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This is a blog about early retirement.

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It has been exactly 6 months after I retired.   Here's what happened to my golf after I have retired. 

  • I have been playing 5 - 6 times a week.  However, a simple majority of the rounds have been less than 18 holes.   I simply quit when I get too tired, get hungry, etc..    Being able to play everyday, I don't feel I need to finish around.
  • With more time, I thought I'd get warm up before a round but I don't.   I feel I can learn more by playing.  Instead, I go to range practice whenever I can't play a round - raining, course bought out, etc..   
  • I avoid playing during busy hours, like Saturday.  That means I am playing a lot by myself or with my wife.  This gives me time to focus more on each shot.   When I play in 4-some, sometimes, I get distracted.
  • My HI improved immediately after my retirement.   Playing 5 - 6 times a week helped me improve on my short game, and course management.   HI improved by about 4 - 5 strokes over the 6 months, not all at once though.  However, I don't think it will continue to improve unless I do something different.  

Before retirement:

  1. Practiced on weekdays for average of 60 - 90 minutes at home, and range.
  2. Did golf specific workout on Mon, Tue, Thur, and Friday.
  3. Played 2 rounds on weekend.  Played about 125 rounds in 2015.

In retirement:

  1. Practice 3 times on weekdays for average of of 90 - 180 minutes at home, range, and/or in field.
  2. Do golf specific workout for 2 days, 1 day off, 2 days, 1 day off, ...
  3. Play 2 rounds on weekdays, and 1 - 2 rounds on weekends.  Play about 170 - 190 rounds in 2016.
  4. Post in Member Swings forum.

12/28/15 - day 1 of retirement, I hit 50 chip shots with LW, SW, GW.  The focus was on noting & controlling distance.  I hit another 50 balls with various clubs, 3/4 shot to full swings, focusing on proper hip turn.  Played 8 holes of practice round, focusing on short game around green.  Back home, I did mirror work for about 10 minutes, and another 10 minutes of iron swing with focus on proper hip turn.  I did a golf specific workout and 15 minutes of ThighMaster.   What I did today will be my new daily routine.   I call it RiCK's forever golf plan.  :-)


24+ years in the same company and I apparently made some friends.   At least 4 different farewell lunches were done or coming up.  A few more to be scheduled before 12/24/15, my last day at work.   Who said there are no free lunch in life :-D?

At least two people have shed tears.  I simply don't know how to act when I see tears in people's eyes.   I become speechless ... and deeply touched.  

There have been a stream of people coming to my office for "chat," and people stopping me on hallways for the same.   Some, I have not seen for some time.  Almost all of them are surprised or shocked that I am retiring.  There are two camps - those who can't believe I can afford it and those who don't believe I should retire so young.   I just smile and tell them that my work is interfering with my golf game.    The thing is, many of these people have means to retire also but don't have courage or the need to retire at this point in their lives.   Not me.   My golf game must improve :-).

Many insist on my contact info post my retirement.  But I know I need to make new friends and they in turn will forget about me over time.   Only a handful of those will stay in touch.  That is life.

I was holding down two directors' job.   My groups will split accordingly.   Most of my employees have concerns after working for me for so long.   A few have, in jest, insisted that I don't retire.   Not a chance. 

I don't know what the remaining 13 days at work is going to bring.   So far, I am enjoying the these chats and goodbyes.  I thought it'd be sad but that hasn't been the case.   Weird.




Well, today, I walked up to my boss and told him that I am retiring at the end of the year.   I turned in my resignation but it was more than that.   I kissed goodbye to work, period.  For many reasons, that was one of the hardest thing I had to do in recent memory.  It took a lot of convincing on my part.

I worked since I was 14 for 29+ straight years.  I studied hard, got into a good school, majored in Computer Science, and worked my butt off for many years to climb up the corporate ladder.  The longest vacation I ever took was 10 days, rarely calling in sick.  I spent more time at work than at home.   Most of people I know and deal with are from work.  Work has been a dominant part of my life.   To stop working means that my life is changed forever.  I need to make new friends, create new daily routine.   That's a scary transaction, one that I don't know how it is going to turn out.  I had to repeatedly convince myself that I have what it takes to start a new, different, and better life.

Then there was the question of leaving a $250k/year cushy management job with prestige, and lots of fringe benefits.  I know some leave more lucrative job than that but most people will kill to have mine.  Many of my family members and relatives will look at me as if I lost my mind but I did a lot of math and convinced myself that I can make it work.  It took a lot of convincing.  A lot. 

What convinced me even more? As I got older and became more financially independent, I lost tolerance to bad politics people play - blaming others, taking someone's credit for his own, scheming, stabbing people on the back, doing unethical things to advance, ....   Without much exaggeration, my boss and one of his henchmen is right out of Dilbert, and/or The Office TV series.   I felt like I was selling my soul to these unscrupulous people to pay mortgage, to pay for the privilege of playing golf at nice courses, wining and dining at fancy restaurants, etc..  Well, no more selling my soul.  It's time to pick the people I want to hang around with instead of being forced to dance with the devils.  

But the biggest convincing I did?  Life is just too short.   At 53, my body will only degrade.   It's now or never to improve on golf.  It's now or never to climb the Half Dome, hike into the deepest part of Grand Canyon, run a marathon, rebuild a vegetable garden in my backyard, read good books, never to worry about setting the alarm clock to go to work, .....................................................................................................    There's just too many fun things to do that sure beats work.   That sure convinced me.




After working 39 years since I was 14 years old, I am about to leave the work force for good.  The org. I work for has been always a politically toxic place led by a sociopath and his equally bad underlings (my peers).   For the last 2 years, I have been conning myself that I need to put up with the BS to pad my retirement fund to travel the world, play the best golf courses, eat the best food, i.e., live in style.   But the BS bucket is now full.  I can't stand another day of work.  I am mentally exhausted and no amount of golf is going to relieve the stress I get from work.   It is impacting my health.   Having lost a younger brother to cancer a few years ago, I know a life can be short, too short to shorten it with a stressful job.   My health over accumulating more wealth ...

Luckily, despite making a few bad financial decisions, we are ready financially to retire.  My wife and I saved like ants.   We lived  far below our means for all these years (until recently when we decided to splurge a little to see what it is like).   When others in my position were buying luxury cars and expensive houses, we bought Hyundai and lived in a relatively modest dwelling.   I knew my relatives were talking behind my back about my "stinginess."  We invested any and all disposable income and let the power of compounding do its job.  I didn't panic sell when stock market plummeted time after time.   

For others who may be reading this blog, I suggest you read The Millionaire Next Door: The Surprising Secrets of America's Wealthy Book by Thomas J. Stanley.   Anyone can be a millionaire over time holding down a regular job.  You too can retire early if you so desire.   I know some people need to work to live.  They can't separate work from life.  That's not me, and that's not many of us.  

So ... it's time to call my own bluff.   Write that resignation letter.   Kiss goodbye to the stock options which is yet to be vested.   Sign up for ACA.   Make the list of things to do in retirement.  Plan on practicing & playing more golf.   One more year working is one more year dying.   It's time.  

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    • First, I’m kinda the same way as well.  Second, the other winter I had a set of irons and some other clubs I wanted to sell on eBay.  I thought if I list them now I might only have the warm states as my buyers so I decided to wait for spring.  I guess that idea didn’t have any merit because the cabin fevor set might have even been more willing to buy them in winter.
    • Now's as good of a time as any  I've never hit them, but read great things about them. I tell myself I'm trying to find the perfect set, but honestly I think I just like irons.
    • I have a set of Nike blades (the pre-VR ones that Tiger used most of his career) sitting in a box in my kitchen that I bought off Ebay a few years ago. Eventually I'll get them shafted and put grips on them.  If I were to buy another set like that I'd probably get the MP 32s. Those are probably my favorite irons ever made. 
    • You're not helping! I'm supposed to be not buying clubs, or at least that's what my wife tells me  I'll PM you 
    • Passing by the used, ahem, pre-owned, section every practice indoor practice session (PGA Superstore) and it's some kind of miracle I haven't bought anything, lord knows I looked.


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