Finding your Authentic Self Abroad
Living abroad can be messy! And for those reading this in your home country thinking their friends and relatives abroad are having the time of their lives, not necessarily and not always. It is a challenging journey financially, finding your career path and especially self discovery, which is what I'll focus on for now - finding your authentic self abroad. It took me 9 countries, 3 continents and feelings of a dead end in Germany to embrace myself, that being whole and authentic, while finding and owning my identity. It was an even bigger challenge for me because I began moving around at such a young age that adapting became very second nature to me, to a point that I would morph easily into new environments. Though adapting is good, I learned that keeping healthy boundaries and knowing yourself is what will keep you sane. Losing yourself abroad can be scary so take these tips from me, a person who owns her African-ness with pride with respect to the country I call home. 1. Observe Yourself
Notice your reactions and behaviours when living abroad, especially when you are in an uncomfortable spot, see what puts glimmer in your heart and hold on to those moments to develop them further. For me, it was any moment, that Africa came up. Home. This is my heritage and my identity.
2. Explore Your Values
Figure out your values, when living abroad, your values might not match the country you are living in and you might feel inclined to adapt. Look within for what matters to you, is it ethics, family, faith. Explore them in order to start living by them.
3. Practice self love and compassion
It takes loving yourself to actually take the first step in to self discovery and authenticity, compassion is something you will need to maintain. Set aside time for you. Time where you can get to know yourself. Romanticize that time with yourself. Once you start to feel whole, then, share some of that!
4. Listen to your intuition
Listen attentively to your inner self, follow that inner guidance. If something doesn't feel right, do not pursue, but if it does, do not hold back!
5. Find your life pupose
Once you open up to living more authentically abroad, you will find it easier to discover your passion, you might have a company you want to start, goals you want to reach, visions you want to come to fruitation. It will become clear. Just like my baby, Swahili Secrets, birthed through self discovery.