The Road Less Traveled — Backbone Power

When the Universe Nudges You, GO!

What does that even mean? In my humble opinion, there is a way to better live in synchronicity with the universe than most of us do. When people meditate, they speak about things becoming clearer. When people go on a retreat without their daily distractions, people report life slows down and things become clearer. I believe when we have what I call daily, weekly, or monthly “stare” time we get messages that can help us make better decisions. Find your own language for this phenomenon. For a few moments trust, this might be a possibility and join me on my journey with the goal of pondering what these words might mean for you.

Prepare For Change

During the last quarter of 2018, I attended a local evening talk by a clairvoyant. She said a lot of things that evening but the one idea I could not dismiss was, “Be prepared for change and I mean to change that might include moving, reinventing yourself, and having your life a life you wouldn’t recognize today. And if you aren’t fluid with the change, be prepared to be whacked upside the head- “she probably said be prepared for the consequences”. I like my words better because I know when I ignore what the universe is trying to tell me it feels like a 4×4 connecting with my head.

Before the “evening talk” I was becoming restless and in need of a new adventure. So, for me, these were two signs from the universe-a feeling internally that I needed to be in a different place living a different life and an external conversation (the clairvoyant) validating this restlessness. I began to think I might be in alignment with the shifting energy in the universe. After the “evening talk”, I felt nudged to spend time in a very spiritual place doing nothing except being still, meditating, and asking for guidance. I also read everything I could on different places to live since I was “sure” I was being asked to make a big move.

Visit my travel page here:

By the beginning of 2019, I was able to try out the words with a few close friends and family members. I don’t remember the exact day, but I do remember within the first two months of 2019 noticing that my adventure when first uttered sounded crazy, but soon became a dream that if I didn’t follow, I would be depressed.

As a single professional woman, mother, and grandmother, I plan to move halfway around the world to an island I’ve never been to, where I know no one and didn’t speak the language.

Once my dream was clear, and I had reached the point of no turning back, I put my head down and begin to take action. I wanted to move to Madeira, Portugal, and become a resident by the end of 2019.

Looking back now, I know those were long exhausting days with many sleepless nights and yet things moved forward. I hired people to do the things I was not competent at doing. I had so many lessons during those ten months. There were people who openly expressed negative opinions. There were those who were supportive to my face and negative behind my back, those who were probably jealous and secretly hoped I would fail, and those who supported me every step of the way. Other people’s opinions are just a test to see if you are clear and committed. Observe who is who and move on. Surround yourself with people who support you and are happy for your success!

“Go after your dream, no matter how unattainable others think it is.”

Sometimes it would have been better for me to let go of a challenge sooner. Maybe I missed things because I was moving too rapidly. Yet I was moving closer to living in a country halfway around the world. Yes, there were setbacks, sometimes 2 steps forward and 4 steps backward, but eventually, the forward movement won. I was a resident of Madeira, Portugal in November of 2019.

Visit my travel page here:

When the clairvoyant said, “a life you wouldn’t recognize”, I took that literally and decided to sell, give away, or find a special place for all of my belongings. Letting go of all but a very few of my “things” was quite a rich process both emotionally and physically. I can write volumes about this process, but for now, it felt as though I was the person distributing all my belongings after I had passed on. I did move with about 5 suitcases. And I did feel I had created a lot of room for new adventures and experiences.


So to recap February 2019 I had announced I was leaving the US and moving to Madeira, Portugal. In November 2019 I was a resident of Madeira, Portugal with my 5 suitcases. By February 2020 I had secured a lovely yearly rental. I had met so many beautiful, fun, caring, supportive, and engaging friends. I had a wonderful life, unlike a life I could have imagined or recognized a year ago. One month later we went into quarantine.

“Follow your dreams, believe in yourself, and don’t give up.”

At the time of this writing, Madeira, Portugal has 121 cases, no deaths, and has been touted as an island who has handled the pandemic wisely and responsibly. People on the island care about each other, follow the rules, and have created a safe place for us all. My dream which to many seemed crazy in February 2019, now seemed brilliant. Funny how dreams work like that.

Should everyone pick up and move to Madeira, No. Should everyone start listening for their nudges so they can find their Madeira, Yes! I am starting this page for anyone who has been turned upside down by the pandemic and is paralyzed. Remember only you can find your dream. If you borrow another’s dream it probably won’t work for you. If you have a partner/family, it is important to find a dream that fits all of you. I will pack as much information on this page to help you through the challenges.

“As soon as you begin to pursue a dream, your life wakes up, and everything has meaning.” Barbara Sher

Why A Travel Page?

Visit my travel page here:

The purpose of this travel page is two-fold. One, I want to nudge everyone who feels stuck to just take a step forward-and another-and another!

Don’t look back! You’re not going that way. Mary Engelbreit

Two, I want to show you how powerful it is when you move to a new place to find your community by making friends. Accept invitations, issue invitations, join groups, be curious about your new home and you will begin a rich exciting journey.

Life is about taking chances, trying new things, having fun, making mistakes, and learning from it.

Wait too long and you run the risk of bumping into fear, isolation, and depression!

Madeira Daily Living

Originally published at

Psychotherapist, Speaker, Coach, and Author of “Backbone Power The Science of Saying No”

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Dr. Anne Brown

Dr. Anne Brown

Psychotherapist, Speaker, Coach, and Author of “Backbone Power The Science of Saying No”

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