Greetings, friends! It’s been so long since I’ve written a proper post here on The Jazzy Nation. I have been pretty active on my Youtube channel and Instagram (well, active-ish…). I don’t know, it’s been really hard for me to write on this platform for the past few years. Sometimes I get caught up in the idea of perfection when it comes to having a website. I oftentimes, forget that The Jazzy Nation was originally intended to be a blog before it became anything else.
Anyway, I can talk more about that topic in another post. For today’s writeup, I want to discuss How I Prepared For My Move To India. Additionally, I share my 7 step process for moving abroad as a foreigner/expat. I equate living in India for my second country abroad like having a second baby (although I’ve never had a baby). What I mean by this is, I was less afraid and more ready to move overseas than I was when I moved to Morocco.
1. Visas and Passports:
For India, a little more preparation is required to get your documents before you move. I am comparing my experience to the work it took to get my required documents for my move to Morocco. Morocco only required a passport, which is still a lot to get if you do not already have one. India required my husband and me to get a visa in addition to our passports.
It was important for us to start the document process early because we needed the time to make sure everything was right. My advice to you is, get your documents taken care of early so you have one less thing to wait for and worry about. If you are coming to India for work, make sure you see what type of assistance your job can lend and if they require you to register for a specific type of visa.
2. Bulk Shop
Fun fact: I love grocery shopping. Throw in a trip to Costco and I am set up for a really fun day! I felt so much joy as I shopped for my move to India. Buying bulk snacks I knew I would want, shopping at some discount stores to get some odds and ends, and stocking up on makeup for my skin color was a must! I never assume that the place I will be moving to will have any of the products I know I will want and need. It’s always safer for me to purchase things before I move so I can have them shipped. Although most of the time you can find your favorite things abroad, I like the peace of mind I get when I am able to purchase what I think I’ll need and want in America.
Research is key! Jazzie from Black Digital Nomad said something really interesting in her collaboration video with me. She likes to research food options in places she thinks about moving to before actually moving. Food is such an important part of having an enjoyable overseas experience! If you cannot eat the food in your adoptive country, you are going to be sad, upset, and most importantly, hungry!
When I researched for India, I looked at everything from articles, pictures, and YouTube videos. I really wanted to get an idea of what my new home away from home would really be like before making the leap. I like to envision myself in a place before moving and research helps me do that!
4. Prepared My Family
I was very privileged to be able to go back home and visit my family before moving to India. I like to think of myself as a family-oriented person so visiting my loved ones was really special. One thing I say to myself as a reminder that life is fleeting is “Tomorrow is never promised”. I believe this is true for everyone, not just me. That’s why before moving to India, I made it a point to mend broken relationships, spend time with those I love, and I took time to strengthen friendships.
I was also able to share what I researched about India with people so they could feel more comfortable with the idea of me moving so far. Again peace of mind is important and I was able to give that to those I care about and I have been able to maintain all of those relationships even while living in India which has helped keep me grounded.
5. Prepared My Body
Mental and physical health is so important to me. I was honestly afraid that I could potentially lose myself after moving to India. However, when I become fearful about something, I am instantly motivated to prevent those fears from getting the best of me. Before my move to India, I knew I could not do much about my health situation until I actually moved so I decided to prepare my body while I still had control.
I worked out a lot, tried my best to eat healthfully, and I worked on my mental health through spiritual practices of prayer and meditation. I really enjoyed all of this ‘me’ time. As I say, “You never know what you don’t know until it happens”. And with that, I wanted to be mentally and physically strong before my move. I am so glad I took the steps to do so because I have so much more resiliency.
Getting vaccinated before moving abroad is a must. I actually hate the idea of vaccinations but since living in Morocco and being sick ALL THE TIME, I could not afford to live the same life. I decided to get all of the required vaccinations to keep me from getting sick as well as getting other people sick. It’s almost flu season so I will be due for a re-up of that shot which I am not excited for but I know it will be so necessary!
7. Goals + Planning
Living abroad can be hard at times because of all the reasons you would expect: homesickness, illness, culture shock, and more! I always say that living abroad is very different compared to going somewhere for vacation. So it’s important to move abroad with intention. What will you be doing? Will you have a job? How will you sustain yourself? How will you stay healthy in the mental, spiritual, and physical sense? It’s so important to have goals for yourself BEFORE you move so you can answer the above questions and have a plan.
There are probably a number of things I missed from my preparation list so please let me know what I should add in the comment section! Thank you so much for reading. As I get back into the swing of blogging, I am sure my writing will get better, I will become more consistent, and hopefully, fall in love with writing!
Look out for my next posts which will be all about my trip to Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. I will be sharing all of the details about the trip so you can plan a similar vacation if you are interested.