Welcome to A Life Examined

What is the examined life? A life worth living! As I look at the road ahead, I take all the baggage from the past and use it as experience - the pain and the passion, the sorrow and the joy - allowing it to carve wisdom into my mind and hope into my spirit.
There is no experience that can't be useful to me at some point in my life. There is no lesson learned that cannot make a contribution to the future.
A tiny drop of water is a part of the ocean. A tiny speck in the night sky is a ginormous star in the distance. It all depends on perspective.
So, this examined life is to offer reflections in the hope of discussing things which are of value to myself and to others.
Love, Sarah

Thursday, 23 October 2014

New Beginnings - Part 2 Personal navigation in a foreign country

I have moved country and am in the process of seeking a new home for my family and settling in. So, I have important decisions to make. How can I be sure my decisions will be the best decisions? How can I be sure to keep myself on an even keel, emotionally, socially, and spiritually.

How do I navigate in a new society, where so little is familiar?

A few days ago I did the unthinkable for me: I chose random experience as my decision-making strategy. I threw two pieces of paper up in the air, each which had information for a different potential home, with the view that whichever one landed first would be the one I would pursue.

One did land before the other; I contacted the relevant realtor/estate agent to pursue that first one.

So far, I've not had a clear response from the agent connected to that property, and I continue to pursue a home through other contacts. But this was a fascinating experience -  a one-of-a-kind for me - because I am the sort of decision-maker that usually makes a decision using facts, gut instinct and prayer. I can't remember ever being so 'random'. It's one way, but not usually my way of choice, to make a decision.

Right now my family is living in a cozy, safe, quiet, pleasant apartment on the Costa del Sol. We have much to be grateful for: the climate is warm and sunny, the people are friendly, the environment is safe, we know some people from England who live here.

But have you experienced how difficult it can be to stay grounded, clear-headed, and focused, when you are not in your own home, in your familiar neighbourhood, surrounded by familiar places, people or things?

How do we navigate when we seem to have little that is familiar on which to lean?

For me, the keys are accountability and structure.

If I keep to a routine of self control in diet, exercise and prayer, it's helpful.
If I continue in my writing, my reading and my reflection, I am able to maintain my sense of identity and emotional balance.
If I continue to relate to friends from abroad (the internet makes that so easy!), stay close to my husband, and allow events to take their course rather than seeking to control my circumstances, I find I remain connected to myself in surroundings that are so new, and yet am able to enjoy discovering this new world in which I find myself.

My son has found his school. My husband has his job. They are settling in in their own ways.
And I find I have time to be myself, with you and within, which helps me to navigate through tremendous change.

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