With the quest for travel and adventure still burning in our hearts, we quit Canada in search of long hot summers and a more laid back lifestyle. Our next move took us to the beautiful harbor city of Sydney, Australia.

Over the past 12 years, I’ve lived in several countries and visited countless more. I’ve embraced foreign cultures and traditions, faced uncertainty and accepted frequent unease, met interesting people and collected lifelong friendships.

Because living abroad is one of the most satisfying and challenging things a person can do.pandora jewellery www.jewelleryv87n5.top It altered the core of who I thought I was and who I am now. Living abroad changed me.

And there are four ways it will also change you. Forever.

You don’t change job or move house, you do that and more. The scenery changes outside your window along with everything and everyone you once knew. The impact on you is huge.

You might not realize it immediately but one day you’ll see it for what it is. You grew, evolved and moved on. You faced setbacks and dealt with them on your own. You overcame obstacles, beat back the naysayers and you have the scars to prove it.

Some scars are good, some are bad, but nothing can ever be the same.

Things that were once important no longer matter. Things that didn’t seem important before now matter more. The value of friendship is paramount. Familiarity is a forgotten concept and you don’t take anything for granted.

The act of moving abroad made you realize that “things” don’t equal happiness. In fact, you start to redefine your original idea of success.

On this international journey, you learned more than just differences people, places, language, culture.

While you experienced adventures at breakneck speed and your world slowed in order to incorporate them all, life at home carried on as before. People went to work, they did the groceries, they holidayed, they had birthdays, they got married, they changed jobs and they moved house.

And while everything appears to have stayed the same, the truth is that life moved on without you.

This is a huge price to pay with moving abroad. You can have the adventures and the experiences but you can’t have “them.” You’re missing everything from the life you had before and all you can do is watch from the sidelines as people carry on.

At some point, you realize you couldn’t go back even if you wanted to.

Some have tried and succeeded, others have failed. The problem is that your former life moved on, you moved on, and all the time you both moved apart.

Over time, phone calls drop off, emails are less frequent, contact lessens. You’ll never lose your friends and your family will always be family. But you’ll matter less to them and they’ll figure less in your new world.

It’s a harsh reality so face up to it. Or go back while you still can.

3. Your world became a whole lot bigger.

The moment you set foot abroad, the world grew in size.

New sights, smells and sounds opened up before you. The boundaries of your former life pushed out. The addiction to exploration became a permanent fixture.

And now there’s no turning back.

You always knew the world was this big but only when you stepped upon its far flung corners did you realize just how big it is. How amazing it is.

Knowing this, marveling at its size and scope, how could you ever give this up? The answer is that you won’t. You can’t.

Because you’ll never stop searching for more.

Living abroad encourages independence and responsibility. It builds respect and an opportunity to appreciate everyone and everything around you. These lessons stay with you and shape the person you become.

Embrace the scale of what you’re doing. Rejoice in it.

You can travel further, speak another language, cook diverse foods and embrace different cultures. You understand local traditions and festivities, open your mind to opportunity more frequently, approach relative strangers with confidence and kiss former home comforts goodbye.

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