by Expat Focus columnist, Evelyn Simpson
January - the beginning of a new year; the time when we look at our lives and resolve to do things differently. Most people set resolutions in January but have often broken them by February. In this article, I’m going to discuss the use of more rigorous goal setting – akin to that used in the workplace – to get more out of expat life. For accompanying partners, whatever your employment status, goal setting can be a meaningful process of evaluation which enables a critical look at life and creates an intention of how to use your time. The article will also give you some tips on how to make your goal setting more effective and pass on some resources that you might find helpful in my own annual goal setting process.
Why set goals?
First, some of the aspects of life that make being an expat accompanying partner challenging can also create opportunity. For instance, taking time out from your career is the most obvious example of a decision with challenging consequences but also provides the opportunity to try things that were precluded due to lack of time. A conscious planning process can be a key tool in realising those opportunities and in making the most of your expat experience.
Second, deliberate planning can be pivotal in avoiding one of the most common traps into which the expat accompanying partner can fall; that of making commitments not because they fit your values and purpose but simply because, at a time when you are vulnerable, it feels great to be asked...
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