At the beginning of 2015, my husband and I decided we would deliberately change our lives. Not the lets loose five pounds kind of change, more of a completely rock our own world and go for our dreams change. We began by having a weekly coffee date, just the two of us, where we would compare notes, thoughts, and ideas about what this exactly meant. We were far enough in our personal growth that we knew we had to focus more on what we wanted rather than get caught up in the details of how we would get it.
This had always been a bit of a sticky point to us. We were very, very good at deciding what we wanted, but we would let reality define our goals and things would go awry. This didn’t mean that we weren’t manifesting things; we were just manifesting small things. We were not being deliberate creators.
We knew that we wanted to move away from the area that had been home for the last eleven years. We wanted a big change, one that would give us a lifestyle that we loved. And while the sky truly is the limit for manifesting things, if you do not believe it is possible, if it is so very out of reach that only matching six numbers and a Powerball can deliver it, you will choke yourself. For instance, if we had decided we would uproot the family (we would also be moving my mother along with us) to Monaco and buy a mansion overlooking the sea, I can assure you we would still be sitting in our old house trying to figure out how.
Florida has always been a vacation favorite for us. We took annual trips to Walt Disney World and visited my grandmother who was born just a few miles from where we now live. Every time we would visit Florida, from the first time I brought my husband here in 2000, we would talk about what it would be like to live here.
During our weekly coffee dates, we would research different places and areas in Florida. We would look at cost of living (much like other places it varies in different areas of the state), insurance rates, job availability, housing availability, and other factors. As we knew that we wanted to be within 30 minutes of beaches, our main question was east coast, west coast, or panhandle? We would find a community or area and “drive it” on Google Maps. We’d spend hours on real estate websites and dig through Facebook groups by locals in these areas.
Donate, Sell, Toss, or Move?
As we knew that we did want to go (just not quite where yet, but go nonetheless!) I began the task of clearing the clutter in the house. To make sure that we set our intentions, I packed up some noticeable, but not needed in everyday life, things like my china cabinet. We made a staging area for boxes and I started on the house.
As we focused in on Florida, I focused on closets, cabinets, Christmas decoration tubs, and the pride of my living room: my book wall. Yes, I am a bookaholic. I had an entire wall full of shelves packed tight as a tick. In addition to the shelves, I had another large bookcase, ripe to burst and box after box after box of books in storage.
Armed with my e-reader, it was a bit easier than I had anticipated letting them go. Some were very easy, I wasn’t sure why I had kept them at all. Others were yellowed paperbacks that were available on my kindle. For several months, I would take a carload to my local Half Price Books and let them sort it out. (I really love that you don’t have to take books back if they don’t want to buy them. The leftovers will be donated or recycled if you like.)
As we cleared the clutter, we gathered steam. We began to view things in a new light and question objects. Do we actually use this? Is the sentimental value real or just nostalgia for nostalgia’s sake? Why do we think we can’t let go of this particular item? Every packed box strengthened our intentions. Every item sold or donated lightened the load. I’m sure there was a good Feng Shui lesson in there. Towards the end of our time in that house, everything was so pleasing. Clear surfaces became a new balm for my soul.
To maintain focus as we dealt with daily life, we revisited a trick we had used when we decided to leave Atlanta and move home to Texas. We bought a state map and hung it on the wall where we would see it several times every day. In Georgia, our Texas map was on a corkboard at the top of the stairs. There were pins in it showing every city that had a branch of the company that I was employed with at the time. The little green flags designated our target area. It took us less than six months from the time we started talking about moving to rolling across state lines. Once we hit the target date for me to request a transfer, everything fell into place, happening quickly and easily. We wanted that again.
Our Florida map was above small table that we used as our in and out of the house catch all. Keys, change, wallets, purses, backpacks, mail, and the like went on that table. It was the first stop when we arrived home and the last thing when we left. This time there were no pins, no corporate transfer safety net, just a highlighted coastline running from Tampa Bay down to Charlotte Harbor, our finalized target area.
Taking the Leap
To close friends we had occasionally mentioned wanting to move away and everyone would smile and nod. In truth, we had probably started mentioning it years earlier, but this was different. As we declared our intentions we set down a timeline for moving. We would put the house on the market just as the 2015/2016 school year was ending. We intended to be in our target area of Florida by the end of Summer 2016. (We moved into our house here on May 16, 2016.)
When we held the first giant garage sale in spring 2015, we mentioned it to neighbors. At that point, we did not have our target area nailed down so when we were asked where we were going, we would just say Florida. When they asked for specifics like where in Florida or where we would be working, we would smile and truthfully say, “We don’t know yet.” At that point some of them would start acting like they had encountered a brazen panhandler that made them uncomfortable.
Our final garage sale was that fall, and while we could give them our target area on a map, we still couldn’t tell them specifics. This didn’t seem to make things better. The neighbors would smile and nod as they would peruse the furniture that we no longer wanted on the driveway. (There was a lot of it!) Both sales had been heavy on items from my mother’s storage rooms and unused in years. One couple was overheard commenting that we were “flat out crazy” as they hauled off our excess garden tools.
The Money Question
When we decided to make the move, we were careful to softly ask the money question. We were the typical American family: a mortgage, a couple of car payments, and too many credit cards. We had an emergency fund, but hardly enough to move the household across country and pay bills while we found jobs. For years as we would work the Law of Attraction, we would find that while we weren’t living the lifestyle of the rich and famous, cash would always turn up and things would always work out for the best.
After carefully observing our car habits, we realized that very rarely would my car get driven that my husband’s car wasn’t in the driveway. After crunching the numbers to see which car would have the most money left over after payoff, my husband’s Toyota departed the family. This also gave us a monthly boost by cutting our auto insurance premium. Once it was gone, I pretended like it wasn’t, throwing the car payment towards our credit cards.
We focused on manifesting money with the intent on moving, not reducing debt. Focusing on the debt is often a mistake people make when wanting to increase their abundance. Law of Attraction cannot tell if a focus is positive or negative, so if you keep saying debt, debt, debt, you often get more debt. Our focus was on freedom, freedom to move and financial freedom.
We attracted a windfall of the blue. Years earlier my husband had worked for a company that had a pension plan. We were young, financially uneducated, and unaware of this pension fund. When the company closed the plant, there may have been a letter that went unnoticed or simply forgotten. And here it was, all these years later, a letter notifying us that we had 30 days to contact them about this fund or we would receive a check for the amount, minus any age penalties and taxes. The other option would be to roll it over into a 401k or other retirement plan. Since this was money that we were not even aware existed, we let them send a us a nice fat check. They grossly overestimated the amount of taxes withheld so as a bonus in early 2016, we got a nice fat tax return.
While we don’t speak of our finances with others often, when we did during this period, it seemed odd to them that we weren’t just stashing money into savings. And that’s true. We spent it as quickly as we could get it, every little bit of it that we could find. Windfalls, garage sale money, clothes being sold through consignment stores, all of it was spent and focused on freedom. By the end of the year, all we had left was one small car payment and a mortgage. And when we sold the house, the mortgage would be gone.
At this point we realized that even if we did not move, even if we stayed right where we were, we had already changed our lives. This bolstered our intentions and we soldiered forth, we were close to smelling sweet salty air and we knew it.
Have you ever picked up and moved across the country (or world)? Would you ever? I’d love to hear about it, so leave me a comment below.