Stories of "down-shifting"

I recently finished the fantastic book "Affluenza" by Clive Hamilton.

Was particularly taken by the chapter on "down-shifting". For those to whom the phrase is unfamiliar, it refers to the voluntary simplification of lifestyle, be it taking a lower-paid, lower-stress job, or moving to a smaller (typically, cheaper) house. (Aaaahhh, wiki!)

This idea appealed, particularly as I was reading the book while traveling internationally for work, and was away from my family for an extended period (Never a good time to contemplate significant decisions!)

I'd like to hear from anyone who would like to share their own down-shifting experience. I can imagine a few outcomes:
  • I downshifted - I love it! Best thing I ever did!!
  • Bored - too quiet; I need the excitement and drive of a high-flying job.
  • Tried it, hated it. The romance of the idea is way better than the reality.
  • Love the idea, but I just can't bring myself to make the leap... maybe next year?
  • Did it, loved it, but we couldn't afford it. Too early, and I need 'x' more years of saving/investing to manage properly next time
  • Downshifting? NEVER! Give me the hustle and bustle of "the next deal" every day!!

Maybe I just need a holiday, because I know I don't have the finances yet to make a significant change. Some days, I feel like I'd just love to leave my IT job and go back to driving trucks! But would I get bored? And would the same issues arise? And would I get frustrated that "I'm not earning enough to invest"?

Anyone else with a comment?
 
We are in the "downshifted and loving it"camp :)

Mind you our downshift has been a five year process.

We moved from 2 businesses and your typical 3 bed 2 bath 2 car family home with 2 kids. Kids left home (yay) and we sold both businesses and moved to the sunny coast to a 1bedroom resort apartment :)

Kids are welcome to come home..(we have a sofa bed daughter is here now for a bit)

Mick worked a standard 38hr week for a whole 12 months before deciding to kick the business off again. The difference between business MK1 in Bris and Bus MK2 here is he is a LOT more relaxed and less work for more money.

I have been travelling back to the north side of Bris just 3 days a week but the final "downshift" happens for me at the end of june this year when i finish in Bris (YAY)


We have not had any major problems downsizing. The stress levels are a LOT less ..... We did "cheat" a little bit in the fact that we kept the Bris house for 12 months as an IP. It was kind of a "ïf we hate the coast we can go back" thing
 
The plan was to downshift when we emigrated to Oz. I was high up in a big multinational and hubby was running his own business. We had 2 small children and I was never seeing them, huge hours and huge commute, big mortgage etc

Moved to Oz, got a job in a really small business with lots of time to go other stuff, no travelling etc. I was bored sxxtless in less than a year so moved jobs and now am high up in a multinational, lots of hours, small commute but lots of travelling.

What I learnt is that I need to be busy. The plan is to retire at 50 BUT I know I will be bored really quickly so am already working a second job in post grad education with the plan to lecture when I retire to give myself a reason to get up in the morning.
 
We downshifted a few years ago from the city to a big, cheap house in the bush.

Then we found a cheap doer-upper with subdivision potential 35km down the road in a much nicer area so we downsized by price but upsized by location.

Now we're doing it again - building for less than the value of our doer-upper but its a much bigger house with all the mod cons and is worth a tonne more.

I do really like it in the country though. Its nice and quiet, very laid-back, and since we work online the only thing we really need is broadband, and we've got that here. This town is really nice, and just big enough that pretty much everything we need is here, and anything that isn't is 2 hours away in Adelaide or 1/2 hour away in Pirie.

Big, cheap house in the bush is still for sale if anyone wants to buy it, although I'm not in a rush because the rent it brings in is just sooooo much higher than the mortgage payments. $75k, has everything you need, mostly. Rainwater not mains and NextG not ADSL. Location and house layout would make a perfect art gallery.
 
forget it.

sleep when i'm dead.

i'd rather build an empire of wealth to pass down my lineage, teach my kids about wealth creation and just keep building in the meantime.

then i can be a philanthropist and give to worthy charities and organisations, or better yet, set up income generation streams for them.

happy to have a holiday house in the country, but when i'm 75 i might think about it, or be living in a paris apartment. too many options.

i can settle down physically all i like, but there's no way i'l settle down mentally. the day i do that is the day i start to prepare for my death.
 
We plan to "down shift" in 10 years or so.

My partner is in love with the idea of owning bush property, chickens in the yard and all home grown veg etc.

For me, ill go as far out as she wants, as long as we can still get high speed internet connection :p

Cheers

Mick
 
i can settle down physically all i like, but there's no way i'l settle down mentally. the day i do that is the day i start to prepare for my death.

totally agree - i'd go insane in a very short space of time. having observed my mil sit day after day watching the daytime tele from the time the kids left home makes me cringe.

that being said - i am looking forward to the day where we sell the big ocean views house and move into something smaller, and use the money to pay off some ip debt, so that we can travel comfortably around the world ...
 
that being said - i am looking forward to the day where we sell the big ocean views house and move into something smaller, and use the money to pay off some ip debt, so that we can travel comfortably around the world ...

...hence my "paris apartment" quip....:D
 
My partner is in love with the idea of owning bush property, chickens in the yard and all home grown veg etc.

Why not just do that in the (outer) burbs? Most councils let you keep chooks (our neighbour does) and you can dig up the lawn and plant veges (we do!)

The Y-man
 
Why not just do that in the (outer) burbs? Most councils let you keep chooks (our neighbour does) and you can dig up the lawn and plant veges (we do!)

The Y-man

Oh, I should have mentioned the multiple acres, horse, large work shed also.

I should have elaborated a little more :p

Cheers

Mick
 
Oh, I should have mentioned the multiple acres, horse, large work shed also.

I should have elaborated a little more :p

Cheers

Mick

Had a similar vision until my wife pointed out I have trouble retaining botanical control of my not so big yard..... :)

Cheers,

The Y-man
 
Anyone willing to share their age?

Also, did you wait until you were in a particular financial position FIRST, or was the choice more important?
 
I recently finished the fantastic book "Affluenza" by Clive Hamilton.

Was particularly taken by the chapter on "down-shifting". For those to whom the phrase is unfamiliar, it refers to the voluntary simplification of lifestyle, be it taking a lower-paid, lower-stress job, or moving to a smaller (typically, cheaper) house. (Aaaahhh, wiki!)

This idea appealed, particularly as I was reading the book while traveling internationally for work, and was away from my family for an extended period (Never a good time to contemplate significant decisions!)

I'd like to hear from anyone who would like to share their own down-shifting experience. I can imagine a few outcomes:
  • I downshifted - I love it! Best thing I ever did!!
  • Bored - too quiet; I need the excitement and drive of a high-flying job.
  • Tried it, hated it. The romance of the idea is way better than the reality.
  • Love the idea, but I just can't bring myself to make the leap... maybe next year?
  • Did it, loved it, but we couldn't afford it. Too early, and I need 'x' more years of saving/investing to manage properly next time
  • Downshifting? NEVER! Give me the hustle and bustle of "the next deal" every day!!

Maybe I just need a holiday, because I know I don't have the finances yet to make a significant change. Some days, I feel like I'd just love to leave my IT job and go back to driving trucks! But would I get bored? And would the same issues arise? And would I get frustrated that "I'm not earning enough to invest"?

Anyone else with a comment?
Is there anyone here who doesn't have an IT job apart from me?

We downshifted in our lifestyle back when we moved to Dromana in 2000 (eventhough we did the whole USA move from 2005-08 for excitement).

Sleepy hollow by the sea, no traffic, no lights, no commute, no crowds...

Beautiful beaches and all we need to live, in a semi-rural environment.

We were able to buy more house with less dollars.

We don't need the concerts, the nightclubs and the razzamatazz of city life anymore - hate it actually, but we can zoom up to Melb anytime we have to.
 
Just a regular factory worker here..until July 31..then I quit and we have "down shifted".
Moved from the nice large 4 bedroom house 2 years ago to a family occupied apartment building. We took a 1 bedroom apt and the adult children took the other 4 units. It has worked beautifully.
We think we have secured our first house sitting job at Hanging Rock. It is for about a month.We just need to take our picnic lunch :)

Our budget will be $1000 month.

We are considering buying a used vehicle this year in Australia, instead of waiting until next.This will enable us to see more of the rural areas, and sleep in the back if necessary. We just received word from Revenue Canada we won our objection. This will pay for the vehicle.
 
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