Is the grass greener on the other side?

Living in England, a city job that you love, earning good money – would you leave it all and start from zero on a small island. My husband and I did it and we haven’t looked back since. Some people say we were brave while some say we were foolish to do so. Although very content with our lives, my husband and I always knew we wanted more. So we calculated the risk and took the plunge. I am a law graduate and was working as an Adjudicator in London. My husband, H is a Marketing Manager and he was working for a well known chain of companies in the UK. I am a Mauritian national and my husband is British. We left our jobs and life in the UK and moved to my home country to settle. Taking the decision to leave our well settled life back in the UK was a hard one for both of us. However, for me it was nothing new. I was moving back to my home where I was born and spent my childhood – where my family is. For my husband it was a whole new experience in a foreign country where he doesn’t not even speak the language.

I have decided to share his story to help you make the decision for yourself, whether you want to move somewhere new for a while or for the rest of your life.

Dream Big

What kind of lifestyle do you want? What is your goal and how do you want to spend the rest of your life achieving it? These are the fundamental questions you should ask yourself . Back in 2013, H had everything in England – a nice Audi, a good job and the latest phone and gadgets (which even though available, are far more expensive in Mauritius). But he wanted more of life. he dreamed of a quieter yet more fulfilled lifestyle. He dreamed of a large house with a beautiful garden. He dreamed of spending the weekend relaxing in his outdoor swimming pool or playing with the dogs in the garden. Fast forward 2 years later he is doing just that. H who is a big fan and follower of Robin Sharma always tells me you should never fear to dream big. As Robin Sharma says If People Are Not Laughing At Your Dreams….Your Dreams Are Not Big Enough.

Plan Ahead and Don’t Give Up

Research everything – food, job prospects, climate, culture, education system if you have kids, social activities and so on. The most important of all – be optimistic. Be aware that there will be challenges awaiting you. According to his extensive research, H already knew that finding a job will be difficult. The reason being he does not speak a word of French. Although English is the official language of Mauritius, the main spoken language is French and a French dialect called Creole.

H sat at home for 4 months before finally landing a job as Marketing Manager. I gave up few weeks after arriving to Mauritius. I was not ready for the challenges and changes I had to face in the country I once called home. However, H, having had his share of difficulties and challenges in the past knew it well that he had to believe and keep going. He is a firm believer in the quote (by Robin Sharma of course!) – ‘When You Most Feel Like Giving Up Is When You Most Need To Be Keeping On’.

Make Sure You Have Enough Money

H had saved up quite a bit before moving. While it did not relieve the stress of being jobless for 4 months , it did help us big time. We were able to carry on even though none of us was earning anything. The harsh reality is that you will need more money than you think you need. We were lucky that we both found jobs within 4 months but it can certainly take much longer than that and unfortunately you have got to pay the bills somehow.

Find similar people

It might help to talk to and read about similar people who have made the move. H subscribed to an expat blog. It was a useful platform for discussing both the challenges and positive experiences encountered by the people who have moved to Mauritius from different countries. H gathered some useful tips from the blog. 

Sort out your immigration and visa

Gather as much information as you can from the Embassy/High Commission of the country you are moving to well in advance. Visa and immigration formalities can take ages!! Make sure all your documents are in order before you move. Facing immigration problems in a foreign country can be very distressing.

Finally… just enjoy the ride

Once you have made the decision to move, just enjoy the journey. Your life is about to change. Every change in life is an opportunity. Take it and use it to the fullest! We did and we continue to do so. For us it is the best decision we have taken in our lives so far. Today we can say we are living the dream or I should say we are living H’s dream.

H had a dream and a vision. He always tells me you should visualise your dreams. Write it down or draw it if need be – you need to be able to picture it in your mind. He did and we are living exactly what he visualised. I have managed to find a drawing he made years ago. He showed it to me one day and said – this is how I imagined our house one day. Years later, I still cannot get over the striking resemblance of the drawing to our house today.