Circumnavigation: the year of preparations

How to prepare for a circumnavigation that is going to take 3 years, or possibly the double? Or possibly, I was never ever coming back?
I had been saving up money since I made up my mind, so for almost a year. It was awfully hard, since what makes life worth while is fun and play, and that costs money more often then it doesn’t. Usually, I would spontaneously book a trip to some exotic country, or buy something nice, as soon as there has built up some sum over on my account, thus ruining all saving possibilities. But after a year of saving, I was just within the limit of being able to sail for several years if living cheap and Spartan. I had locked up two-thirds of the savings in papers and a private investment at a friend’s company. I also was doing weekly gigs in Stockholm, saving up all the pays, and I sold off everything I owned except for a couple of boxes of private stuff.
After buying the boat, a lot of gear had to be found, ordered, bought, and installed to equip the boat for a long sailing. I had a large motor beside my bed, the hall was taken up by a huge rubber dinghy, complete with pump, oars and what not. Solar panels and a generator also take a lot of space.

When the spring came, the actual work on the boat started. All the coating had to be taken off with a sander or a grinder, all the dirt had to be washed off and sanded off. 

At first, it was loads of fun, I went berzerk with an abrader shaped as an ironing device. It felt somewhat like polishing a giant tooth that never ended - the yellowish outer layer with the cracks disappeared, and the nice white color under it started to show, it also buzzed like at the dentist's (but much louder of course). However, the device could only be used on surfaces that were flat and large. So when it comes to small smart drainage paths, all the gear that sits on the decks, and the bent areas - there, I had to scrub by hand. Or by finger. With tiny bits of sandpaper, which is about the same feeling as trying to clean your entire kitchen with a toothbrush.

At the end, my knees were dead, all my clothes were covered with a thick layer of white dust, and the fingers looked like dried salted beer sausages - wrinkled and white. Then, the new paint was going to be put on in several layers, and a lot of different solutions would have to be fixed. Never-ending work...

Some photos of work in progress...
I still worked a lot, doing overtime that paid off. Most of the spare time was spent on paperwork, reading up on sailing, selling my stuff, even my car, moving to a less expensive living, and hunting sponsors. Some other tech gadgets had to be agreed upon and bought, like a GPS, E-Pirb, maps, etc.
Had to do vaccinations (good to start well in advance), a medical and dentist check (too bad to have to care about such stuff while in open ocean), have looked at sailing clothes, for example a sailing/flotation overall suit for North Sea to order. New credit cards to be ordered, so they will not expie during the years I am sailing. New passport etc.
Also paperwork like talking to CSN, quitting subscriptions, changing phone abo, etc.
Since I was going off for several years, I could not just get a year off and come back to work. So three months before the departure, I quit my job. My boss was sorry to see me go, but got me to promise that when I come back, I would call them first. The company also kindly sponsored some safety gear (life boat and flares). A small cost for them, but a great possibility for exposing the brand at the sponsors page, and a simple risk mitigation to make sure a competent consultant does come back (both by avoiding drowning, and by building goodwill).
A few months into the process, I dropped the news to my parents and family, Naturally, they were not happy, and became very worried and scared. Their voyage was most probably more difficult than mine... I involved them with plotting the live coordinates of sailing, and checking weather reports. It was a lot of help for me, and a good way to give them control of how it’s going.
The last weeks before the sail-off were hectic, mildly put. So many things had to be done. If I would do this again, I'd take a week off work before departure. That would definitely save me a lot of stress.

Some photos taken of the boat after the recondition.
Here is the full chronological post of the circumnavigation updates, a.k.a "what happened next"!