- Tanya Arler
6 months in? Make a new plan!
Updated: Mar 10, 2022
Are you just back from your first time home since the big move? You’re probably full of mixed emotions.
It was so good to have been home, but at the same time, you’re happy to be back. Many of you were dying to going 'home' because your adjustment has been hard. You couldn’t have imagined being excited to come back when you left because going ‘home’ was back to comfort, and easy, and all the people and things that you missed so much.
Then suddenly you realise - your new country IS home and has become your comfort zone.
Woah! Who knew?
It’s a new year and if you moved 6 months ago or so, the hardest part of starting out as an expat is behind you. Congratulations!
With the hardest part is behind you and the realisation that ‘this’ is home, now what?
I suggest you re-think what your initial intentions and plans were when you came to this country in the first place and make a new plan.
Before the move we all have a vision of what we're going to do when we get to the new country and the plan is ALWAYS flawed.
The first big mistake is generally that we plan to learn a new language and be fluent in 3-6 months. Does that sound familiar? With that, a host of other things come: join a gym, find a job, learn how to knit, lose weight, volunteer at a soup kitchen…etc. But when we get here, there's so much that we didn't expect and couldn’t possibly have predicted. It means that either our plans become irrelevant, or just not realistic in the new setting.
So this is your chance… revisit your initial plan and make a new one that suits your new surroundings and is feasible in the setting that you’re now familiar with.
Do you still want to learn a language or find a job, GREAT! But make the time line realistic based on where you are. Are you like, no… I have too much going on to learn that language. Also GREAT! Let it go.
And maybe your new home has things to offer that you couldn't have imagined; mahjong, teaching opportunities, belly dancing, university courses, candy making or ikebana! Don't forget to look around prioritise some of the unique experiences that are right at your finger tips.
Tanya - a happy expat
PS. If you are a new expat and are still looking for direction and advice, check out my book UNPACK - a guide to life as an expat spouse, or reach out to me and ask any question you like. I am happy to help if I can!
Tanya Arler is the author of the book UNPACK - a guide to life as an expat spouse and founder of A Happy Expat. A HAPPY EXPAT offers expat spouses practical tools, mindset coaching, and advice on how to navigate the staggering change they are going through, all the while remaining the rock their family so desperately needs.
So they too can become...
A HAPPY EXPAT
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