… by squizing my eyes I would see the place were I live as I did the very first time I saw it. Everything seem so nice and undiscovered just waiting to be explored.
The grass was green and the sky so shiny blue as nobody has ever touched it. I was momentary happy, expectant and touched by being touched.
In the beginning when you start at a new place, you immediately adopt a new life view. Everything is so thrilling and everything you do is filled with exciting possibilities. From one moment to another you switch your mind and see things in a positiv expectant way.
But you can’t hold the exitment. As times goes by the exhilaration of the early days fades. Suddenly the amazing place that changed your life becomes a picture hanging on the wall. A picture in which you want to be a part of again. You want to enter… just one more time!
And this could be the beginning. The beginning of a long-term unhappiness in a foreign country were the only thing you wished was to turn back time. Go back into the picture. Or to return home.
BUT.. it doesn’t need to be so. There are some mind-sets you can use, so life abroad can be as amazing as it was in the beginning. Let’s see if the grass can stay green and the sky shiny blue.
I think it’s important to remember facing reality as it is – in which I mean that life normally isn’t all good. You need to accept that a level of uncomfortableness is a part of life. Also a part of an expat life. Of course there will be times when you miss your family to death or you miss seeing and hugging your best friend and instead of resisting the feeling you need to embrace it. When you are embracing the feeling, you are embracing life as it is. You face reality in stead of fighting it. Don’t denide or resist it but let the feelings be a part of you. In a good way!
Don’t look back
Many years ago a good friend of mine said to me (after living abroad for many years) that: “The most difficult thing by living abroad is actually returning back home”. At that time I didn’t know what she meant. But now I know. I think the key is not to pack your belongings in your old suitcase but instead buy a new one and pack new items day by day which goes with your future plans, goals and experiences. If you take your old suitcase and your belongings from back then – then you would definitely be disappointed. Everything has chanced because of your lens, the lens that has been changed over time: home will never be the same. So leave the past and think of the future by packing goals and experiences in a new bag each and every day. Because the past has gone the day you left.
Be proud of yourself
By choosing a life away from your family and friends you need to have some guts. You are taking a chance and you have no idea if the ship will take you on a nice journey or you will be unhappy the hole journey. Sick of seasickness. BUT you did it! The strength and bravery no one can take that away from you. To take a chance on a different life, away from everything you knew is a brave thing to do. So raise your head and be proud of yourself and if things hasn’t been working out as you planned then take your strength once again, if you choose to, create a great life once again all anew.
Don’t let anyone pass through your soul with their dirty shoes
When you are living abroad you have far fewer strong connections to rely on than you used to. You feel rejected and let down more regularly. It’s easy to get sad by letting other’s actions define how you feel about yourself and it’s a fast track to low self-esteem and unhappiness. BUT like a wise friend of mine said: “Don’t let anyone pass through your soul with their dirty shoes”. Instead learn to support, love and be kind to yourself, regardless of how others behave empowers you to be brave. You will subsequently choose close ties more wisely to people who will give you power and support and would love you just the way you are.
Stop worrying and start living your current life
If you have been living abroad for at long time then you know all about the “long-term indecision” that can leave an expat’s mind spinning. Yet when your mind is in overdrive, you become crippled with an inability to decide. Instead you ought to get out of your mind and embrace your current life and let your intuition be your guide. Don’t let your mind spin but take the path which is most colorful leading by your intuition. Then you are on the right way.
Often people believe that living abroad must be the key to a happier life. That living in Italy one of the most beautiful places on earth must be happiness. But like I used to say:
“A long-lastning happiness is a state of mind. It doesn’t matter were you live – life most beautiful view starts from the inside.”