5 Reasons Moving Overseas Has been the Best Thing I've Done

Self Portrat
Self Portrait

     Living the in same city my entire life made the idea of moving overseas equal parts exciting and intimidating. True, I did live in Australia for ten months while going to college, but always with the intention of moving back home.
     Relocating to any new city for an undetermined amount of time can be frightening, and fear was definitely an underlying emotion when it came to planning our move. As intimidated as I was to move to a new continent, new country, and new city, looking back at the past several months has made it clear that moving overseas has been the best thing I have done. Yes, there have been difficult moments, and I miss my family and friends like crazy, but the good has thus far outweighed the bad. Here are five reasons why:

1. Experience 
     This seems like the most obvious benefit of moving overseas – or travelling anywhere for that matter. Seeing and living in part of the world different from what I’m familiar with has expanded my experience, and since moving overseas I think I have done more new and scary things than I’ve done my entire life combined! From exploring a new part of the world to starting a new job, I have become rich with experiences, and I feel like the proverbial sponge soaking it all up!

2. Trust 
     From trusting myself to trusting our decision to move, I learned a lot about trust, not only in the first days of our move, but in the months that have followed. I’ve had to allow myself to step outside of my comfort zone and trust myself in new situations. Mark and I have had our trust in each other stretched since moving, too. When you move to a new city and don’t know anyone else, you almost have no choice but to trust one another, or allow your relationship to descend into disaster (fortunately this hasn’t happened). I also had to focus on putting my trust in God and his plan for us. It was all too easy to come up with reasons why moving was the wrong thing to do, but in the end I had to focus on trusting that we were making the right decision. Change is scary and uncomfortable and I have a tendency to equate discomfort with wrong, but as I continue to learn over and over, that is definitely not always the case.

3. Appreciation
     You know that moment you start to (sort of) understand your parents and appreciate everything they did for you as you were growing up? Moving to a new city can instill that feeling of appreciation for a whole heap of things. It can be a bittersweet feeling, somewhat akin to nostalgia, but with more purpose. I appreciate more now than I ever did where I came from, the lessons I’ve learned along the way, and even the little things I took for granted while living in a familiar environment. Another word for appreciation is gratitude, and I am so grateful for the journey I have had the privilege of walking so far – it just took moving away for me to fully realize it.

4. Self Awareness 
     Putting myself in new situations – getting a job, getting involved with a new church are some examples– has increased my self-awareness, in good ways and in not so good ways. Insecurities I didn’t even realize I had have made appearances in these past months, and, in a strange way, I’m grateful because I’ve been able to overcome (most of) them so far, and learn a lot about myself in the process. I’ve had to make friends in an unfamiliar environment for the first time since high school and I’ve realized that I’m much more of an outgoing introvert than I thought! I’ve also come to realize (even more than I already did) that being self-aware helps me be more ‘others aware.’ By understanding myself better, I can interact, connect, and build relationships with other people at a deeper level. I’ve really come to embrace who I am as a person along with discovering areas in my life I need to work on. It has been a humbling and encouraging experience so far and I hope I continue to learn and grow into the best version of myself I can be – one step at a time.

5. Perspective 
     Living in the same city my whole life made it easy for me to create comfortable patterns that I essentially hindered my desire and ability to step out, try new things, be challenged, and grow. Moving to a new city has totally shifted my perspective – things that I used to see as big problems no longer seem so big, and excuses that held me back from stepping out have ceased to hold up against the bigger picture. Sometimes a change of scenery can work wonders in the way we see the world and how we as individuals fit into it.

Self Portrait

     I'm sure this list will continue to grow! Our experience with moving overseas has so far been incredibly positive, and I'm eager to see where the next months and years will take us - figuratively and literally! 

      Have you ever moved overseas or to a new city? What was your experience like?

     Thanks for stopping by - have a beautiful day!

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