HOW LIFE ABROAD AS AN EXPAT PARTNER CHANGED MY LIFE IN A POSITIVE WAY
Moving abroad for the job of your partner means a lot of change in your life and most of the times you will be surprised that this change is affecting really EVERY angle of your life.
On Sharethelove, I have written a lot about the identity crisis of the dependent Partner and the struggle of finding your professional fulfillment abroad. Recent survey and several articles of other Expat Partners also stress the risk of losing self-confidence and perspective when everything changes and not only in a positive way.
However, there comes the time in most Expat lives when you feel comfortable in your new surrounding, you established your network and found something meaningful to do with your time. This is where I am at the moment and I want to share with you all the great epiphanies I had in recent time about the Expat Partner life.
gainig The big picture
The time abroad as the partner allows you to step back and watch your life from another angle. You are forced to interrupt your daily work life, your career and everything you were used to professionally. While there are no new projects, no everyday hassle your time and energy is needed for completely different tasks which allows you to value your old life from afar and think about potential new directions.
THE LUXURY TO WORK ON YOURSELF
When you managed to see the big picture for the first time – you can start to act on it. Many Partners use this time to add a degree or to learn something completely new. For me personally, this allows me to focus also on skills I am just genuinely interested in without questioning the professional value all the time.
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RE-SET OF VALUES
Moving abroad as the partner allows me to think about what value family and loved ones have to me and how I want to prioritize them in life. You get a clear picture of friends who are actually there for you and realize what kind of friendship are mutual or in fact are not.
RECOGNITION INSTEAD OF EVALUATION
Living within a foreign culture but not just visiting for a couple of months allows you to dive in and realize what culture really means. For me, culture is a framework of values and rules we are born in. Hence we rate different things as right and wrong and approach the same situation in a totally different way. Since I realized this, I stopped evaluating one country/culture against one another but just love to recognize differences as an interesting and fascinating fact.
I can see that these positive developments are more on a not so tangible level. However, daily life will come back soon enough so it’s a nice change to spend your time with a bit more mindfulness until then.
I would love to hear what you have learned during your time abroad and what positive aspects you see?
Let me know in the comments below.