Well...it's GREAT! In fact, it's exceeded my expectations. I thought I would miss work a lot more than I do. The first week was a little rocky. The hardest part for me was unplugging. A new cell number and email made this a lot easier. It also helps that I have a lot to do in prepping for sailing and the big move.
One of the first things I did was join a gym. We found a great gym that is open 24/7 and has 2 hours of childcare a day included in the membership.
The second thing that I did was BREATHE. I intentionally turned off my cell phone, unplugged email and just let time tick. I actually find myself forgetting what day of the week it is as we run around doing stuff with family.
I received a good email from a friend/colleague who retired at a relatively young age:
"Mark, from my experience it will take 30-45 days before your actually decompress and begin to enjoy the retirement life. When I left the working world there were many nights waking up with a cold sweat thinking I forgot something and ran to my office. So if that happens to you don't worry it happens to everyone. For me it was the day I took my watch off, was they day I knew I could handle retirement, if you ever need someone to talk to about this feel free to give me a holler. Retiring young is more difficult than people think it is, don't get me wrong the hours are great. Be prepared for strange looks when people ask so what do you do? and you reply I am retired. Most important thing is to actually take the time to meet your kids, that was the main driver behind my retirement. You always hear the grow up so quickly, with my daughter graduating from high school the other day I can say it is real. One last piece of unwanted advice, don't look back and rethink your decision. Enjoy your family and your time and think every day is a Sunday now...."
There is a lot of truth in his advice. I signed up for the gym mid-morning on a Wed. The membership lady asked me 'So, you have the day off today?'...I replied with a smile 'You could say that...' It was a little awkward.
I have been surprised by how many people are considering doing something similar. There have been a lot of emails asking about 'How I pulled the trigger', or 'Please keep them posted on details as they are considering the same thing.' It has been frankly eye opening. A couple of excerpts from others:
"While everyone else is either disgruntled with the job they have or looking for a replacement for the job they lost while watching their house turn into an aquarium as its financial value sinks underwater, our very own Mark Silverstein takes to the high seas and says ‘…Good morning. And if I don’t see you, good evening and good night!’. Bye!!
Dude I am so happy for you. It takes some serious cojones to say ‘…talk to the palm I’m outahere’ to Corporate America but you’re doing it. Nice!"
"Hey Mark – I just checked out the blog! Fantastic! I have been looking at Catamarans and planning for the same excursion for about a year now. I’m still a few years away – but, I was smiling the whole time I was reading the blog. I hope you guys have a blast. You’ve certainly worked hard – and completely deserve it!"
In conclusion, I have adjusted a lot better than expected, and am truly enjoying the different pace. No regrets. No rearview mirror. Every day is Sunday.
|Sunset from our charter boat in BVI's|