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Retirement panic

(30 Posts)
Helenlouise3 Mon 03-Oct-22 13:48:01

Today marks the first day of my retirement. I've worked for 45 years, the last 30 of which have been in a Primary school classroom. I've been so looking forward to this day for a few months and now it's arrived, I'm almost at the panic attack stage. I love walking, knitting and crochet, doing jigsaws and reading, apart from spending time with my 6 grandchildren. I've more than enough to fill my days but this feeling of panic isn't nice.

kittylester Mon 03-Oct-22 13:59:55

Lots of people find it helpful to organise things 'to hang their week on'. That might be a day when you volunteer, go on a course, join a group that interests you. Something that has a definite day and time in your week.

Enjoy your retirement.

Humbertbear Mon 03-Oct-22 14:02:16

Nothing to panic about. Join a walking group and knit n Natter. Find your local U3A. You will be fine. Relax and wnjoy

nanaK54 Mon 03-Oct-22 16:52:52

It will take time to adjust, but you will and then enjoy, enjoy, enjoy!

sodapop Mon 03-Oct-22 16:53:47

I agree with kittylester have some organised time in your week Helenlouise but take time out just to relax and smell the roses. You don't have to fill every minute of every day. Enjoy wine or two.

M0nica Mon 03-Oct-22 17:32:40

That first day, always is frightening. Suddenly, ts happened, you are a pensioner, what do you do next.

It is a bit late now, but it helps to go away for the first few days so you can pretend it is a holiday and the first few days when you get back are a few more days off before you go back to work, and also to have already been in contact with no more than two organisations that interest you.

It is the beginning of the academic year, see what classes your local authority offers, they may have started but it is still not too late to signup. My college offers classes in sewing knitting crochet, jewellry making and a host of other subjects. It will give you one day a week with a definite regular engagement.

Septimia Mon 03-Oct-22 18:12:51

You've been used to a routine and having to do certain things at certain times (whether you wanted to or not!).

Perhaps it would help if you set yourself a simple routine so that you know what you're doing. The good thing about it will be that you can vary it if you want to!

Germanshepherdsmum Mon 03-Oct-22 18:15:11

Gosh, I was so grateful to retire. I was worn out. I certainly didn’t panic! However, some structure to your days might be helpful. Maybe get a rescue dog which will instil routine in terms of walking and feeding?

silverlining48 Mon 03-Oct-22 18:34:46

Not so easy to rescue a dog, we tried for two years before giving up.
However it’s early days of course it’s strange but you have had some good advice and mine would be must to take time for yourself to get used to the idea you are now retired after so many years.
Won’t be long before you wonder how
You found the time to go to work.

Cheesey Mon 03-Oct-22 18:45:46

I was fortunate to be able to retire at 59 after working full time for 43 years and I felt I was more than ready for it. The first day though felt really strange, as you say OP a sense of panic, what am I doing? I am far too young to retire!
It does take a while to get the job out of your system and to realise that after working so hard and paying into your pension all those years you truly deserve it.
Now I absolutely love the freedom and the fact that your time is your own. Seven years on the thought of going back to work horrifies me.

Kim19 Mon 03-Oct-22 19:22:13

I fully understand your panic but it will soon turn to joy. As Monica says, it's a pity you hadn't organised an immediate wee holiday to ease yourself in. I phased myself in by doing fewer hours each week for three months and building in some gentle voluntary stuff. Fully retired from everything now. Bliss.?

biglouis Sat 08-Oct-22 01:14:35

I dont really know what "retirement" is. I was an academic and for several years and drew my state pension in 2004. I continued to do some consultancy and research work for colleagues at the uni to bring in some extra income.

I had already been selling vintage on Ebay for some years as a side husstle and then gradually opened more shops and built it into a business. It gives structure to my day as I plan around a list of tasks I hope to achieve. I dont always get through all of them. Nor do I sit around from 9-5 as selling online does not have time limits. Sales come in while Im asleep and when I wake up I send the invoices or pick the orders.

Just taken the entire month of september off and will be taking 4 weeks off at christmas. Took April off as well.

I sometimes feel I envy other retired people I know who just potter or watch daytime Tv or Netflix. Living life on a low level without the worry of demanding customers or things going astray in the international mail. However I would quickly become very bored. I enjoy a challenge.

Madgran77 Sat 08-Oct-22 16:48:19

Before you leap into things zir down and think about what you really want to do, are interested in, how you really want to use this time. Then think about your options for yhose goings and fo some local research on what is out tgere that is relevant. And avoid filling every hour of every day, or you will have no time for those lovely spontaneous hints with friends etc that tend to pop up on occasions!! Enjoy!?

Madgran77 Sat 08-Oct-22 16:49:45

Spontaneous "treats" not "hints" ?

Nannarose Sat 08-Oct-22 16:57:40

I have no hints, we are all so different; but I do want to thank you for the service you have given. Whatever else you do, you can be proud of your contribution.

Hetty58 Sat 08-Oct-22 17:05:43

Helenlouise3, I knew I'd take time to adjust but was surprised by my own reactions to so much free time. All those things I planned to do 'later' - I still didn't feel like doing. Guilt set in as my excuse had gone. The books remained unread. I didn't miss work or teaching one jot. I loved spending whole days in the garden and walking the dog. I didn't want to holiday, go riding/swimming/skiing - or see more of friends and family. I joined a group of retired teacher (for lunch time meet ups and activities - and was bored rigid. I looked into volunteering but couldn't bear to commit myself. Now, I've found a new love and appreciation for the little things in life, the newly noticed details, the peace and quiet. I hopped off the merry-go-round and I'm so happy!

Marilla Sat 08-Oct-22 17:25:27

Hetty58 I did enjoy reading your comments on your experience of retirement so far. I retired from teaching five years ago and have no desire to volunteer, join groups of strangers for activities etc. I am much more content looking after my grandson a few days each week and for the rest of the time enjoying peace and quiet. Like you it’s the small pleasures which make me happiest.

Harriet4 Wed 26-Oct-22 23:37:58

I semi retired at 58, took my NHS pension then returned on 3 days until last year when I left my job. I then got involved with the covid vaccine team locally working 4 days a week. That finished in January this year and I started to panic about retirement.
It is a very strange feeling, loss of earnings, loss of having a purpose, loss of having a reason to get up in the morning and loss of routine after so many years.
My husband was lucky and decided to retire early at 53 yrs and he made the adjustment easily. It’s been much harder for me. It’s not that I don’t have anything to do. I go to a pottery class, swim, bought and ebike and cycle, I love gardening, walking the dogs, bring with the grandchildren although they are older now and don’t need caring for.
I knit, read, learning to sew, I have lots I want to do but that sense of that’s it, no more work and a loss of the purpose of work is proving difficult for me.
My previous boss asked me if I’d do a couple of days on the bank as they are so short staffed so I jumped at it!
I’ve decided after this year on the bank to finish at Christmas as I should get my state pension in January.
I was one of the first to have to work the full 6 years longer to get my state pension having been born after 1955. So working longer became a necessity.
I think I’m ready to retire but I still feel wobbly about it. The loss of earnings is a huge thing for me. I have an occupational pension already and will have the state pension on top and will comfortably manage financially so I need to relax and let go however I’m still struggling.
Is it just me? I should be glad to finish and in some ways I am because I know I will fill my time and I do intend to do some voluntary work also but it’s creating anxiety. Anyone else feel this?
Just another of life’s adjustments I suppose!

welbeck Wed 26-Oct-22 23:42:36

try keeping a journal ?

Coolgran65 Thu 27-Oct-22 04:13:01

I retired 13 years ago and looked after 2 grandchildren for 2 days each week and loved it. They no longer need care. My days are full and I hardly know how, it just happens. However anout 3 months ago I joined a writing club in our local library. It’s 2 hours every Tuesday and I love it. We also have homework which takes about 30 minutes. I wish I’d joined sooner. Lighthearted and lots of interesting chat discussing each other’s offerings. Subjects to write can be poignant or funny depending on each person’s point of view. No pressure. There are about 10 of us max. Sometimes only 5. Sometimes a few go to next door coffee shop afterwards. Just sorry I didn’t join years ago. The library even provides a trolley of tea/coffee/biscuits. It’s all free.

multicolourswapshop Thu 27-Oct-22 05:04:16

I retired at 63 not yesterday and chose to house and I loved it but my dh wasn’t so keen so I gave up no use sitting in beautiful old and new houses with a grumps it spoiled tge Housesitting. Anyway as I was still a busy lady I didn’t have tge time nd I didn’t want to go it alone, as an update regarding himself another hospital visit has taken place where he was looking fab after getting pumped full of antibiotics for a UTI hoping he gets home today lots of love to those who are recovering in hospital

multicolourswapshop Thu 27-Oct-22 05:06:23

Sorry guys I chose to house sit posted too early before I read my post

notgran Thu 27-Oct-22 06:27:12

I worked full time from 16 to 65. Loved every job I had (at an insurance company then the civil service) and most of all loved the friends I made along the way. For the first few weeks I retired it just felt like I was taking annual leave. Then we went on a couple of holidays and slowly it dawned on me I could do what I wanted when I wanted. The best feeling of all? Nothing needed to be rushed and if I didn't need to do it immediately (and very little does) then it gets done eventually. I haven't joined any clubs etc. just kept in touch with my lovely friends and we meet up often. Most are now retired also so it's very easy to make plans. It's early days yet Helenlouise3, just relax into it and enjoy!

Urmstongran Thu 27-Oct-22 07:20:03

I retired at 60y (8 years ago) and like the OP had to wait 6 years for my state pension. We did our sums on the back of an envelope and divvied up our retirement lump sums to live on until the state pensions (finally) kicked in. At first I used to look around a café or pub garden at lunchtime and think ‘I don’t belong here with all these old people’. I found my first few weeks I dreamt about work and my colleagues a lot! I think my mind was putting stuff away in mental filing cabinet. We adjusted well though because we took a month’s holiday, going off to the airport on that first Monday morning. It certainly helped me to transition.

I’m not one for volunteering or crafting. We don’t have a dog any more either, yet retirement is bluddy wonderful. Not everyone gets to enjoy this special time in their lives so it just makes me really grateful that we have reached this stage.

Retread Thu 27-Oct-22 07:43:34

I clearly remember the first time I realised that I could stay in bed and finish a good book. Bliss!

I tried volunteering, it wasn't a good experience (the woman in charge was very "bossy"), so I resigned after three months. Because I could.

I have regular visits with friends, walk, garden, knit, do exercise classes on Zoom, spend time with grandchildren, try new recipes ... and occasionally still have time to lie in bed and read! Retirement really is great. And I'm also grateful to have this time.