I hear this often.
‘My hardest move was not be the one I thought would be.’
So take heart. If you’re concerned about moving again, you probably need not be.
Maybe it’s a bit like when you remember your umbrella, it never rains. Or watch a movie that’s received below-average ratings, and really enjoy it.
You might be pleasantly surprised with how well this next move plays out for you. Go into the move with that mindset and it’s even more likely!
Take my moves, for example. I’ve lived in Kimbe in Papua New Guinea during ongoing unrest and violence. I’ve lived in Nuku’alofa in Tonga and struggled to pick up the local language. I’ve lived in Leeds in the UK earning £2.02 per hour – admittedly 25 years ago but a handful of pennies all the same. I’ve lived in Vancouver in Canada working 70+ hours per week. I’ve lived in many cities and towns throughout Australia – Newcastle, Ariah Park, Forster, Coffs Harbour, Launceston, Murwillumbah and Brisbane.
The location I found the toughest would have to have been where I didn’t know the language, people only had to glance to know I didn’t belong, and everything was different to what I grew up with.
Not in my experience. My hardest move by far was to a picture-perfect coastal town in Australia – my home country.
It wasn’t the size of the town that was tough, I’d previously lived in a smaller township of 300, as well as the 6th largest city in Australia. It wasn’t the location that was difficult, it had stunning coastline and beaches on one side, rolling hills and rainforest on the others. It wasn’t lack of purpose that was challenging, I was team leader of a travel consultancy, a role I thoroughly enjoyed.
It was tough for two inter-related reasons.
- My energy levels had plummeted. And the best health professionals could come up with was a script for amphetamines. For a 25 year old! Even though I had no training in health at that stage, there was no way I was going to fill that script. Even if I couldn’t drive for an hour without stopping for a sleep. (I sometimes wonder how life might have played out if I had. None of my imagined endings are positive. ‘Band aids’ in the form of pills rarely fix the underlying problem.)
- The flow-on effect of my poor health meant I struggled to make friends.
– I went to bed at 7pm every night, ruling out evening groups.
– I dropped in at the triathlon club, however couldn’t handle their expectations once they recognized my name – unknown to me I had won various interclub awards years before, while training for ironman events in a town 200km away. A lifetime ago.
– I invited friends and family to visit me, but they couldn’t come every weekend, and my falling asleep by 7pm didn’t make for the most exciting trip for them.
– I invited colleagues on weekend outings, but of course not many people want to spend 7 days a week with their workmates.
This was about 20 years – and 11 moves – ago.
In that challenging move and those since, I’ve learned three key things about moving again. And I’ve discovered they’re not unique to me. What do you think, are they similar for you too?
- People are the most important part of the relocation puzzle. Other people. And just as importantly, yourself. Worth prioritising.
- Moves don’t get easier, you just gain a better understanding of what you need lots of and what you don’t mind doing without.
- Having energy and enthusiasm helps a lot! Keeping an ongoing health record and where possible continuity of care, even if via email or Skype, really helps if you or a family member are facing health challenges.
Are you moving again? How are you feeling about it?
I’d suggest you go into this next move with your eyes wide open. Knowing you have the tools and the experience to pull it off. Ask yourself a few key questions, such as ‘what is important to have happen sooner than later?’, ‘what helps me feel confident and capable when I move?’, ‘what have I learnt about myself during this last relocation?’ and ‘what support do I need?’.
And you’ll probably be pleasantly surprised with how brilliant you are getting at moving again.
Want more relocation tips? Download a free chapter from Your Relocation Solution: be healthy and happy wherever you are HERE.