The Arizona Experiment! – Defend Good

The factor that drew me to early retirement is freedomand that’s nonetheless the perfect a part of it.

Again in 2005, the first motive for this freedom-seeking was having the ability to commit my finest hours to being a Dad – I had a sense my profession in tech can be too demanding to maintain as soon as the full-time job of elevating youngsters kicked in.

Eighteen years later, wow has that guess ever turned out to be proper. Early retirement has proved to be essentially the most wonderful, worthwhile journey and it’s nonetheless simply getting began. It was an astonishing 13 years in the past that I wrote to you about Little MM beginning kindergartenand now he’s achieved with highschool.

It has given me the area to get pleasure from so many new experiences, working onerous and taking part in onerous typically, but additionally slowing issues manner down when essential, to take care of and develop by some actual hardships.

However now, with that child-raising section lastly nearly achieved, I’m cashing in a number of of these Freedom Chips for a very massive change: shifting to a heat sunny place for the winter to check out a brand new life within the walkable, bikeable, car-free group you’ve most likely heard me raving about previously: Culdesac Tempe.

So on the primary of December I’ll be packing up the important garments, instruments and devices, and throwing my highest mountain bike onto the Mannequin Y to make the epic street journey throughout the mountains. Simply in time to flee the incoming Colorado winter. And my son can be becoming a member of me for the journey!

On the lookout for updates? I’ve added a separate tracker web page right here.

Heading West…

We’ve booked ourselves a spacious two bed room house there, for 4 full months. Little MM can be roughly alternating his months between Arizona and Colorado so he can nonetheless have time with each mother and father, whereas I’ll be there the entire time.

An enormous a part of the enjoyable is that this can drive me to invent an entire new life for myself, away from the simple comforts of the large group and plentiful development websites that maintain me so busy right here.  It is going to be each an enormous change and a big problem, which is strictly what all of us want frequently to maintain life filled with that means and pleasure.

So What Are You Going to Do in Arizona?

Trying ahead to changing this with a *actual* Arizona mountain biking image I can be taking quickly.

The precise particulars are nonetheless within the works, and I’d love to listen to your concepts and suggestions (see the “get in contact” word under. However right here’s what I’ve bought thus far:

  • Meet as many new folks as attainable, and reply the burning query all of us have: what sort of folks select to maneuver to a car-free neighborhood within the middle of a super-car-based metropolis?
  • And naturally hang around with present buddies who dwell within the space – do you know our personal Protection Critic (aka Chris Smith) already lives in Culdesac?
  • Share a few of the experiences, whether or not good or dangerous, right here on MMM and on locations like Twitter and Instagram so you possibly can dwell vicariously by this expertise.
  • Use my newly liberated additional free time to go to their kickass on-site health club to get in additional good condition.
  • Use extra of that free time to jot down extra weblog posts and sweep a few of the cobwebs off of this uncared for on-line persona of mine.
  • Have a look at the climate app on my telephone periodically to cackle on the blizzards I’m lacking in Colorado and have fun my luck as compared (the standard “winter” day in Tempe is often within the mid-70s which implies sandals and palm bushes and outside eating the entire time)
  • Host a number of meetups in Culdesac’s outside plazas like we did final March
  • Begin a unusual free handyman enterprise the place I assist new residents arrange their IKEA furnishings and transfer heavy stuff and grasp work, as a combo of assembly folks and being helpful and exercising my compulsion to construct stuff.
  • Experience bikes! Rather a lot. Discover the distant corners of the Phoenix metro space and the encompassing desert valley and mountain trails on mountain bikes, common bikes, and the e-bike that comes included with the primary 200 Culdesac flats.
  • And maybe most significantly, assist my almost-adult son get all types of recent experiences throughout his visits, by residing in a model new metropolis for the primary time since he was born waaaay again in the identical period as my very own early retirement.
Certainly one of Culdesac’s major “parking heaps”, adjoining a restaurant patio
My future health club (particularly the stuff within the far background)

Is There a Larger Image To All This?

Okay, you’re onto me. If I’m going to go to the difficulty of typing shit into the pc and sharing it with you, there’s normally a function behind it different than simply journaling my very own private life, and this one other a type of circumstances.

To start with, there are the first-layer egocentric targets: I need to have the perfect winter ever, meet a bunch of sensible new folks, and I additionally need Culdesac to be an enormous success so they’ll construct extra neighborhoods like this across the nation and set an instance that completely improves the way in which US cities construct and increase themselves sooner or later.

A lot Higher than Parking Tons

However even for those who don’t care about all that, I additionally need to use this as slightly assertion about making an attempt deliberate life modifications.

By throwing myself into a brand new group which aligns so properly with my very own values, I hope to function a reminder that possibly you would possibly need to attempt the identical factor. Or simply attempt something new.

In a cushty, affluent nation like ours, a few of the in-built tendencies of Human nature are inclined to work towards us, saying,

“Hey – I’ve seen now we have loads of meals and cheap shelter and that’s ok.
So let’s simply double down on the Netflix, consolation meals, and occasional luxurious purchases and that may maintain us protected.”

As an alternative, I would like you to set your life treadmill to only a little bit of a steeper, more healthy incline setting.

Which means questioning the established order and doing all your finest to maintain not less than one little experiment on the go within the background. Perhaps meaning forcing your self to maneuver to a greater place, or taking steps in direction of getting a brand new job that offers you a greater work-life steadiness.

The most important transfer I ever made was leaving household and buddies and my previous job behind to maneuver to the US, alone, at age 24. Trying again, I’m shocked I had the braveness (and the organizational expertise) to drag that off again then. I’ve change into older and a bit slower, and so comfy that it’s onerous to think about doing one thing so daring now.

However even immediately 24 years later, I thank my previous self each single day for doing it. My current life is an extremely completely different and higher factor due to that previous little bit of braveness.

The spirit of constructive experimentation may also imply beginning to problem your physique extra usually – giving it more durable work and exposing it to a wider swath of temperatures and actions. Or becoming a member of new Meetup teams to increase your circle of buddies and experiences.

It doesn’t actually matter precisely what you do, so long as you level your toes in what feels like a great path and simply begin shifting. Create some purposeful change, which can absolutely really feel a bit troublesome, just because change is tough. And onerous issues are good.

Future Arizona Neighbors: I’ll see you in 4 weeks!

Additional studying: I’ve been studying books, doing life experiments, and writing concerning the worth of strategic hardship for some time now. However the newest is a e book referred to as Dopamine Nation by the gifted psychiatrist/writer named Dr. Anna Lembke.

To summarize: your mind creates a baseline for happiness primarily based on the HARDEST factor you do, after which compares the whole lot else to that. So for those who do onerous issues, life basically appears unbelievable due to this attitude. If you happen to remove all hardship, all of the sudden even the pleasures of life appear bland, and you reside a spoiled and unmotivated life.


To get in contact: ship me a DM on Instagram or use the e-mail handle “e-newsletter” on the area of this web site. (Publication subscribers also can simply reply to this publish for those who acquired it by way of electronic mail.)

Concerned about stopping by in your personal Mini Culdesac Experiment? They’ve a number of short-term leases out there at slightly cheap charges (lower than close by motels) – test em out at e book.culdesac.com

What is going to you do together with your automobile?

I’m bringing the automobile simply as a handy electrical shifting truck to hold two folks and 4 months of residing provides. As soon as I get there, I’ll discover a protected place to park it offsite and dwell the complete car-free way of life of Culdesac, very like I do after I’m right here at dwelling. I sometimes solely use automobiles to hold actually heavy stuff or for journeys to different cities and states, but it surely’s even simpler to perform this in Tempe with its location proper on the sunshine rail and with their onsite bike, scooter and even automobile sharing heaps.

What about your home?

My place in Colorado is at the moment arrange as a two bed room home on the principle ground, plus an house with a separate entrance on the walkout decrease degree. After I’m at dwelling, I take advantage of the entire thing as one dwelling – the house simply makes an awesome place to host a reasonably fixed stream of visiting buddies. However for the winter I’m hoping to hire out one among these areas to a good friend or trusted acquaintance who will take excellent care of the whole lot, whereas I depart the opposite part free for the occasional visits I’ll be paying to this space over the winter. Apart from keeping track of the place, it will likely be an effective way to apply the age-old Mustachian strategy of earning money whereas taking holidays!

What Occurs on the Finish of March?

Because it stands, I’ve no plans past this level. I’ll head again to Colorado for my dwelling base, however with this being a brand new section of life I’ll be layering on new adventures. Apart from the 2 mountain properties that I’ve been serving to to construct out, I simply teamed up with a good friend to assist him create an intentional (and considerably experimental!) residing group in Denver referred to as Wild Life Ranch.

We’ll should cowl extra of that in a future article, however the primary thought is that he’s changing a 13-acre former horse ranch in a comparatively prime a part of the Denver space, right into a future village of higher-end tiny homes and different dwellings. These can be organized round good widespread facilities with an enormous emphasis on folks really having fun with the method of residing collectively, versus simply residing individually side-by-side as we are inclined to do in regular neighborhoods.

#Arizona #Experiment

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