Pat - Gosangs Tunnel, NSW, Australia
Pat - Gosangs Tunnel, NSW, Australia



Hi I'm Pat

On this page there's a few details of how we're managing our lifestyle - blocking time for work and other things that are important to us.  Having that balance for us is part of being happy.  I look at happiness as a continuum which you are always moving along from very happy times to sad times. There's always going to be unhappy times - that's part of living - but even in the saddest of times there are things you can do to start moving yourself along this happiness continuum to a better place.  It's about understanding and managing yourself, and at times it's also about recognising and accepting the support you need. 


Below is a description of a few things we do to start you thinking:


Wendy and I don't want to retire even if we had enough money to do so - work is just too important a part of life to stop.  We need to earn and we want to contribute.  We also want to be able to do the other things we enjoy.  

There are a couple of key financial principles that help us achieve this balance: 

  • We have multiple small income streams that make us less dependent on any one.  
  • We try to minimise expenditure.  This is a combination of prudence, understanding the difference between wants and needs, and being open to opportunities that cost little or nothing.

So far this combination has enabled the lifestyle we want.  To travel, to work, to have no winters, and to have the flexibility to choose the things we want to do.


Here's a few details:

  • For 30 years I have worked in the Community and Voluntary Sector (CVS) as a volunteer, senior manager or trustee.  I've been fortunate enough to work with organisations that have social, health, international development, housing, art and environmental objectives.  I now undertake short to medium term contracts that allow me to contribute fully and earn a living.  I don't want a full time permanent position.  Are you working to live, or living to work!?  I'm currently working with the Red Cross in New Zealand as part of their refugee resettlement programme covering maternity leave. 
  • I also offer relief general management to the CVS,  There's always too much to do in this sector and managers and staff can suffer 'burn-out' but find it difficult to free the time for an essential break.  If you're part of an organisation that needs some relief to cover a sabbatical, maternity, times of change or just because there's too much to do and would like to see my C.V.  contact  me.
  • As a midwife Wendy has undertaken many short contracts, especially in the Australian outback.  If you have a particular skill there's often well paid opportunities in the outback.
  • During the New Zealand summer months we try to be at our house there running a small Bed and Breakfast business in Golden Bay close to the Abel Tasman and Kahurangi National Parks.  If you like beaches and mountains it's a great place to visit, come and stay.  Details on the 'Bed & Breakfast' page.
  • If your looking to do a road trip like the one that Wendy and I did from Darwin to Cairns for free over 12 days, then there are a number of websites that facilitate the relocation of rental cars and camper-vans, often for free and some that also include petrol and insurance.  We use  transfercar but there are many.
  • One of the biggest costs when travelling is accommodation.  If you have time and flexibility, and like looking after pets, then house sitting can be a great way to see an area and have free accommodation.  We have had wonderful house sits (all involving looking after pets) in Australia, France, New Zealand and England.  Have a look at where we have sat here.  Again there are a number of websites that broker this, such as Housecarers .   If you join using the link on this page then we earn a small commission - it costs you nothing extra and helps meet the cost of managing this website.
  • In the past Wendy and I have had a small business that provided relief management in the hospitality industry - in motels, caravan and holiday parks for example.  For owners or the full time managers of hospitality businesses it can be very difficult to find time for a break.  This one way that you can work and travel.  This is about flexibility and taking opportunities when they arise even if they are not what you usually do.
  • Travel light.  We only take 7 kg cabin bags on flights.  In our experience you do not need more than this.  It's cheaper and so much easier when you're going through customs or heading for your accommodation.  If you are going somewhere warm you don't need many clothes, and we've found that in most places there is always cheap clothing if you need especially if you are happy to use op shops.

Hope this has been helpful.