Good Choices and Guts to Fulfill the Dream


I  have an amazing opportunity before me and I found myself waffling this morning.  Then I remembered that this opportunity can be looked at in a way that brings about fear, or in a way that encourages me.  Note the word encourage contains the word courage.

Good Choices

The expat or immigrant to a new land is usually very clear about the reasons for coming:  it was life threatening at home and anything that gave even a hint of opportunity for was better than being killed.  This is for the refugee, for the expat and immigrant it’s a new job and a new chance and a new start.

A woman has come with an expat package to Switzerland to start her first job after receiving an MBA from a prestigious university.  She speaks no German, speaks fluent French, but in Zürich nobody wants to speak French with her.  She bravely starts learning a new language at night after long days and a very big learning curve on the job.

A new recruit on his way to Germany has just finished high school and is aware of his abilities and needs. He wants to start a possible career with the marines, specifically with the military police.  He hopes that after a 20-year career, he can then start a second career as a police officer.  Because his high school time was successful but not stellar, the young man thought that this would be the best choice for him – he bravely moves onward and upward. 

These brave choices above were clearly thought out.  The people had a plan and they are following through with that plan.  They saw the situation, make a plan and then took the necessary action.  Thus, they were on their way!  It sure took a lot of guts to move in that direction.


People must be brave to move forward when the opportunity presents itself.  Waffle and the opportunity just might disappear.

The asylum seeker and his family leave their home country via Nairobi to Dar es Salaam looking for asylum and hoping to make it to a safe environment, a place where the children might have a chance to grow up and have a successful life.  The adults knew it would be very hard, full of unknowns and major changes, but staying was too dangerous for them.  So, they gathered all their courage and moved on.

The recruit has never really been away from his family and the leave-taking has been hard for him.  He knows that everything will be very tough, and that his future is uncertain.  But he also sees the opportunities afforded him by entering the military.  The USA is full of such honorable and earnest young people and I was truly amazed at the depth of his certitude that, despite the very scary possibilities, he is ready to take the chance and try something completely different from what he has experienced thus far.  This man is also sure that there will be no easy route to a successful military career and he is ready and willing to put in all the hard work expected of him.  

Coping Skills

Whether you and I and the others are be able to cope with our future environments, only time will tell.  But showing a willingness to change and learn is the first key to success.  After taking the opportunity (no fear stopping us), these kinds of skills are key to success in a new environment:  willingness to change, and willingness to learn.  We human beings have all needed these two abilities, topped with bravery and the ability to make wise choices to continue towards better futures.  May it be so for us all, refugees, recruits, young executives, expats and the rest of us – today, and always!

Patricia Jehle