How one family sold everything and gained everything.

Leith and Aaron McHugh have been through the kind of pain and heartache that every parent dreads. Their daughter Hadley was born with a underformed brain. Her 12 years of life were filled with medical care and hospital visits. After she died Leith and Aaron took stock and made a plan many people think about but very few carry out.
They sold their possessions, sold their house and moved in 2015. They lived in a cabin for 6 weeks, slept on friends couches and rented a home for a while.  “It wasn't simple or easy and I cried a lot. Our home matters a lot to us. That season was so hard but the impact of selling up on our family was incredible”

Aaron and Leith McHugh. Their daughter Hadley died in 2010.

Aaron and Leith McHugh. Their daughter Hadley died in 2010.

I interviewed Leith about their story. 

“About the time Hadley was very ill our son told us he was gay. This was obviously a big change for all of us. I was at the same time working on some of my own inner healing and we had to look long and hard at our marriage. Then our son was taken into rehab for drug and alcohol addiction. We just knew we needed to purge the pain of all that and selling our house was what felt right. For us, the pain was in the bricks”

Selling up and moving out of their house enabled the McHugh's to let go of many of their associations with their lives to date. The new perspectives helped them to carve out a life that was based on what brought them most energy.
They began to call the whole process of selling up ‘Rebooting your life’. They now run Reboot weekends in Colorado Springs.


“People who come need to be willing to be introspective. They need to look at their relationships. We have participants represent their relationships with red yellow and green dots. Red is for energy draining relationships, yellow for 'proceed with caution' and green for relationships full of life. We talk through how much joy they experienced in their life. Many people don't spend time doing the things they love.”

For Aaron and Leith using joy as the engine of life is what reboot weekends are designed to achieve.

“One man came to one of our weekends feeling like she was in a red zone. Everything was draining his energy. But when he did the mapping tool he had green dots all over the place. His perspective shifted and he realised his life was well balanced this new insight helped him feel the joy and energy in his life.
“Not everyone should sell up everything,” says Leith, “it’s just what we needed to do, but everyone can clear out something. Clear out their heart or clear out a cupboard in their home”


The McHugh’s help people to do that with their Reboot weekends. I admire their bravery and their pursuit of having more joy in their lives. Watch out for Reboot weekends in the UK perhaps?

For more links to the McHugh's work and their podcast Work Life Play click here.

Naomi Light