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Age is (not) Just a number ...continued

Updated: Nov 19, 2021

The last week’s blog, we talked about the Age group 18-27 years.

Admittedly this is the best age to migrate when we take into consideration the physical strength, energy and brawn of young adults in this age group. However, their most significant challenge is that of their emotional and mental immaturity. Most are still trying to figure out life, their purpose and place in the world and where they fit not only in their family but also their communities. It's a rite of passage in the ageing process.

Today, we will move on to the second age group. 27-36 years.

In my opinion, this is when adulthood truly begins. Developmental Psychologists suggests that the brain reaches its full development within this age group and until then we are mostly ruled by our emotional brain, which explains the naivety and impressionability of children, teenagers and young adults. Around 30 years of age the emotional brain stabilizes, and the logical brain begins to take over. We become less reactive to our environment and more analytical in trying to figure out the effects of our own actions and how to use them to impact environments.

In other words, we become RESPONSIBLE and critical thinking is a big part of it.

Life is no longer the happy go lucky scenario it was up until this point. Responsibilities start to pile on in the form of children and parents that need to be supported financially. We enter the “sandwich generation” where we are neither the elders of the clans as yet nor can we be seen as children anymore.

This is what makes migrating in this age group rather tricky and something not to be taken lightly but rather requiring a lot of thought, planning and preparation. In this age group time is of the essence, you need to figure out the quickest way to make your transition, reach your goals and regain your financial independence in order to reassume your responsibilities as a participating member of society and provider within your household.

The opportunities

The best opportunity for migration in this age group would be as a skilled immigrant. This offers you the opportunity to be headhunted or recruited from your home nation by organisations that value your special skills in European countries. If you are fortunate enough to possess such specialised skills, it puts you in a position to negotiate the terms of your contract including allowing you to relocate with your family. Migrating in this way automatically pushes you up in the migratory pyramid because not only will your physical needs be covered ( housing, health insurance and basic needs) but also your safety needs (visas, permits and a stable financial income). If you can negotiate for your family to migrate with you, it also means your emotional needs and sense of belonging are guaranteed because you keep your family unit intact.

The option also exists for people in this age group to migrate as a student, a masters program or even better a Ph.D. program can serve as gateways to life in Europe. Because of the nature of Ph.D. scholarships (research work for a university in a particular field), you may be considered as an employee of the university and therefore able to negotiate the terms of your program including bringing your family with you while you complete your doctorate. This puts you in the same category as the highly skilled immigrant and able to negotiate from a position of power and authority.

Re-educating yourself or a career switch. We’ve talked in previous posts about bottleneck sectors in European counties. These refer to specific trades or professions that are in high demand in European and western countries as a whole. If you are open to this alternative, you may want to look into enrolling yourself as a student to study one of these specific professions and meet the demands of this sector through your re-education. One such example is enrolling in Nursing school or apprenticeships in the field of nursing though to be able to follow through with any career switch I suggest you be truly passionate about your intended field of study. Motivation is a key factor in ensuring the completion of studies aimed at a career switch.

The risks

Unfortunately, the biggest challenge for the adults in this age group is a race against time. Depending on how you migrate you will need time to learn a new language and become fluent enough to study in it or operate on a professional and social level. You will need time to re-educate yourself or further your education in order to have a competitive edge as an employee in the European job market. You will also need time to find your feet socially and financially before you are in a position to resume your responsibilities as breadwinner or provider for your family.

Although the pressure of piling responsibilities is a motivation for migrating, it usually serves as a barrier towards personal development and socio-cultural integration once you reach the new home country. Most Immigrants are in a hurry to earn an income as soon as possible and reassume their role as providers for their family back home especially when migrating for a career switch or “just trying their luck” without a particular plan in mind. Although abandoning your training for a menial job will provide you with a minimum wage income (barely enough to sustain yourself let alone send home) you are resigned to a future of living under the poverty line in a foreign country and this begs the question, is it worth it? This is exactly the situation that smart migration in the form of coaching and counselling aims to avoid.

Migrating as the head of a household, especially if you migrate alone means putting strain on your marital or parental relationships. Long-distance relationships whether with a partner or with children are never easy and while a partner may understand and be able to rationalise the “why” of your absence, children might have a harder time coming to terms with it and might see it as abandonment or disinterest on your part. The longer you are away the bigger the rift between you, the weaker the bond and the more stressed the relationships. That’s why directing your efforts to find the shortest route to a family reunification on European soil is important.

If you are up for the challenge of migrating and happen to be within this age group, some guidance and support in the form of coaching can help you chart out a clear path and plan of action, negotiate your worth as a skilled immigrant or even help you stand out as an appealing candidate to potential employers in a European or western market.

Book a discovery call and let's start laying down the foundation to your safe migration if you are in this age group.

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