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Big Change?

July 19th, 2018 at 01:35 pm

I just celebrated 20 years at the company where I work, which I know is a very unusual milestone these days. And, now my company is going through a downsizing initiative because of financial difficulties and so I may not make it to 21 years.

The final outcome of the process will not be clear until later this year. Ugh. I am 53 now and I was planning on staying at my current employer until at least 57 or 58 and then retiring early with a plan of what to do next. I'm not sure that I could actually stop working at that age, but I was considering part-time or seasonal work as one potential scenario.

My place of employment is very hard to leave - I have incredibly good benefits (although these will start to be reduced for those who remain), it's a beautiful place to work where interesting things are always happening, and I'm in a rural area without many other suitable employment opportunities. So, if I lose my job, I may very well have to move. This would involve selling my house. Double ugh.

At the moment I'm feeling anxious and scared, which is understandable. I'm also thinking about ways to help myself through this time period. My first instinct is to retreat and hide in my comfort zone (addictions!) of internet and food and I have been doing some of that. Actually, I've been doing that for a quite a long time, way before this turn of events appeared on the horizon, so I need to address that anyway.

Another view is that this may be the shake up that I need to move myself in a different direction. Life is short and I'm honestly kind of frozen in place and a bit bored. I've let myself get way too comfortable and I'm stagnating on many fronts. I'm resisting change and that's not usually healthy or productive!

At this point, I have no idea what the outcome will be. Strangely enough, I will be somewhat involved in the process which will determine what positions are cut and it's a little hard to stay focused and motivated in general. I'm calling it "Project Digging Your Own Grave" in my own mind.

I've had some good cries and I'm trying to keep my mind and heart open to possible new avenues to explore and adventures to experience. I'm terrified of trying to find new employment at 54 - it’s a whole new world out there and I’m not sure how I will fit in. I have been coasting in my job for years - woops - keep growing your skill sets, kids – learn from your elders!

My first concern is determining my current financial state. I'm terrible at regularly managing my money, so I don't quite know what I have. Thankfully I have been able to put the max in my retirement account for quite a few years and I do have savings. My main fear is that if I do get laid off, I will lose the financial footing that I've worked so hard to build. I'm single, so I don’t have anyone to rely on to cover bills or health insurance for a bit. Plus, I'm tired and I deal with depression. I'm ready for a break. I'm not sure how I'm going to get the energy together to motivate for all of these possible changes.

I also want to focus on managing my anxiety, getting back on track with healthy eating and exercising so that I have as much energy and clarity as possible and reminding myself to take everything one day at a time. Life is short, it's summer, I'm alive and healthy, and things really could be a lot worse. I don't want to dismiss my own reality and my feelings about it, but I also want to keep it all in perspective and encourage myself to keep moving forward.

As for today, I unfortunately didn't get it together to bring a lunch, so I spent $8 on an unhealthy meal. On the plus side, a colleague gave me a dozen local free-range eggs that he can't use and I happen to be out of eggs right now! I'm also eating a lot of mini candy bars that I got from the same guy - not good, but at least they were free. Smile

I recently ordered a digital bathroom scale from M@cy's (on sale for $39.74 down from $96 and free shipping) so that I can keep better track of my weight. I hope I like it! The old-fashioned scale that I currently have is not very consistent and I can't see the numbers! The new one should arrive within a week.

Score, I just got 24 sw@gbucks for a search. All of my troubles are over! Smile


6 Responses to “Big Change?”

  1. CB in the City Says:

    I can totally understand your fear of finding new employment, moving, etc. Big changes are never easy. I had to find new employment when I was 59, and I was sure it was a lost cause. But it turned out I got the first job I applied for. You never know. I had to move, too, and while it was scary, it's been a good change for me. You are very well-fixed financially -- much better than I was -- or am -- so I feel you can face these changes with some confidence. Keep blogging -- I'm sure good things are ahead for you, and I want to hear about them!

  2. mumof2 Says:

    I can imagine that you are a little stressed about all that is going on right now, but being summer it is the perfect time to start getting healthier, I have a chronic illness so I know how easy it is with anxiety and depression but I choose to remain positive (I do have some off days). I also eat because I'm bored or stressed but 1 think I do is when I feel hungry I drink a glass of water if I'm still hungry then I grab something healthy to eat the main thing is to only buy healthy foods..treat every once in awhile but if you don't buy the junk food then it isn't there to snack on and if you go to get it you have time to really think about whether or not you want it...also take yourself walking...its great for the mind, soul and body. As for the job etc just go over your finances while you are waiting to find out if you still have a job or not see where you actually stand, see what you need to do (if anything) or if you can cut anything out of your budget, if you don't have a budget write one out I have ours written out every year in about october that way we can plan anything that comes up, look and write up different scenarios so if the worst happens then you have a plan...good luck and don't stress over things you have no control over or that haven't happened yet

  3. rob62521 Says:

    This is tough. Hopefully you won't be "digging you own grave" and you can continue working here. But, it sounds like you have done a good job of saving money. That cushion will be a comfort if you do have to look elsewhere for employment.

    Please keep blogging. We are your friends and your support.

    We bought a new scale a few months ago and I won't say I like getting on it much better, it is far more consistent and I the numbers are bigger so I can see them better.

  4. starfishy Says:

    Thanks for your comments CB - I am always glad to hear about the experiences of those who have trudged before me. Good to know that you were able to find a job at 59!

  5. starfishy Says:

    Thanks for reading and your encouragement Mumof2 - and welcome to the blogs! Smile

  6. starfishy Says:

    Thanks Rob - I appreciate your support! And I can relate to the new scale experience - works great, but I don't really enjoy using it - haha. Smile

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