It has been a little over five years since I returned from living in Russia. My students still write to me occasionally and ask me when I will return to visit them. I look back on this time in my life with fondness. Plus, I can actually tell my children that story that I walked to school and back home which took 20+ minutes in the snow. For Americans this may be a myth, but in Russia, its a fact of life! So this experience of living and working abroad gave me a new knowledge and additional experience that I would not have had otherwise. So while many see living abroad in an unknown place without the necessarily language skills as ‘scary’, I saw it as exhilarating and empowering. Why the hell not go? So I went, and I had an amazing time.
In fact, I hardly look at it as a scary point in my life at all. But when I tell people that I once lived abroad many tell me how brave I am. Others tell me that they could never pick up and move to another country on the other side of the world for a job. Some cite security issues, others cite worrying about the language barrier. I never thought of these things. I just trusted that it would be great and I would figure it all out. And, I did just that.
Over the last year, I’ve met tons of individuals who live and work overseas as a conscious attempt to break free from the normal expectations of living. Wherever you grew up traveling around the world to see other places is exciting, which is why people do it. Getting to see and learn about other cultures is an amazing experience and I definitely recommend it. Living abroad isn’t for everyone, but that has just been my experience of stepping into the unknown. Stepping into the unknown is different for everyone and represents different lessons and challenges.
Many people talk about taking calculated risks in life, but not everyone is willing to step out of their comfort zone. Some might consider leaving all they know to live abroad to be a huge risk. Taking risks makes us stronger and bolder. However, I never saw leaving the country to live overseas as a bold move or as a calculated risk. I saw it as an exciting adventure which would expand my horizons, my knowledge, and my experience. Yet, I had no idea what it would be like nor could I predict that it would be one of the best decisions of my life.
At that time I was challenged too prior to leaving. I had been single for a long time and suddenly right after giving notice for my job, I had met someone new. He was fabulous and everything I was looking for. I had no idea then that he would become my husband. I had no idea then that leaving to live abroad would actually help us to get to know each other better or that he would wait for me to return. I think the major point here is one that is resonated through a famous quote by the great Martin Luther King, Jr. “You don’t have to see the whole staircase, you just need to take the first step.” Sometimes you don’t know what is ahead other than opportunity.
Taking calculated risks and taking advantage of opportunities IS what moves you forward.
What risks have you not taken which could level up your life or biz?
What risks are you considering taking which could take you to the next level in your life or biz?
You don’t need to move overseas or anywhere to take risks or step out into the unknown. In fact your steps might look completely different. The main point is to get out of your comfort zone and to stretch yourself beyond your imagination. Instead of looking at risks as risks, look at them as adventures. Try this and see what happens.
If you have leveled up your biz or changed your life in some way, share how you did it by taking risks or leaving your comfort zone in the comments below. I’d love to hear your story and what you did to expand your life.
If you are looking to get challenged, open yourself up to new opportunities, or really need to make a change, schedule your complimentary discovery call with me.