Of course, human beings don't start over, not really. Even in the witness protection program they still bring themselves. And unless they have done considerable work on those selves they cart along plenty of emotional baggage. In 12-step programs, when such illusions take the form of relocation, they are labeled "geographics."
However, there is such a thing as reconfiguring pieces of one's professional and personal life for specific objectives. Those doing that don't anticipate a total transformation. More, they frame it as a bet that thing could be a litte more - fill in the blanks. What is filled in could be:
- Warmer in temperature, without snow
- Plentiful in the kinds of communications assignments available to a professional who isn't between 22 and 34
- Accessible to work on contract onsite without paying about 50 bucks a day, plus pricey lunch, to take Metro-North from New Haven, Connecticut to midtown or downtown Manhattan
- Filled with new people to meet rather than bumping into ghosts.
Before portable phone numbers on smartphones and email addresses, such a move would have been a setback for our businesses. Clients who had used us five years before and remembered our work as superior wouldn't be able to find us. Prospects would have questions as to why we relocated.
Now, all is seamless. Plus, those in the old location, seeing our east coast phone number, might never realize we have taken a hike. That definitely would be the case if they paid us with PayPal.
After this winter of (extreme) discontent, I am doing my due diligence on major metro areas in Arizona. Of them, Phoenix has the most public relations and marketing communications agencies. Yet, the rents are about half what I pay in Connecticut. The state is pet friendly. The drive there is 36 hours. No, I wouldn't be starting over. I would be following the example of my grandparents who took the boat from Italy and Poland, betting on economic opportunity and a better quality of life. We Baby Boomers could be the New Immigrant Class in developed economies.