Unplugging to Reconnect: A Journey Toward Fulltime Homesteading, Sacrifices and Challenges, Part 1

| 6/23/2015 11:21:00 AM

Navigating Unchartered Waters 

Face it:  If you chose to leave the rat race for a "back to the earth" lifestyle, you will be in the minority, albeit a growing minority. While everyone's journey from conventional to alternative living differs depending on your starting point—in terms of career, finances, assets, and relationships—getting meaningful guidance from friends and relatives or even professionals can be tricky, if not frustrating.

In our particular case, a meeting with a professional financial planner ended in a polite, "This is out of my area of expertise." Our CPA was willing to help us run through some numbers regarding the sale of assets to pay off debt, and was able to give us some very general guidance regarding tax implications of such liquidation efforts to start life anew

But, in the end, our accountant was unable to provide the level of assistance that we hoped for given his certifications and his hourly fee. In fact, at one point he made a comment about our desire for a "subsistence living" while referring to the rest of his clientele as "high end," which should have been a clue regarding his qualifications to really guide us through this unique financial, tax and life change.

Encountering Some Positive Response

You likely already know that your own mindset is not common, either. Do not expect people to fully understand, let alone provide useful input.

"This is madness!" is likely what most will think. That said, foreign immigrants who have literally given up their lives to establish something new and, in their vision "better" in the Land of Plenty, have tended to have a greater measure of sympathy with our reasons for the change and the drastic nature of this life shift.  (This said, we encountered numerous executives in our previous place of employment who voiced not only understanding, but a desire to have the same "courage" that would allow them to leave their secure government careers, some even noting they would have left years prior if they only could muster, again, the courage to walk away from the predictable pay, cheap health care, etc.)

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