How to Expat Yourself Quick and Easy

Having moved about 6 times in the last 5 years, here are a few tips to relocate quickly and easily:

1. Declutter your life.

Reduce your material possessions and financial obligations to the absolute minimum. For example, I cancelled most monthly subscriptions: Netflix, Amazon Prime, Hulu, Spotify, EagleRider, Green Chef, Bespoke Post, CrowdCow, Planet Fitness, and sold everything that I hadn’t used in 6 months. This not only makes it easier when you need to move, the money you save or recoup can be used to relocate.

2. Take a Pre-Move vacation trip.

Recon is key. Research exhaustively your future destination, and ask yourself if it meets the minimum standard you are willing to live by. Leave the resort. Travel the country. Share the local culture. This will give you an idea of the compromises you’d be willing to accept when you move, and ease into the acceptance that life will NOT be exactly as you are leaving it. After all, that’s the purpose of relocating.

3. Reduce your financial footprint.

Do away with bank accounts that provide minimum services for hefty fees. Develop a better relationship with your financial service provides. Demand you be treated as a priority, and get the best service for the minimum money. Your bank doesn’t care about you. Your insurance carrier doesn’t care about you. Your landlord probably doesn’t care about you, either! It’s probably a huge corporation anyway. If it isn’t, it will soon be.

4. Be willing to let go.

Not all relationships are fruitful. Not all situations last forever. Understand that in order for something to be a stage, it needs to conclude by definition. Maybe it’s time for a change of scenery. Maybe it’s time for a change of profession. Ask yourself seriously if what you are doing now, and where you are headed, are truly where you want to be in a few years. Finally, understand that life is a series of stages, and we are victims to believe that this is the best that we’re gonna get. The best way to test a hypothesis is by proving it wrong.

5. Always undergo A-B testing.

Question everything. Ask everything. Leave no stone unturned. The only way to know if you’re headed in the right direction is to measure results, and adjust on the fly. Life is a dynamic process that requires constant experimentation. Sign up for that dance class. Try your hand at a new skill. Leave your comfort zone temporarily, and push the boundaries of your status quo. Then, compare results. Don’t give into ‘momentum vivendi’. Don’t do what you’re doing only because you’ve always done it that way. The true measure of a successful system is indefinite repeatability.

6. Don’t compare your path to others.

While it may be easy to extrapolate other’s results to guide your own, only you know you. Each person is different, and only through your own set of perceptions, skills, and systems will you know what works. We don’t all approach the same situation with the same cognitive tools. You are the cumulative result of your own experiences. Never believe that we’re all built the same, or can fix the same things with the same skills. Every situation can be solved through multiple approaches. Find yours, and yours alone. Share your experience, but understand that life is like pizza and sex: It’s different for everyone, but always delicious.

7. Define your goals.

If you don’t know where you’re headed, you’re never gonna get there. Devise a plan, but follow it loosely like guidelines. Uncharted territory is seldom explored in a straight line. Adapt. Fine tune. Reassess. Repeat. Make a list of “Needs / Wants / Likes”. We all need food, shelter and water to survive. But we need a little more than that to thrive. ‘Needs’ are undeniable and unavoidable. ‘Wants’ are temporary and optional, but add to your “Happy Meter”. ‘Likes’ are frosting on the cake. Know which things fall into which. Then, devise a tiered plan to obtain ALL OF THEM within reasonable measure. If you find yourself struggling for ’needs’, you’re most definitely on the wrong track, and it’s time for a change. If you’re struggling for “Likes”, you need to reassess your priorities.

8. Failure is always an option.

It’s absolutely alright to fail. What you do with failure is what will define your success. Get back on the horse. Get back on the wagon. Don’t let failure detract you from your overall goal. Relocating overseas is a marathon, not a sprint. That means you need an average pace, not an immediate velocity. Build systems upon systems of redundancy. Build a social circle. Start saving for a slush fund by cutting down on “Likes”. The biggest wins are usually the product of massive fails. No one ever establishes a Personal Record after every run, so each failed attempt brings you closer to winning. But BEWARE: Don’t let failure define your system.

9. Ask for help.

Leave foolish pride aside and ask for help. Know when you need it, and don’t hesitate to ask for it. You probably think you’ve gotten this far alone, and maybe you have, but you can get even farther with a little help. Reel in your resources. Collect the kindness of strangers by offering your own set of skills. Humans are a communal species, and we thrive when we join efforts. Nothing you’ve ever done is new, so someone must’ve traversed a similar path to yours. Then, refer to Tip #6.

10. Set a deadline. And stick to it.

It’s called a ‘DEADline’ for a reason. Don’t delay the inevitable. It may be uncomfortable, but the discomfort produces a reactionary response that will move you in the right direction. Don’t give into the “I’ll do it later” mindset. Time is ALWAYS running out. The single most common complaint I come across among expats is “Why didn’t I do this sooner?!” The time is NOW. Carpe FUCKING Diem your way into happiness, because if you don’t go out and get it, it’s not gonna land on your head like a fluttering butterfly.

Now, let’s get cracking. There’s a place out there for you, and it’s only up to you to find it! I can help you find the ‘how’ and ‘where’ when you find the ‘when’. That’s my ExitStrategy.™️

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