July 2016 I packed all my stuff into one suitcase and left my home country Germany to go and live in England for one year. At least that’s what I thought.
November 2017 and I’m still here. Nearly 17 months later, but actually I am not counting.
Not anymore that is.
It feels too much like home now.
The reason why I left Germany was never because I hated living there, it was more that I got a bit bored and wanted to see something different. I wasn’t in the best mental state when I left. I felt lost and unsure about my personality. I just didn’t knew where I was going in my life and the little town I was living in just didn’t really show enough opportunities to me. Saying that I still have no clue what I’m going to do with my life, but I am definitely more aware of what kind of person I am, what I want to achieve and what I want and don’t want in my life.
There are many reason why I would recommend moving to a different country, but here are the ones that have been the most important to me.
1. It’s a massive step out of your comfort zone!
If, like me, you like to stay safe and sound in your comfort zone this will be a big shock for you. Different language, mentality, food, housing, traffic…EVERYTHING IS DIFFERENT! You’ll find yourself ordering coffee in a, to you, completely new language, worried about pronouncing words the right way and you’ll endlessly get lost and confused whilst trying to find your way around the city.
There just won’t be a way around stepping out of that little friend of yours, the comfort zone!
2. You’ll meet strangers who will become your closest friends.
If you don’t want to end up all alone YOU WILL MEET LOTS OF PEOPLE!
If you are a little introvert, like I am, you will most likely meet those people online and you will probably be incredibly nervous when you meet them for the first time. But here is the thing: YOU WILL GET BETTER AT MEETING PEOPLE! Your conversation skills will improve massively and you won’t find the thought of meeting a stranger that scary anymore. As long as you keep on meeting people that is. If you’re as lucky as I was you’ll make some friends for life during that progress.
3. It’s a great way to learn about yourself.
Meeting all these strangers will mean you’re going to talk A LOT about yourself! Which will result into you questioning your own identity at lot more.
Why am I here?
What do I want to do in life?
What is important to me?
I’m not saying that you will find the answers to these questions, but at least you’re thinking about it.
4. It’s eye opening about your own nationality.
You will start seeing your own nationality from a completely different perspective as a lot of people will tell you what they think of it. They will confront you with lots of cliches, some of which will be true, others will make you laugh because they’re that ridiculous. But it’s not only about learning about your own nationality, it’s also about getting to know a, to you complete new one, and adapting to it. I have to say that, even after only 17 months here, I definitely picked up a lot of the British way of living and would even go as far as saying that a part of me secretly feels quite British.
5. You will get more relaxed about not knowing what you want in life.
You will see that you’re not the only one who hasn’t got a clue and you will be okay with that. Things like your job/ house/ where you live aren’t as important as you think and don’t define you as a person! WE’RE ALL A BIT LOST AND THAT’S OKAY! As long as you keep on working on yourself and making some steps in the right (or the wrong) direction everything’s a-okay.
6. You are braver than you think!
I have done so many things that I was so scared of doing since I moved. Luckily there is no way around doing them, someone has to go to that appointment or make that phone call. No one is going to look for friends/ jobs/ flats for you. If you don’t do it, no one is going to do it for you. The only way is right through it!
7. You will learn to love being on your own.
Being away from all your family and friends will always be hard BUT you will learn to live with it. Not only to live with it but also to be happy with it. Especially in your first few months it will hard to bring yourself to go to the cinema/ cafe/ art gallery on your own but as soon as you make that step you wouldn’t want to go back. I am so looking forward to those trips on my own now and wouldn’t want to miss them. Being away from my family and friends from back home makes me appreciate the time I get to spent with them so much more and nothing is better than having a friend to come and visit you in your new home town.
8. You won’t stop learning.
It just won’t stop! There will always be something new and challenging coming at you.
You will find yourself always trying something new, things that wouldn’t even have come to you mind before you moved. For me it was starting to write at lot more and having the courage to actually show my writing to people!
9. You will feel proud of yourself.
The progress of moving to England was not easy and there definitely were a lot of times where I thought of giving up. The fact that I am still here, sitting in my own little flat and going to work every day, makes me feel incredibly proud of myself. I feel like I achieved something special that not everyone experiences in their life. And I encourage you to do the same.