The suitcase lifestyle

Carrying my red suitcase, I was changing places, countries, continents and couch over the last years – such as many of you searching for a job or just a payed internship or simply a place to sleep. When a friend is calling me, the first question which I get is not ‘How are you?’ but ‘Where are you actually?’. I was avoiding any kind of shopping – not only because of my limited money – but of the fear that my suitcase would not close anymore. 

 While I was still posting pictures of my new exciting destinations and trying to convince employees by my work experiences abroad (even if it less than 3 month), I was feeling little alone and lost between the different places. I was slowing losing the feeling of belonging and connection, and counting more the ‘goodbyes’ than the ‘hellos’ within one month.

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In situations when you return to your old so called home, you suddenly realise that your friends have left. When you finally find a job in your country of origin, you realise that it is even more difficult to make friends there than in any international community.

You would love to describe yourself as citizens of the world and somebody with an open mind and broad perspectives – but you need to admit secretly that most of your international friends have mostly the same social background and that you cannot equal Internationality with Diversity. You keep up desperately your ideology that one day, you will contribute to changes in this world. However, most of your energy is going to fixing your own life. And we find ourselves somewhere in between citizens of the world and a placeless generation.

And as most of us can consider themselves as privileged to have the right passport, the right university degree, the right network in order to this international (or suitcase-) lifestyle, we can question whether this privilege is rather an obligation in our job market.

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Once you return home-in case you still remember your roots – you have to face the truth: There is no way back! You might find a place to stay longer and to build your home (the world settling is already out of your vocabulary) but you will probably not return to your old life – which you secretly judge as simple and easy lifestyle.

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While living this crazy suitcase life, we can keep three main points in our mind:

  1.         Focus on our goals: We are probably remembering the times when we were invited at four different dinners at one evening, when we were running into our friends in the supermarket, when we were a kind of celebrity at our home city. This nostalgia should not change our ambitions, ideologies and aims for our own life. We as narrator of our stories can have as much patience as needed to find the place, job or goal which we are looking for.
  2.           Focus on the moment: In between chatting with old friends and talking with random people at the new place, we can focus on living in the moment. Every place has something to offer, you can connect to people in a few hours and you can make your time valuable even if you only stay for a few days or weeks at one place. If you look for it, you can find it.
  3.          Focus on your inner value: Even if you are sleeping at the couch of friends for some time or you are needing their help and advices, you should not lower your self-esteem. In some life situations, you can give more and in another situation, you need more. It does not change who you are. Keep in mind your personal value of being who you are.

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