Moving to another another country is obviously a big life change. But, sometimes, along with that change are other changes that have nothing to do the move, yet are affected by it. I’m going through one of those changes.
Work has not been the most important thing in my life, yet it has been pretty important and my career is what has always taken center stage and taken up the most time. When I first moved here my first step was to start looking for work—actually I started the job search even before I moved here.
The thing is, even back in New York, I was at a point where I wanted to shift things a little in my career. That got put on the back burner once I moved. Now it’s coming back in the forefront. How I work through that shift here is different from how I would have handled it back home.
Same issue, but it requires a different approach in a different environment. In New York, the change would have been more tied solely to professional changes. In Nairobi, it’s a more holistic change because it affects a bigger part of my life.
I’m still working. I haven’t abandoned my clients, just doing less. I’m scaling back and reassessing some things. I’m taking some time to figure out how I want to work going forward, the type of work I do, the level of engagement, and so forth. (That part is the same.) I’m also figuring out my new work-life balance.
I’m taking more time for life. I’ve been here a year-and-a-half and I’m just now making friends. This is all on me. I was too busy working to go out and be social. It has been really isolating.
That is changing. I’m making time for people. I’m making time to go out. And, I’m exploring more of my other interests. For the first time in my life, I’m going to work less invest more time in my own well being and social life.
It’s not easy to do. I feel guilty because there are so many women here who want to work but can’t or have had to take a lesser post (and here I am choosing to do less). I feel like I should be working non-stop (yes when I type it out and read it I see how toxic that sentiment is).
It’s an adjustment for me. But, I think it’s a good thing.