If you spend five minutes on Instagram, then it seems that becoming an expatriate or traveling for an extended period of time is not a, but the trend. I’ve certainly had friends, friends and family of friends, and colleagues asking me about how I moved abroad. I think now is a better time than ever to manifest your dreams of living in a different country. Have you been thinking of moving your family abroad, but aren’t sure of what to do with those thoughts? If so, then please keep reading.
MAKE A VISION BOARD
First things first, how did I move abroad?
I visualized it. There was a day that I was laying on the floor of my living room. I was nearing the end of my graduate studies, so I had probably just pulled an all-nighter from studying. As I laid there, I saw myself living in and traveling to different countries. I had long had the dream of living abroad, but the vision of that reality didn’t come until that day, years later. I really wanted it to happen. Aloud, I prayed expressing that I wanted to travel, to see and experience the beauty of the world. And I wanted to earn a living while doing it.
From then on, I started happening upon ways to get abroad and how people were making a living. You know how when you want to buy a new car and you start seeing it everywhere. Then, you can see yourself, even more, driving that same vehicle. From volunteer opportunities, fellowships, and teach abroad programs, and as I learned of ways to make it happen, my vision of moving abroad became more pronounced.
Now at the time, I never thought of making a vision board as I am suggesting you do. But I certainly employed visualization techniques: making affirmations that I could live and work abroad. I also expected to find the right opportunity and I mentally rehearsed taking the leap. So if you’ve been thinking of moving your family abroad, a great place to start is with a vision board.
- Do you already know where you would like to live abroad?
- What comes to your mind when you think about moving abroad?
- What lifestyle are you hoping to create for your family overseas?
Whatever mental images that come to you, make a physical representation of them. By doing so, it will help you to determine and focus on why you desire to live abroad. Moving abroad with your family is a major life change. Thus, it is important to know why you desire to do it. The power of visualization is amazing and having a physical representation of that imagery (goals) to see every day will help you to align with its importance and work at making it happen.
CREATE A CIRCLE OF SUPPORT
Next, you need to find your people. It is important to have a supportive group of people who get your desires to move abroad with your family.
Years before I actually moved abroad, I can recall telling my boyfriend at the time and my mother, both of whom are Aries, about my idea. Guess what they did. They shot it down saying something to the effect of “You just graduated. It’s time to work a real job.” I legitimated it and went to work at the corporate gig I had upon graduation.
Fast forward to now, I can put a name to their response. Fear of the unknown and comfort in doing what others “normally” do.
If people do not share your vision, then they can’t genuinely support you in doing something they haven’t imagined for themselves. So I suggest creating a circle of support that consists of people who share your same interest in moving your family abroad.
The Internet and social media technologies are an asset to you for finding and connecting with expats. Find some and join them. You can start by searching for Facebook groups of expats in your countries of interest, as well as, expat groups on Linkedin, which are helpful for researching jobs abroad.
COMMIT TO MOVING YOUR FAMILY ABROAD
Moving your family abroad is a huge decision. But once you can see, taste, and even smell (kimchi, anyone?) your vision of life abroad, then the next thing to do is commit to making it happen.
What do I mean by commit to moving your family abroad?
You need to move away from being merely interested in moving your family abroad to saying, “we’re moving to a different country.” In other words, you make the decision and commit to that decision. Getting to this place doesn’t happen overnight, but that is where your vision board and circle of support comes in hand.
Your vision board helps you to sit with the idea for a while. Each time you see it, you’re reminded of your dreams of moving abroad. And you will start taking steps towards making it a reality. By networking with families living and thriving abroad, you will become more motivated by them to get the ball rolling.
This is where your interest turns into commitment.
Next, you need to set a date, start planning and execute that plan. The moment you set a date is when the realness of your vision of moving your family abroad sinks in. It doesn’t matter if that date is one to two years out. What matters is that you make moving your family abroad a goal with a deadline.
The benefit to having a deadline is that it motivates action. What action should you be taking? Stay tuned by hitting the “subscribe now” button for my next post.