I love that quote by Seth Godin!
Jackie Lange of Panama Relocation Tours said the other day that of all the people who’ve come on her tours over the past three years, 37% have actually already moved to Panama, many to the very same areas of Panama we’ve visited on the tours, and many more are actively making plans to ESCAPE TO PARADISE. Sorry for the book plug.
Someone had posted this quote on my Facebook page and it struck me as one of the best reasons to move to paradise. Why just visit on vacation. If you love where you’re at and the life you’re leading, fantastic! Live life and enjoy it! But if it’s not what you want, why not make a change?
Really, what is stopping you? It’s YOUR life! You only go around once [with apologies to some of my friends who believe in reincarnation]. Why not make the most of the time and life you’ve got? A lot of folks get stuck in a rut which someone has defined as a coffin with both ends knocked out.
There are lots of reasons why people do the same thing over and over even if it’s something they don’t like. Sometimes you are just stuck … for the moment. Sometimes folks don’t imagine another way or write it off as “impossible” without really checking it out.
There are three chapters in my book that people over and over say were the most helpful. The first is “Running The Numbers” … how to look at and analyze where you are at and where you would like to be and how to dream about what you’d like to do even if, at the moment, it seems “impossible.” The second chapter folks mention is, you guess it, “Dare To Dream.” How to figure out what you really want in life. “If money were no object what would you really want.” And the third, “Finding Paradise” is how to sort through the possibilities and find your “paradise.”
Face it. Life is not perfect. We are not perfect. And there is no place on the planet that is perfect. That includes Panama. Better to find that out upfront than after you’ve picked up, invested and moved without understanding what it is that you are getting into. For us, Panama has been fantastic! But it’s not for everyone.
So how do you know? I talk a lot about that in the book. It is important to do your “Due Diligence” … another chapter! Read. Research. Study. Talk to as many people as possible. Talk to other expats who will give you the straight scoop. Visit. Visiting as a tourist is one thing, visiting as someone considering living here is something different. There are lots of companies who have developed very profitable businesses selling folks on relocating and retiring to various countries and destinations. Some of them bring you to Panama for an expensive seminar sitting in a fancy ballroom in Panama City and hearing presenters, who in many cases have paid to participate, telling you about “opportunities” or, sometimes just blowing smoke. Carefully prepped expats will share their wonderful experiences in paradise. Other real estate tours take you around the country where you are a captive audience seeing only their listings.
Why I like the Panama Relocation Tours by Jackie Lange is not just that they use my book as a textbook, although I like that and so do the folks who come on the tour, but that they show you the real Panama. It is a boots-on-the-ground tour with a small group of like-minded folks who are interested in Panama as a possibility. Nobody is selling anything. It is not a real estate tour. You visit some of the places expats like to call home, meet formally and informally with real expats who share their experiences and give you the real, honest facts about their lives in Panama.
Some folks have taken the same tour two and three times. Why? Because each time they learned and experienced more about life in Panama. And most of those folks ended up moving here, first renting and trying it out, and then moving here permanently.
I enjoy meeting the folks who come on the tours, who usually visit our home and with whom we have dinner when the tour is in Boquete. Sometimes I tag along on the tour just to meet folks and share about Panama. I did that on the April tour [picture below] and will do so again with the May tour later this month. On the April tour we had a fantastic group of folks from England, China, Canada and across the US.
So instead of dreaming about the next vacation, maybe you should really think about setting up a new and different life.