The New Belonging: Rediscovering Your Identity as an Expat | expatwoman.com
 

The New Belonging: Rediscovering Your Identity as an Expat

Moving to a new country can sometimes leave you feeling a bit lost, here’s how to rediscover yourself in new country

Posted on

25 December 2017

Last updated on 27 December 2017
The New Belonging: Rediscovering Your Identity as an Expat

 When you move to a new country, you are faced numerous new challenges in your daily life trying to adapt to a new life with a different culture and language. What was once simple and routine, now becomes more complex, such as going to the supermarket, or to a doctor’s appointment. I am sure that many of you have already faced this kind of situation, making you feel inadequate within yourselves and the new reality.

Moving to a new country is not just something physical, where we will physically move from one place to another. This is an internal process, where we have to create a new personal and professional identity. Since you were born, your identity is related to your family and culture, starting with your first and last names. Over the years, your identity is becoming stronger in your personality and way of living. Your identity is directly related to the society where live, your friendships, school and the sport you practiced. In short, your identity as a person is directly related to the reality around you.


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The feeling of not belonging in the new reality is something very common in the beginning of the adaptation in a new country. You cannot relate to a profession, being the employee of that specific organization, a relative or a friend of someone else anymore. You are no longer identified as something external to you, but now your identity will only depend on who you are: your values and beliefs, your strengths and weaknesses, what makes you unique and special in this world. The true belonging is really within you, in your strength, courage, and determination to be who you really are, being authentic and true to yourselves.

The process of self-knowledge is the key to a more fulfilled and balanced life. The better we know ourselves, and accept who we really are, our imperfections and uniqueness, the more we feel grounded and confident with ourselves. There are many ways that you can explore to find your true belonging, each one of us is unique and special human being. You could start by asking yourself and reflecting: “What is really important to me? What makes me feel unique and authentic? What do I really want in my life?” Remember that the answers are all within you, we need only take a moment to listen to them and find your own answers.


The New Belonging: Rediscovering Your Identity as an Expat  About the Author

Andrea Fleischfresser, CPCC, PCC Certified Professional Coach currently working with clients from different nationalities supporting them to live a meaningful and authentic life abroad.