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Karacticus GRM+ Memberand Dork
3/3/22 5:47 p.m.

Before I go any further, let me say that this is from someone who took an early retirement, was unable to figure out how to make his life really work that way, and is now contracting-- not sure it's I've really figured out that either, but it's a way to stay in denial if nothing else. 

Sounds kind of like as far as the job is concerned, at best, things will be back pretty much the way the were before you left and you're back in the road to needing the sabbatical again.  At least you'll have found out if a sabbatical is the answer. 

Should you take the time (and you should) for self-care reasons, it seems like one of the other primary objectives should be some serious thought on "if not that, what?" Again, this is "do as I say, not as I do."

Maybe a similar position in your industry working on what appears to be an exciting project, even if the chance of project success is low enough you wouldn't want to be betting a career on it?  I was considering some stuff like that in retirement, but my wife nixed the opportunities that were available at the time for what were really pretty good reasons-- so spouse on board is a good thing.


Peabody MegaDork
3/3/22 6:23 p.m.

Having a couple months off last spring made me realize how poorly I was doing. I wasn't burned out, but I wasn't exactly thriving, either, and I came to the conclusion that it was mostly my job. So as good as the pay was, I decided that I wasn't going back. For the first time in my life I didn't really know what I was going to do, but at that point everything was on the table. Retirement, semi-retirement, full or part time work, but because I could, I was open to pretty much anything. In the end I took a job working three days a week. I've been there a little over six months now and all the problems, all the things I'd identified as making me feel like E36 M3 are gone.

Getting off the treadmill and taking time to unwind and think about your priorities can only help. But until you get out of it completely, you may not have the opportunity to see clearly what's really happening. If I'd never had that time off in the spring I'm pretty sure I'd still be there, still hating it, and still feeling like E36 M3 all the time. And not realizing for a second how bad it was.

yupididit GRM+ Memberand PowerDork
3/3/22 6:52 p.m.

Dude, take your sabbatical and then find something new and easier on you. Stress is a silent killer and money and success does not solve it. 

The air force just introduced a 1 year career intermission program where you can take a year off and come back at your same rank etc. I wouldn't take it because I know I wouldn't want to come back lol

We have a huge retention issue because this E36 M3 sucks emotionally, mentally and physically. Our generation and the next do not see the value in a lot of things we have to do. Which causes us to leave the military because in your 20's you have so many options outside of it. I'm 15 down and every day I wonder if I want to stick it the next 5 years. My body is broken to the point where I can't work on cars for more than an hour and cannot write for more than a few minutes. Most recently my Dr told me I shouldn't try to run it I can help it, because my back injuries and legs literally going numb and becoming useless randomly. I work from home pretty often and every time I have to put on my uniform and walk into the Pentagon, it puts me is a E36 M3 mood. I'm only 33 and can retire from the military at 38 which will be 20 years of service. The retirement isn't a liveable income at all (in this economy) so I don't know why they call it retiring lol. Anyway, I absolutely will not do more than 20 years. And I have some abstract plans for the future but nothing set in stone. 

I do not have millions of dollars worth of anything and I'm tempted to dip out. If I were in your position, I would choose me. 

Steve_Jones Dork
3/3/22 7:47 p.m.

Here's the problem, you're wired to work. It's not about the money at this point it's just how you're wired , and it's tough to turn it off. Now you start to wonder, is this it? I've done this all for what exactly? It gets pretty depressing, but know it's common, and it's not anything you did, or didn't do. It's really tough when you've been successful, and just think there's gotta be more to life than this. 

Take the sabbatical, and take the full 2 months. It'll take a month to get out of work mode. Be careful not to throw yourself into something else that just substitutes for work (like the boot camp). Travel, hike, camp, whatever, but do something you have always thought you'd enjoy, could be hike the Grand Canyon, could be ride a motorcycle through all the lower 48, etc. 

I went through the same thing 10 years ago, sold my company for dumb money, and couldn't relax. It took a month before I could turn it off, and another month before I could actually start to see a difference in my mental health. We own a house in the Caribbean now strictly for the ability to get away for more than a week, best thing we ever did. 

It's not you, you're not alone, and you're not broken. 

wearymicrobe PowerDork
3/9/22 3:53 p.m.

Thanks for all the replies. I did read them all and I really appreciate the candor here being able to ask a question like this.   Talked with my offline help as well and they have similar experiences. 

So talking with the wife I am talking 3 weeks off over June and July in one big break. One week at home, one in Mexico surfing and on also in Mexico at a all inclusive with her for a wedding. Taking my parents as well. Going to take another three weeks and go overseas at the end of the year with the wife Covid/War allowing to make up for the 40th Birthday trip and our 15 year wedding anniversary trip we missed due to Covid. Going to reassess at the end of the year and see if that helped. 

Starting to see less stress from selling a bunch of cars and motorcycles off over the last couple months and I am going to stop flipping them for at least the end of the year outside of stupid make 10K for sitting on my hands deals. Not having fun right now doing it, more to have something to do then make money. 


I am absolutely wired to work you are right about that. Whole family is that way. Its going to take a shock to the system to break it. A true 3 month sabbatical I have to ask about a year out according to corp rules so going to put my name down and see if there is a time that works for everybody next year as well.  Just need to confirm nobody else has asked. 


docwyte PowerDork
3/10/22 9:54 a.m.

In reply to yupididit :

The military retirement is a travesty, especially compared to what Congress has voted in for themselves...

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