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As your cross-cultural coach, I understand what you're going through. I've been there.
PAULA ROSECKY is a certified life coach specializing in cross-cultural issues and life coaching. She is certified through The Life Coach School and has over 20 years experience in research and human behavioral science.
CHECK OUT MY LATEST PODCAST APPEARANCE
on Suzy Rosenstein's "Women in the Middle" podcast:
How to Explore & Soar When You’re Stuck in Midlife
hosted by Suzy Rosenstein.
Decisions were made to bring you and your family to this country. You wonder how you can make the most of it.
Have you ever thought:
Should I be doing more to make my family’s sacrifice worth it?
I don’t fit in here.
I’m not sure where my home is. I don’t feel at home here or there.
Why did I leave my home country anyway?
Why did I come back to my home country?
You or someone in your family made some difficult decisions to get here and you want to make your own stamp on the world.
Some of your family lives abroad and some are in the same country. You do what you can to stay connected to your home here and there. You even visit abroad regularly, but when you’re there you feel a distance. You think, “I don’t belong there anymore.”
In the meantime, you want to build your career and relationships where you are, but sometimes you don’t feel like you fit in here either.
You always feel just a bit different than the people around you. Maybe your credentials are different, or you have world experiences that not many people can relate to. You feel like you have one foot in one country and one foot in the other. It’s a lonely place to be.
If you speak English as a second language, you feel self-conscious about putting yourself out there. People tell you that you speak beautifully, but you think they’re judging you and you question yourself.
On top of all that, your mom (or dad or children) has such different cultural views than you do now. You argue all the time or find yourself keeping quiet to keep the peace. You’re not sure how to change this old pattern, so you don’t change it and years go by. You wonder if you’ll regret that someday.
Does any of this sound familiar?
I was born to immigrant parents. They didn’t speak English when they moved to the U.S. They didn’t think they would ever return “home” and made a new home in a very unfamiliar place in a new language.
I grew up with them not knowing the rules and I helped them figure it out.
When I was old enough, I decided to go live in their “home country” to experience it for myself and to understand them better.
I loved living there! I learned the language, did fascinating work, went back to school and had great relationships.
I was a curious, independent person until I returned to the U.S. after being out of the country for 8 years.
I wasn’t sure where I belonged when I returned. I had rich professional, and personal experiences from abroad and somehow, I found myself in the house where I grew up. No one cared to hear about what I had experienced. I didn’t think anyone could relate to me.
I hid my confusion and loneliness from my family and friends as I cried in the car. It was hard for me to be “home” because it didn’t feel like home anymore. Not at all.
I tried going to a therapist, but that didn’t seem like what I needed. I didn’t know where to go for help.
I didn’t feel like I’d fit in to any new job and I had no idea how to start making new friends after being away for so long. My friends had moved on with their lives.
And, what if I decided to go back or travel again? Why bother making new friends if I was going to leave?
Over time, I recovered from all the change I created and went on with my professional life, loving research, and multi-cultural work.
Years later, after I lost both my parents, I learned 5 things that could have helped me through so many of my cross-cultural situations. I could have:
Isolated the facts from my beliefs about myself and my decisions
Watched more closely what my brain was telling me
Noticed how I really felt about it and processed that fully
Been more intentional about what I did
Created any experience I wanted
Now I have the tools I need to get me through any difficult situation and decisions I make. I use these tools to create the life I want, and I can help you do the same.
Working with Paula has brought me clarity. Paula provided powerful tools to help me uncover what was holding me back, then worked with me to create an efficient game plan to achieve my goals. In fact, one 45-minute session with Paula propelled me way beyond what I saw after three sessions with my counselor! I highly recommend Paula for anyone who is seriously ready for change. Be ready to work and she will help you reach your goals!