I regret not working surrounded by fun people all towards something exciting, that people find interesting, and want to talk to you about.
I often wonder what my life would have been like if we had stayed in London?
I have many days where my children annoy me, it all becomes too much, i feel lonely, down and that I am a rubbish mother who can not stand to hear the crying and demands from 3 little people anymore, and obviously its all my husbands fault for moving us here.
I love my life in Joburg.
I adore my home, and the time I get to spend with my husband (who has 8 minute commute) and as a family (we get to eat breakfast together every morning and most dinners too).
I love early evening swims with the whole family
I love going out mid week catching up with friends, drinking way too much, and have a babysitter put the kids to bed.
Is it normal to still want to go back to my old life, the life I had before kids, where we lived in London, even after 5 years - I haven’t let it go??
Have you ever wondered how your life would differ if you had made a different decision?
Experienced a sliding door moment?
In particular do wonder what your life would have been like if you never said yes to moving abroad? Or didn’t have children? Or studied a different degree?
With the Rugby World Cup taking priority in our house hold over the past 6 weeks, I have been through a whole rally of emotions, from wishing I was back in the UK, to daydreaming about what role I may have been playing if we hadn’t moved to Johannesburg. With many of my forma colleagues working at the tournament, posting photos on social media streams it was hard for me to not think ‘the grass is greener’, and wondering how my life would have been different if I had made different choices.
If I am realistic and think about it sensibly rather than with my emotions, our move to Johannesburg has given me the chance to refocus and find a career that fits with my personal and family aspirations. Would I have had the guts to leave the Sports Industry if we were still in the UK? Probably not, but would I have the happy family I current have? I doubt it (certainly wouldn’t have the memories of the bush, late night swims, wonderful friendships). The reality is I would have been stressed out juggling work and home, lacking the confidence to retrain, to look elsewhere for a better balance.
I would have held the belief that it is too late for me to retrain, I’m in my 30s now.
Yet - research from LinkedIn has found more and more companies looking to recruit from outside their own industry.
"The portability of professional skills from industry to industry means that people now have more options to switch industries without having to restart their careers from square one.” Andrew Kritzer
So whether you are an expat or not, a mother or not, if the research suggests it is never too late to reinvent yourself- to reopen those sliding doors.
What is it that you have always dreamed of doing? What new things can you take on, give a go, whats the worst that can happen if they don’t work out?
I have decided to give myself some grace when it comes to daydreaming about what life could have been like, but then to also think about the reality and the facts which are:
I do love my life here,
I have made a new career for myself,
I don’t hate my children
Its ok to feel lonely
& to Cry sometimes about it.
But, when push comes to shove, take these emotions to ask WHY, why do I feel like this? What could I do to make the situation different? For me its help me reconnect with my passion for sport, and the impact it can have, and reconfirmed that one day I will go back into that world, but not yet. For now I am staying in the present, looking forward to watching the World Cup Final with friends, after swimming outside with my kids, and enjoying this special time that I will always look back on in 5 / 10 years time, as probably some of the best days of my life.
Do you know what it would take for you to reinvent yourself this year?
What tips could you share in the comments below as to how you have come through the comparisons, and daydreams of what life could have been like?
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