I’ve made it a personal goal throughout my life to remain simple – some might say I’m even overly simple, or ‘stupid’ (my university teachers, employers, friends, family etc. etc.). When it comes things such as moving abroad, or other weighty matters, it can be best to have a simple, positive outlook.
One of my students recently told me about the benefits of thinking positively. He had been reading a book about neurology and the most rewarding thing he got from it was that the brain has an almost limitless capacity. Thinking positively increases your brain’s ability to make connections and store information.
Enough with the psychology anyway. If you’re still stuck in the UK, ask yourself why. It’s time to move abroad! Stay simple, and keep positive and check out these solutions.
1. Choosing a country
Challenge: If you’re thinking of becoming an English teacher this summer, it’s wise to think about where you want to teach.
Solution: There are no ‘right’ or ‘wrong’ countries. If you feel like an adventure, go somewhere you have never been before but that appeals to you. If it doesn’t work out after the first year, find a new location.
Challenge: Getting a work visa can be difficult depending on the country you want to go to.
Solution: Find a job! With a valid offer of work, getting a visa becomes a much simpler process. Beyond that, don’t be afraid to try it and see. Visa regulations are surprisingly flexible, especially in Asian countries.
3. Finding a job
Challenge: Securing a position as an English teacher without being in the country.
Solution: The Internet. If you want a tried and tested method, there are institutions like the JET scheme for Japan, or the British Council. Private language schools and community school jobs are also plentiful on the Internet. Getting a job online is not unusual. Furthermore, most teachers find that opportunities for work come up regularly once you are in the country so finding a new employer shouldn’t be a big problem if the first job doesn’t work out.
4. The move
Challenge: Relocating thousands of miles away with all of your possessions.
Solution: You don’t need all of your possessions. Take what you need and leave/sell the rest. Moving abroad involves a bit of sacrifice, but there are rewards too. There are professional companies to help with the practicalities of international moves, and your employer may offer some help too.
By the account of most teachers, moving abroad is not as challenging as it seems. Don’t hold yourself back. If you want to teach in Azerbaijan, it can be done.