I recently uprooted my life in Ontario and moved across the country to Alberta to take a job. More specifically, I left home without a job and moved to the west part of Canada in the hopes that I would land a good job for my career. And I did. My family was concerned prior to my departure, and I suppose I would have felt the same way too if my sibling or daughter did this. Usually people get a job and then uproot their life; I did it a little backwards. But – I did my research before leaving. I read countless articles and publications that indicated there were a number of opportunities in the western provinces of Canada – opportunities and increased pay over what was being offered in my home province. I left a job that I truly liked, my family, my friends, and all that was familiar to me. And while I had a pretty decent life in Ontario, I felt that I was capable of more.
I was able to land some temporary work while I searched for an opportunity that I was excited about. Of course, the pay for the temporary work was low, but I was determined to not let that stop me from creating and experiencing my own happiness. I went on a strict budget and still needed to pay all my bills (student loan, car payment, car insurance, etc etc…). I stopped buying anything I didn’t actually “need”. It was amazing to discover how many things we as a society purchase without really thinking about it such as dine-in or take-out meals, magazines, clothing, going out to the movies, snacks, coffee on the go, and so on. It was a little uncomfortable to not participate in these expenditures at first, but I always reminded myself that I had what I needed, and anything above that were “wants”. And I learned to live without the wants.
I entertained myself with little free things that life had to offer, and I started walking on even-numbered days to stay active and kill a bit of boredom. I was diligent about getting up each morning and searching for jobs. I became picky about what I applied to. Some might think that was silly, but I learned years ago that life was way too short to go to work unhappy. So why would I apply to a job just for the sake of applying, especially when I had part time temporary work already?
There were times when I questioned my motives. There were times when I wondered if I would ever be able to find the balance between a job that excited me and good pay/benefits. There were times when I missed my family, my four nieces & one nephew, and all my friends so much that I started to think I was crazy for uprooting and leaving them all behind. But I maintained the notion that opportunity would knock on my door. And it did.
I am two-weeks deep into my new job in a city that is completely foreign to me, with no family or friends in town, in a province that I did not grow up in. But I am absolutely thrilled about all of this! I thoroughly enjoy my new position and responsibilities, and I enjoy learning abut everything that comes with moving to a new city. I may have done things a little “backwards”, but I knew within myself that something great was out there waiting for me. I feel confident that my sacrifices will be worth it in the end…
When opportunity knocks, it’s a good idea to open the door and invite them in.