But for how long can you sustain that?
There’s a point where there will be a diminishing return for the amount of energy you expend. You continue going down that path, you get burnt out, jaded and bitter.
People come, people go, and the genuine desire to go through the motions and meet new people wane with time.
Weather you’re working in an expat hot spot like Hong Kong, or doing your own business in a remote island, are you really “settled”?
At the back of most foreign expatriates’ minds is a confession. The truth that they know that this period in their life, it will not be permanent. This “freedom” so to speak, is it really going to last?
I had this feeling a number of times in the last few years. Should I buy this? Should I commit to that? Will I even be here to experience these? Those were questions that would pop up in my mind when it came to more mid to long term decisions. That uncertainty was exciting but also sometimes a little limiting in some areas. I would avoid activities, tasks and commitments as I would feel as if they would tie me down in a location.
The questions kept resonating heavily with my feelings towards my most recent environment, slowly beginning to look forward to a new atmosphere and change. I kept looking back at the happy times that had heavily accumulated in my adopted home city. Naturally, I compared my feeling of the present moment to those I remember feeling in past photos, or reading past stories, the hindsight bias kicked in and I naturally felt as if the most fulfilling and satisfying periods were those I had left behind.
Whatever trickery I tried to convince myself otherwise, failed. Business circumstances, societal changes, they also did not help, factors outside of my control continued to fuel the desire to explore again, to just enjoy something new.
Was I just a hamster on a wheel? Was I just another millennial trying to get their rush of dopamine? Ultimately, despite wanting to believe otherwise, there’s some level of truth to both of those. I had grown myself professionally and personally a lot over the last few years. But I never once imagined integrating into the society I was living in, fully. I was always a foreigner.
So, it happened, something inside of me sparked a thirst for change. Like what happened years ago, happened again.