“To be honest, I really want to live by the sea” my friend confessed in a recent phone conversation. As she went on sharing her recent experience in Puerto Madryn, Argentina, I noticed how her tone of voice enlivened!
“I feel I belong there”, she said.
“That's great! I’m so happy for you. What are you going to do about it?”
“Meh, I’m not sure… I feel guilty about leaving everyone and everything behind. And besides, what will people think of me?”
As an expat myself, I get where she’s coming from and I know how she feels. I change gears:
‘Tell me, who are the 5 most important people in your life?’
She was quick to answer - “My parents, siblings, nephew”. Proud, not a single doubt.
“That’s so sweet. And what about You?” 😏 it was indeed a tricky question.
“Oh, I see what you did there… I get it, thank you”.
9 out of 10 people answer in the same way - and I use this question often - not just with expats but with everyone prioritising everyone else but themselves when it comes to work, relationships, any kind of decision, etc.
Maybe you’re thinking it’s selfish to do so, or that it feels good to be there for others.
Well, let me share this with you: there’s a reason why you put your oxygen mask on first in case of need during a flight.
You can only show up fully for others when you have attended to yourself first.
What’s opening up for you as you read this?
What are you not allowing yourself to do because of guilt or of what others may think?
As the new year approaches, what do you want to leave behind?