A Guide to Reinvention Abroad

Chantal Panozzo
  • By Chantal Panozzo
  • May 11th, 2010

Take on a new role in a few easy steps

Take on a new role in a few easy steps

by Chantal Panozzo

For many trailing spouses, reinvention abroad is a common theme. If you visit ExpatWomen, for example, you’ll find stories of successful lawyer turned authors, advertising executives turned entrepreneurs, and accountants turned artists. But how exactly, do you reinvent yourself?

Below are some tips:

-Start with what you love. If it weren’t for the money, what would you do? Would you write? Would you walk dogs? Would you go shopping? Brainstorm what you love to do in your free time.

-Figure out how what you love could become a business. If you love to shop, could you give shopping tours of your new city or launch an online shopping guide? If you love to write, could you become a professional blogger? If you love to paint, could you design and sell greeting cards?

-Now pick the most promising idea from your list and start creating a platform that will help your name get known. A platform is just a fancy word for a bunch of things you do that make you an expert in one area. How do you become an expert? Below are a few things to consider to get you started:

-Keep a blog about your area of speciality and build a readership. Network with other bloggers. Volunteer to write guest posts on popular sites in your niche.

-Sign up to receive HARO notices so that you can help a reporter and get your name in the news at the same time.

-Volunteer to give talks or classes about your topic at clubs and organizations.

-Write articles about your area of interest for publications.

-Start a Twitter account, but keep it single-minded and use it only for your chosen topic.

If you follow some of these steps, before you know it, you will be well on your way to a new career.

Have you reinvented yourself abroad? How did you go about it?

Chantal Panozzo is a writer in Switzerland who has written for a variety of publications on two continents. She’s the author of One Big Yodel, a blog about life in Switzerland and moving abroad, and also discusses living abroad as a freelancer at Writer Abroad.

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