As the economy shifts many people are rethinking their participation in the Great American Rat Race. Some are doing this by choice, others by necessity.
Do you like where you live? Not you house or neighborhood, but the town or city. If you don’t like where you live, move, preferably to someplace cheaper.
Move into a less expensive abode. If you can chop your mortgage or rent by half. This is the magic percentage. Live smaller. We Americans want big everything, house, cars, etc. We see it as a symbol of status. Realize what a joke that mentality is.
Quit your job. Of course this is easier said than done. If you are deep in debt this is not an option. You must first pay off most of your debt before checking out. Likewise health insurance is usually tied to a real job.
Figure out how much you really need to live on. You are going to have to make sacrifices to gain your freedom. If you look deep into your heart and find you value a new car every couple of years more than you value your freedom, come to terms with this and settle into life with the other suburban rats.
If you decide that lower pay and a smaller house are okay with you, begin to simplify your life. Sell unused goods. Turn off the TV. Start taking daily walks if you don’t already. Do your walk in the morning so you can watch the rats climb into their leased cars on their way to the endless race that you have opted out of.