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  • Salina Janzan

On dreaming big, and just doing it.

Updated: Jan 15


Thoughts on living abroad and following your dreams.

I have recently read a throng of rather depressing (and often irksomely self-ingratiating) articles pertaining to ‘The Downsides of Travelling/ Moving Abroad'. (I.e. ‘you'll feel guilty all of the time.' ‘Moving abroad is ultimately a selfish choice. ‘You'll lose friends'/ ‘You'll be blamed for being a bad friend'). Now, there are some undeniable truths included in many of them but mostly, I find myself a little nettled by them.

Yes, you will miss things. Good, happy, celebratory things and terrible, heart-wrenching, sad things.

You will feel absolute joy at hearing good news and you'll want to say: "We'll have to celebrate!" then you'll realise that you can't, because you're however-many-thousands-of-miles-away, and have a slight sink, thinking, maybe celebrating four months later isn't really the same. But you know what? It sounds clichéd but really: with true friends, time and distance don't matter. Anyone who says they do is totally bonkers, in my opinion. True friends, are patient and can carry a relationship through a phone without holding it against you. And maybe for a while you're not as close as you once were, but that's how friendships evolve, and you'll see them again and talk about things the way you always have and goof around like you always have and it will be awesome like it always has. People manage to fall out and grow apart while living together, so I'm pretty sure more time together + closer distance, does not = happily ever after. Appreciate what you have; even it looks a little different while you're away.

Plus there are no excuses because technology is a fan-freaking-tastic thing. FaceTime, Skype, WhatsApp, Facebook, iMessage… I could go on. Actually, it's bloody confusing. Why on earth do we have so many different options to have so many simultaneous conversations? Anyway, your loved ones are there, yes they are smaller versions, in a strange box (at least, this I am fairly certain, is what my cat thinks) and not really hug-able, but they are there; and you can be for them. I know so many wonderful people who do this extremely well for their loved ones. Don't undervalue it.

Finally (and this is the biggie): remember to keep doing something you love. If one of those aforementioned terrible happenings makes you think: "what the hell am I doing? Why am I doing this cr*p? What is the point of this?" Then listen to me when I say: you are doing the wrong thing. So you should be asking yourself these things, and you should listen. I had a slight epiphany with this, when a heart-hurting-cry-inducing-sad thing did happen and I thought: right, concentrate harder on what you are doing, work harder and make it great; suddenly I realised I wasn’t asking myself those things, I was doing something that mattered, I was building myself to be something better, and it made all the difference.

Unless you have run away from your responsibilities, and as long as you are doing it for good reasons, it is not selfish to move away and chase your dreams. It is inspiring. Not enough people go after what they love, fight for what they dream of and take the leap to do what they long to do.

So, enough ranting from me – what do I really know? – listen to Shia: just DO it!


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