There’s no denying it, London is an amazing city. Yes, it has its downsides, namely the crazy cost of living, but on the other hand it has so much to offer. For me, London was my own version of the “American dream”. I came here eight years ago, not speaking the language, having no money and feeling like I had nothing to offer. Fast forward to present time, I’ve got a great job, amazing friends, a flat that I love and above all a new-found self-esteem.
So, why move? That’s the million-dollar question. For many reasons actually, the most important being my boyfriend lives in Spain. For anyone who has been in a long-distance relationship, you will all agree that there’s a time when something has got to give. But beyond that, I just realised that I aspired to other things in life. Money, career, owning my house used to my biggest priorities and let’s face it, it is still important but not enough anymore to stop me from pursuing my dream to live in Spain.
This leads me nicely to the next question I get asked the most when mentioning my move to Spain – how did you know it was the right thing to do? The short answer is, I still don’t know, but what I do know is that there were some clear signs at the time that I was ready to make my next move. So, if you are asking yourself the same question, I would say look out for those signs that might not be immediately visible to the naked eye but will give you a good idea (money aside) whether you should take the plunge or not. This is what did it for me:
Feeling like there’s nothing left to achieve in current country
A while ago, I reached a point where I didn’t feel like there was anything else for me to achieve in London – not that it was necessarily true, but I felt like I had met all the goals I had set myself (in London anyway) and was getting bored of chasing promotions after promotions. I just found it all unfulfilling to be honest.
Constantly talking and thinking about new country
God bless anyone that has been around me for the past three years. I don’t think I spent a day without banging on about Spain, Spanish food, wanting to learn Spanish etc. I can get pretty intense when I enjoy something.
Obsessing over people who made the move
One day, a new freelancer joined my company. She was an English girl living in Spain and commuting between London and Barcelona for work. I used to spend days fantasizing over her life and trying to figure out how I could make it work for me. I remember reading this article in The Guardian about a guy who did the same and ended up better off - despite flying between London and Barcelona twice a week - because the cost of living was so cheap in Spain. This became my new obsession.
Constantly looking for jobs in new country despite being happy/comfortable in current job
This goes back to my tendency of slightly obsessing over things. When thinking about moving, I was determined not to leave London without finding a job in Spain, so I spent every free time I had looking and applying for jobs. I even kept doing this after starting a new role in a great company where I was doing really well. It paid off though!
Not being afraid of missing out on things in current country
I have built an amazing support system in London and have got a group of friends which I know will always be there for me. Whilst at the beginning, the idea of not seeing them as often and missing out on things filled me with sadness, I just realised that no matter where I am, true friends are forever.