Standing in the Doorway

by Richard

I have just recently retired after 40+ years in the building business. Going on month 5.

After sitting in the captains chair for 25 of those years, and fielding calls, seeing clients, handling sub-contractors, scheduling jobs and caring for employees, I suddenly find myself at a loss.

I feel a little depression and anxiety from time to time. I do not miss the worry and stress that came with the job, but I do miss the identity. Who am I now?

I am standing in the doorway and I am hesitant to take that first step.

It is not like I don't have anything to do. I have a farm, horses, maintenance and hobbies, but something is missing...

Just wondering if someone else out there might be or had a similar experience.

Thank you,

Comments for Standing in the Doorway

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Standing in the Doorway
by: Richard

You all are very kind to take time to relate your own experiences with me. Thank you.

I am still struggling a bit. Some days are harder than others. I am getting my energy back little by little.
I never realized this would hit me so hard.

Being around people is what I miss most, so I am looking at starting a fun part time business.
Retirement is a wonderful gift! And I am honored and privileged to have this time!

I wanted to end this note on an upbeat!

Take care,

The real you..,
by: Linda, North Carolina

It took me several years to realize that I had to take off my professional "hat" and let that identity go.

The opportunity lies in finding out who you really are when you are not identified with work. Get a picture of yourself as a child and start dreaming about who you want to be, not what you want to do.

And then explore people, places and activity that help you become that person. I don't have family near so I volunteer and have a fun part time job which keeps me engaged with others.

Wishing you all of life's best in your retirement.


Retire slowly
by: Anonymous

If at all possible when about to retire do not do it all at once, cut back from 40 or more hour to 30 or less for a while and then cut back some more.

I think it would make the adjustment much easier.

Years ago people did not suddenly retire, they let the young do the hardest work and cut back on their hours of work slowly.

post retirement
by: mildred/tn

could u work as a consultant at the same job? or would u b interested? I find that I am constantly reinventing myself..I am not happy w/ the same day to day routine.

Felt the same way
by: Linda/Florida

Definitely needed time to adjust to retirement! I retired in 2009, and yes it was nice for a month or so. Then you wonder how to keep busy. I WAS my job!

I tried several volunteer jobs, and quit volunteer jobs, thought about going back to work part time, but then I thought nahhhhhh...don't want to get back in the rat race.

I do enjoy volunteering with AARP TaxAide, gets me out helping people and meeting friends! I have to be careful not to volunteer too many hours, then it becomes a chore.

I think I've adjusted okay, now. Still get depressed and lonely sometimes, but being on my own schedule, doing what I want to do over rides that!

Standing in the Doorway
by: Richard

Thank you Wendy. Good words!

Just stopped and visited with my former secretary today. We had been together for over 17 years.

She was telling me about all the stresses that are going on. How my brother is learning to cope with everything.
I smiled inside that I no longer have to carry that burden.
However, I miss all the all the people I used to see every day.

I am looking into having a small part time business to stay connected with my community and people. Something low stress like a pencil sharpening business or custom napkin folding :)


by: Wendy

Yes, many of us experience exactly what you are dealing with. A speaker for Pre-Retirement seminars, years ago, used to say that we actually need to Grieve our Job Loss.

Yes, we voluntarily retired. But - nobody expects the abrupt END of it all. It's a weird time of life, a huge life transition, and something we DO get past... it just takes time.

Wishing you the best!

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