Ever thought of moving abroad? Are there days where you’ve thought I’m just gonna pack my bags and go find a new life somewhere else?
We have all had those days but the difference is there are some people who do just that, myself included! You decide ‘I am going to take a chance on myself, my desires and dreams, the need for change, and go for it!’
There is no faster way to know what you are made of than to quit your job, sell all your stuff, pack a bag, and hop on a plane bound for a new life. Upon arrival, you don’t have a job, nor do you speak the language, or know very much at all about the culture, and you have no idea where to begin. This is the basic story of my two podcast guests this month. To hear their stories, click:https://bit.ly/35QD1CY
It’s two very different stories, but it is two gentlemen who wanted something else for their lives. There was something niggling inside them, a nagging that kept whispering. Maybe there is something out there that can give you the answers you are looking for in life, in yourself, and in the world.
It is definitely not a new story. We have all seen movies about people traveling the world to find themselves. But does this really work? Can you answer all of those questions about life, yourself, and the world by packing up your bags and trying to live in another part of the world with no plan at all? Well, let’s look at the pros and cons of the situation. I can speak from my own experience and those of my clients. So let’s start with the good news, shall we?
#1: Getting Some Distance: Moving away from all of the responsibilities and barriers that seem to be holding you down and making you feel trapped in your life can feel very freeing. In the beginning, when you go abroad you can feel liberated. Everything is new! You have cut some or all ties with your old life. You get to start out fresh in unfamiliar places, with different people, having unique challenges, learning a new language, and immersing yourself in a strange, new culture.
#2: Getting Out of Your Comfort Zone: Have you heard this expression before? Well, in this case, it is true. When you throw yourself into the deep end of the pool and don’t know how to swim you pull out knowledge, talents, and force you didn’t even know you had in order to survive this new experience.
#3: Creating a New Life: You have the opportunity to carve out a different, meaningful life for yourself. No matter how you do it, everything, the adventures and the challenges, is still going to be new. This new chapter of your life is about creating the life you didn’t have where you previously were.
#1. Hard Learning Curve: It’s true that moving abroad will push you out of your comfort zone and pull things out of you that you didn’t know were there. And while that sounds wonderful, it is important to remember that there is a hard learning curve to this kind of change. Think about all the normal activities you have to do now (make phone calls or write emails to get information, surf the web to buy items/services, walk into a store to purchase food, etc.) Add on top of every activity or event, using another language and learning how those things are handled in another country or culture. Every form, every appointment, every order (verbal or written) is in another language? It’s surprising how much knowledge of language and culture you need to run your life. It’s a given in the place you were raised, but going abroad is trying to learn all of that at once. Same work twice the energy!
#2: Constant Goodbyes: Although you will be meeting lots of new people (hola! bonjour!), you will often have to say lots of goodbyes (adios! au revoir!) to some of those same people. When we move abroad we naturally gravitate towards the international community as they are living the same experiences we are and can offer a sympathetic ear, as well as, valuable information. You may interact with this group at first and then integrate into the culture or you may stay with the international crew the entire time. The thing about the international community is that not very many people are staying permanently. You could find yourself needing to find a whole new friend group every couple of years.
#3: When the Rose-Colored Glasses Come Off: One thing is that no matter where you go, no matter how great the view, the prices, the people; real-life always creeps back in. The same responsibilities, same issues around career, relationships, who you are, and where you are never really go away. Know that by moving abroad you can change the scenery but you still have the same problems with the added issues of language and cultural differences. These can be tough to navigate. Let’s just say some things get lost in translation.
So, is it a good idea to move abroad with no clue? Well, you wouldn’t know, would you? You just read this article it has already given you a clue (or two). 😉