Should you stay or should you go?

One of the hardest decisions you will face when deciding to emigrate is whether to stay or go. Unless you can separate emotional and practical reasons by yourself this is where some coaching conversations can really help.

As the doing of preparing to move continues the questions about staying or going can get louder and louder. Getting really clear on your why for emigrating can certainly stand you in good stead in those moments.

Here are my top things to consider when thinking of emigrating:

  1. Are you running away from something emotional or a situation you can’t bare to face back home?
  2. If all goes to plan and emigrating is successful what are you hoping to achieve with your move and what does that give you long-term?
  3. Are you planning to emigrate for good or to test the waters? This one is really important to get clear on because how you approach things as you prepare to emigrate will look very different if this is a temporary vs a permanent move.
  4. What are you most scared of when thinking about moving to another country? Again, really important because fear is ok and believe me I had plenty of my own on my journey but pretending it’s not going to happen is going to give you a rude awakening when it does.
  5. What are you most excited about when you think about emigrating?

Notice there is a mix of more positive and some more down to earth questions? It’s very easy to get swept up in the emotional excitement and anticipation of moving and then hit the ground with a thud once you move and you’ve gotten past the honeymoon period of your big move. Being clear on your whys, your hopes, your fears and your dreams will mean you’re a lot less likely to get completely overwhelmed by the whole process.

Also there will be plenty of people in your life who will wonder why you’re doing this which in itself can feed your own self-doubt. The clearer you are on your reasons and the more you’ve practically and pragmatically thought about things the more reassured you will be about the decision and the more other people will feel confident in your decision too, not that there’s a need to appease others with your decision to move.

Reasons I was interested in emigrating:

  1. I wanted to try living in another country where they were actively looking for immigrants. In the UK there is so much competition for work and so many services are way overstretched. As someone without a specialist profession, Canada could offer me more employment opportunities and opportunities to grow.
  2. I wanted to experience a different culture where I would be different and not just your average Joe.
  3. I wanted to experience living in another western country. I was in a toss up between Germany and Canada as both appealed but Canada had certain visas I wouldn’t qualify for after I turned 30.
  4. I wanted to go on an adventure. I’ve never been a huge risk taker but before I turned 30 I wanted to do something significant and that I was proud of doing that was a bit different. This wasn’t for other people, it was for me. 30 was a big age for me because my Dad was killed when I was 3 during the Gulf War. Joining the military was his big adventure and up until emigrating I felt like I’d kind of plodded along in life and emigrating was something I really wanted to do.
  5. I wanted to become a dual citizen of another country because why not? Not many people are lucky enough to do that and I had the potential to become a Dual Citizen if I put my mind to it. In September 2021 I realized that dream.

There are many reasons for and against emigrating. If you have the mindset of the grass is always greener on the other side I can tell you you’ll be bitterly disappointed but being open to change, comfortable with not knowing and conscious enough to know there will be rough with the smooth then you’ll certainly be setting yourself up well for this adventure.

A final thought I want to leave you with is remember nothing is set in stone. Just because you leave one country doesn’t mean you can’t go back except in exceptional circumstances. It’s very easy to get swept up in the idea that leaving and emigrating means the end of the world if something doesn’t go to plan.

If you’d like to explore the idea of emigrating further please contact me on greatcanadianmove@gmail.com.

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