Being an Expat: The Next Chapter

Had this photo taken during my time in Lisbon! Perhaps my favorite city I’ve visited so far in Portugal.

A little over a year ago I wrote this post which talked about a new chapter in my life, one centered on traveling. That was in the midst of one of my hardest years I’ve had and unknowingly before a year that could possible transform my life. Okay, that’s a tad dramatic. But after that post, I really did take to heart my aspirations of seeing the world. Since my solo trip to Canada, I’ve been to Denver as well as a two week trip to Portugal.

Sure, it may not seem super extensive, but it has been amazing. I’ve also been on a few small solo trips, including seeing Ariana Grande perform on her Sweetener tour opener. All is this to say that I am ready for the next step, a new stage. What does that include? Moving abroad.

Expatriate (or “expat”) is someone who temporarily or permanently decides to live in a country different than their native country.

First things first, where will I be?

Which country will start my expat journey?

Living abroad has been a dream of mine for years. I missed the chance of studying abroad in college and has since regretted it. Now, I am trying to make up for that by going to a country I’ve dreamed of visiting and living in… SPAIN.

Yes, I will be in the beautiful country of Spain for nearly a year. Even typing that sentence feels surreal. If you’ve read some of my language focused posts in the past you know that I study Spanish. One of the best ways to learn a language is through speaking. Thus, the best way to do that is by full-on immersion in a country that speaks your target language.

Making the decision.

Would you ever be an expat?

Like I mentioned, I’ve always dreamed of going to Spain. So the decision as to where I should go wasn’t a hard one. Although there are several countries on my list as possible expat destinations in the future. The hardest choice was deciding what program I’d want to use to fulfill my goal, which city I’d like to live in (although with most programs they decide for you, often times you can give them your preferences) and whether now was the “right” time.

By the way, you might be wondering what exactly I’ll be doing as an expat in Spain. Well, I’ll be studying as well as getting work experience teaching English to students. You may know that I’ve worked as an online English tutor for almost a year, so I am excited to see how it is doing it in person.

Check out my video where I show my first day teaching English online.

Newsflash, there is no right time.

Being an expat will have its pros and cons, but I'm ready to try something new

If I let my overthinking have its way I wouldn’t be going. There will never be a right time for many big changes in your life. You have to decide whether you’re with staying in your current situation for much longer or not. And I was NOT. The travel bug has seriously infected me and my desire to see the world is stronger than ever. I’m in what I’d consider a “life transition” stage in my life and I felt this would be the next right move. Either I’d let my dreams of being an expat come to fruition now or I’d keep putting off with hopes of that time being “someday.”

Before I leave…

I’m unsure of when this post will be published. It’s likely that I’ll be in Spain already getting familiarized with my new setting. I plan on doing several posts in the future as far as getting the visa (don’t even want to talk about it right now), saving money, making money, dealing with a language barrier, packing and more.

To say I’m not nervous would be a lie. Being an expat was a dream but it’s crazy to think it’s happening now. I have so many aspirations to travel Spain and the rest of Europe, meet other expats and perfect my Spanish. Stay tuned for my expat adventures!

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