It is with an enormous amount of gratitude that I can say we have been truly blessed to have been born and educated in the luckiest country in the world. When we lived in London and I became pregnant with Lucy, we made a decision to return to Australia to raise our family, because we wanted our kids to have the same wonderful opportunities that we’d had. So it is with absolute honesty that I can say that we are not turning our back on Australia, or the people here that we love.
It is also with a huge amount of gratitude that I can say that we are achieving ‘the Aussie dream’. We have a lovely house, our children were attending a very nice private school, and we both had great careers. Given all that, it’s hard not to feel like a spoiled brat when we say that we don’t want it any more. It just isn’t making us happy.
I’ve worried about others thoughts about our plans to sell it all and take the children on a Global Adventure. Maybe we might insult others with our decision. Who do we think we are to chuck it all in? This is how it’s supposed to be right? This is the Aussie dream everybody is working for. Why should we be any different? I’ve even had moments of doubt, everyone works hard Gina, everyone has a mortgage.
We’re not saying that we’ll never work again – we just don’t want to be slaves to our jobs.
We’re not saying that we’ll never own property again – we just don’t want it to trap us financially.
We’re not saying that we’ll never return to Australia – we just want our children to develop an open mind and heart to other cultures.
We’re not saying that everyone else is wrong and we’ve got it all figured out – we just want to try a different way.
We’re not saying that owning nice things is wrong – we just want to live with less clutter, quality over quantity.
We’re not saying that we have all of the answers – we’re figuring it out as we go along.
And last of all, we’re not saying that we regret any of the decisions that we’ve made in our lives so far. All of them have taught us something, and all of them have contributed to who we are.
I’m not sure if there is a name or a diagnosis for the feelings that are leading us to try something different. I’ve heard “Affluenza” and “Over-consumption”, even “Luxury Fever” being thrown around. Recently I heard of “Stuffocation”. Maybe this is the one that suits best, but I’m not sure yet.
This is a short 3 minute snippet from a great video about Stuffocation by James Wallman a journalist, trend forecaster, keynote speaker, and author. He recently wrote about Stuffocation; how we’ve had enough of stuff, and why we need experiences more than ever. Underneath I’ll post the link to the full video in case you’d like to see more.
The funny thing is, since deciding that the Aussie white-picket-fence-work-until-you-retire-then-travel Dream isn’t making us happy, we’ve been surprised to learn that it isn’t making a few others happy either. We are not alone, we are in the minority yes, but not alone. As I began with, Australia is the luckiest country on earth, and I think the luckiest thing of all, is that we have the opportunity to explore what makes us happy. So go on explorers! What makes you happy? Because your Aussie Dream might be completely different from ours, and that’s OK 😉