When we sold our business at ages 47 and 50, I said to my husband that I never wanted to work full-time again. This started the journey of living a slow, simple, nomadic life.
This led us on a journey to set up a second business that allowed us to travel and work 3 to 4 days a week, 2 or 3 weeks a month, with two months per year of holidays.
We began our transformation from overworked, overstressed, highly in-debt business slaves to a simple life.
The second business allowed us to work as little as was required to pay the bills and cover life’s essentials. This left adequate time to live life at a snail’s pace compared to our former life.
We have now accessed our superannuation and have not worked for a full twelve months. This gives us the choice to spend all our time relaxing or working part-time if and when we choose.
A travel lifestyle and family.
We have family scattered all over Australia and a travel lifestyle allows us to spend more time with our children, grandchildren, siblings, parents, and extended family members. I have even had the opportunity to look up old friends that I had not seen for 30 or 40 years.
I believe that friendships and close family are important for our general health and well-being.
I love that I have time to spend with the people that matter the most to me.
Having a lifestyle that allows me to travel, along with the benefits of today’s technology and social media are wonderful opportunities.
This opportunity is not always available when you have children to educate or have others dependent upon your physical presence. However, if you have the opportunity to travel full-time, even if it is only for a short period of time, I urge you to seriously consider this.
How to travel full-time.
There are many ways to travel depending on your budget. I have through the years traveled by car and tent, motorcycle and tent, a car with trailer and tent, a car and camper trailer, a car with trailer and using motel accommodation, motorhome, and motorhome with a car.
I love the choices we have in terms of accommodation depending upon our personal needs and the terrain that we wish to navigate.
Other options include a vehicle with a rooftop tent, a vehicle with a caravan, a bus with or without a car, a vehicle with a gooseneck (5th wheeler), and even a truck (heavy vehicle). Trucks can be motorhomes inside and many trucks also tow a caravan, a trailer containing business equipment, or a car.
There are some people, especially the younger generation, who choose to back-pack or travel overseas. However, this is not my choice. I prefer to experience the wonderful opportunities available in my own country.
I have a truck-based motor home because I can carry more weight. I love the ability to have a large fridge and a freezer, a washing machine, a reasonable amount of clothing, linen, and sufficient cooking utensils to create wonderful meals.
Living in a small space may be challenging at times, however, I do not go without much. I live a more minimal lifestyle and surround myself with items that help me, heal me, or bring me joy.
Time is finite and valuable. Don’t waste it.
Unfortunately, I have seen far too many people leave travel too late always thinking that they need to stay home to help their children or make more money to retire, and then find that they lose the opportunity due to ill health of themselves or another family member.
I will stop traveling full-time and find a small house in the country at some point in the near future. However, the experiences I have enjoyed will give me the motivation to continue to travel from time to time whilst I am still able.
I love having the ability to make great use of my time on this earth.
Money and Possessions
Teaching yourself that money is not everything and diluting the message of consumerism is part of the journey. Leaving a career behind and that dream house that always needs money spent on it was part of the process.
A simple life need not mean surviving on rice and beans. Let it be one that allows you to slow down, relax, and spend time on hobbies and activities that you want to participate in. You can still have nice things, you just need to be selective and make better choices.
The stress of always working and considering whether you can survive the ups and downs of business can add an extra burden to an aging body and this is the reason I began my nomadic lifestyle in my late 40s. I am now in my 60s, far happier, and look forward to a bright future even though I do plan to travel part-time.
I urge you to seriously consider the wonderful opportunity that can be ahead of you, especially if you can travel without using your retirement funds. We initially began our nomad journey with a business that allowed us to travel and sell goods in person and online. We now use our superannuation. In the future, we will have social security.
There are many other options available to create some type of income if you wish. This blog is one of my tools moving forward. I am also considering some part-time work.
If you have a lot of super, you may be able to consider retiring early. I cannot give advice,
so please check with your accountant or financial advisor as to whether you can or should utilize some of your retirement options.
I love the fact that I can spend time doing what I enjoy including writing, photography, fossicking for gems, and prospecting for gold. These hobbies also give me the ability to create a little income along the way reducing the need to work at a job, unless I choose to. I can camp by a river, read a book, watch some YouTube, and just relax.
Have the ability to choose your path.
The ability to travel is one of choice.
In 2019 we decided to close our business, take a break, stay in one location for a year, and decide what to do for the next leg of our journey.
When the pandemic hit, we chose to stay put and get a part-time job to increase our savings. We then fully retired and restarted our journey.
I will continue to see the country, make a bucket list of things to do and places to see, and get out there and enjoy life. My recent trip concentrated on fossicking for gems and stones. This hobby had to take a back seat while we had our retail business.
I love the fact that I am not tied down with the need to care for an expensive house and have the ability to stop or start my travel journey as I see fit. The lockdowns may have stopped me from traveling, but the fact that I have somewhere in the country where I can just pull up stumps and park my motorhome means I have my bases covered.
I love having a block of dirt that can be left for long periods of time. No expensive house to worry about. No lawns. Weedkiller and stone pathways keep the weeds at bay when I am not there. Even when we do have a house, it will be a low-maintenance one.
I will be buying a house soon, in a small country town. It will not be an expensive showpiece, just somewhere simple to cover future needs. Whilst I love my life today, I do realize that I will one day be older and need to settle down somewhere.
Slowing down and enjoying life does not mean walking so slowly you almost go backward.
It does not mean that you have to hug trees, stand still, and just breathe. I believe that it is all about doing the things that really matter to you because you have the time to do so.
Minimalism, to me, means living with only the items that help or heal me and bring me great joy. Having a motorhome instead of a house has led to a more minimalistic life. Buying a small house will enable me to continue this lifestyle.
We are only on this earth for a short period of time and if we can live each day, and take advantage of every opportunity we can, then life is so fulfilling.
There is no time for boredom and the days fly past because we are doing the things we love all the time. I have no idea where we ever found the time and energy to drag ourselves to work 60-plus hours a week.
I enjoy photographing nature and love to share my world with others. If this lifestyle interests you, check out my photos on Instagram. I am sharing my life and journey through this blog and social media.
Looking for ideas to start a nomad journey, check out my post on nomads in Australia.