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This couple found financial freedom in their 50s in Costa Rica — and you will too

My husband James and I have worked for over 30 years and believed in the unspoken promise given to us when we were young. It went like this: “If I get an education, get a job, raise a family, work hard for 35-40 years, sacrifice essential time with family and friends, save money, and then retire at 65-70, I can collect Social Security and grow old with enough money to live the rest of my life in peace…”

We decided about three years ago that this promise would not be kept. We were in our late 50s at the time and decided we had to do something to live the rest of our lives peacefully the way we wanted.

And in addition to the financial worries we had, which revolved around health care and aging in the United States without depleting everything we had saved up, we were also looking for more.

We wanted:

  • Having the financial freedom to live and work where we wanted

  • Travel anytime and anywhere without compromise

  • Spend time with family and friends on our schedule

  • Buy what we want and need without worry

We were stuck. Stuck in jobs that sucked up all the rest of our soul, stuck in the paradigm that made us pay for a house and all the trappings of “following the neighbors”.

And stuck in what we call the “crustiness” of aging. Worry, anxiety and a feeling of being overwhelmed that kept us from living our good life.

So, we decided to make a change. Stop making excuses for why we had to live the life we ​​lived and get back to our lives so we can enjoy the next 20-30 years on our terms.

The hardest part of this decision was coming to the conclusion and working on our mindset. We had to shift from being stuck in the way we had always thought about life to expand our perspectives and open ourselves to the possibilities of what could be.

Once we stopped all the excuses for not making a change (and there are a lot of them, aren’t there?), we got to the only reason that mattered: to live a life of joy and peace. , so we can be there more for the people we love and serve others.

Our first step was to register with Winton Churchill and learn how to start a freelance business to start making money online while staying in the United States.

It changed the game. His journey has opened up a whole new world to us. We learned that our abilities and skills would not only translate to online work, but would be valued by a wide recruiting audience.

Once we started freelancing, we started looking for other sources of income online, and now we have multiple sources of income using freelance and digital marketing platforms.

To move, we sold our house, our cars and our possessions. We started a YouTube channel (yes, in the late 50s we learned about technology) and moved to Costa Rica with only what we could take on the plane, including our dogs, Cousteau and Ferdinand!

Our criteria for where we moved were clear:

  • An easy flight to the United States

  • Proximity to an airport

  • Easy access to excellent and affordable health care

  • Near the beach

  • Pedestrian district

  • Living between expatriates and locals

Today we live in Surfside Potrero in the Guanacaste region of Costa Rica along the north coast. We bought property outright (remember, we sold our house) and are mortgage free 800 meters from the beach. We are building a community of digital nomads for others like us. We work when we need to and travel when we want.

Before moving to Costa Rica, I was making around $3,000 a month with my online freelance. After we moved, I reduced the amount of freelance work I do and now make about $1200-$1400 a month. It’s entirely up to me to do what I want.

Our days were spent walking our dogs on the beach, listening to the howler monkeys in the jungle behind our property, serving our customers, having a beer or glass of wine around 5:30 p.m. to watch the sunset, and planning the next friend or family member who wants to visit.

People always ask us, “how did you do it?” and this is what we say:

  • Determine which life you want

  • Pay attention to your ways of thinking that have kept you where you didn’t want to be

  • Be open to new possibilities

  • Be confident in your abilities and skills

  • Embrace both your wins and your losses because there is learning in both

  • Seek help from experts and others who have done what you want before

  • Do your research

  • Don’t wait if you’re ready to go, and above all,

  • Don’t let fear hold you back.

We, too, were scared, but we wanted to live a life of financial freedom, creativity, discovery, and mind growth.

As digital wanderers, we can do it all, and so can you!

This story was originally published in International Living.

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