As we close out the Thanksgiving season in the United States, I want to share what I'm thankful for this year although I am not there. Giving thanks and expressing gratitude is an intricate part of my life that I do not often share except with those in my inner circle but this year, I would like to take the time to publicly share five simple things from my expat life that are important to me.
I love the sun but the sun doesn't always love me because I get sunburned. I treasure the sunshine because it rejuvenates me and gives me positive energy. It is why I tend to live in regions of the world that are sunny and warm. Of course, I have to mention that the sun is an excellent source of vitamin D and to also remind you to wear sunscreen to protect you from the UV rays. Sunshine Smiles!
One of the benefits I enjoy most about living abroad is flexibility. I have the freedom to travel the world and build a business at the same time. Overall, I have been able to increasingly add time to improve my care in ways I probably would not have been able to do living in the United States. Not having a life of constantly being in an endless cycle of hurry and rush helps with my clarity and creativity.
I like things such as having more vacation time and a humane work schedule. An emphasis on family and community time is designed to provide employees with the flexibility to enjoy life. The fact that I have been able to take a career sabbatical to work on my business and my company and not feel the burden of my nine-to-five job is the type of flexibility my global lifestyle has given me and what I love the most about it. Flexibility means the world to me!
I am thankful for my family, friends, and family of choice. My family and friends, whether they are at home in the US or in other parts of the world, have been incredibly supportive during this journey of living and working abroad using my HigherEd career. My loved ones have understood that I am not always at every family or close-friend event and we also do not always talk, but when we do, we spend quality time catching up. As for my family of choice, those are folks globally who have taken me into their family and made me their sister in some capacity or close friend, and I appreciate that global circle. I am very grateful and thankful for the love of my loved ones!
I am profoundly grateful for the ability to make an impact and earn a living while working abroad in higher education. I am thankful that I can share my knowledge with and also learn from others. These experiences touch my heart and are very rewarding for me so the impact is happening in both ways. I have the privilege to impact others, in this case young adults and these young people will in turn impact our society, culture, and norms in the places where I have lived and even beyond. Let me say, just thinking about impacting the next generation is overwhelming, but gratitude fills my soul as I undertake the responsibility. A positive contribution and impact matters!
One of the biggest self-awareness discoveries I have made is finding my inner peace while living and working abroad. I am incredibly grateful for the opportunity for intentional and purposeful self-awareness and self-growth while living and working in other cultures and nationalities. This sense of self-awareness has led to a greater sense of inner peace, enjoying just being able to enjoy life on my own terms, and doing what I like. Peace of mind comes from inner peace!
In closing, I am truly thankful for all my rich experiences and the enlightening moments I have gained from being in the places I have been. I am grateful to the people I met who have expressed openness and kindness. In some cases, they taught me lessons about who they are, their culture, and their society. I really want to share that gratitude for everything I am experiencing and that it has been meaningful in many ways.
So, to my friends, family, colleagues, subscribers, followers, and listeners who are stateside, here’s to wishing you a pleasant holiday season and remember that giving is part of life.
Wishing you warmth, kindness and gratitude!
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