The International Living Podcast

Episode 33: How to Move Overseas With Confidence

July 12, 2023 International Living
Episode 33: How to Move Overseas With Confidence
The International Living Podcast
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The International Living Podcast
Episode 33: How to Move Overseas With Confidence
Jul 12, 2023
International Living

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This week, Jim Santos talks to International Living Go Overseas Mentor about her article in the July 2023 issue of International Living magazine ‘Use my Expertise to Move Overseas with Confidence’. 

In her article, and in her discussion with podcast host, Jim Santos, Kristin explans how she developed her unique expertise... and how it can help you settle into a new, better life overseas.

Kristin’s Ready to Relocate program will open to new members in a few weeks... so if you’re already an International Living subscriber, or if you’ve signed up for our Daily Postcards, keep your eyes on your inbox for updates.

Kristin talks to Jim about her travel-rich upbringing, her determination to find a life that allowed her to carry on exploring the world through her adult life, and how she hopes to help others enjoy a better life living, working, or retiring overseas.

Learn about culture shock, reverse culture shock, what to look for, what to avoid, and how to start living the overseas life that’s calling to you. As Kristin says in the podcast: ‘life is made up of moments, and when you travel, you just get so many more and different, various and richer moments than you could have imagined.’

Join host, Jim Santos, as he meets Kristin Wilson—expat, writer, vlogger and International Living Go Overseas Mentor, in the latest episode of Bigger, Better World.

If you’re enjoying the podcast, we would really appreciate it if you could leave us a review on your favorite podcast platform: https://lovethepodcast.com/internationalliving.

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Show Notes Transcript Chapter Markers

Send us a Text Message.

This week, Jim Santos talks to International Living Go Overseas Mentor about her article in the July 2023 issue of International Living magazine ‘Use my Expertise to Move Overseas with Confidence’. 

In her article, and in her discussion with podcast host, Jim Santos, Kristin explans how she developed her unique expertise... and how it can help you settle into a new, better life overseas.

Kristin’s Ready to Relocate program will open to new members in a few weeks... so if you’re already an International Living subscriber, or if you’ve signed up for our Daily Postcards, keep your eyes on your inbox for updates.

Kristin talks to Jim about her travel-rich upbringing, her determination to find a life that allowed her to carry on exploring the world through her adult life, and how she hopes to help others enjoy a better life living, working, or retiring overseas.

Learn about culture shock, reverse culture shock, what to look for, what to avoid, and how to start living the overseas life that’s calling to you. As Kristin says in the podcast: ‘life is made up of moments, and when you travel, you just get so many more and different, various and richer moments than you could have imagined.’

Join host, Jim Santos, as he meets Kristin Wilson—expat, writer, vlogger and International Living Go Overseas Mentor, in the latest episode of Bigger, Better World.

If you’re enjoying the podcast, we would really appreciate it if you could leave us a review on your favorite podcast platform: https://lovethepodcast.com/internationalliving.

Facebook | Instagram | Twitter | YouTube

Jim Santos 00:09

Hello, everyone, and welcome once again to Bigger, Better World. In this episode, I'm pleased to welcome Kristin Wilson, the new go overseas mentor, to the International Living family. Kristin can provide you with personalized guidance in your search for the overseas home best suited to your needs and desires. Her Ready to Relocate program will open to new members in a few weeks, so keep your eyes on your inbox and the IL website for updates. Kristin, welcome to IL and to bigger, better world.

 

Kristin Wilson 01:11 

Thanks so much, Jim. It's great to be here. And hello to everyone who's out there listening.

 

Jim Santos 01:16 

We do want to talk about your July 2023 article that will be in this month's International Living. It's called “Use my Expertise to Move Overseas with Confidence’. But before we get started with this, since we're introducing you to everyone on this podcast, why don't we start at the beginning? Now, I understand that you've been fascinated by travel from a very young age.

 

Kristin Wilson 01:37 

That's correct.

 

Jim Santos 01:38 

What do you think it was that first sparked your interest?

 

Kristin Wilson 01:41 

I'm not sure if it was any one thing, but I do think that everyone who's human has this innate love of travel or draw to travel. And I think that just because of the roots of our species, that we've been explorers and we've been traveling since the beginning of at least recorded time and from what we know of our ancestors. And so I think it's something innate that's within every single one of us. 

 

And I just was fortunate to be born into a family where my parents like to travel. My grandparents worked for Pan Am, the old airline in Miami. And so not only did I love to travel from a young age, but I was also allowed to travel with them and I was also exposed to their photos and also I loved reading books. And so I just kind of dove in from childhood. 

And my wanderlust was the motivation for what I studied in school and what I did for work and what I continue to do today. Travel is what I eat, sleep, live, breathe, everything.

 

Jim Santos 02:50 

Well, I think you're being a little modest, because I do know some people who are perfectly content with exactly where they are and have absolutely no interest in looking around them.

 

Kristin Wilson 02:59 

I guess I don't know many of them.

 

Jim Santos 03:01 

Well, the way you move around, it doesn't sound like you would. You told me you just arrived from the UK.

 

Kristin Wilson 03:07 

That's true. Yes. I've been traveling through the UK for the past two months and will be traveling through there this summer, hopefully going to Scotland and exploring more of the north and also some of the south as well. Previously I had only ever been to London and I know that there's so much more to the UK outside of that one city.

 

Jim Santos 03:29 

That's really the problem with travel. I think the more that you see, the more you start to wonder about what you haven't seen yet.

 

Kristin Wilson 03:36 

Exactly. I've done so many videos on the top ten places to see here or the top ten places to visit, the top ten places to live in different countries. And when you really go deep into one place, I mean you can find the top ten neighborhoods of one city and you can find the top 1000 places to see in one state. 

 

There's so much once you start going really narrow into a destination and you start to see all that there is to offer. And even in the UK, there's kind of been this tension between having all these places on my bucket list but also being a busy adult and having a job and all the other things that I have to do. It's like I'm not completely living on a vacation, I'm not retired. So it's also finding that balance between working remotely and traveling and also enjoying the sights and also creating content about it to share with you all.

 

Jim Santos 04:42 

Well, I have to warn you, it doesn't necessarily get better. I mean, technically I've been retired myself for several years now, but I seem to be busier than ever, and here we are doing a podcast. Right?

 

Kristin Wilson 04:52 

Exactly. But it's great that you're working in your passion project. And that's why I started a podcast as well. Because I think that sometimes when you feel like there's a hobby that you want to do or that you should be doing, and you're not dedicating enough quality time to it, at least for me, it can create a little bit of anxiety and kind of emptiness. 

 

And I think as much as many humans love to travel, we're also creative beings and so having a creative outlet, whether you like to paint or do sculptures, pottery, write, speak on microphones, anything like that, is really something that all of us should be encouraged to do. And I wish that we had more of that from elementary school and into higher education where there was more emphasis on that because I think that that's part of a healthy life balance. But fortunately, travel and retirement can give you some extra opportunities to pursue those passions.

 

Jim Santos 05:54 

Right. It certainly helps to have something, a reason to get up in the morning and travel can certainly provide plenty of reasons.

 

Kristin Wilson 06:01 

Yes.

 

Jim Santos 06:02 

Getting back to some of the early years here, I was interested to read in your article there that you had a cultural ambassadorial scholarship from the Rotary Foundation. And I don't know how many of our listeners have actually heard of the Rotary Foundation, but this is actually a pretty impressive thing here. They've been in operation since 1916, so it's over 100 years now with the goal of advancing world understanding, goodwill, and peace. So this is quite a big deal. How'd you end up even hearing about this scholarship and much less applying for it and getting it?

 

Kristin Wilson 06:33 

It's really quite a crazy story that my dad and I still talk about it to this day. And I received the scholarship and went abroad as a Rotary scholar back in 2002, so more than 20 years ago. And it still kind of blows my mind how it all happened, because it set me on the trajectory that I'm on today. 

But it was really just a coincidence or a synchronicity where my dad and his friend were going down to Miami to watch a football game, and we were living in St. Augustine at the time, which people might know as the oldest European settlement in the United States. So it's quite a lovely historic city if you want to check it out. 

 

But they were on their way down to see this football game, and my dad's friend was a member of one of the Rotary clubs in St. Augustine, and they had their lunch that day, their weekly lunch, and so he invited my dad as a guest. And at the lunch, they were talking about this scholarship program, and it turned out that the president of that club was the physical trainer for my high school football team and cheerleading squad, and I was a cheerleader.

 

And he said, you know what, Jim? He said, Kristen would be a perfect fit for this scholarship. And I was really highly involved in high school. Lots of clubs, lots of activities. I guess he thought that that would be a good fit for me. My dad took the scholarship package home. He mailed it to me. I was going to school at the University of Central Florida at the time, and I looked it over, and I also agreed. 

 

I'm like, this is perfect for me. I'm very much into history and culture and geography. I love to travel, highly studious, very outgoing. And so I decided to apply for this cultural Ambassadorial scholarship where essentially I would be a student representative of the United States, living abroad and promoting goodwill and cultural understanding in that country. 

 

Doing a lot of community service projects, which I've been involved in local community service ever since I could walk and learning a language, staying with a host family, getting to know the local people. And so I applied, and it was a very arduous application process. I think it took about a year and a half with lots of interviews, speaking engagements, meetings, references, and I ultimately received the scholarship, and they sent me to Costa Rica, so I got really lucky, although I wanted to go to Italy at the time because that's where my grandmother's family is from. And that's where I went for my senior class trip. So I wanted to go to Italy, but they sent me to Costa Rica, and I think it was the best thing that ever happened to me. 

 

So that was a great experience and it was kind of just being at the right place at the right time, but also doing the work, applying for the scholarship and taking that opportunity. But also a risk because it required putting my college studies on hold for a semester because studying Spanish in Costa Rica was, I couldn't get credit for that for my university. So I actually had to take a semester off to have that experience. 

 

But I wouldn't trade it for anything, that experience. Studying abroad in Costa Rica, living with a local family, completely changed my life. I'm so grateful I speak Spanish to this day. It's made my life so much easier, and I actually just went back and spoke at a Rotary meeting in St. Augustine about two months ago and shared about my experience. So even 20 years later, I continue to speak at Rotary clubs and share about that and also how it's related to what I do today.

 

Jim Santos 10:27 

What part of Costa Rica were you in?

 

Kristin Wilson 10:29 

I was in Santa Ana in the Central Valley and studying at a suburb campus. And then after a couple of months, I started studying at their campus near the Sabana Park, and moved in with a different family just to get some variety.

 

Jim Santos 10:51 

When you did go back to school, you ended up studying abroad in Australia, as a matter of fact, didn't you?

 

Kristin Wilson 10:58 

So I was gone for an entire year after the Costa Rica semester. I did one semester in Australia, and that was because I was majoring in international business and the school there, Griffith University on the Gold Coast, they have a really good international business program, and so that's why I went there. And oddly, enough. I was a bit homesick for Costa Rica when I was in Australia, and then I was in Australia for six months, but that was a great opportunity as well. 

 

I feel like when I got back to the United States on my 21st birthday, I was just completely changed. And it was very difficult to reintegrate into the US university lifestyle with my sorority. And it kind of seemed like almost like how we went through the pandemic, and it kind of seemed like time was frozen during that time. It kind of felt like that. It's like I went away, and then I came back, and then it was like everything was the same, but everything was different from how it was when I left. But I think it was for the best.

 

Jim Santos 12:13 

Yeah. I think what people don't always realize is that culture shock actually works both ways. Once you get used to another culture, returning to your own culture can suddenly seem very disorienting.

 

Kristin Wilson 12:25 

Yes. And now that I've traveled to more than 60 countries and I've lived in so many of them, I don't even know if I really experience culture shock anymore. I feel like I live in this parallel universe where everything is new and different, but everything is also relatable, and I can adapt anywhere. 

 

I think it would have to be a very extreme cultural difference for me to actually feel that shock that I felt in those first years, because I've spent exactly half of my life traveling in other countries and half of my life growing up in the US. 

But reverse culture shock is real. And I just videoed about it on my channel. And there's hundreds of comments from people sharing their experiences of how they went, even if they went away for one week or two weeks to another country. When they got back, they noticed all of these different things that they didn't notice before or things that they noticed before seemed more extreme when they came back. 

 

And even after being out of the US for two months in the UK, when I landed in New York City last night, I felt it. All of a sudden, everyone's in a hurry, and people are angry, and people just seemed more rushed and more frustrated than they did at the airport in Manchester where I was flying out. And it reminds you, oh, yes, not only am I back in the US, but I'm in…is New York the biggest city in the country? I mean, I'm in the heart of the Northeast, and it's a very diverse city, but it's also larger than life, and so you really get that energy as soon as you land at the airport of Welcome to New York, but it's definitely a different vibe than you get in Europe.

 

Jim Santos 14:15 

Yeah. The change of pace of life is definitely the thing that most people notice. When you return to Costa Rica, you were starting to sell real estate. Was that something that you had always planned on doing, or how did that come about?

 

Kristin Wilson 14:29 

No, actually, when I came back from Australia and I graduated from college, I went into a one year MBA program because I wasn't sure exactly what I wanted to do for work. I continued to travel back to Costa Rica during the summers, and I really loved it there, and I felt like I wanted to stay, but my parents kind of pressured me to go to grad school, so that's what I did. 

 

And during that time, I actually experienced a burnout where I had a seizure on my way. So it was my midterms during grad school, and I had a 06:00 a.m. flight to Costa Rica that weekend for a charity event that I had been involved with when I studied abroad there. And I blacked out in the airport and woke up on the floor of the airport terminal in Atlanta, and there were all these people around me, and it was very confusing. 

 

But they ended up putting me on the plane in a wheelchair, and I went to Costa Rica for the weekend. I got back, I had all of these tests. The doctors took away my driver's license. I mean, it completely changed my life. 

 

And it made me think that if I experienced a physical burnout at 21 years old, then what would happen when I was 41 years old or 51 years old? If I continued on this trajectory of, I was studying full time. I had multiple jobs. I had an internship. I was a grad assistant. I just kind of was burning the candle at both ends, drinking too much caffeine. 

 

So that really made me reassess my life trajectory, which was to go into being a management consultant or working for a Fortune 500 company in the US. 

 

And so after that experience, when I graduated and started looking for jobs in Orlando, I got an email from a friend of a friend who was living in Costa Rica, and he said, hey, I heard that you lived here. I heard you speak Spanish. Do you want to come down and work for me in real estate? And I thought, I don't know. Do I want to do that? And so I went down there, I checked it out. They flew me down, and I said, okay, I'll do it for one year, like a gap year. I'll work on my Spanish. I'll live in Costa Rica. I'll learn this industry of real estate, and then I'll come back to the US. And I'll continue with my real life. 

 

But then that was in 2005, and the global real estate boom was happening, and things were going really well, and I thought, well, hey, I think at that point, I was 22. I'm making six figures a year. I have a view of the ocean. I surf every night at sunset. I ride a four x four to work. This is great. I'm just going to stay here. And I just never left. 

 

I continued working throughout, selling real estate in Nicaragua. I was in Costa Rica, Nicaragua, Panama, and then traveling around the world, taking time off to go to Europe and go to Bali, go to Australia, and just having a great life. So I did that, and they just never found a reason to go back to the US. So I could get one week of vacation per year and work in a cubicle. It just never really aligned. There was not much of a compelling advantage to come back to the US. And resume, quote unquote, normal life that all of my classmates from business school were doing.

 

And so I continued, and I'm still mostly living abroad today. I will come back to the US. Sometimes. I was back in Florida during the pandemic, but I find that when you go abroad, one thing leads to another, and you might go somewhere and find your home away from home forever and apply for permanent residency or citizenship and stay there. 

 

Or you might go for a few years and then start exploring other places and find another place that you want to live and kind of end up moving around the world or changing homes a couple of times. So I think that just taking that first step is always a good way to get your feet wet and see what's out there. 

 

And there's absolutely no way that that day that my dad came home with the scholarship application that I would have known what would have happened in my life over the next 20 years. So you never know unless you go.

 

Jim Santos 19:17 

Yeah. And you bring up a point that we're hearing more and more often on Bigger, Better World. Also this idea that if you decide to try a life abroad, it's not written in stone that once you move to that country, that's your final destination. The hard part is that first step. Once you've made that leap and you start living in another country, you start to wonder what all the big fuss was and realize that you can live anywhere you want. 

It's empowering, very empowering thing to learn that you can live in other places and other cultures.

 

Kristin Wilson 19:48 

And we're very fortunate because this was not possible for so many reasons not too long ago. It wasn't possible because of technology hadn't advanced to the point that allowed this type of mobility. The geopolitics of the world and the safety and security conflicts didn't allow it. And also society, as far as how people worked and how we made a living and where our jobs were located, they were very fixed to those destinations. 

 

And I think with more women in the workplace and people having multiple jobs and different careers and side hustles and now with the Internet and the ever decreasing cost of plane tickets well, not during inflation, maybe, but generally we have more affordable, farther reaching travel options than ever before. And now even countries that are trying to attract retirees, remote workers, and digital nomads with different types of visas and residency options. So it's an unprecedented time. I think we're just all so lucky to be living in it right now.

 

Jim Santos 21:06 

Yeah, definitely. And things are changing even as we speak. It's getting easier and easier to travel, and there's more opportunities coming up now. I was reading about when you first got into your current calling around 2011 with Orbis Relocation. 

 

There was something in there, a comment that really resonated with me. You said that one of your reasons for doing it was you found a lot of misinformation about living overseas. And that really resonated because one of my books, Living Abroad, the subtitle was Challenging the Myths of Expat Life. And it was the same thing. 

 

I talked to people who were expats. We were living in Ecuador, and I just ran into so much misinformation and just myths about what it's like to be an expat, what it's like to live in another country and how dangerous it is and all of that stuff. So I was very interested to find out that that was one of your big reasons for starting Orbis relocation.

 

Kristin Wilson 22:02 

Oh, yes. And I was victim to all of those same headlines and stereotypes that Mexico is dangerous or solo female travel is dangerous. And I had been traveling to Mexico to go surfing because I used to be a competitive surfer. So I'd been going there since I was 16 with my friends from California. We would drive over the border, we would go camping. 

 

And of course, there's dangerous people and places in Mexico, just like there are in different countries. But for the most part, I felt very safe. The people were so friendly and welcoming. And over the years, probably seven to ten years, I had to just question everything that I had been told and rely more on my actual personal experience and reality that I was living. 

 

And these were the early days of the Internet, right? Even in 2011. So reading people's travel blogs and kind of seeing these strangers and forums on the internet with all this misinformation, I thought, well, if these strangers can sit behind these computer screens and write all of this stuff that I know to be either subjective or just flat out wrong or outdated or untrue, then I might as well add my voice to that conversation because I have good intentions and I want to help people.

 

And I have a different perspective, especially being a 20-something year old single female living in Central America. And so I started my relocation company, which was to help people one on one with their moves abroad. And then I also started a travel blog and then later a YouTube channel and podcast to help share about a lot of topics that now, since the Pandemic, are starting to get mainstream awareness because so many people are getting location independence through remote work, different companies are always announcing new remote work policies. 

 

And this term of digital nomad or just the whole concept of an international overseas lifestyle is becoming more globally acceptable. So it's a great time. But the reason I started the relocation company and shifted from real estate to relocation was because so many of my real estate clients asked for help with all of the other things that go along with moving to another country. 

 

And at first, I didn't know any of the answers, but over the first ten years of learning everything, that's when I decided to offer that as a service to people. So instead of selling houses, I helped people with all the logistics that go into a move, and I've been doing that ever since.

 

Jim Santos 24:54 

Tell us about your YouTube channel, Traveling with Kristen.

 

Kristin Wilson 24:58 

Yeah, Traveling with Kristen. We just celebrated five years a couple of weeks ago, in YouTube years.

 

Jim Santos 25:05 

That's quite a while.

 

Kristin Wilson 25:06 

Yeah.

 

Jim Santos 25:07 

Dog years. Yeah.

 

Kristin Wilson 25:09 

Feels like 50. No, in some ways it feels like I just started yesterday. But when I look back at my notes, I actually just found some notes from 2017 when I was trying to gain the courage to start a YouTube channel. And all of the ideas I had and my why for creating a channel. Like why I wanted to help people, what I wanted to help them with and why what I had to say was useful and important. 

 

Because before you start publishing information about a topic, it can feel like you're just one person out of 7 billion people in the world. And you think like, well, what do I have to say that's more important? There's probably other people that know more than me or there's more experts, but as long as you know at least 1% more than someone else, then you can teach them something, even if it's a 1% improvement. 

 

And so it took me a couple of years to really gain the courage to start the YouTube channel. And even I started the channel in June or July of 2017. And I didn't start publishing videos for six months. At first I just started filming and documenting what I was doing and showing people that, hey, it's an option to live this kind of lifestyle.

 

You can work on the go, you can travel where you want, you can live in other countries. And that was just so foreign to people. Whether it was my grandparents, friends or my classmates from high school and college, nobody understood what I was doing. And so I thought the best way to teach was to show them. And so I started with doing travel blogs and answering FAQs and things like that. 

 

And then the videos have evolved a bit to cover more wide ranging topics from dual citizenship or renouncing your citizenship, to culture and culture shock, and doing city guides and destination guides, going really deep into the cost of living and different things that people want to know about health insurance. And so it's been extremely rewarding. 

 

And every day that I'm talking to people and reading comments, it just blows my mind. This person on the other side of the world is getting value from this video and they're sharing their story there and it's just amazing. I mean, even to be able to publish content that people can watch it for free anywhere in the world at any time of day, it's just amazing.

 

So I'm having a great time. And the Traveling with Kristen community is definitely, I would say, at least 200,000 people strong now. So everybody, we start as a single voice, but then it grows into a community and it becomes something much bigger than yourself.

 

Jim Santos 28:05 

Now, I understand that since you started Orbis and up to now, there's over 1000 people that you've helped relocate to, was it 37 different countries? Yeah, that's quite a good record.

 

Kristin Wilson 28:18 

Yeah, I actually stopped counting after that because I used to have this spreadsheet where I put every single person's name and who they were and where they were going and how I helped them. It actually started as a poster. I bought a poster board at Office Depot in Costa Rica, and I just thumbtacked this poster up on the wall and I started with my first client and I started writing people's names on this poster. And then eventually I turned it into a spreadsheet. And then eventually I just stopped updating the spreadsheet because it was like too many, too much, too many people. But yeah, that's where I left off counting quite a few years ago now.

 

Jim Santos 29:02 

So now with International Living, you're doing a Ready to Relocate eight-step program?

 

Kristin Wilson 29:07 

Yeah, this is a program that I started in 2021, and I did it because my entire career since 2011, I helped people one on one with their relocation. But I kept repeating this process a thousand times, as you mentioned, and I thought I could probably help a lot more people and empower them on their journeys to teach them my process for relocating to another country. 

 

And I know it works in at least 37 or 40 countries, so it should work for everybody. And so I spent about six months or so creating a formula for how to relocate to another country and then opening small private group coaching groups of people who want to move overseas and then teaching them step by step how to do that, and also giving them the supporting documents and videos and information that will help with completing each of those steps. 

 

So within each of this eight step framework, there's a lot of different little steps, but we just let each step build on the next one. Because people know there's a lot of steps in a move overseas, they just don't necessarily know which ones to start with, which order they go in, how long they take, et cetera, et cetera.

 

So we make that really straightforward. And then I'm also there with them in weekly calls to go over questions live in person related to what we talked about that week and the content.

 

Jim Santos 30:43 

Yeah, I know a big question for a lot of people, even if once they decide that maybe they should live overseas, is where they should live, do you help them even at that basic level?

 

Kristin Wilson 30:53 

Oh, yes. I would say that's one of the first things that we talk about, whether they're working with me one on one or ready to relocate, it's getting clear on why you want to move overseas, because a lot of people want to do it for many years. Some people can't even remember when it was that they first had this desire to go abroad. 

 

For some people, it's been their whole lives, for other people, it's been ten years, and some people, it's just been the past year or so that they've been thinking about it. It's very personalized as far as why you want to move and where you want to go. There's almost 200 countries and there's so many places that could be the right place for you. So who's to say that it has to be one of the most popular places that people go? 

 

Or maybe it's a country that's very popular with other foreigners, but maybe you find a corner of that country that is kind of off the beaten path and off of the radar. So we spend a lot of time on that because the destination is the foundation for the rest of the relocation and where you get your housing and if you're applying for a visa or residency, it's kind of everything else builds on where you go.

 

And oftentimes most of the time people come to me with they're not sure at all where to go, or they have a long list of places or they're trying to decide between a few different places and they're stuck. I don't know which one to pick.

 

Jim Santos 32:26 

Right.

 

Kristin Wilson 32:27 

So we definitely do a lot of work with that.

 

Jim Santos 32:30 

Well, after all these years and all the travel that you've done, all the people that you've worked with, do you still have that fascination for travel?

 

Kristin Wilson 32:37 

I do. Being based in the UK this summer, that wanderlust. It's really coming out. I'm trying to go to a different place every weekend. I feel like travel is like a lifelong thing. My heroes are people like Rick Steves, who've been traveling their whole lives. And then Europe is so small that you can really travel to a lot of different places in a short amount of time and also with a small budget. And I have some family throughout Europe as well, so I hope to go and visit them this summer, too.

 

Jim Santos 33:11 

What's the best part of living in a different culture for you?

 

Kristin Wilson 33:15 

There's so many good things, but I always reflect on…we talked about culture shock, but we also talked about empowerment. And there's something that makes me feel, when I'm in a different culture on one side, having that reverence and humility and respect for the culture, but also feeling a little bit like you have a superpower because you're a little bit different. You have a different perspective. You're seeing everything with very fresh eyes. 

 

So things that you take for granted in your home country or that you think are normal, you start to appreciate those really little things in life. I can still remember the exact taste of the best pomegranate I ever had, and it was in Fig Tree Bay in Cyprus, and the best raspberries I've ever eaten were in Sofia, Bulgaria. You just start to associate little moments of life with a destination. And that, to me, is the most beautiful part of travel. Along with the people that you meet, of course. 

 

And right before we hopped on this call my new friend who lives in a little tiny village called Chester in the UK. He sent me a message of how his day was going and his week was going. And so these connections that you make with people—life is made up of moments, and when you travel, you just get so many more and different, various and richer moments than you could have imagined.

 

Jim Santos 34:47 

We've been chatting with Kristin Wilson, International living's new go overseas mentor. You can read about her in the article in July 2023 edition of International Living magazine: ‘Use My Expertise to Move Overseas with Confidence’ and you can find links to some of her videos on the IL website. 

 

Don't forget, you can meet Kristin and your humble podcast host here at the Ultimate Go Overseas Boot camp in Denver, Colorado this September 2 through the fourth. Go to Intliving.com/Denver for details and a discount before time runs out. Now that's Intliving.com/Denver. 

 

Kristen, thanks again for joining us on Bigger, Better World.

 

Kristin Wilson 35:26 

Thanks so much Jim, and I look forward to seeing you in Denver.

 

Jim Santos 35:39 

The Bigger, Better World podcast is a production of International Living. If you enjoyed this episode and you'd like to help support the podcast, please share it with others, post about it on social media or leave a rating and review. If you have an idea for an episode or a question you'd like us to answer, email us at mailbag@internationalliving.com. And don't forget to put podcast in the subject line of your email. That's mailbag@internationalliving.com

 

We created Bigger, Better World to help showcase the ideas we explore at International Living each month and grow our community of travel lovers, expats and experts who believe as we do, that the world is full of opportunity to create a more interesting, more international life. You don't have to be rich or famous to do that. You just need to know the secrets. And that's what we bring you at International Living. 

 

If you haven't become a member yet, you can do it today with a special discount offer for podcast listeners. You'll receive our monthly magazine plus a bundle of special extras. You'll find the link in our show notes or you can go to Intliving.com/podcast. That's Intliving.com/podcast. Be sure to tune in next week for another brand new episode.

 

Thanks again for joining us on Bigger, Better World. I'm Jim Santos for International Living. I'll see you next time, and until then, remember, there's a Bigger, Better World just waiting for you.

 

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A Chance Meeting Provides a Backdoor to a Life Overseas
Costa Rica to Australia—Using College Study as a Ticket to the World
The Pressure of Grad School in the U.S. Gave Me a Seizure
Making Six Figures a Year, at 22, in Costa Rica
Location Independence, a New Type of Workplace, and Informing People About it
Practical Details of Helping People Live Their Dream Life
The Best Part of Living in a Different Culture