I recently read a response to someone’s complaint or request for advice, in an online expat group, that read “Why is everyone always trying to solve things by selling something? At one point, we could ask for advice and receive it in a community without having to pay for it.”
The expat space is particularly burgeoned with coaches, workshops, webinars, service providers, and more. And moving isn’t easy! So it’s not a surprise that an industry has developed around it – with a fancy name (global mobility), certifications, and more.
As I reflected on the responder's question, I realized that they had touched on something critical. How do we develop or find our communities of support? For some groups it exists by virtue of shared experience and some other identity. But, the larger a group gets the harder retaining the qualities of trust and mutual investment become. Hence someone asking a question in a group of 20K members on Facebook being seen as an opportunity to bill a client as opposed to supporting an individual.
As a coach and facilitator in the repat space, I wondered what do I add to the equation that you might not get from your community? After all, the grief of loss and change and excitement all pass to a new baseline sooner or later. Is it worth paying someone to get over this or better to accept that it is what it is, knowing that it will pass.
In her workbook, The Re-Entry Roadmap, Dr. Cate Brubaker talks about our ability to acknowledge and recognize how re-entry is different from other experiences that we may feel simultaneously. How it can impact these other experiences and often be misattributed, resulting in us carrying around rocks or templates or assumptions for years, without resolving them into a new flourishing identity. I think that in addition to her book, this is where coaching comes in.
The ICF definition of coaching is: “partnering with clients