Over 50 & Thriving Series Over 50s Lifestyle

Thriving Without Fear – The Courage to Live Happily

November 14, 2018
Thriving Without Fear – The Courage to Live Happily

Are you afraid of something in your life? 

Is it the fear of change?  Fear of being alone? Fear of stepping outside your comfort zone? or Do you Fear living an authentic life and being true to yourself?

Fear can certainly inhibit our growth and ability to Thrive in life. 

I haven’t known my next guest, in the Over 50  & Thriving series for very long, but when I read her describing herself as ‘a 58 year old retired Grey Goddess on the Go!’, I knew I had to have her as part of the series.  Who wouldn’t love to be a Grey Goddess on the Go?

Laureen from My Fab Fifties Life is living her life travelling the world with her husband of 35 years, having ‘grand adventures in their fifties’.  Whilst that sounds like a dream for many of us, Laureen and her husband have made that dream come true for themselves BUT it was a decision that wasn’t taken lightly.  It took courage and that is the topic she is writing about – Overcoming Fear and having the Courage to live happily.

You can connect with Laureen through her website and social media links at the end of her article.

Thriving Without Fear – The Courage to Live Happily

As an American with a fulltime travel life I often find myself asked questions that revolve around fear; aren’t you afraid to travel around the world? Were you afraid to leave the USA?  Isn’t it stressful to sell everything and not own a home any longer?

I see these fear-based queries from my over-fifty friends and family as a symptom of an American based thinking where owning more brings security.  It’s a way of life for many my age.  I’m not ashamed to be an American. But I have made a conscience effort to not be that kind of American. My husband and I have chosen a lifestyle as minimalist adventurers in our fabulous fifties.

There was a time where having the right job, the right house, the right car was important to me.  What other people thought of me, my clothes, my career, even my kids was critical to my happiness.

But then one day I had an epiphany. 

I was on an airplane, coming back home to Seattle, after what should have been a lovely and laissez-faire get-away to Paris.  But instead of being relaxed my brain was on overload thinking about everything I would need to do when I got home; meetings at work, deadlines to meet, kids to chauffeur, bosses to please, laundry to do, weeds to pull.  My heart was racing as I frantically made lists of things as I sat on the flight.

As we came into Seattle it was a beautiful evening and the city was awash in colorful lights. And then I had a moment.  I felt myself hanging there, 5000 feet in the air, looking down on the twinkling city and suddenly realized how very, very small I was.  How insignificant I am.  How ridiculous my to-do list was.  And most importantly, how short life is.

My life began to change from that day forward.

I realized my job no longer fulfilled me. I set my sights on retirement.  I began to make exercise a priority and as a result began to feel so much younger. My husband and I made a life-changing decision to sell our house and almost all our belongings. The purge was the most freeing thing I had ever done. I also purged my life of people who were pulling me down, who only cared about me if I could do something for them.  That was a hard but valuable lesson. We began to plan a life of full-time travel.  And all of it felt right.  We had no fear.  We blossomed in the anticipation of our new life as minimalist adventurers.

Everyone we knew was amazed at our decisions and many were afraid for us. But fear did not work into our plans.

What did we have to be afraid of? 

We had worked our entire life, raised two great kids, invested wisely and now we stood to reap the rewards from all of that.  For us, travel was the answer.

Since all of this happened, I have had people ask my advice on how I re-invented myself.  My answer is always the same.  I did not.  All I did was go back to the person I always was.  Peeling away the layers of judgement and expectations which laid heavy on me from those around me.  Underneath all of that I found a happy, kind, adventurous, talented and lovely human being, looking for a full and fabulous next life chapter.

As we mature, our eyes are opened wider than at any other time in our life.  For us, finding a way to capitalize on our goals while still being healthy enough to do so has been an amazing way to reset my life’s momentum before it’s too late.

I realize not everyone has the desire or the means to do what we have done.  But everyone has the means to set a goal to live these golden years happily.  Let go of the things that weigh you down and the people who use and abuse you. Peel those layers and dig deep to recognize your own self-worth.

That costs nothing.  It can be hard.  But do not fear it.  It is the best and most rewarding thing I have ever tackled.

I am so grateful to Sue for including me in this series – despite the fact I took forever to get this piece done!  I love to collaborate with other like-minded fab fifty women.  We all need to stick together and thrive!

Meet Laureen

Thriving without Fear

Laureen Lund is an American travel blogger and full-time traveler who has been on the road for two and a half years with her husband of 36 years.  Retired from a career in marketing and event management Laureen and her husband Arne sold all of their belongings before setting out on the adventure of a life time.  Current country total is 88!

Laureen’s blog www.myfabfiftieslife.com chronicles the adventures and misadventures of being a world nomad, a grey goddess and a travel diva, who loves to read, eat, drink, hike, walk, cycle and explore, in the sun if possible. It’s a great life – My Fab Fifties Life.

Connect with Laureen

Blog https://www.myfabfiftieslife.com

Facebook https://www.facebook.com/MyFabFiftiesLife/

Instagram https://www.instagram.com/myfabfiftieslife/

Twitter https://twitter.com/FabFiftiesLife

Pinterest https://www.pinterest.com/laureenlund/

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If you are Over 50 and would like to contribute to the Over 50 & Thriving Series, I would love to hear from you. Send me an email at sue@sizzlingtowardssixty.com.au and I can provide more details.
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24 Comments

  • Reply Leanne | www.crestingthehill.com.au November 14, 2018 at 17:35

    Laureen, lovely to meet you here on Sue’s blog. I’ve visited your blog several times and always enjoy your positivity and watching you living such a carefree life. I don’t think I’ll ever be selling everything and travelling the world, but it’s nice to live it vicariously through someone who was brave enough to do just that. I have managed to cull a few negative friends and to keep the surplus of “stuff” out of our lives, so I feel like I’m following some of your suggestions!

  • Reply Cathy Lawdanski November 14, 2018 at 19:41

    I love this Sue and Laureen. Such a reminder of the things that bog us down are so little and insignificant most of the time. I love how you came back to who you really are Laureen. Inspiring post!

    • Reply Laureen November 15, 2018 at 02:13

      Thanks for your comments.

  • Reply Lori Jo November 14, 2018 at 21:22

    Laureen, how exciting! I am also 58 and can see us doing a mini version of this. My husband will have lifetime flight benefits with Delta Air Lines, but he wants to work 10 more years before retirement, hopefully it will be sooner. We don’t have much “stuff” compared to many other Americans we know who cannot park in their garage, but have started the “purge” and it is very freeing! We are also deciding if we even want to own again or just rent, home maintenance is stressful. Enjoyed your post and will keep watching you 🙂

    Lori Jo – 50 With Flair

  • Reply Suzanne November 15, 2018 at 08:07

    Hi Laureen, I admire the courage it must have taken to sell everything and begin a lifetime of travel. Setting fear aside is not always easy, but when we do, the door is wide open for opportunities. I am curious about how you manage the details of being a US citizen traveling abroad for an extended period of time, especially if you no longer own a residence in the states. I follow a few bloggers who enjoy this lifestyle and some even have permanent Visas from other countries. Others have explored for a while and then returned to establish a home base, albeit on a much smaller scale.

    I agree that we as Americans do not need all our things and stuff, but I do quite like the comfort of my home and my belongings. I don’t equate security to them at all, and simply enjoy what we have accumulated. I especially enjoy the anticipation of coming home after a long journey abroad, or within the states and being surrounded by my stuff. Familiarity is comforting to me. We will eventually downsize and travel even more, but I don’t see giving up a permanent residence to come home to.

    Sue, thank you so much for introducing Laureen to us today. She is definitely my kind of woman and I look forward to hopping over to her blog for more of her adventure!

    • Reply Sue Loncaric November 15, 2018 at 14:13

      Hi Suzanne, Laureen certainly has an interesting life. Unfortunately, not one that I can follow at the moment but I do love reading about how other Women Over 50 are living their lives by their own rules. x

  • Reply Joanne Tracey November 15, 2018 at 08:34

    Thank you, Sue, for introducing us to Laureen. What you’ve done, Laureen would have taken tremendous courage – and isn’t necessarily for everyone. But what is for everyone is, as you have pointed out, the ability to set and go after a goal to ensure you’re living your most authentic life now – regardless of fear…however it is that looks for you.

    • Reply Sue Loncaric November 15, 2018 at 14:14

      Hi Jo, Laureen’s post certainly hit the mark and I agree it is all about not just setting the goal but going after it and making it happen. x

  • Reply Min @ Write of the Middle November 15, 2018 at 11:12

    So lovely to meet you Laureen and thank you Sue for introducing us to Laureen! I loved reading your story and can so relate to feeling heavy with all the layers of responsibility and living up to expectations and getting caught up in having ‘things’….and I can also feel the sense of freedom of unloading a lot of that and peeling back the layers. I think how you’re living your life now is fabulous and so very inspiring! 🙂 #TeamLovinLife

  • Reply Deborah November 15, 2018 at 11:14

    I have to admit it’s something I ponder Laureen and Sue. I don’t have kids, so it’s just me and so there’s no legacy or expectation I have anything to leave to the next generation. My niece will be very well taken care of so as I think more and more about it… I think when my mum is no longer around I might cut the ties that bind me to the security etc I hold dear… perhaps I’ll sell up. Rent. Travel. Live.

  • Reply Janet Mary Cobb November 15, 2018 at 15:17

    Laureen, what a great way to spend your life! I am always amazed at how fearful some people can be. While I am not afraid to travel or toss my life like salad, at this point, I am happy to stay close to home. I think the most important thing is to face fears and be willing to try something new. Thanks for sharing your story!

  • Reply Christina Daggett November 15, 2018 at 15:38

    I was so excited to read your post, and find out , there’s another couple doing exactly what my husband and I have been doing for about , 7 years, now. I enjoyed reading your story and hope to make contact with you.

    • Reply Sue Loncaric November 15, 2018 at 16:03

      Hi Christina your comment has come through and I’m so pleased that you will make contact with Laureen. xx

  • Reply Christina Daggett November 15, 2018 at 15:44

    Hi Leanne, I’ll try leaving a comment, again. Not sure why it didn’t go through. I was excited to read your post because my husband and I have been living this same continuously traveling life style for about 7 years now. I enjoyed reading your story and hope we can connect soon.

  • Reply Kathy Marris November 15, 2018 at 21:12

    Oh wow! How I’d love to sell up everything and do the same Laureen. Although we chucked out jobs in and travelled around Australia for 7 months a few years ago, I’m not sure whether I’d be cut out for a full time nomadic lifestyle. I do love having a home to return to and I would miss my kids too much. You’re extremely brave and I applaud you. 88 countries is a huge effort. #LovinLifeLinky

    • Reply Sue Loncaric November 16, 2018 at 17:36

      Hi Kathy, I would miss my family too much I think but I do applaud Laureen and her husband for taking the opportunity. I love hearing about other people’s lives it is so interesting. x

  • Reply Cindy November 16, 2018 at 04:15

    My stepping out of fear was buying Lareens home! I love how that looks different for each of us!

    • Reply Sue Loncaric November 16, 2018 at 17:18

      Hi Cindy! What a lovely story. I’d love to hear how you have settled and overcome your fear. Have a beautiful weekend. xx

  • Reply Donna November 17, 2018 at 15:32

    Hi, Laureen – Your story is very inspirational! It is a pleasure to meet you here. I look forward to reading more from you.
    HI, Sue – Thanks for continuing this wonderful series and for introducing us to Laureen!

    • Reply Sue Loncaric November 22, 2018 at 07:25

      Hi Donna, apologies for the late reply! I love this series and hope to be able to continue in 2019. There are so many interesting Women Over 50 and in retirement who are Thriving and not just Surviving and I want to share their stories with others. Have a lovely day and thank you as always for your support. xx

  • Reply Leanne @ Deep Fried Fruit November 20, 2018 at 04:40

    I just met someone recently (American) who sold his houses and owns a boat (as in a big boat that can sail the seas) and an RV and he and his wife just travel. I admire that. He’s done it young too. He’s only in his mid 50s.

    • Reply Sue Loncaric November 22, 2018 at 07:28

      Hi Leanne, some people are just able to make their dreams a reality and this guy and his wife have certainly made theirs come true. What a life! I’m not sure I could do that at the moment but they have been brave enough to take the step to freedom in their life. x

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