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  • Making a change when you're comfortable

    So the main question I am seeking some feedback on - has anyone decided to just pick up and move? What has your experience been and are you happy with your decision?

    Now the background of our situation:

    We (married, 2 young kids) currently live in our hometown where most of our family resides. Spouse is a physician in a higher paying specialty. We live a very "comfortable" life meaning our priority has been to seek balance between work and enjoying time with our children. We could make more $ here but it would obviously mean spouse working more hours. I've been at my current position for a while (non medical/finance related) and have been very happy with it. To sum it up, we could continue doing what we're doing for the rest of our lives and be perfectly fine. We're comfortable, but not exactly happy with where we live. As I said, we were born and raised here. It's served us well but we always think about how we would want a different childhood for our children than what we had. To put it simply, there's just not much to do here. We've also had things happen in our lives that have made us re-evaluate our priorities.

    We have some immediate family and friends in an "outdoorsy" part of the country that we've visited at least 3-4 times a year for the past 4 years. We've really fallen in love with the lifestyle and area and have been thinking about making a move. It's really been on our mind for 2 years or so now. We do think it would bring us happiness and allow us to raise our children in a different city with a different lifestyle.

    And since this is mainly a financial forum, financially we would be OK. While COL would be higher, spouse would make more even working the same hours. Once the kids are a little older the plan has always been for spouse to pick up more hours. My job would be up in the air, however. I may be able to transfer within the company and keep the same approximate level of pay. And truth be told, my job satisfaction would probably take a hit as I have a very good situation as it is but I *think* that's something I'm willing to sacrifice.

    We're financially responsible and aren't crazy spenders. I'm not really worried about the financial side of things, but it's more of a philosophical thing. We're very close to our family here and would miss them dearly, but believe they would come and stay with us for an extended amount of time throughout the year. We're not very "spur of the moment" type people, but deliberate and most likely overanalyze things. Has anyone decided to make a significant change from their comfortable lifestyle? Given that we're still in our hometown, a change like this is a big decision for us. While there would be some uncertainty (always is when change is happening), I think achieving the same comfort is certainly attainable.

    Thanks for reading!

  • #2
    You have already taken the important intermediate step of finding a place you might move to and thoroughly exploring the options there. If you know you will love it, what are you waiting for? Better to move now when the kids are young and you won't be uprooting them in middle or high school, which is tough.

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    • #3
      Originally posted by Ozarka View Post
      We're comfortable, but not exactly happy with where we live. As I said, we were born and raised here. It's served us well but we always think about how we would want a different childhood for our children than what we had. To put it simply, there's just not much to do here. We've also had things happen in our lives that have made us re-evaluate our priorities.
      The "things" you refer to are likely the key. It strikes me as odd that you were fine establishing your life and starting a family in the hometown but now have decided it isn't where you want to raise your children. If you haven't maybe consider therapy to help unravel whether you are actually looking for a new geographic area or are running from something. The good news is financially you will be fine. You could always try it and if it wasn't what you anticipate return to hometown.

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      • #4
        I'd probably just do it or else you'll always kind of regret not doing it in the back of your mind. Most people can't do things like this because of $$$ but that doesn't seem to be an issue for your family.

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        • #5
          If your wife is in a specialty that can make moves easily without having to build up a pt base I say go for it. If you find it's not what you hoped for you can always move back.

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          • #6
            Not a thing wrong with wanting to live in a “better place”.
            As for the couple, two “better jobs” is the question. You have visited enough. The question is if you have visited in the extreme seasons to really have a feel for what it is like to live there.
            Scout the employment options, not just the comp.
            Moving when kids are younger has huge advantages for the kids.

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            • #7
              Nothing wrong with seeking a better lifestyle for you and your family. Certainly the grass may not be greener and visiting somewhere can be different than living there. Quality of the job matters too, for you and your spouse. If you can't find a good job or you're unhappy then that's not helpful either.

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              • #8
                How far is it from your current place? You didn't really specify what family lives where. Elderly parents going to need help etc?

                But yeah sounds like a go

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                • #9
                  I'm an outdoor lover so made the decision over thirty years ago to move away from families for the outdoor lifestyle. It was a great place to raise kids and we've enjoyed the four season lifestyle. Now semi retired and no desire to live anywhere else. Just back from a mountain bike ride with miles of wilderness behind the house. Not much of a city person, even less so with Covid. I couldn't imagine living somewhere with poor weather and nothing much to do. Like you, when I was growing up I knew very early that my hometown was not where I wanted to live permanently. When I moved out here I took a job that paid well below the median for my specialty, not thinking it would be permanent. I saw some opportunities and was able to change things up so I was earning at the top 10% for my specialty while also progressively working less hours. Life is what you make it. The journey is everything.

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                  • #10
                    I think you should move.

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                    • #11
                      I think you have a strong case to consider moving.

                      Family factor - we made a similar move and are 10+ hrs from both sets of parents. As the kids get bigger the opportunities to visit family are harder to come by. You may want to evaluate how much this would impact your life. Not sure how far the distance is.

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                      • #12
                        Internal medicine outpatient practice here.

                        We moved after 14 years in central California to San Diego with two kids 8-10 just at middle school age and away from the central nucleus of siblings, cousins, and inlaws.

                        Not an easy choice, but we had always been looking to improve the daily living situation, had ultimate eyes somewhere else, and believed in doing so when the finances made it possible to enjoy daily life and our lifestyle. It took 14years to get there financially but we got here and living it now for 9 years here....and the parents and inlaws moved down here too to boot!👍

                        Make sure you really want your destination to live 24/7 and not vacation.

                        ​​​​​


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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Ozarka View Post

                          To sum it up, we could continue doing what we're doing for the rest of our lives and be perfectly fine. We're comfortable, but not exactly happy with where we live. As I said, we were born and raised here. It's served us well but we always think about how we would want a different childhood for our children than what we had. To put it simply, there's just not much to do here. We've also had things happen in our lives that have made us re-evaluate our priorities.
                          I would say move. Never let life lead you to a spot where you have regrets later on.

                          I made one of the longest moves moves of the forum members. After finishing my med school, internship and a 3 year post graduation in internal medicine in India I had a great job offer that was offered out of nowhere. But at 26 I had been at the same small town for about 10 years. It felt like I had become the proverbial "frog in the well" who thinks the whole world is what he can see. I decided to break the chain and jump out before I became a middle aged, disillusioned, cynical crusty man.

                          So one day I converted my hard earned Indian Rupees to British pound sterling and applied to British medical Board for their entrance exam. And got a one way ticket to London. Studied for the exam and took the plunge. The worst case scenario - the old job would still be there even if my pocket were a few thousand rupees lighter. I also converted a few thousand rupees to US$ to take and FMGEMS in case USA was in my future..

                          Luckily I cleared PLAB in my first attempt and passed the UK exams and enjoyed my time in Britain. Unfortunately the pyramidal structure of their medical training meant I might have to settle for a glorified NP like job. My ego would not allow that and I came to USA to do a fellowship. Heck, if it failed I could always go back to India. But I have succeeded here and am now in the sunny SE part of the country. I am glad I took chances.

                          Better to have set sail and not discovered anything than live with regret of not sailing at all.


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                          • #14
                            counterpoint - never leave a good job, especially in a weakening economy with hiring on hold and layoffs coming
                            It's psychosomatic. You need a lobotomy, I'll get a saw.

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                            • #15
                              https://poets.org/poem/road-not-taken

                              Make whatever opportunities you want happen. You can only choose one path.

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