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How to; Cancel your current life. (Cancel Culture)

Updated: May 25, 2023

In this Cancel Culture, we live in, why not embrace that idea and cancel the rut your life has become and just: "get a new one"?


Cancel Culture is everywhere. I used to think it was going to drive me nuts. But after thinking about this for a while, I decided to embrace it.


Don't panic, just breathe
CANCELLED

At the doctor's office with my husband one day in early April 2020, I heard the doctor say a phrase I will never forget. "Tim, your job and the stress are literally going to kill you".

My game of candy crush would have to wait. I looked up at our physician's face and realized I had heard what I thought I heard. Death? That set my alarm bells off.


Life is not meant to be worked to death!
alarm bells are ringing!

We were only in our early 50's. We had at least a decade to go before he could stop working! How on earth would we deal with this? What do we do?



Paris, Rome, Istanbul?
Where to??

Here are some tips to get you thinking.


Tip #1 - Take a tally of all your finances.


If you are planning to quit working, aka; have no income, you had better take a deep look into your finances.

Can you afford this?

Do you have a retirement account?

Is there equity in your mortgage?

How is your credit?

What can you cut from your budget?

Does your lifestyle now, need to stay the same or can you cancel it and start fresh cheaper?



Budgeting is easy when you set alerts!
side by side budgets are the best way to see actual costs



Tip #2 - How is your health?


Obviously, we were looking at some health issues with my husband's job. Working at a high-stress job 6 days a week for 10-12 hours a day will wear anyone down. He was diagnosed with diabetes as well so we had that to deal with. These factors played a huge part in where we would start again as well as where we could go.

How is your mobility?

Can you climb the stairs?

Do you have any limitations?

Can you get your required medications anywhere in the world?

Do you have heart problems?

Can you fly?


“Time and health are two precious assets that we don’t recognize and appreciate until they have been depleted.” Denis Waitley

Tip #3 - What about your family?


We gave our jobs and families a year to embrace our decision to travel full-time. I experienced tears, anger, disbelief, and even that little green monster- jealousy. In the end, you have to take into account that if you are too far to fly home in a day, it may not be for you. At the time of this post, we are in the middle of selling our Turkish campervan to go back to the United States specifically to be closer to our family. There's no shame in it. You just have to go with how you feel at the time. In the end, it's not about them, it's about you!



I had a garage sale.
rummage sale/ garage sale

Tip #4 - What do we do with "all this stuff"?


We went from a 5 bedroom, 2 bath house filled to the rafters with things, 90% of which we did not need....ever, to a campervan and a 10x10 foot storage unit. It takes time and a massive amount of work. Here are some things we had to do just to be ready.


1. Have a rummage sale- in fact, have a lot of them!

Empty the garage first and then one room at a time can be added to your garage sale as space becomes available. Put the signs out and leave them out! If someone comes knocking, make time to let them check it out. Keep going and accept offers lower than what you "think" it's worth, otherwise, you will be there forever and the goal is to purge!

2. Take excess furnishings to a consignment store. Let them deal with it and collect your money when it sells.

3. Do a Facebook live sale and take bids! This will sell way more than you think and you can make more by having people "compete" for your stuff.

4. Give all those "saving for the kids" things- to the kids! If you want them to have your collectibles or jewelry when you die, just give it to them now. Why wait?

5. Donate for a tax credit. Most big thrift store outlets will give you a tax receipt for your donations. Ask your bookkeeper or accountant friends how much you can deduct for this and max that out. If you have very little income the next year, you will want that credit.



The world is my oyster
pick a spot!


Tip #5 - Where are you going?


Do a massive amount of research!

We spent over a year watching youtube travel vlogs, reading every article on every destination we could find, and still think we may have done better somewhere else.

You should base your decision on a few things like,

Have you been there before?

Do you like the local areas?

Do you speak a little bit of the language?

Can you get around the area?

Is your currency exchange good enough?

Is the weather a factor?

Can you fly in and out of there cheaply?

Do you like the local food?

Is crime an issue?

and many more that will depend on your personal situation.


Tip #6 -Figure out the logistics;

I am a certified travel agent and even I had a difficult time figuring all this out so don't feel bad if it's overwhelming. Just embrace the "suck".

There are a number of personal situations that can change and add to this list but this will give you a start to your "to-do" list.

Accommodations -

Where are you going to stay?

Is it a permanent address?

Can you get residency from this address? (Some Airbnb's do not qualify as residences for this purpose)

Are you close to all the amenities?

Do you have pets coming with you?

Is there a rental contract? How long is that contract for? What are the laws regarding rental increases? (trust me you will not want to be surprised with a 750% increase after 1 year like we did)

How loud is it at night?

Is it in a safe neighborhood?

Do you need to furnish it? (Some rentals think unfurnished means you buy the fridge, sink, oven, air conditioning and heat, etc...)

How much does it cost (and how far) to the airports?

How welcoming are locals to ex-pats in this area?

How long do you plan to stay?

Does the country offer a nomad visa, and what are the requirements?


Transportation -

Do you need a car?

Can you title that car to your name?

Do they have a bus/metro pass option?

Can you buy a vehicle without being a resident/citizen?

Is there a good rail system within the country/region?

What costs come with all of these options?

Is where you live walking-friendly?

Do you have transportation big enough for yourself, luggage, and pets to your new home?

Did you call me to get flights? ( I am a travel agent ya know!)



Financial -

Do you have to have a local bank account?

What are the fees for using the ATMs?

Can you leave your money in your home bank? (We use an ATM once a month for all expenses and use a bank that reverses all ATM fees).

Do you need to have a local currency bank account? (Some countries require one for residency and to pay your local utility bills).

What will your budget be? (Make a local and home budget side by side for comparison).

Can you travel with your debit card? (make sure to ask your bank if they have an easy way to report travel plans to them online)

Sim cards- I will do another article on this but for now just check with your provider that your phone is unlocked and can switch out the SIM card in another country.

Before you go, get some of the local currency from your bank. they may charge you for this, but it is better to have a few hundred dollars in your new local currency than be without it in your first hours of stressful arrival.


Medical -

Do you have the local medical insurance required by the host country?

(Most countries require this as you arrive and it will be for the absolute bottom-of-the-barrel medical insurance so make sure your needs are met with travel medical insurance). TIP; I SELL THIS!

Can you get your medications locally? ( you will be shocked at how much cheaper they are abroad!)

Do you have special needs to think about such as wheelchair access, or specialty doctors that you will need?



Just kidding
My actual basement full of random docs!

Tip #7; - Do you have your documents in order?;

Most everything can be kept on a hard drive and if you don't know what one is yet don't feel bad, I didn't either. Just ask a kid. (they know tech way better than me!)

Most of your docs will be on the hard drive.

Bonus tip; keep 2 copies and update monthly by setting a calendar alert!

One thing a lot of people forget about is mail. We opted to send it to our kid's address and they pile everything up in a basket for when we visit. The best way to control mail is to take a look at each piece of mail you get every day and go online to accept the paperless option instead. By doing this for a year, we had virtually no mail coming in when we left.

The hard copy docs you will need to keep handy are;

Birth certificate or adoption papers

Child custody papers

Divorce papers

Drivers licenses

Marriage certificate

Social Security Card

Medical & Dental records

School records and degree certificates

Passports (make 10 copies and keep them in a pouch that's easy to get to, you will need them a lot!)

Bonus tip; NEVER GIVE OUT YOUR PASSPORT TO ANYONE BUT OFFICIAL LAW ENFORCEMENT!

Pet documents (I will write a whole article on that soon!)

Immunization cards and records

Visa forms

Notify all your credit cards and banks that you are traveling and make sure they know for how long.

Make a copy of all of your docs and credit card/ banking info and leave a paper copy with someone you trust. they can always send a photo of the copy if you need it.

ALSO; keep a version of this file on your phone as well and lock the file so you don't lose it.



Being organized is key!
Say yes to new adventures!

All in all, it's a horrendous nightmare to cancel your old life and start over again, but the joy and the adventures you will have from jumping into this are well worth it.

Whether you are traveling like us full-time or just moving to a cheaper country in retirement, you can always count on me for advice and help along the way!


I am a certified Travel Agent, so if you like where we are or want to book a trip anywhere in the world, let me see if I can find you a better vacation or retirement spot!


You can schedule time with me on a 30 min Zoom call for Travel or Insurance by clicking this link.





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