids and doesn’t want any. Dave is from Ontario and is working towards his CGA certification.
I wrote a couple of months ago about a possible job opportunity as a manager. I decided to not go for that job, but in the meantime I was unsuccessful in an additional job I did apply for, not as a manager (I was told I didn’t have enough experience to do it).
I have a friend who just started working for my company a couple of weeks ago, at a position I held three years ago. He (at age 30) had just graduated from school and is starting his second career. Where I’m kind of looking to change jobs or companies, he couldn’t be happier starting a new job. He’s coming from working as a cook where he had erratic hours for a relatively small amount of money. He’s ecstatic to be working a consistent daytime job that has benefits and a pension as well as vacation days.
I think that all I need, and all that most people need is a little bit of perspective. My first job was working in a chicken barn, gathering eggs. It was a dusty, smelly job which I really wouldn’t wish on anyone. I was paid piecemeal, at 3.8 cents per dozen eggs I gathered. For an 11 or 12 year old kid, the few hundred dollars a week was huge cash, I just had to smell like a chicken barn for a couple of days a week and skip around the odd rat at my feet (I really hate rats).
I think it was Nelson who wrote a few months ago (although I may be wrong) about how people get so worked up about their happiness and work. I mean, I’m not going into a coal mine every morning. I sit at a desk and try to solve accounting problems and write letters all day. All I would be trading my current job of solving “number problems” for would be for more of the same.
I’m sure if I continuously changed jobs, I would probably always get over the “honeymoon” stage and think there’s something better somewhere else. I’ve changed jobs three times now in the last 5 years and it really hasn’t increased or decreased my day to day happiness all that much. I just don’t think that I would be overly excited about any place that I had to go to for a certain number of hours per week, whether it was this job or another job.
I think that what draws me the most to early retirement is the realization that I don’t really think I want to work anywhere. I mean it’s laziness to a point, but really it’s about choice. For now, I can choose the job I want to do, but I still need to earn a paycheque.
What do you do when the glamour is over with your job you were previously super excited about? Do you move on to the next one, or stick it out?