Be happier? Where is happiness? It is here 🙂

I’ve always been a happy person. The little things in life, as simple as they are, always made me happy: the breeze in the trees, my little girl’s smile, a cold beer, and some nachos!

Until I wasn’t anymore. I didn’t understand why at first: I had everything to be happy. But I wasn’t anymore. I had my husband and Emma-Kate whom I loved very deeply, a business that I was passionate about more than anything, an amazing family, a lot of friends and everyone was healthy. What was going on?

Another side of my personality that you may not know: I always want to accomplish a lot. So since I have my business, I have always tried to respect an order of priority so that I do not let go of something, or someone important, and not even realize it. Because I could have spent all my time on my business! So the order of my values or priorities was: my family, then my business, and me at last. And travel, of course!

These are the most important values in my life, and therefore my priorities.

Step 1: Quitting my secure and well-paid job

Me going back to my well-paid government job in June 2018 was such a shock against my values. That’s why, after many intense discussions with Clinton, I quit from this job. Freedom! But also much, much less money.

In fact, we had lived for 5 years without my salary (the first 5 years of Emma-Kate’s life) and we have been fine. We made sacrifices, but in accordance with our values. So we should able to do it long term, but by quitting, we would have no backup if something happened.

Quitting took tons of courage. Going against the current is not easy.

Step 2: Selling our house

This first step led to another: changing houses. Our beautiful, large and luxurious house came at a cost of money and time that we could no longer afford. We are people that plan for just about everything that can happen to us in our life (illness, accident, death, etc.), and we needed some leeway to deal with the unexpected.

Therefore, when I quit, we already knew that we would have to sell our house.

Our house

It took us a lot of courage to put it up for sale. We loved our house. A lot.

On the other hand, we had only a small mortgage on our house that would disappear when we were going to sell it.

Debt-free at 40 years old

And yes, Clinton and I are 40 years old, and we are debt-free. Zero. 0. We don’t have a mortgage, no loan on a car, on furniture, no student loan. It’s as if we are “out of the system.”

It’s weird explaining that to people because they don’t think it’s possible to be debt-free before retirement. And why not own beautiful things just for for the sake of being debt-free?

Do you know the song Society, by Eddie Vedder? (see the lyrics at the end of this article).

Clinton and I have always loved this song, which played in the movie Into the Wild. This song has always made us dream.

Keeping a (more) simple life

It is written in the Bible that if your eye is focused, your whole body will be bright. (Matthew 6:22). When we talk about our eye, we talk about our view of things, what we focus on in life.

When we keep our lives as simple as possible, then we are “bright” because we can focus our time and energy on things that are even more in line with our most important values.

That’s why we’ve made so many big changes in our lives: so that our lives can more fully fit our most important values. And money is not an important value to us, nor is material goods. Traveling with our little girl that grows up way too fast, that’s what we want to invest our time!

I’m not saying here that I don’t like beautiful things, and when I go to Home Sense, I go crazy and I would like buy everything! But buying too many of these things comes at a cost. And that’s a cost we don’t want to pay.

Our new home

Don’t feel sorry for us at all! We are not going to live in a tiny apartment. We chose a beautiful house that’s almost new, which will require as little maintenance as possible, no repair (hopefully), no spa, no pool, no garage, no fireplace … no more unnecessary luxury. Still, we will have what we need.

(photo to come!)

Our house will cost us $575/month to live there, which includes electricity, municipal and school taxes, and insurance. Can’t find a decent apartment that will cost us that! And we wanted a house with a yard so that Emma-Kate could play outside with worms and come home all dirty with a smile on her face!

Happier, really?

I would say that it hasn’t been easy to make the transition. But we will soon find a simpler, but more fulfilling life that will fit better with most important values.

Is it going to be worth it? Only time will tell! We will have to stay strong and courageous to resist all the offers that this materialistic world offers us because our credit is 100% available! Do you realize that? We have zero debt at 40, and we can go back into having tons of debts at any time!

We will need courage on a daily basis. But at least we’re going to be happier! And we will be freer to travel the world with our little girl before she chooses her friends over us haha!

I’m so proud of us! Who’s doing this in 2019? Are you serious? Not a lot of people. I am proud that we have chosen to live in harmony with the right values for us. I am proud that we are different. Because when one is free, the eye focused and hopefully brighter 🙂

Society, by Eddie Vedder

It’s a mystery to me
We have a greed
With which we have agreed
You think you have to want
More than you need
Until you have it all you won’t be free
Society, you’re a crazy breed
I hope you’re not lonely without me
When you want more than you have
You think you need
And when you think more than you want
Your thoughts begin to bleed
I think I need to find a bigger place
‘Cause when you have more than you think
You need more space
Society, you’re a crazy breed
I hope you’re not lonely without me
Society, crazy and deep
I hope you’re not lonely without me
There’s those thinking more or less, less is more
But if less is more how you’re keeping score?
Means for every point you make
Your level drops
Kinda like it’s starting from the top
You can’t do that
Society, you’re a crazy breed
I hope you’re not lonely without me
Society, crazy and deep
I hope you’re not lonely without me
Society, have mercy on me
I hope you’re not angry if I disagree
Society, crazy and deep
I hope you’re not lonely without me
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Showing 4 comments
  • student life

    It is easy to be happy? Of course, it is! However, you need to follow at least a few simple rules and directions! You gotta reach your goal in this case!

  • Josee Lapointe

    J’ai beaucoup aimé lire ton article . Une écriture honnête et franche.
    À mon humble avis pour l’avoir vécu ..n’avoir plus de dettes c’est ça être riche !
    Et oui ,comme tu le dis si bien ..le piège c’est de ne plus remplir la carte etc 😉 Mais sincèrement c’est plus facile que l’on pense 🙂
    Bonne continuité dans vos futurs projets!!

    • Dominique Lessard

      Merci beaucoup ma belle Josée pour tes beaux mots. Vous êtes nos exemples 🙂 xx

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