If you’ve looked through my blog, you’ll know that I usually write posts containing advice for expatriates, but today I wanted to change it up a little and celebrate five of my favourite things about my expat life.
Living as an expatriate can be daunting, lonely, and sometimes difficult. But most of the time it’s exciting, full of opportunities, and it’s a new adventure each day. In this post, I want to share five things that I’ve been able to experience by becoming an expat and why they are so important to me. Let me know in the comments what the top reasons you like being an expat are!
#1 – the diverse group of people I’ve met
I know this is the cliché thing that all expats always say, but there’s a reason why it’s said all the time – because it’s true! Living abroad, I have met so many different people, each with their own unique culture and values that I don’t think I would have ever experienced in my hometown. Not only does meeting a diverse group of people expand your understanding of the world, but it also means that you are bound to meet people with similar beliefs as you, but they could be from a completely different part of the globe. Some of my closest friends are from places I’ve never even visited before such as Korea, and who knows maybe our friendship will inspire me to take a trip there!
#2 – the places I get to visit
Being an expat has a certain effect on your perception of the world; maybe it sparks your curiosity, or maybe your new location has lots of places to discover, or it can even be a blend of both of these reasons, but I’ve found that I’ve been able to uncover so many unique places since becoming an expat. By places, I don’t even mean countries or cities, they can be a small cafe you’ve found in your city or a favourite boutique that you’ve stumbled upon – the experience is still the same. As an expat, you continually get to explore new things.
#3 – the effect it has had on my mindset
I am the kind of person that likes to stick to a routine and have everything planned out; I do not do well with a last-minute change of plans. But since becoming an expat I have become better at being able to easily adapt to a new situation. Through a number of things such as finding out a friend is moving away next month, welcoming new people into our community, understanding different cultural norms, I have been forced (in a beneficial way) to become more readily adaptable, a skill that I know is extremely useful in life!
#4 – the self-growth it has given me
Believe it or not, even though I share my life experiences on the internet, I am actually quite shy sometimes. Being an expat has boosted my self-confidence as I have become more accustomed to meeting people for the first time and introducing myself. I’ve also become mentally stronger as I’ve had to go through experiences such as loneliness when I first moved and homesickness – these have helped me become stronger and I am grateful for these experiences.
#5 – the opportunity that it brings
I have been able to participate in so many different opportunities since becoming an expat, things that I would never have dreamed of doing back home. From running around the Dubai Creek in a half-marathon to visiting Abu Dhabi Sustainability Week, there are so many unique experiences that I’ve been able to seize head-on since becoming an expat. Don’t be scared to make that jump and experiment with new opportunities!
These are just five things that I value from my expat life, but there are many more I could talk about. Let me know in the comments what your favourite reasons are!
See you next week