I’ve hit a new phase in my life. I don’t know how I got here. I just know that I’ve arrived. So it’s time to start a new blog series that addresses the restlessness of the presence and the uncertainty of the future. What I feel certain about is that I’m ready for a move. Maybe even a big move. But at this point, I have more questions than answers.
My life has changed tremendously in the last 17 months, when I had a stressful high-profile career and a young adult in the house. Then my job was taken away, my child claimed her independence, a couple of cats died, and I’ve been obsessed with filling the money gap by creating online courses for the Early Exit Academy. This summer I traveled to Germany (Bavaria) to visit my brother and sister-in-law, and I just returned from a trip to southern Africa. Both trips awakened my sense of adventure. Never have I felt so unsettled.
All big decisions should be driven by a combination of push and pull factors. Push factors are those things that drive you away from a predicament or place. Pull factors draw you toward another life. I’ve been feeling the PUSH factors for quite some time now. But I don’t have the PULL part of the equation figured out yet.
Here are the things that are pushing me away from my current life.
I’m ready to make a change. And if not now, when? But what am I doing? Where am I going? How will I get there?
I don’t have a clear vision of where I want to live – yet. But there’s a big part of me ready to move to another country. I sometimes think about my ideal day and the lifestyle I hope to create. A lifestyle that includes
So there you have it. Where is this fantasy land? I know that even paradise comes with its own challenges, but I’m ready for an adventure and the time feels right. So why not give it a try? If it doesn’t work out, I can explore other options. The very thought excites me, and is a little terrifying too.
The wildcard in my decision-making process is my income. A few months ago, I launched my portfolio of courses at the Early Exit Academy. And I’m in the process of revamping my Better Life Challenges website, where I’ll begin offering interactive 30-Day Challenges for a price. But I’m still at a point where I don’t have any income. (If you’re wondering how I could afford exotic travel, I used frequent flier miles in one case and in the other, I had paid for the trip well before I lost my job.) So my stress level remains ultra-high.
My immediate concern is making money from my website, courses, and 30-day challenges. The products are there. The paying audience is not. Next week, I am headed to FinCon19 – the annual personal finance conference. There I will meet other bloggers, figure out how to monetize my blog in a way that suits me, and learn about marketing and promoting my products. What has become obvious is that I need help selling my stuff. So I hope to find a PR and/or marketing expert who can fill this void. I’m ready to make some money!
Today is also the start of a new journey to become a certified financial coach. I enjoy guiding people on their financial journey, but I don’t have the tools and strategies to turn coaching into a business. So I’ve
sunk invested my dwindling resources into the Financial Coach Academy (affiliate link). By December, I’ll have all the tools and strategies needed to create my own coaching business. It’s a good fit for me, especially since I can coach anyone from anywhere. My coaching credentials follow me wherever I go.
My “escape to paradise” timeline looks like this:
The entire plan could easily explode if I don’t have a decent income by the end of January. Then it’s time to re-evaluate my finances and pick up a salaried or consulting gig. Or maybe move up my escape timetable?
NOTE: If you’re wondering about my net worth – it’s a little over $1,000,000 ($300,000 is tied up in my house and almost all the rest in retirement funds). I turn 56 in December, so Social Security and Medicare are out of the picture for quite some time.
What are your suggestions and recommendations?
Dr. Brenda is a sociologist, educator, blogger, motivator, and financial coach. In addition to blogging at The Five Journeys, she writes 30-day challenges at BetterLifeChallenges.com. Her passion is guiding people on their journey to financial freedom through coaching at DrBrendaMoneyCoach and online courses at EarlyExitAcademy.com.