A friend rethinks things

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Re: A friend rethinks things

Postby TexasBred » Sun Mar 18, 2018 3:04 pm

zirlottkim wrote:Ambition is what drives the world. The hard part is finding a balance between family and work. I can sympathize with Grit. To be successful at commercial shrimping requires most of the year away from home. 20 to 40 day trips with a week home in between trips. But that week is spent working on the boat preparing for the next trip. You just get to sleep at home. I did this for 25 years. I had a talent for it and felt I was made to do the job. I enjoyed it but it was mind consuming. There was no better feeling than coming through the pass after a long hard trip knowing I pushed the crew, the boat and myself and had a good trip in the hold. It was hard on family life so a few years back I decided to pursue the marketing side more and hired a Capt to take the boat. Through the years I would hear people condemn me some for "working my life away" but the some of the same people spend their lives without ever finding a job they enjoy doing. Work to them was a 40 hour a week "something you have to do", not something they poured their heart and soul into. I pitied them and I never wanted to be that type of person. I can't condemn someone for using their talents and being successful.

And getting it done in 40 hours a week. ;-)
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Re: A friend rethinks things

Postby TexasBred » Sun Mar 18, 2018 3:07 pm

Jogeephus wrote:I've been contemplating retirement for a few years now and its a hard decision. I had my first full time job at 8 years old and hated it. Would watch the clock and was convinced it took an hour to move five minutes but then I finally figured out that if I kept myself busy and looked for things to do and stayed busy the day would fly by.

When I was in my twenties I set a goal and promised myself I'd retire and do exactly what I wanted when I reached it. At 40 I realized I had hit that goal at 38 but was too busy to realize it and retirement was the last thing on my mind because I enjoyed what I was doing. Some question why I continue working so many hours and at times I question this myself. I don't think anyone has suffered from this because at a young age I was taught efficiency and did more before noon than many did in a day. This trait has been one of my strong points and I think its not the amount of time you spend at work or with family but the quality of that time. Putting it simply, I work hard and play hard because my time is a premium. I also learned that its futile to chase butterflies for the sake of pride. This took some time to learn but I finally got it when a wise man told me you can't make $30/hour doing $6/hour work even though you are more than capable of doing the $6/hour job. Though I don't need or want for anything and could close shop today I feel a responsibility to others who benefit from my working and I still get satisfaction from all of these things but money and trinkets are not my motivators.

I think my younger self would be let down by the person I have grown to be because I broke my promise of retirement and have never bought as many candy bars as I had once promised myself I would when I had the means. But in defense of myself I have done a lot of good and this good will be seen long after I'm gone and that - to me - is worth a lot.

Joe, knowing you, you probably bought the candy bars.....you just gave them all to someone else and slipped away quietly.
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Re: A friend rethinks things

Postby TCRanch » Sun Mar 18, 2018 6:20 pm

A lot of these post resonate with me. My husband came from nothing (seriously, an outhouse) and worked diligently, even as a kid, got his 1st job at a bank when he was 17. Fast forward 30 years and all I asked for my birthday one year was NO work - my birthday was on a Sat and my request was simply no pager, no work emails (clearly this was before cellphones). My wish came true - sorta - because we spent the day with him in Immediate Care & subsequently jacked up on meds. Fast forward another 7 years when he was CEO/Pres & we were able to retire when he sold the company, bought the ranch, built a house, bought the cattle. That's when the real work began! Who knew I would become soooo passionate about cattle? Him, not so much. And he's had a multitude of health issues the past couple of years so I'm essentially doing everything myself. Not all bad because he's finally starting to appreciate all the little things. But unfortunate because he never really had a chance (self imposed) to spend much time with his kids and now grand kids because they're so far away. Little "Cat's in the Cradle" for him but as much as I loved my corporate job/life I'm happier now than ever. Bonus, I don't have to go to a gym!
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Re: A friend rethinks things

Postby Farm Fence Solutions » Sun Mar 18, 2018 8:10 pm

Like TCRanch,(and everyone else, it would seem) many of these posts hit home for me. Motivation has never been an issue for me, I started early in life, my Dad always said you have to work hard to play hard, and I have very big goals professionally. I also see the other side of it, and struggle for balance. We have a dream of taking a year or two off for a great adventure with our daughter before she strikes out on her own, but no intentions of early retirement. I'm not sure of how we will get it done, but I'm hopeful that we will. I have really started to enjoy what I do these past few years, and I'd hate to give that up for good. The part that I don't like, believe it or not, is being in such high demand. Most folks say that's a good problem to have, but I'm not sure I agree. Plenty of hundred hour weeks around here.......
Balance, it seems to me, would be the key. I hope to find it one day.
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Re: A friend rethinks things

Postby herofan » Sun Mar 18, 2018 9:49 pm

Although stress has always been viewed as a negative thing, I think some people actually have to be under pressure in order to feel alive. That’s certainly not me. I try the avoid stress. I’ve also never had one thing that was the focus of my life, even when it comes to fun

I don’t know if I’ve mentioned before, but I sing with some guys on occasion. We do some local gigs on occasion, and sometimes have an out of town gig; it’s fun. It’s like a little taste of the limelight. I’ve always loved music. The guys are good, and we rarely practice.

We have all said, however, that if it got to the point we were practicing three times a week and playing every weekend, it would then become work and no longer be fun.

I feel that way about most everything. I don’t like for my life to be consumed with activity.
I like being available when my daughter calls from college and says, “hey dad, you want to come down and be with me tomorrow?”

I’m curious, for those of you who do work a lot, how do you work out family time and obligations?
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Re: A friend rethinks things

Postby Bigfoot » Sun Mar 18, 2018 10:24 pm

herofan wrote:Although stress has always been viewed as a negative thing, I think some people actually have to be under pressure in order to feel alive. That’s certainly not me. I try the avoid stress. I’ve also never had one thing that was the focus of my life, even when it comes to fun

I don’t know if I’ve mentioned before, but I sing with some guys on occasion. We do some local gigs on occasion, and sometimes have an out of town gig; it’s fun. It’s like a little taste of the limelight. I’ve always loved music. The guys are good, and we rarely practice.

We have all said, however, that if it got to the point we were practicing three times a week and playing every weekend, it would then become work and no longer be fun.

I feel that way about most everything. I don’t like for my life to be consumed with activity.
I like being available when my daughter calls from college and says, “hey dad, you want to come down and be with me tomorrow?”

I’m curious, for those of you who do work a lot, how do you work out family time and obligations?


Currently, my children are involved in my farm work. I may view it differently, when they are not. I would say, that my children have some activities, that I have never witnessed. The activity that I deem most important is rodeo. I've never missed one. May have spent too much time at rodeos.

We buried my MIL today. My wife's side of the family all live out of town. We gathered at my MIL house after the funeral. I stayed about 30 minutes, and had to leave. Cows calving, calves up being weaned, still feeding hay, the list goes on and on. I was gone about 3 hours, and rushed to get things done. Could have gotten someone from my family to cover for me. People with stock to tend, all know. Nobody can just walk in, and do what needs done. I know which cows are springing. I know where everything is,and how to do it.

I honesty, didn't feel bad at all. I might should have, but I didn't. My wife knew she married a busy man. My kids realize, what goes on. I begged my son not to come with me, but he wanted to.

I never have less than 8-10 hours of work to do at my job. I have an almost equal amount of work to do at home. I could actually work more at home, but I leave some stones left unturned.

This'll get your thread shut down, but I have to be honest. Faith with out works is dead. My service to God is what is suffering. Farm work makes me happy. Cows/horses/rodeo are pure enjoyment to me. They partially (see I even try to smooth it over) block me from doing things that need to be done to grow the kingdom.

I took time out today to check a few cows. God owns the cattle on a thousand hills. His need of labor is far greater than mine.
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Re: A friend rethinks things

Postby greybeard » Mon Mar 19, 2018 9:33 am

Bigfoot..Reading the last part of your comments you made to KY hills yesterday regarding his mother, I'd say you're holding up your end of the 'works' thing just fine.
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Re: A friend rethinks things

Postby Jogeephus » Mon Mar 19, 2018 12:27 pm

herofan wrote:I’m curious, for those of you who do work a lot, how do you work out family time and obligations?


My family comes first but unlike some I see I'm not going to get off from work to go grocery shopping with my wife just because she wants company....not that she would ask me. Take this weekend for instance, my wife had a lot of responsibilities helping two elderly ladies we care for outside our home and I could tell she was getting a bit overwhelmed especially after having a hard week at work. My plate was also full but one of my jobs was hauling hay which consisted of dead time during the transit so I used the dead time to do laundry so she wouldn't have to. It was a little inconvenient but it wasn't bad and I even had time to blow the pollen off the porch so when she got home there were two less things for her to worry about and she was happy therefore I was happy and two elderly ladies whose children are no more than buzzards were happy as well and to top it off at sunset one of my cows came out the woods showing off her new calf.
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Re: A friend rethinks things

Postby herofan » Mon Mar 19, 2018 4:03 pm

I think if I ever went back to school, my next degree would be in psychology. Human behavior has always fascinated me. I like to know what makes people tick. I guess what fascinates me most about this “work all the time” topic is that it’s a concept I wasn’t aware of until I became older. I came from a blue-collar family where people worked because it was necessary to make a living. It was the right thing to do. You didn’t complain about it, and you weren’t lazy when there was work that needed to be done, and you didn’t go around with your hand out. I don’t, however, recall anyone announcing that they loved work, and even though work was more physical then, I don’t remember things being as stressful and “on the go” like most people are today.

What also interests me is that it’s not necessarily practiced world wide. I’ve read that in some European countries there is more of a distinction between work life and personal life. They tend to work during work hours, but not after. Some don’t even check work-related e-mails after hours or weekends.

I suppose “success” to me was getting to a point where life wasn’t as physically back-breaking, and I could make enough money that I wasn’t having to work all the time; I have managed to do that. I guess my goals were tied to the results of work rather than the work itself. I never had a goal of, “I hope I can work 16 hours a day 7 days a week.”

I suppose there are some time-slots where I could work more, but I have reached my goal, so why would I do that? When I say I could work more, I don’t mean I’m slacking on my job, I mean that I could dream up some projects during my summers off, for example, but I don’t want to. I feel successful in the fact that I don’t have to. While everybody else is running around being busy all the time, I can just do whatever I want for three months.

Another thing that seems like a new concept to me is people having multiple jobs. When I was a kid, the adults I knew had one job. They might be a mechanic, work in a factory, raise cattle, drive a delivery truck, or whatever, and that was their work life. If someone had more than one job when I was growing up, it was because they were struggling to make ends meet and not because they were addicted to being busy.

My brother and I work currently together on the cattle. He had cattle several years ago when I wasn’t involved, but he also had a really good public job, so he eventually sold the cattle. He said he didn’t feel like he could have any quality of life working public and then having to mess around for hours on a farm. I understood perfectly.

If I ever seem defensive about it, I don’t mean to be. I think it’s only because there are those (not on this site) who like to act as though people who choose the more laid back lifestyle are somehow not “living the life” or somehow our life can’t be as fulfilling as people who are busy all the time. I no longer worry about others views on that subject. I don’t see any busy people whose lives I envy, and nobody can convince me that my life would somehow be better if I was busy all the time. I know who I am as a person and what I enjoy. I realize that the thing I enjoy most in life is family, peace, low stress, and low drama, and a hot cup of coffee by the fire on a snowy morning.

I realize there are movers and shakers in this world who will find cures for diseases, discover hidden wonders, and invent things to make our lives better, but I realize I’m not one of those people, and I’m perfectly fine and happy with that. I’m sure whether I choose to sit on the porch swing with some iced tea one day or work from sun up to sun down won’t make much difference in the grand scheme of things, but it might affect my personal enjoyment for that period of time.

Some say you have to work hard to play hard. To be honest, I’m not sure what that even means. My grandparents had to work hard to eat and have clothes. If I had to guess, it probably means expensive play and the type of effort that makes playing seem like work too.

I remember a guy telling me a story once about his father being in the field on the tractor in the 1950s, and someone came by and told him that his close neighbor had been killed in an accident. He said that his father shut the tractor off, and it sat there and wasn’t started again until the day after funeral was over. He was just giving an example of how people did things like that for respect back in those days, and apparently they didn’t starve to death in doing so.

If it got to the point I couldn’t go visit my friend who is laid up without being in a hurry, or go with my son to the latest Avengers movie without feeling like I’m wasting away, or have to know months in advance before I can confirm a singing gig, or have to eat and run on Thanksgiving day, it would be time for me to reevaluate my life, but that’s just me.
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Re: A friend rethinks things

Postby TCRanch » Mon Mar 19, 2018 5:53 pm

herofan wrote:Although stress has always been viewed as a negative thing, I think some people actually have to be under pressure in order to feel alive. That’s certainly not me. I try the avoid stress. I’ve also never had one thing that was the focus of my life, even when it comes to fun

I don’t know if I’ve mentioned before, but I sing with some guys on occasion. We do some local gigs on occasion, and sometimes have an out of town gig; it’s fun. It’s like a little taste of the limelight. I’ve always loved music. The guys are good, and we rarely practice.

We have all said, however, that if it got to the point we were practicing three times a week and playing every weekend, it would then become work and no longer be fun.

I feel that way about most everything. I don’t like for my life to be consumed with activity.
I like being available when my daughter calls from college and says, “hey dad, you want to come down and be with me tomorrow?”

I’m curious, for those of you who do work a lot, how do you work out family time and obligations?

Interesting you mention that. I have an unusual gift and played the piano, string bass & bass guitar by ear. As in, I need the score to follow along but I can't read a note of music. And yet I made first chair in the Wichita Youth Symphony Orchestra. My brother kept pressuring me to go for a scholarship but that would have turned something I truly enjoyed into hard work. And I really haven't played much since college. BTW, regarding your later post, I did get my degree in Psychology ;-)
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Re: A friend rethinks things

Postby herofan » Mon Mar 19, 2018 10:36 pm

Jogeephus wrote:
herofan wrote:I’m curious, for those of you who do work a lot, how do you work out family time and obligations?


My family comes first but unlike some I see I'm not going to get off from work to go grocery shopping with my wife just because she wants company..


I’m with you there. I do believe in doing what you need to do at a job. I don’t understand people who take off early or take an entire day off for a dentist appointment or something that could have been scheduled after work. I don’t think I’ve missed a day in 5 years.

Some will take a job and then only work when it’s handy. There was a lady that worked at school last year that missed at least one day a week, and there was always some kind of drama that caused her to be late at least twice a week. Needless to say, she’s no longer with us.

I do believe in doing your job whatever it may be. I just don’t want to work all the time, and I don’t want a job that consumes me, and I don’t want more than one job.
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Re: A friend rethinks things

Postby D2Cat » Mon Mar 19, 2018 11:51 pm

After reading this post I find this interesting, "just don’t want to work all the time, and I don’t want a job that consumes me, and I don’t want more than one job."

Just seems to me to describe someone who has been brought up on "easy street". Don't want to work, not going to be consumed by anything, and one job is enough, want to set around and watch a movie, three months off.

Sure not my style.
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Re: A friend rethinks things

Postby True Grit Farms » Tue Mar 20, 2018 3:38 am

I take my wife shopping and enjoy being able to. We worked hard to be able to enjoy and do as we please later on in life. I always told my wife "I sure don't want my kids to work like we had to" and danged if they don't anyway.
If I had as much free time as some, I'd be sure to get into trouble.
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Re: A friend rethinks things

Postby herofan » Tue Mar 20, 2018 5:45 am

D2Cat wrote:After reading this post I find this interesting, "just don’t want to work all the time, and I don’t want a job that consumes me, and I don’t want more than one job."

Just seems to me to describe someone who has been brought up on "easy street". Don't want to work, not going to be consumed by anything, and one job is enough, want to set around and watch a movie, three months off.

Sure not my style.


My upbringing was far from easy street. I don’t understand why nothing can be interpreted in middle ground d anymore; everything is looked at as an extreme.

So, if what I described is not your style, are you saying you do want to work all the time, and you do want a job that consumes you, and you do want more than one job, and you don’t want time off? That’s fine, but not my style.

As another poster stated, they worked hard so they could have more freedom and be able to do as they pleased at some point, and hoped their kids wouldn’t have to work as hard as they did. That sounds like a normal goal to me. It sounds ds weird to me to say “my goal is to work 16 hours a day 7 days a week so I never get to do anything but work, and I hope my kids have to do the same. That’s when I know I’m successful”. :?

It doesn’t matter anyway, my way of living doesn’t affect anyone else, but it keeps me and those I’m close to happy.
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Re: A friend rethinks things

Postby Farm Fence Solutions » Tue Mar 20, 2018 6:05 am

Some great points made by everyone here. I better get to work.....It'll be dark in 13 hours. :bang:
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