Everything’s about to Change.

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It’s a few months away yet, but I have made the decision to leave Hong Kong. There’s just not the breadth of opportunity I need here when it comes to my career and I have known that for a while. It’s time to return to the UK or to find somewhere else to call my home, at least for the time being.

I’m not scared of the move, I’m starting to save money and look at the posts that are coming up and if I’d be suitable for them. It’s hard though to go from a full time job to something I can’t really plan for. I’m starting to make my CV look good and think about who I am and how I can present myself. Think about my USP etc.

An anxious mind is not what I need in this situation and for the most part i’m doing good. As I mentioned before my anxiety is near to nothing which means I can take these steps without feeling like I’m doing anything wrong. So far it feels like the right move. I’ve told my work and I’ve told my friends, even my Mum and that’s huge! Now I just have to survive the next couple of months.

It’s funny you know, now I’m in my late twenties, I should have this shit down. I’m the person with 3 years experience, a breadth of knowledge and experiences under my belt. But will they want me? I now have everything that a few years ago I wasn’t getting anywhere because I lacked it. This is a forgotten moment in any person’s life.

Theoretically I should have a family, a house, a car and a pension building up…so far that’s not the case. You know what though, I feel like I’ve lived, if only for 3 years, I’ve explored, I’ve sought new worlds and new experiences that not a lot of other people have. There’s no engagement ring on my finger, but you know what? There’s time for all of that, I still feel like a teenager when I look at other people ‘adulting’ but I feel like my mind is more rounded. My perception clear and my body ready for this next chapter.

“Adulting isn’t all it’s made up to be anyway”

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Mission Accomplished

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Kung Hei Fat Choi!

It’s Chinese New Year in Hong Kong and tonight I did something I would never have been able to a year ago. Literally.

This time last year my friend and me were supposed to be watching the New Year’s fireworks and my anxiety was at a peak of resistance. It took me all my strength and energy to just leave the house. My friend came to my town, had a meal with me and every step we were like “We could just stay here if we want – no pressure” we were taking it in baby steps. Now I am not one to miss out on things and therefore I took a deep breathe got on the first tram we saw and took off to Sun Yat Sen Park. It wasn’t too busy but my body was going wild. It’s so difficult to describe that feeling, it’s just like your whole existence wants you to turn around grab the nearest taxi and get home under the duvet forever more. We managed to stay and watch enough until the sky became one mass of smoke and smog and then decided to leave. I couldn’t even go for a drink after, we had buy drinks from 7/11 and go back to my apartment for me to feel any kind of secure.

So this year I was determined. I had a conversation with my Doctor about my medication and asked him honestly where it was all going. He upped my dosage and said as soon as I I stopped feeling anxious altogether, we’d start to take the dosage down slowly.

That time is now.

Tonight I was on fire. I went to a place I knew would be busy, the IFC Terrace. I left the house with no problem at all, got to a nice spot on the terrace and all this…on my own. Usually when I’m on my own it’s a mission to get myself to stay without running back home. Today was different, I wondered around the shops, knowing full well the fireworks didn’t start for another hour, found a place to sit, got myself a coke and generally chilled. After the fireworks ended, and yes I was only able to see 30% of them…., I took it slow, chilled on the rooftop for a bit knowing that it’d be busy, the kind of busy I couldn’t be bothered with rather than I dreaded. I slowly made my way down to the MTR taking routes only the professionals are aware of when it comes to slow tourists. I went to Pret, walked through the airport express, bought some water and walked back to Central. Then when feeling tired at this point, I got the MTR, not a taxi, there was no panicking, no wondering if I would get home before I vomited everywhere. I took it slow and actually enjoyed the atmosphere.

The next few months are going to be full of challenges and I know I have to work hard to keep on top of myself, my feelings and my anxiety. But for this small thing to have happened makes me proud of myself and sometimes that means more than anything anyone else could tell you.

“Sometimes you just have to congratulate yourself.”

Hong Kong: A window to my world.

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In September 2013, I moved to Hong Kong. I knew one person here and I’d be working with her full-time. Once I found out about the job here, I nearly let myself down a few times, thinking maybe it was best to stay in England and stay with my friends, safe. But as I will explain another time, that’s not me. I never let myself be scared by a challenge, everyone in life should challenge themselves and me in myself wanted to do it.

The adrenaline kicked in about two weeks before I left, for the first time in ages I felt on top of the world, someone wanted me for my skill and merit. My first class honours degree had finally got me somewhere. I’d spent the last year freelancing, I direct with young people and after a successful second year out of uni, I found myself freelance again. It’s never easy to make the transition back after being paid a definite wage each month. But I survived and worked hard, the whole experience however hit me hard and if it wasn’t for my friend Mel, I don’t know what I would have done. By accident we started living together in a tiny studio flat. She was understanding, chilled out and the most the most fun I’ve ever had! If she hadn’t have helped boost my confidence during that year I don’t know if I would have made it to Hong Kong, but I did and I’m proud of myself for taking the leap.

Once I got here my anxiety vanished.

I used to sit and wonder where it’d gone, I felt great, there was no pit in my stomach, I was confident in meeting new people and making friends. The adventures I had in that first month involved alcohol, boys, making new friends and staying out late. All of which are horrendous triggers! Then something happened, it jilted me and made me re-analyse who I was becoming and what I’d left behind. I was becoming cocky and I didn’t like it. It wasn’t me. There’s  a funny culture in Hong Kong that I didn’t want to be a part of. From then on it slowly trickled back, the feelings of dread, apprehension and my own self belief.

However much it returns, I need to keep my head above water, I like to concentrate on the positive side of life and for all intents and purposes appear to others as strong. It may be a facade, but it’s who I wish to be.

I’m settled into a flat now and live alone, I just have to remind myself daily of what I’ve achieved. I’m doing well here and have already been asked to direct a huge production for the company. I just have to keep smiling

 

I’ll always try to stay positive.