The Magic of Sticking to The Plan

Posted by on Jul 11, 2015 in Cultivate Community, Recent Posts | 7 comments

The Magic of Sticking to The Plan

I am delighted to share Sue’s story of perseverance. Sue participated in our eCourse in Spring of 2014, and it’s been such a joy to watch her plan unfold. The thing I noticed about Sue right away was that she was serious. She read every lesson and really put her all into the tasks. She made a plan, and even when things didn’t go as she planned, she stuck with it. As time went on, her vision got clearer. She recently shared in our private forum about her exciting move to the place of her dreams, and I asked her to write a guest post to share with you.


The synchronicity that Sue experienced is what happens when you do the work–you are met halfway! Congratulations, Sue, we couldn’t be happier for you. And thank you for sharing your story. -Hari


If you’d like to join Sue and the rest of us on the pathway to mortgage-freedom, there are a few more days of open enrollment for the summer session. Click here for details.

Hi, I’m Sue Resnik, and I’ve been dreaming of living a simple life for a long time. Living in Texas 2000-2009, I ran across log cabin kits for 600-800 sq ft homes and dreamed of building one on the neighboring 6 acres. That never happened, but about 2010, having moved back to IL and hearing more and more about tiny homes, I signed up for blogs, read more and more about tiny houses on wheels (THOW), signed up for Deek Diedricksen’s Design and Build: A Tumbleweed Workshop in Boulder, CO in the fall of 2013 and Hari and Karl Berzins’ online workshop in the spring of 2014 entitled The Plan: Creating your Pathway to Mortgage-Freedom, this last one having me actually taking specific steps toward my goal of building my own THOW. Because I learned I’d need to cut my expenses by sharing space with someone, I began my quest for a roommate in IL.

I woke up one day mid-late May 2015 and realized because I was unable to find anyone to co-house with, I was not getting any closer to my goal of building a THOW and because I’ve felt a draw toward North Carolina, I checked Craigslist to see if I could rent something for $500 a month, about half what I was currently paying. I saw many homes that I’d feel comfortable sharing near Asheville, so I thought, “Good…when the time is right, I’ll know I can do this……But wait, what’s this?” And that’s where I saw Caroline’s ad for a 450 sq ft cabin on her 50 acres about an hour west of Asheville.

The cabin, her passive solar home, the organic garden, the goats, the chickens and bees were all calling me. I emailed for more information, and learned we had even more in common. When we spoke, we felt like life-long friends. We eat the same (pescatarian), we both have drums—both Native and African. I mentioned tiny homes and, sure enough, building some on her property is one of her goals! WHO WROTE THIS SCRIPT!?!?

Within two weeks I flew into Asheville for a 2-day visit. Not only did Caroline meet me at the airport, but two of her friends, Ann and Anthony, joined her as well, and they were as excited as she was to meet me! I was treated to lunch at the cafe attached to the food co-op and was in heaven. I felt encapsulated in what felt like the warmest, friendliest, amazing place and people on earth!

And then I saw the land in person and I just HAD to be in a science fiction movie! Hours earlier I was in a place where I was surviving—even with some close friends. I was just getting by. I went to work, paid my bills and hoped something magical would happen to help me achieve my goals.

And magically there I was in an enchanting place, surrounded by people who already felt like friends, considering the possibility of living in this cabin surrounded by koi fish, bullfrogs, beehives, a creek with waterfalls, chickens and goats up in the Smoky Mountains! There are potlucks on a regular basis with neighbors in the community! A COMMUNITY!!! This was SO surreal! I’ve wanted to break bread with like-minded people for as long as I can remember. And, get this, my rent would be $550, plus half of utilities; which is less than half what I was paying in IL, exactly what I envisioned.

I knew I had to go for it. At 64 years old, I had no time to waste. So there I was—a person who makes lists, likes a schedule, prefers to know what’s around the bend, considering taking a leap of faith that I’ve never done before in my life. But it felt right….the people, the place, the dream… if I TRULY wanted to live my reality, this was the Universe shouting ‘here it is…this is just what you want!’

Within a few hours, I called in my 2-weeks notice. What relief, freedom, excitement and sheer joy knowing my three years at this job would all be over in two weeks.

How did this magic happen? I had intentionally put my dream out into the Universe. For several years I’ve shared with anyone who would listen: my meet-up friends, my friends from UU, my writer’s group, my landlady, the realtor who was showing my duplex that was for sale, and my sister. At first I said ‘I thought maybe…’ or ‘I’m hoping to……’ Then it became ‘I plan to…..but, I don’t know when or where’ then I got clearer: ‘I see myself somewhere in North Carolina.’ And after the trip I said it ‘I’m moving! I’m doing this! I’ll be gone before the end of the month!’

At this point, I felt a buzz like never before. Regardless of what time I went to bed, I was ALWAYS up by 5 making lists—in this case, it was VERY necessary!

  • what will I take?
  • what will I attempt to sell at my yard sale?
  • what will I donate?
  • what about relaxers for my two cats?
  • what kind of vehicle will I rent?
  • have my daughter help go through photo albums/pictures in frames
    • pull out all the pictures to have digitized
  • check on flights for my son to come out from Portland, OR to help and drive with me.

I had lists upon lists and I’d never been so exhilarated in my life—EVER!

I needed to rent a vehicle for the move. To save money I decided to go with an SUV. I wanted a cargo van; but they were never one way—by anyone! The only SUV available, however, was a ‘standard,’ which wasn’t overly big. It was obvious NO furniture would be going. OK, I can live with that. I also would have to leave behind my 6-month-old 5-cubic-feet chest freezer, microwave, toaster oven, juicer, vacuum, pots and pans, dishes and 3-level cat tree. There wasn’t even room for all my linens, so packed a few pictures in towels and put anything ‘soft’ in bags so they could be squished into crevices. I already simplified my clothing, so I packed most I had.

And after deciding what I’d give away or sell, I divided things into 3 piles:

  1. Things I HAD to have
  2. Things that were totally optional–could take or leave
  3. Things that if there was room, I’d get into the bags or boxes and pull out a few favorites of things I wanted, but could certainly live without. In the end here’s what I took:
  • my stand mixer (I’m a baker)
  • a few baking items (can’t live without my ramekins for crème brûlée)
  • blender (gotta have my smoothies)
  • box of photographs (ran out of time for digitizing)
  • 3 pillows
  • 2 sets of sheets newly purchased because I was downsizing from Queen to double bed (and got 50% off at thrift store where I worked)
  • desk-top computer and printer
  • an African and Native drum (leaving another African drum behind)
  • a hat that was my dad’s that I bought him when I was 10 years old and that he wore until he could no longer get out of bed
  • 4 framed photos including a 78-year-old one of my father in the Army when he was 26
  • my yoga mats
  • my cats and their crates and all their paraphernalia
  • a few odds and ends

When asked if I missed the things I left behind (‘You’re not taking your cedar chest?’), the answer is no, not really. I do miss several of my closest friends, but we can still stay in touch, thank goodness.

Unless they’re super personal items, mostly photos that I limited, I can live without ‘stuff.’ Because I’m sharing space in Caroline’s home instead of renting her cabin, I need very few things. Living with Caroline will help her to reach her goals of completing her co-housing building and beginning her tiny homes sooner. This, in turn, helps me since I’ll eventually live in one of the tiny houses on Caroline’s property.

Having so little makes me feel lighter, totally unencumbered and at peace. Life is good.

Thanks, again, for sharing, Sue! Enjoy your new life. 🙂

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  1. That’s a great story! And motivational! And inspiring! Thanks for telling it.

  2. Hurray! So happy to hear that these intentions you’ve been putting out to the Universe are happening! I would agree that it feels like magic, but it happened because of you! Keep tapping in to that and ANYTHING is possible.

  3. Oh gosh, I’m sitting here ready to cry like a GURL! I love this story, it pleases me so much!

  4. This is a beautiful story of strong intention and law of attraction. So inspiring! Congratulations on manifesting your dream! I’m especially happy to read this because I’m 61 with 2 cats, so can relate! Thank you.

  5. Sue corajosa! Sue, escreva um blog nos contando sua aventura diária.xx.
    Eu também sonho em morar no sul do meu país cercada de muito verde.

  6. Really considering a thow. I would like to get your newsletters. I have lots of questions and learning from reading. I live on the coast of NC and plan to stay in the area. Will buy land here.

  7. Congrats Sue and welcome to WNC! I’ve lived here my whole life and couldn’t possibly imagine living anywhere else! 🙂