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Questions to Ask Before Becoming an Expat in Northern Europe

Moving to Northern Europe as an Expat is just the beginning of your exciting yet challenging journey. 

There’s a lot to think about before you move. To make sure you have not forgotten anything important before boarding that flight, we have come up with this list of questions for you to ask yourself.

Below you will find 14 questions that are considered extremely important to ask yourself before moving abroad.

1. What Is My Primary Reason To Move Overseas?

Is it for work, love, a better future, or maybe to study?

Why do you want to move abroad? If you are moving abroad in search of work and want to move your belongings, you should consider the best international moving companies that will be suitable for your needs. You need to be clear about your primary and secondary motives.

2. What Are My Core Values?

Knowing your values is the most important thing before making any major decision in your life. Once you have defined your values, answer the following question.

3. Will Those Values Be Honored Once I Move Abroad?

We will feel happy and satisfied as soon as we honor what is important to us. Without knowing our values, we just roam in the dark. Consider if moving abroad causes your life to line up more with your values or vice versa?

4. What Do I Want To Get Out Of My Life Abroad?

Imagine that you already live abroad, what do you want from your life? 

When I look at all the time when I was moving, I see that every time I wanted to achieve completely different things.

The first step was to be together, the others to have a career, a family vacation, and to get to know new cultures.

5. What Lifestyle Do I Dream Of Having?

The most important question to ask yourself before moving abroad is what lifestyle you aim to live. 

Do you want to live in a country with lots of sun, beautiful nature, exciting culture, or delicious food? 

Do you want to have a busy career, or do you want to choose a quiet lifestyle, like in Sweden? 

If you looking for a lifestyle in Sweden, for example, then you would probably want to consider international household shipping to Sweden, especially if you were offered a job there and plan to settle down more permanently. 

6. In Which Of The Five Countries Could You Lead That Lifestyle?

In which country will you be offered the lifestyle that you desire? Make a list of your dream countries and check if the country you are going to move to meets your requirements.

7. What Type Of People Do I Click With, And Where Can I Meet Them Easily?

You may be Polish, but you feel much closer to Dutch culture than to Polish culture, especially when it comes to how you raise your children. Dutch culture is much more relaxed than Polish culture. However, they are known to have more structure and rules.

8. What Is My Career Path For The Next Few Years?

Was this step initiated by you or your partner? If you are the one who will be working abroad, it is most likely that you initiated this move, and you already have a career path.

If you are an accompanying partner or if you have moved for love, you need to think about how this will affect your career. 

Can you continue your career abroad? Will you stay home (possibly with children)? Think about what you want your career to ideally look like in the next few years.

9. Would My Direct Family Be Impacted By My Move Abroad?

If you’re single – there is nothing to worry about (duh). However, if you have a relationship or a family with children, there are a few additional factors to consider.  

10. Do They Support The Idea?

If you have older children, they need to understand why you want to move. Also, if only one partner has received an offer to move and the other one has to give up their job, there is more to consider. The partner should also support the idea of moving.

11. Who Else Supports Me In My Dream To Move Abroad?

Are there other people around you who support your idea, both in your country of origin and abroad? Do not share your dreams and plans with negative people who, as you may know, might immediately criticize your ideas. This is an important consideration, especially if you know that others’ opinions can easily influence you.

12. What Are The External Obstacles To Moving Abroad? How Do I Plan To Deal With Them?

External obstacles may include money, visas/work permits, diplomas, etc. Have you identified the things that stand between you and moving abroad?

As difficult as it may seem, make a plan to overcome these obstacles. Think about the people who can help you and get in touch with them. Make a concrete plan, then make a few small steps, starting with the most achievable step.

13. What About Internal Obstacles?

Although many of you may think that if you are dealing with your external obstacles, it is fine, but very often it is not. Internal obstacles can be much more powerful than external obstacles.

Think about all the negative thoughts and beliefs that keep you from moving. If you feel that negative chatter prevents you from moving abroad, it’s time to deal with it.

Write down all your negative thoughts and ask yourself the following two questions for each of them: 

  • What is the worst that can happen
  • How can I deal with it? 

Also, think about all the positive reasons you want to move as well as all the difficult situations from your past life, and how you managed to turn them over.

14. What Am I Waiting For?

Times and circumstances will never be perfect, so don’t wait for them. The most important thing is that you want it, you discussed it with your family, you put the right plan in place, you gathered the right supporters around you, and worked on your positive thinking.

A Final Word

Now that you have asked yourself these questions, you should have a better understanding of what you want to do and whether moving abroad is really the right thing for you.

You should also be able to consider whether the country you have chosen, among other things, is in line with your core values. 

Either way, moving abroad is a serious decision, but if it is your dream and you are ready for it, do it!

What do you think?

Expert

Written by Peter

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