You don’t know the city. You don’t speak a lick of Spanish. The currency is foreign. Yeah, visiting the Acropolis sounds nice but… The climate is too humid for you. The work market in your country has a lot to offer anyway so why go through all that trouble?
I get it. The world can be a scary place out there but I’m here to present you with 5 reasons you should think of working and living in another country anyway.
1 – Learning a foreign language
Nowadays more and more employers seek candidates that have knowledge of an additional language besides (English and) their native language. That’s right folks; fluency in English is rapidly becoming a staple requirement, so now learning a third language has become your new ace up your sleeve. This requirement is popping up more and more lately in all sorts of different areas not even remotely related to translation jobs, and even if it doesn’t show up as a requirement it will always pop up as a benefit in your favor.
Even if you don’t need it to impress your new employer, think of all the cute girls/boys you could impress at the bar ( ͡° ͜ʖ ͡°)
2 – Honing your cooking skills
I’m a 25-year old who still doesn’t know how to cook. Mom does it. Mom doesn’t let me do it by myself anyway, even when I try (and fail horrendously every time). Maybe in your house it’s your dad that does the cooking. Anyway, living abroad and being responsible for your own meals may be the small push you need to start learning this important survival skill.
When you come back you may even share that delicious recipe you learned by yourself with your parents and your family.
3 – Networking and making friends
Nothing gives you a better push in the back to become a social butterfly than being in a completely new country, especially when surrounded by a foreign language. Knowing how to build relationships is an important skill to have inside and outside of the work environment, and this type of experience is the best school to effectively enrich your communication skills in a short time.
Also, never underestimate an expat community (people from your native country who already settled in or are in the same boat as you)’s ability to make you feel as if you are in your native country which is always handy when you start feeling a bit homesick. And they totally get your struggles too. Hey, it turns out you’re not as alone as you thought you were when you first got out of the airport!
4 – Getting to known a different culture
As good as expat communities are, don’t make the mistake of relying on them too much. You should still definitely make friends who are native in the country and get the true experience of living in said country and experiencing their culture.
Knowing how people think in your country, and getting an insight of how people in another country think and act like toward the same subjects while having the expat experience will give you 3 different perspectives of life and make you appreciate subtle and tiny things you took for granted a lot more. It will also give you a reality check on all those little problems you thought you once had or highlight issues you didn’t think about before…
5 – Enriching your resume and putting you above the competition
Enough said. But if you still need an explanation, if a hiring manager has the tough decision to choose between you and another candidate with the same set of qualifications required for the job, it’s almost certain your experience abroad will give you that competitive edge to make their decision swing in your favor. Having an abroad experience will reveal that you are most likely not afraid to take risks, proactive, open-minded, have determination and can bring something fresh to the table.
So, are you convinced yet?