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When you feel like you’re not enough

There comes a time in every expats and travellers life when something happens back home. It’s hard enough to miss the celebrations, weddings and happy occasions. But then there are the darker times. When someone is sad, heartbroken, sick or even dying. There is no right or wrong way to handle a difficult situation, because every situation and person are unique. But there are some things that might help you when things feel too hard and you don’t know where to start.

  1. Let go of the guilt. I know you feel it and it’s a blockage that prevents you from truly being there in person or in spirit. The bad thing did not happen BECAUSE you’re far away, it happened DESPITE you being far away. As soon as you let go of the guilt you can start finding a solution on how you’re going to be present to support this person.
  2. Reach out. Being sad on your own is hard. Reach out to whoever you need to. Sometimes I hear of expats who don’t dare to call people because of old stuff. Get over that and just reach out. When things happen our perspectives change and that might just be the bridge to overcome the old crap that keeps holding you back from connecting.
  3. Allow yourself to grieve. Just because you are/were not there, does not mean that you’re not allowed to be just as sad as someone else who happen to be physically closer to where it happened. Cry, write, go boxing, scream, listen. Whatever you need to do to get through the challenges. 
  4. Know your boundaries. Only you will know the level of presence and support that you are able to provide. You don’t have to do anything you don’t want to. Call, text, send flowers, fly home immediately or book a trip for later in the year. There are a million different ways of being there and showing support without spending all your savings on a trip back home.

Recently one of my beautiful friends from University passed away from an epic battle with cancer. I knew she was really sick, but when I found out via text message she was no longer with us, I just sank down on the floor and cried. My mind could not get around that this stunning powerhouse of a woman had to leave us so soon. I won’t fly home for the funeral, but I’m sending all my love and thoughts to her family and close friends and I’ll be making a donation in her name to cancer research. So that more mothers out there get to see their kids grow up. And even though we did not speak every day I still grieve her. How have you coped with sadness and grief whilst being far away from home?

Moving home is a big question on its own. If you’re thinking about moving home after a long time away, join my join my free webinar on 23 June to get some tips on how best to go about it.

PS: Don’t miss my special offer in June.