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Thinking of moving abroad? How prepared do you feel on a scale from 1 to 10? Well, let’s get you to a 10!
Moving abroad can be a frightening and overwhelming process, but it can also be exciting and become one of the most life-enriching experiences you’ll ever have. Which one will you choose for yourself?
My name is Diana and I help professionals moving abroad to have a smooth and successful move to another country. I teach you how to save money, time and energy with your move. I teach you to do everything right the first time and fulfill the dreams you have for your move abroad.
If you're driving, cooking or walking or simply prefer watching a video, instead of reading, click below. Stay safe :).
Because my experience with my international move has been one of the toughest of my life, I made it my mission to help people like you to have an easy, pleasant and stress-less experience with their move.
I created 3 Master Guides to cover all aspects of the move:
This is basically everything you need to know about your move. I designed it precisely for it to be a 1-stop-shop for your smooth move to another country. It’s what I would have needed before the move. Easy enough?
The first Master Guide, Moving Abroad: The Essentials covers everything a move cannot happen without. It shows you how to:
The second Master Guide, Moving Abroad: The Important, but Hidden covers everything that affects the quality of your life and your overall life satisfaction. Most people fail to take these into consideration and have a tough time because of this. Be ahead of the game and learn how to:
The third Master Guide, Moving Abroad: The Mental & Emotional covers the sensitive psychological and emotional challenges that almost no one mentions to you before the move. It teaches you how to:
And wait! There’s more you should know to definitively fall in love with the 3 Master Guides! Each Master Guide contains:
Well, how prepared do you feel for your move on a scale from 1 to 10? These Master Guides get you to a 10.
If you’re thinking of moving, or face challenges after your move, or if you know someone who does, get the Master Guides and become the expert of your move.
How to find the Master Guides?
They offer a wealth of precious information and great value at such convenient prices.
Let’s make your move a success!
Is this you?
I get you, I’ve been there and so have the majority of the people who moved abroad. This article is especially for you.
Nevertheless, if you prefer watching a video, I've got your back. Click on the image below.
Personally, I had a very tough experience with living in another country, away from family and friends, from the places I grew up in and from everything that was familiar, comfortable and close to my heart. Living in a culture different than mine, with different expectations and ways of doing things, is tough and can lead to anxiety, depression, anger, frustration and resentment. Are you experiencing any of these?
I don’t want you to feel any of these and you should choose not to. It’s really uncomfortable and it affects your life in many negative ways:
You’re really not enjoying your life.
Do you want to really enjoy your life and help the ones you love do the same? My wild guess is you do!
I’ve created something special for you: The Smoovster Post-Move Breakthrough Program, containing proven tools, techniques and strategies that have helped others like you to integrate successfully, feel at home in their new country and regain their life, energy and old self back.
How important is all this to you?
In the Smoovster Post-Move Breakthrough Program, I invite you to 1:1 chats, in person or online, for us to figure out together what is missing in your life after your move to the new country and to turn it into the life you imagined before moving.
Believe me, experience tells me that the solutions you need are closer than you think and change happens fast. Why waste more time?
How do you want your life to be? Let’s get your energy, your life and yourself back, so you can enjoy your life the way you want to.
Now that we dealt the emotional stages before the move abroad here and know how to address them, we can say “bring it on, emotional stages after the move, we can handle you, heheheee!”
Most of us are worried about the logistical, administrative and financial aspects of the move, such as having the paperwork in order, finding a job to support our lifestyle, decorating our new home so it feels like… home. But once these are in place, something else happens: our emotions kick in. O-oh, this is not what I signed-up for… Now what?
Well, a move comes with the corresponding emotional stages, it’s just the way it is (“it’s neither good nor bad”, as Brene Brown’s therapist says). It’s normal and healthy and there are ways to deal with each of the emotional stages. We all go through them. By all mean, you are not alone. Now, that’s a relief!
If you haven’t watched the video in which we describe the 9 emotional stages after the move, find it here. It’s short and sweet, don't miss it.
Alright, I guess you want to know how to address each of the stages? Here's one strategy for each (and then I’ll tell you where you can find more).
“Hurraaay, I’m finally here and it’s so amazing!”, you feel like telling the whole world.
Use this heightened state and alternate between the discovery and allocating time for the settling in, especially from an administrative and logistical perspective. Learn how to do this in the Smoovster Step-by-Step Plan document, it's free!
“I’m so tired, there are too many new things in my life all at once!”, you think to yourself.
Set-up habits and create rituals to provide you with a sense of stability, while you deal with all the to do’s of this stage. Our Master Guide Moving Abroad: The Mental & Emotional has a Chapter: Managing Your Decisions, Willpower and Habits Successfully. It’s super very useful and practical tips on how to reduce your stress and tiredness when dealing with so much novelty in your life at the same time. Get your Guide here, at the price of a latte ;).
“Things are slowly getting better”, you can breathe again.
Enjoy this stage and recharge yourself with more self-care activities and start turning your attention towards activities you’ve wanted to do, but maybe didn’t have a chance to do since you’ve arrived.
“This is so hard, I miss everything from back home!”, you feel depleted.
Accept that this is part of your process and of living abroad and it’s OK. We have to give up some things, to make room for others. The immigrants we’ve interviewed have reported that it helps a lot to have family or friends visiting, to visit your home country or connect with people going through the same feelings as you are.
Additionally, we have outlined the most effective strategies of dealing with homesickness and grief in the second Master Guide, Moving Abroad: The Important, but Hidden. You can get it here.
“I should have never left my family, they need me.”
Continue to keep show your beloved ones how important they are to you, by: communicating regularly, as often as several times per week, sharing your feelings openly. Think of creating a long-term plan, e.g. to bring your parents after you receive your citizenship or to return to your home country in a certain number of years or bring your family abroad once you earn enough to support them. If you’ve been going through a challenging time and need support on this, please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org for a free call, to find out how you can address this.
“I’m am finally settling in, this is my new life!”, you tell yourself.
You have achieved so much, celebrate your success. Nevertheless, continue to learn, be open and curious, observe and most of all, start integrating, allow this new life to become part of you.
“If I was able to do this, I can do anything!”
Enjoy, but do not forget the help you received from other people, acknowledge and thank them¸ may they be your loved ones back home or your new acquaintances. Continue to be kind, grateful and help others who are now in your shoes.
“That’s it, I’ve had it, I’m leaving!”
We all go through stages like this several times. The best things to do is to wait until your emotional state calms down. Only then you should ask yourself: “Am I 100% sure that moving back is going to bring me what I hope it to?”
“I feel good, I have integrated the new life and the new life has integrated me”
It is time for you to acknowledge how far you’ve come. Look back and tap yourself on your shoulder for the journey. Congratulations for getting to this point!
For more details, tips and valuable advice on the emotional stages and challenges of moving abroad, access our 3 Master Guides:
They contain every aspect you need to know about to set yourself up for your successful move to the country of your choice.
You are amazing! Go for it! We’ve got your back.
One of the least discussed aspects of the move abroad is this one: our emotions. We experience them, for sure, but we tend to say: so many people have gone through this and they were fine, I’m just overreacting and… I’ll get over this.
Yes, I too trust you will, but the fastest, easiest and most effective way to get through your emotional roller-coaster (that’s how I like to call it) is to:
Hurrah! That doesn’t even sound that impossible, does it?
For a description of the 7 emotional stages before the move, watch this short video here.
So, do you want to know what are 7 ways in which to deal with your 7 emotional stages? (“Yeees!”) Well, then here’s a powerful strategy for each:
“This is the best decision ever!”, you are excited.
This is a wonderful state to be in. Use your energy to write a letter to yourself about why you want to move abroad. Be enthusiastic and positive in your letter, because you will need to read it when things get tough.
“This is going pretty well!”, you are calm and content.
Take as much time as you need in this stage and “milk” it. Do your thorough research as you can regarding the place you are moving to, because, as we say at Smoovster, information is power. This will help you reduce…
“Ohhh, this is too much, too hard, too stressful”, you tell yourself.
Now that the move date is set and the reality of it all sinks in. This is where the Smoovster templates come in handy. Under our “Free” tab you will find a “Step-by-step Plan with Checklists”. Remember, the big leap is built out of small, smart and purposeful steps. You’re doing amazing!
“Oh my God, what if this goes sideways?”.
Do not worry, this stage is as normal as all the others. We all go through it. Continue to do your due diligence, complete your research, do the exercises, check off the checklist items and follow the steps outlined in the Smoovster Master Guides.
“Is this really what I want?”, you ask yourself.
Once you start doubting your decision, it’s time to read the letter to yourself. See, I told you it will come in handy! It will lift you up and remind you why you are doing this in the first place.
“I can do this, yeah!”, you feel strong and confident again.
Once things start falling into place with your plans, continuously remind yourself of and celebrate the successes you have along the way. This will ensure that you hold on to this powerful state long-term. Great work so far!
“I’ll miss everything so much!”, you realize.
This is the time to commit to keeping in contact with people from your home country. You might not know it, but they represent enormous emotional support especially for the first months after the move. Also, make sure you say farewell properly…
Still feeling unsure? We have gathered all the best tips and advice on how to deal with the emotional stages before, as well as after the move from the many immigrants we’ve interviewed, in the third Smoovster Master Guide, Moving Abroad: The Mental & Emotional. This Master Guide is essentials for your successful move abroad and… it’s at the price of a latte. Get it here.
Congratulations for preparing so thoroughly on the move. You’re doing amazing! And we’ve got your back!
Now that you’ve done your research on the criteria for the country to move to here, it’s time to dig deeper at city and (surprise?) neighborhood level.
Remember Mira & Stefan’s Story?
Without being aware of it, they rented a place to live in Surrey, BC, Canada, which was the center of the Indian community, full of facilities and events dedicated to Indians. This place would have been perfect for an Indian family arriving to Canada, but for Mira & Stefan coming from a European country, it wasn’t the best choice and they decided to move to another city.
So, do you want to make the best decision about the city and neighborhood you’re going to move to right off the bat? My wild guess is that you do, because this is why you’re reading this. This already brings you steps ahead of any person moving abroad, isn’t that great?
What should you consider when choosing your future home city?
… aaand what other criteria do you have?
And what should you take into consideration when choosing your neighborhood?
… and don’t stop here, find additional ones that are important to you!
Do your due diligence and look into this when making such important decisions which will influence every day of your life from now on. It’s really worth your time and effort. We truly admire you and cheer you through this process. You know what’s best for you. Go for it!
For more tips and awesome resources for your smooth move abroad:
Be 10 steps ahead of everyone else! Have you signed-up yet?
At Smoovster we put great emphasis on how to choose the best location to move to. Why? Because it's the most important decision of all and it influences everything else, duh!
And if you don't do it right the first time, it will cost you a lot of money, time and energy to “fix it”. But don’t worry, this is why you are here and Smoovster has made it it’s mission to guide you smoothly through this process. Let’s do this!
How do you approach the process of making this decision?
By getting yourself as informed as possible about the place you’re moving to, of course. The more you know, the more informed your decision will be and you will:
Enough with the “theoretical” talk now!
By what criteria should you choose the country you’re moving to?
This is our checklist. What would you add to this?
And… there’s more! Doing your research on the country is not enough. The next levels are doing your research on the city and… the neighborhood, as well:
You've got this and we've got your back!
This is not an easy one, huh? But it’s one of the most important. Finding and living in a house you love and fits your needs is indeed essential!
Well, then good that you’re here and congratulations on deciding to take a thorough approach, to make sure you make the best choice from the start. You know that guiding principle of ours: do it right the first time! Why? Because it’s such a waste of time, money and energy to move around with all your stuff. Having a mid to long term home is a huge contributor of you and your family feeling stability and peace.
Let’s get to it!
What are the decisions you need to make before even looking for a place to live?
OK, phew! That wasn’t that hard. Once the above are decided upon, what are the additional criteria to take into consideration when moving?
Always feel free to add criteria and items to our checklists or decide that some criteria we've included are non-essential to you. We promise we won't mind :).
The purpose of including as many criteria as possible in our checklists, is that you need to make an informed decision about what is important and what is not to you. You can then avoid surprises, expensive mistakes and disappointment, isn't that what you want?
But things don’t stop here. We need to dig even deeper on the following topics together:
These topics will be covered in future posts, so sign up for our newsletter below, as well as in great detail in our wonderful first Master Guide, Moving Abroad: The Essentials, which contain a wealth of information – it’s a must read if you’re moving abroad. Get it here.
We’ve got work to do, Smoovster! Stay tuned for more awesome content. Why should you do that? Because you want a smooth move abroad!
PS: Remember to sign-up for the newsletter. You won't miss out on any article, video or free tools we're creating for you!
Thinking of moving abroad, but not sure where? Don’t worry, you are not alone in this confusion and indecisiveness.
You probably have several potential destinations in mind and this is normal, because nowadays our options are endless. Which is exciting and also scary, I feel you!
I will suggest a structured approach, which will help you narrow down your options and help you make a conscious and informed decision about this very important aspect of your life: where to live.
The decision about where you will live is probably the most important decision of all, because it influences everything that happens afterwards. This is why, you need to do it right and... do it right the first time!
OK, but how?
The first step, even before starting your research, is to identify 3 must-haves of the location you are moving to, i.e. 3 essential and non-negotiable criteria you are not willing to compromise on.
It’s the same as with dating: deciding on these will help you prioritize, will make your choice easier and will eliminate some options from the get-go.
What are the 3 must-haves of the location you are moving to that you are not willing to compromise on?
Here are some examples to inspire you:
… and the list can continue forever. Our Moving Abroad Master Guide: The Essentials contains all.
What are your 3 must-haves of the place you want to spend the next period of your life or... the rest of your life in?
My friend Laura from Ireland moved to Vancouver, Canada, with her husband, Nick. Their 3 must-haves were:
Your first step is to decide on your 3 must-haves. The following steps will come so much easier to you once you’ve done this exercise. Advance to the next step only when you have them written down and you feel good about them.
So, what are your 3 must-haves?
Well done, your first important step is completed! Let's move on ;).
You want to move abroad, but there are at least 2 options that are really viable? You ask yourself: What to do? How to choose? Where do I move?
Well, there's a mathematical and an intuitive approach. Don't get scared, they're both straight forward, I promise.
Do you prefer to watch the video, rather than reading the post. Got you covered. Here it is, click below:
Also, you'll find a free template for all of the below Steps #1 to #5, to make it easier for you to make your choice. Find it here.
OK, let's randomly say you have to choose between Seattle and Portland. It can be any cities.
Identify your most important criteria for the city you want to move to. For example: good job opportunities, good weather, whether you're able to speak the language, if you have family or friends there, whatever YOU decide is important to you. Done? Let’s move on.
Choose between 3 and 6 out of these. The ones that are the most relevant to you and you want to base your decision upon.
Give each of the criteria you've chose a weight, meaning a percentage, based on it's importance: For example: job opportunities 40%, housing prices 30%, weather 25% and good food 5%. Very important: The percentages need to add up to 100%.
Now here's where we make the difference between the 2. Rate each of the cities for each of your criteria, on a scale from 1 to 10, 1 meaning “not meeting my criteria at all”, 10 meaning "fully meeting my criteria. I encourage you to do your research on this, but it's worth it, so you choose the best option.
Multiply each percentage by the corresponding rate and add the results, for each city. Don't worry, We have a free template for you here, to help you out here. You’ll find both the instructions and the free calculation sheet.
Well? What did you find? Which city has the highest score?
According to this mathematical approach, City #2 has a higher score than City #1. Like it? I find this tool amazing, that’s why I share it with you. Thanks, my dear math teacher!
But there’s also something else…
Although the above is a logical approach, always listen to your gut feeling, to the wonderful inner guide, your intuition.
Whether you add gut feeling as a criterion in your calculation or not, it is important to ask yourself what your intuition tells you when you think of moving to that specific place.
When you say “I am moving to Seattle” (for example) …
What about when you say, “I am moving to Portland”? How does that feel in your body and breath?
Important last tip
Remember to NEVER to make a decision when you are angry, disappointed, sad or frustrated. Always make decision from a place of calmness and balance. Those are the best decisions for you!
Find the detailed instructions and free calculation sheet here. Do it now, later you’ll forget. Let me know what you got and where you’re moving to.
Can’t wait to hear!