How do you judge if those annoying little elements of your new life overseas become more than simple bugbears?
|Photo credit: Flickr Creative Commons xiquinho|
By selecting my preferred criteria on the tool, I was able to draw down a list of possible places to call home that best matched that criteria. I could then compare these selected countries with my current home to see how each place stacked up. In other words, in which country would the local people make me feel more comfortable at work? In which country would I find a better work-life balance? Where would commuting be least painful? Where was the housing of best quality?
At the end of these exercises, I had a much better sense of what I originally went looking for, what was still important to me, and in which country I could have that different, less ordinary way of life. I reconfirmed that I went in search of a life that would involve more time with my family and less time spent in the office. I wanted a life less stressful and more relaxed, with increased time outdoors and stimulation from my immediate environment. Most of all, I did not want to be that guy sat in front of the TV night after night, full of regrets at passing up opportunities, unhappy with his lot in life, and destined to infinite suburban boredom.
It will come down to one of three places. And with family and friends in all three locations, it will never be easy but, one way or the other, our interrupted expat life will get back on track. Watch this space.