In just a few weeks, my family and I are headed to Costa Rica for an ENTIRE MONTH. This has been a dream that my husband, Mike and I have been working on since 2017 when we got serious about setting a vision for our life and our business.
We have been asked so many questions about our trip, why we are going, if we are scared of leaving our life and business or a month (spoiler alert: yes - we are scared but we are doing it anyway), and what we are hoping to get out of the trip so I am sharing it all here. I hope our story will inspire you to make the decision to GO FOR IT even if you are scared in your own life.
For anyone that doesn't know my story - my name is Paige Wilcox and my husband and I own Wilcox Wellness & Fitness - a private personal training business that we franchised in 2017. We have 2 locations - one in Bangor that we have been running for the last almost 11 years and one in Brunswick, Maine that opened in mid-January of 2019.
I met Mike on a blind date in 2006 and married him 5 years later. I definitely married up - Mike is my best friend and partner in all things and I absolutely love spending every minute of every day with him. Not kidding! Together, we have two wild and crazy kids - Hazen is 9 and Brooklyn is 6.
I am originally from Rangeley, Maine - a super small, beautiful town in the western part of the great state of Maine. I come from a family of small business owners - my parents ran a convenience store when I was growing up and I always knew that I wanted to own and run my own business. Not for the typical reasons of ‘being my own boss’ but more for the lifestyle freedom that you can build when you own a business.
I love travel, I love adventure, I love immersing myself in new cultures. It has always been my goal to be able to live and work from anywhere in the world. (Don’t worry - Bangor, Maine will always be my forever home.) I have always made travel a priority in my life and I been lucky enough to do a lot a lot of travel in my lifetime. I have backpacked through Europe, been in the Amazon jungle, and traveled through India.
I love the way travel opens you up to view the world in a different way and provides immense amounts of perspective.
It is scary to leave our business for an entire month - our business is our baby. And our franchise business is our infant baby. But - our real babies - Hazen and Brooklyn are only going to be this little for so long. And I am so excited to have this adventure with them - to connect with them through travel - to see the wonder on their faces - to see monkeys in real life - and to open up their minds to the greatest possibilities. It is scary - but anything worth wild is scary so do it anyway. We only get this one life and we get to decide how to live it.
I feel so lucky. I absolutely LOVE my work. A lot of people have asked me why I don’t just want to disconnect and totally be in #vactationmode for the month. The truth is - I love running the business. I love the team I support. I love the clients we serve. I love brainstorming new ideas. I love creating things to serve our clients better. To me full on vacation mode isn’t desirable - it would be like saying you can’t watch your favorite TV show, or eat your favorite food, or talk to your best friend or your mom, while you are on vacation because you need to disconnect from that thing. But the truth is, doing those things would enhance your overall vacation experience. I hope that makes sense.
I think having the opportunity to get away for a solid chunk of time really gives you the opportunity to look at your life, your family, your business, and your priorities with a new perspective. I think that when we are at home, working, grocery shopping, meal prepping, shuttling the kids around, and doing all the things we can lose sight of the bigger picture.
I strive to live a really intentional life.
I know that life is what you make it and I think that sometimes you need to get out of your daily routine in order to really be able to truly figure out what you want out of life. Things like... How you want to feel on a daily basis. The relationships that you want to have with the ones you love the best. The impact that you want to create in the world. The thoughts that float through your mind.
I remember one time I was going through a particularly stressful time with an old job (I was an account manager for a scientific distribution company) Mike and I went on vacation together.
We were in Puerto Rico and I was having a hard time disconnecting from work - or work was having a hard time disconnecting from me back in the days where disconnecting was my goal.
I had to be on a conference call on vacation in Puerto Rico on the way to the boat for our snorkeling adventure. I had a lot on my mind after that call and boarding the boat. I remember then putting my snorkel gear on and putting my head in the water.
There was a whole beautiful world down there that I hadn’t even considered moments prior.
It made my problems feel so small in the best way possible. The fish would still be swimming, the seaweed would still be swaying, and the waves would still be rolling regardless of what was going on in my life. And I feel like that is what travel does for us. It puts our life into perspective.
I am really excited to have the opportunity to step back and really assess where we are and gain a lot of perspective going forward.
I hope that our experience inspires other people to fully go for it in their life and do something that scares them. It may not be travel related but really finding the thing that will set their soul on fire, light them up, and make them excited to jump out of the bed in the morning. Maybe that means applying for a new job, starting a new business, going back to school, or asking that special someone out on a date.
Whatever it is, I say throw caution to the wind, go for it - especially if you are scared. What is the worst that could happen? Global pandemic?!? Been there - did that - definitely don't want to do that again but we survived it (just by the skin of our teeth).
I am confident that our whole trip is not going to be rainbows and butterflies, monkeys and waterfalls. We will have the challenge of figuring out how to balance the family time with working time. I will still have phone calls to support our franchise business and our team in Bangor and other work to do to keep the momentum of the business humming. I love my work - my challenge will be dialing that back enough to really let the amazingness of our trip and extra family time sink in.
I don’t even want to think about what it will mean when our days in Costa Rica are up but I truly hope that by that time I am itching to get home, get back into our comfortable routine, and eat an American cheeseburger again.
I hope that this trip brings our family even closer together - that our kids see that you can do anything in life that you decide to do - and that life is meant to be fully enjoyed. I am so excited to play full out - embrace the adventure and the challenge - and be transformed in the process.
I hope that we bring home a new perspective from Costa Rica that we can use to serve our clients and our team better.
AND - I hope that from the moment we get home, we start planning our next adventure!
So tell me - what is your next adventure? How do you want it to make you feel? What scares you about it? I want to hear it!