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Yes, I would love to leave my country and start traveling around the world, but how am I going to do it? I have children, elderly parents, a business, a good job…

These are comments—which at times sound more like excuses—that here at Denationalize.me, we hear very often. But is it really so difficult to leave the country or travel?

Today I am going to explain why departing your country is neither easy nor difficult, but simply a question of having your priorities clear and acting accordingly.

Firstly, what do you need to leave your country?

One of the key discoveries we make as we mature, in particular when we become independent from our parents, is that life consists of income and expenses, and that the two concepts are inseparable. You can only spend what you have previously earned.

Here is the first part of the answer to our question. In order to become independent from our country we need to possess the same thing that we used before to gain independence from our parents: a source of income, or at the very least, savings that enable us to manage until we have a new income source.

Those who can live off assets are in the best starting position, whether they be investments in the stock market, crypto, property, or similar. Those owning a self-sustaining business or one which only needs very infrequent attention are also well placed.

Other working situations conducive to going abroad include self-employment (being able to offer your services independently of a fixed location) or employees who can easily switch to teleworking and therefore work as freelancers.

For everyone else, the problem will be to find a location where the prices are low and which enables them to gradually build up a source of income, be that an online business or some kind of investment.

Of course, it will be more difficult if you are a “good citizen”.

As you will already know, good citizens live from hand to mouth, they have a mortgage, a house, a job, they go on holiday once or twice a year and have one or two children. They have very little understanding of finance and investment. These citizens follow the government’s guidelines and willingly allow half of what they earn to be taxed and swallowed up on social security contributions.

This is the exact kind of citizen that states want you to be, because they are bound and cannot escape no matter how much the pressure on them increases.

We therefore find ourselves facing a second emancipation, but this time not from our own parents, but from others who, of their own accord, have decided to assume this paternal role for us.

Those of us who are parents know from first-hand experience that relationships with our children are rather complex, even contradictory. On one hand, you want them to listen to you, take your advice and not expose themselves to dangers that you consider unnecessary. But at the same time, you want them to evolve and grow, learn what they need to know and become strong and independent.

One thing we have to bear in mind is that, contrary to the relationship we have with our own parents, the state does not love us. Our country is only concerned for us insofar as what we can pay them (and very often, not even that).

In other words, we find ourselves in a situation where, like with our parents, the state wants to know what we are doing and hold certain control over us. In certain cases, it even wants to decide for us and be able to punish us. However, in contrast to our relationship with our parents, this is not because they love us or for our good, but because they want to exploit us.

As a result, in this second process of emancipation, the situation will be more difficult than in the first scenario.

The state will try to frighten us, it will try to make administrative processes especially difficult, it will say that there is nowhere like this country, it will try to oppose our loved ones against us, it will call us crazy, anti-social and will accuse us of wanting to destroy what it has constructed all for the simple fact of wanting to leave.

That is why the second thing you need to leave your country is much less concrete than having income. It is a change in mentality: you need to change the way of seeing the world, which you can only be done by moving around, mixing with the right people and discovering all the things that are out there.

The third thing would be to accept that many of the people we trust, people that we love and that love us, will not understand that we want to leave and that we no longer want to contribute to this system. They will say that leaving is not a good idea and that we should stay, that nowhere else will you be more loved or feel more at home than in your own country.

It is important that we are aware of this because, if we really want to leave, we must not let ourselves be blackmailed or talked out of it.

Bear in mind that by leaving not only are we liberating ourselves, but also  clearing the path that all around us can take if one day they get tire of running the rat-race of society.

Your priorities and objectives

Now that you know what you need to leave your country and can find out whether or not you fulfil the requirements, the next step will be to discover whether you really want to. As I was saying, generally speaking, leaving  one’s country is not something that people are unable to do, but rather they do not want to and look for excuses for not doing something that, in some ways, they would like to do.

I think one of the most important questions you must pose yourself is what do you want to achieve and what are your priorities. And then, what are you prepared to give in exchange for reaching your goals.

What is your priority?

Maybe your priority is to travel and discover the world, or you want to save money to become economically independent and be able to retire at forty. Perhaps your priority is finding a country where you can live without government-enforced Covid restrictions or where you can educate your children just the way you like. Alternatively, the most important thing for you might be building your business and being more competitive professionally. Or it could be to live in a safer environment or where the prevailing ideology is different and refreshing.

Priorities are all interlinked and depend on your system of values. And so, if your most cherished values are freedom and self-sovereignty, your highest priorities should focus on being free and independent.

You may have other priorities such as traveling and experiencing exciting adventures. Being a Perpetual Tourist grants you freedom and independence, but it is entrepreneurship, investment and the like that would enable you to finance this lifestyle. That is to say, in order to live in accordance with your priorities you may first need to dedicate time to lay a foundation, even if this stops you from meeting your priority needs for a period of time. You must sow before you can reap.

Next on your list of priorities after traveling and adventure, you may have others such as reading, writing, leisure or romantic relationships. You must pay at least some attention to these areas of your life in order to have the motivation needed to pursue other ambitions that hold greater importance in your value system.

Learning, teaching, living and loving are often key priorities in life, but are they the most important things to you?

What you prioritise may be completely different to those described. In fact, it is likely that very few people place freedom and independence as their most cherished values, perhaps no more than 1% of the world population.

Of course, everyone considers freedom and independence as important, and they look great on a business card, but often these values clash with others that are seen as more important, such as safety, social equality, friendship, love, having children or protecting our loved ones.

Let us return to topic of prioritising traveling and experiencing adventures. These often clash with people’s desire to live comfortably, whether that be with luxuries in or outside the home, or simply wanting to play videogames or the drums and then meeting up with friends for a drink.

Often, a part of these comforts can be foregone in order to, at the very least, facilitate these trips, or, if traveling is not your number one priority, to obtain economic independence enabling you to live without needing to work.

For example, you can leave your country, leave behind what is comfortable, safe and familiar for a new country which (despite not being the same country you lived in all your life) satisfies a great many needs and, crucially, enables you to advance towards your main objective: saving money, starting a business or achieving financial independence.

If traveling or going abroad were your priority, but you were not prepared to do it at any cost, you could save some money by spending less eating out every day, on eco-friendly food, on the supposedly best private school in the city, on having the car with the best available technology or on luxury holidays with the whole family.

However, the reality is that people are too comfortable to even consider what their priorities are. That is not even to mention thinking about what the first step would be in pursuing their objectives.

I am sure you know lots of examples like this.

There is the typical colleaget hat everyone knew at university. He lived with his parents during his degree, with an income of around USD 800 a month, meaning he probably earned more than you, but always complained about not being able to travel because of lack of money. On top of that, he had no fixed expenses: he lived in the large bedroom in his parents’ house and his grandmother cooked for him every day.

In truth, he could have used all that money to travel, but it seems that travel was not his number one priority. He paid USD 65 a month for his mobile contract, USD 25 for cable TV, often bought films and videogames, had his own car and regularly went to the cinema, amusement parks and expensive nightclubs… Is it any wonder that the USD 800 disappeared so quickly?

When traveling, while others stay in the cheapest hostel, this is the typical person who prefers to go on their own and rent a much more expensive hotel room. Instead of cooking or trying cheap street-food spots they prefer to go to restaurants. Instead of enjoying a night out buying two or three beers, they overindulge on whisky and expensive rum. And so while one spends £ 80 the other splashes out more than USD 400.

This example clearly illustrates the fact that people prioritise certain things over others even if they always insist, for instance, that they want to travel (or, in general, more freedom).

Of course, it is unclear whether our fellow classmate from university acts like this because comfort really is his maximum priority or because he has simply never stopped for long enough to consider what his desires and needs are. He may not know which things are most important to him, and instead he simply follows the easiest and most comfortable path.

Anyway, we are going off track. Let us return to the initial question: what is your highest priority?

Hand on heart, ask yourself what you desire, what you need, what is the path that takes you there and what are you willing to do to reach it. It is as easy—or difficult—as that.

Humans’ basic needs are subsistence (health and sustenance), safety (a feeling of control and security), love (family, friendships), freedom, leisure, identity (self-esteem, a sense of belonging), reproduction, creation (invention and curiosity) and understanding (knowledge).

Stop paying taxes, run your business without all the limitations that your home country places on you, diversify your investments, make your money grow more quickly, create a backup plan for if things go badly (more accurately, for when things do go badly), and stop allowing your government to take you for a fool and telling you what to do.

All of this is very good but is it really in line with your priorities? And if it is, what are you prepared to do in order to reach those objectives? Are you willing to step out of your comfort zone to achieve it?

Lastly, how would life be outside your country?

Obviously, no one will be able to answer this question—the only way of knowing is by experiencing it. However, what we can do is give you some ideas to get you started.

At this point you have discovered that, despite your fears, despite the effort that the change would require, and despite the pushback and lack of understanding from your nearest and dearest; you are willing to take the step because it is in line with your priorities. Now, the next thing is to consider how to go about doing it.

It is important to understand that leaving does not need to be a radical decision that you take abruptly, it can quite easily be a slow process adapted to your circumstances. The key thing is that you do not stagnate.

If living abroad scares you, you can start by spending a period of time away, in the country, or in the countries that you think can offer you what you are looking for. This will give you time to learn the reality of that other place in terms of security, people, food, and you can start to build a clear idea of what the day-to-day living would be like there and what it would mean to no longer live in your old home.

By doing this you may not achieve your main goal, that is, to stop being a tax resident in your country of origin. But you would have made the first step and you would only have one left to make.

You would like to have the reward as soon as you have made the effort, I know, but if the alternative is to stand still contemplating your objective and complain that it is too far away to reach in one go, maybe it is worth having patience.

Another option could be to mix with people from those countries or, in general, with people that travel, people that have lived in other places, that have businesses abroad and can tell you about their experiences. By doing this you will be able to start a process of adjustment without leaving your country and begin to have people around you that understand that you want to leave and that will support you in your decision.

Easier still would be to inform yourself by reading articles, watching documentaries and interviews about life in other countries. It is important to stay well clear of sensationalist press, such as newspapers, news channels and so on.

Our blog is a good place to start, as are TV programs that picture lives from people living overseas.

There are also a plethora of Youtube videos showing what life is like in all sorts of countries. You can search on Google or Facebook pages, forums or groups for expats, e.g. Canadians in Prague/Czech Republic/Costa Rica.

This approach to informing yourself has the advantage of being entertaining. It is not hard work and helps you to overcome any fear you may have of those countries.

For those that prefer a faster solution, you can of course travel directly to another country. Contrary to what some people think, you do not need to leave everything behind in your home country.

If you travel to and become a tax resident in a new country, generally speaking, you can keep a property in your home country. There is no need to close anything down: you can keep hold of your rental contract, your empty house, any businesses you manage, and your car; and try life in another country. Should you not enjoy living there, you can pack your bags and return home.

Needless to say, you will need to put things in order from a tax point of view to make sure you are no longer a tax resident there, but do no worry: for that you have our consultancy service.

There are lots of people who want to travel, leave their country and discover new places. If this is your case and you have the means to sustain yourself at least for a time (one or two years), you can wait no more and unregister as a tax resident in your home country, meaning you stop paying taxes. (Equally, if you have no income during this time, you will not pay anything either.)

In any case, if in addition to travel you want to work on your Flag Theory and internationalise the most important aspects of your life, this could be a great opportunity to get to know the countries where you, your investments or your business would not be taxed.

In this scenario it is also important to carry out the necessary fiscal arrangements and correctly unregister in your home country.

Of course, there are many other ways of leaving your home country. You can go to a neighbouring country that would allow you to return home whenever you like, you can live between three countries with one being your country of origin, or you can opt for the 2+1 solution: you have houses in two countries where you spend less than six months, and another country (or various) where you holiday for one or two months a year.

All these options, carried out properly, with the appropriate attention to detail, can enable you to free yourself from the pressure of the state and live a freer life, paying little or nothing in tax.

Conclusion

As you can see, there is not just one way of leaving your country. Your new life abroad could take many forms, adapting itself entirely to your personality and your needs.

What is clear is that to leave your country you will need a source of income.

You may also need to change your mentality and free yourself from the mindset that the media and your surroundings create about what it means to live abroad.

You will need to assess your needs and establish your priorities and goals according to them.

Lastly, you will have to start the process, be that with big steps (packing your bags) or small ones (educating yourself about other countries or visiting them in short trips).

All that remains is to ask yourself, do you want to go? Do you want to free yourself from the pressure of the state?

Because your life is yours.

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