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Thread summary:

Is uprooting and relocation a good idea, grass is always greener syndrome, getting past complacency and overcoming inertia, general moving issues and advice needed

Old 03-14-2008, 09:39 PM
Location: WI
6 posts, read 39,160 times
Reputation: 12


This isn't so much a question about a specific issue but more a commentary that sometimes it is hard to fight inertia and complacency to actually make a big change. I enjoyed the other thread about 'Giving up everything to move across country'. This is in the same vein.
We all heard the saying change is inevitable and those that don't grow, get left behind. I am sort of faced with that now. I recognize I need to make a change but getting it right and actually making the jump is another. I wonder how others dealt with this? Since I am 45, single with no kids or family depending on me, it should be easy to make a move compared to others with a family. It is just me and my dog. I have lived in Wisconsin all my life but have travelled extensively. I have been to nearly everywhere in the US and all over Europe and elsewhere, so I know there is more than chedderland out there. Anyway, I made a lateral career change about a year ago and I took my present position as a stepping stone. I really can't see a career path where I am nor do I see myself doing the same thing. I feel I am not growing in it. I love lifelong learning and ideally would like to work for a college or university where I am challenged more in my field and could work on another degree on their dime. I live in a small city in a semi-rural area of the state. It is hard to meet people here and most are settled down with their families. I really don't have anyone around or tying me down around here. With that said, you can tell I feel a restless urge for something else. Ideally I would like to be in a slightly larger more cosmopolitan area. I research, find career prospects and so on, but then get bogged down into analysis and complacency. I only consider places that have low real estate costs because I refuse to get burdened by a large mortgage in the future. Despite all that I just complained about, I have it really easy where I am. The cost of living is really low, there is no traffic jams, crime, or blight. I have a 8 block trip to work that takes one minute. I barely need to use my car. I could not rent an apartment for as little as it costs to live in my house. When I read about all the troubles and expense people on the coasts have, I am grateful how good I have it now. So then complacency and inertia take over and I begin thinking if I want to risk all of this for what might be the grass is always greener syndrome?
I am at the age where I know if I am going to make a change I need to do it soon. It will be harder as I get older. However I really want to settle down in one area for good. If I was in my 20s or 30s, it would be easy to say, try it one place and then if it is not to your liking go elsewhere. At that age, there is still time to overcome a bad move that may not be to your liking. However, I feel I am past that age. I have moved quite a bit in the state already in my life and I really want to put down roots somewhere.
So I constantly ponder - Should I uproot a good thing, sell my dollhouse in the risk something may be better elsewhere? IS the security and safety I have now worth more than a pipedream? How does one get past complacency and overcome inertia?
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Old 03-15-2008, 05:32 AM
Location: Back in MADISON Wi thank God!
1,047 posts, read 3,350,614 times
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Well,the only thing I can tell you is that I also lived in Wi my whole life,we loved it there,and then made a move to the east coast for my husband's job last summer.I was 50 when we moved and have 3 kids.I did all the research about where to live,schools to attend etc.I looked at it as a very exciting new chapter in my life.I don't think being 45 should be a deterant to moving.You are in a perfect situation to just move back to Wi if it does not work out.You don't say if your're looking to find someone to be in a relationship.That also might determine where you go.I know it's hard to give up an ideal situation.But,you will never know until you try.Start researching where you would like to be.Look at houses for sale in the area.Look at what there is to offer.Get yourself excited to move! Moving to a whole new place where no one knows you is a fun, exciting, interesting experience.The world is open to you.Try it.
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Old 03-15-2008, 08:20 AM
Location: Ct Shoreline
369 posts, read 1,803,690 times
Reputation: 289
I think the age that you are is exactly the time some of us look around and think "Is this it?" One hates to complain when things are so great, but I think it is normal to want to shake things up a bit. I have lived in my city on the same street for 43 years. We are moving to the east coast in the summer. I have a beautiful home, lifelong friends, and a very easy life. I ask myself quite often what I am thinking about in taking on this move and there is no specific answer, it is more of a feeling. A feeling that there is more to life than the safe little haven I live in. That an adventure is necessary before I get too old to have it. That sometimes have "everything" still does not make you happy.

I think L.K. is right. Start researching things not as a someday thing. Narrow your choice to maybe the top three and go see them and get a feel for the area. Don't say "I am thinking of moving" say "I am moving." If you want a safety net, lease your house instead of selling, and give yourself a deadline of say a year in the new location. If you hate it, no harm no foul. Maybe that will make you feel less all or nothing.

I know that for myself I would hate look back and wish I would have tried it. I would rather go and hate it. That to me is no failure. And in the end, life is all one big experiment with what works and what doesn't anyway. Now is the time. Days are passing you by. Do you still want to be having this discussion with yourself next year when you are 46?
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Old 03-18-2008, 07:04 PM
156 posts, read 558,900 times
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I'm a firm believer in surrounding oneself with healthy-minded/hearted people or simply surrounding oneself with people who understand. When I've been in wrong circles I can't begin to tell you how that has made huge determinations on everything in my life.
Sometimes, too, just doing something different helps. A few years back I promised myself I was going to insert into each and every day something brand new: a different route to the grocery store. Calling someone from a 10-yr old address book (that was kinda scary, until I did it: some stranger answered the phone and were very nice and we had a nice chat actually). Baking something without a recipe - you know, just playing with my food. It was what I'd never been allowed to do, thus, actually, had never even tried after growing up & leaving home - funny the loads we can carry with us for years!). I just would make this a sort of personal "law" to myself to do s.thing new each day.

Also, once after a breakup, my friend from work invited me to come to her acting improv class. Oh, my! I loved it so much I stayed on for months and really excelled. We always absolutely howled with laughter in that class. I don't know if your small town would have that, though.

I do believe in the healing property of the arts for getting anyone to be fully alive, fully themselves. That doesn't mean changing your personality to be extrovert. Our improv class had every single kind of folk, which made it even more fun. I believe very much in art therapy (not that I'm suggesting you need therapy), music therapy, acting therapy, etc. Everything is so techo nowadays, that people are out of sync. Art & nature help remind a person who they started out being!

BTW, I've relocated lots. Part on purpose, part was panic. Sometimes society, in trying to be so PC and preachy, people think they have to be these extroverted champions if they want to accomplish anything. That's a lie. Hope I helped you. This is a good idea thread, btw!
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Old 03-19-2008, 09:53 AM
Location: Hampton Roads, Virginia
1,123 posts, read 4,796,500 times
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I was in the same boat for a while. I lived in NoVa all my life and in my mid 30's I was over it but felt that I had to stay right there - easier to stay than make a big decision. However, my mother got very ill and the parents moved in with us. Kids in school, good jobs - same routine every darn day. Then my mother passed away after her 6 year illness. 2 mo later my daughter graduated high school. WOW, the opportunity I had been pondering years before finally smacked me in the face. I fixed up the house, sold it and was gone in 4 months.

I chose to leave my hometown for a much more laid back lifestyle. Even though I never left the state of Virginia, the differences are amazing! Overall, it was a great decision! However, I feel that I am still 'looking' for a better life. Maybe it is age - I am almost 46 - and I am starting to think about where do I want to die - is that morbid??? I KNOW it wont be NoVa and I just dont feel like this is the area I want to live until my rocking chair days. Right now my inlaws are in their 80's and not really healthy, and my son wont graduate high school for 2 years. So I will be sitting here and pondering my next move. I did it once and it wasn't that bad, so the next time will be easier and hopefully closer to finding my special place.

You only live once, so you really have to make the best of it. I knew when I left NoVa I could always go back if I hated it. Honestly - I have never looked back!
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Old 03-19-2008, 01:27 PM
Location: Orlando, FL
12,256 posts, read 16,167,760 times
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Originally Posted by stacylee926 View Post

You only live once, so you really have to make the best of it. I knew when I left NoVa I could always go back if I hated it. Honestly - I have never looked back!
I'm going through this right now. I was born and raised in Vero Beach, FL moved to Oralndo for college and been here every since I graduated....but now I'm like "what's next" I have a decent job and lotd of friends and family here but I just have this itch to get out and see the world. To try something different. Most of my friends and family think I'm nuts, but my mom said the same thing you did. "If you don't like it,you know your way home."
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Old 03-19-2008, 03:20 PM
Location: Somewhere in northern Alabama
17,743 posts, read 53,869,694 times
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"Despite all that I just complained about, I have it really easy where I am. The cost of living is really low, there is no traffic jams, crime, or blight. I have a 8 block trip to work that takes one minute."

Even if I had those complaints, with what you have going for you, and with what may go on in the economy over the next few months or even years, I'd sit tight for a wee bit. The rule in business is generally "last hired, first fired" when there is a downturn. If the SHTF, you are in a great position where you are.
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Old 03-21-2008, 10:26 PM
11,961 posts, read 12,803,979 times
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The nature of your question and the tone of you speech seems more of a spiritual dilema I've read before. Personally, my own analysis paralysis had more to do with my ridiculous idea of perfection which actually made me miserable (it was ME though, started by external, but internalized by my own free will). I just had to let it go .

What I hear coming from you is the yearning to feel passionate about SOMETHING, but you don't know how to find it without using your feet. I suggest you use the internet to follow what intrigues you a while and see if it's possible to bring that culture to your location, instead of chasing down culture. Being passionate about something doesn't mean you have to be fiscally reckless. If you should discover you really have to swim with dolphins in hawaii, rent out your dollhouse in WI.

I think you would do well knowing what your real fear is about this situation too- is it fear of failure, or fear of success? Are you afraid to really live life to the fullest? Every question posed from myself and others requires you to open yourself up, so maybe a close friend who knows you well can serve as a sounding board and help you stay true to yourself. Good luck.
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Old 11-25-2008, 09:27 PM
Location: WI
6 posts, read 39,160 times
Reputation: 12
Default Update and a few more questions

Thanks all for your good insights. It is 8 months later, and I am now 46 and in same place. However changes are coming. I have a few questions after I explain...
For the last few years since I went into my current job I have worked hard training for the new career I want to transition into. I feel I have gone as far as I can in this current one and I recognize it is time to do what my mom used to advise "sh*t or get off the pot". I have recently been sending out my applications and have gotten quite a few interviews from around the country. It is time for me to either take something and move as I previously outlined or reconcile that I will never do it. If I delay a year or two more it will be even tougher to break the grip of complacency. I am actually wanting to make a job change - that doesn't scare me. Twenty years ago I could of gone out of state for grad school but instead stayed here and worked a career in my old field. I later regretted that. The reason I backed out then was I was afraid of giving up the people here in WI. That no longer applies because I have no family or friends here anymore. My friends are all busy with their lives and so on. The dilemma is economics and career.
I had two interviews recently with two different places in the new field I am trying to enter. Both are similar jobs and equally appealing to me. Both interviews went well. I know the first is checking references and I will probably hear from them in a week or so. The second I am sure is interested in me but I was the first they talked to and they said it would be several weeks before the second interview, if I make the final cut.
We all know about Thomas Friedman's notion of The Earth is Flat (We are competing in a global economy and have to constantly improve our talents). From a career stand point that really applies to me. While I have learned some new things in this current job, I have peaked and am not doing anything really important. I feel like a busboy who wants to be a chef - all he gets to do is clear tables and fill the butter dish, not cook the main entre. So taking one of these jobs would really provide me new skills and the opportunity to prepare the main meal. The problem is - both are slightly less money than what I presently earn and I would have to maintain a home in the new area while my present place sits idle. Then if I sell my home here, the cost of real estate in the first place is higher than my comfort level. I do not want to be mortgaged to death. I feel like I would be going back financially with a big mortgage there, while presently I am not. The second one, in another state, has much more reasonable real estate for when I am ready to buy.
Here are some questions. Tell me if I am overlooking something or worrying too much:
1. Is it valid to be worrying too much of the cost of homes in the first place? People love that area and do buy homes there. It is not Manhattan or San Diego prices, but higher than I want to be indebted.
2. Is it valid for me to try to hold off the first place for the second, and base this solely on cost of living?
3. I have also applied for similar position in another part of WI, but have not heard anything. Would I be sensible to hold off for that, based on economics and being able to keep an eye on my home?
4. Am I foolish to consider just standing pat because I have it economically easy now?

Again, if I donít take action to acquire new skills and so on, I will not be as valuable in the workplace. You either move forward or the world moves by. One last thing, I don't know anyone in either place but a friend of mine is determined to move to the first place next summer. So I would have a familiar face in one spot. Sorry about the long posting, but now you see how one who has no one to discuss things with, analyzes.
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Old 11-26-2008, 12:26 AM
Location: Home!
8,710 posts, read 10,380,832 times
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I hear all the answers to your questions in your post.

Reread it slowly and contemplate.

Good luck.
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