Sometimes it was uncomfortable.
Yes, uncomfortable to my bones.
Be ready - if you want to make a big change, you WILL feel uncomfortable.
When I decided to start this expat journey, I knew a lot of things; I did not know how uncomfortable I would feel at times. Originally from Mexico, at age 29, I made the decision to leave home to pursue bigger dreams. I lived for one year in New York, and for seven years in Israel.
There was never a specific plan to follow, but there was a clear direction: I would go all-in. This meant being a YES person, a searching for opportunities person, and seizing-the-day type of person. This meant arriving at parties alone, to classes alone, to stranger’s family dinners alone, to the beach alone, applying for any job, and not letting any mindset get in my way of moving forward.
In the process, I approached people that will be forever part of my life, and I also approached people that would not connect with me. Some nights I would come home and feel awkward, strange, and nostalgic. Nostalgic for my family, for my place of safety and my home; the place where there is nothing to be proved. Other nights I would feel this huge shining light within my body, powerful. I created moments; I did not sit and wait for moments to be created. I would see a situation and jump in head first to create a moment. I would start conversations with strangers that either thought I was crazy or would love me forever.
Now if there is a karaoke event, I will just jot down the date and time and I will get there. If there is a small event for family members, I will sit there with myself and become better at dealing with my discomfort.
I dance with it.
I will go to a Shabbat Dinner with an orthodox Jewish family and eat there and dance with my discomfort. I will go to other places, like a Latin dinner or a fashion party, and will be comfortable and happy.
I learned to be so comfortable with discomfort, that it became my best-kept secret. During my journey as an expat, I created a treasure of moments. Moments that are electrifying like lightning and thunder. Times in which I would connect with other people. Times that started flying while my journey flowed into laughs, movement, conversations and people - people, who like a magnet came to me and became infected with my comfort. And it was powerful. I created moments that will not be forgotten and that manifested my present -- my dream life.
Do not fear discomfort. Fear Comfort.
No growth comes from a comfort zone.