The Long-Distance Family Dynamic

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In episode 039 of ‘Holding the Fort Abroad,’ I sit down with guest Michael Sullivan to delve into the paradoxically uniting but physically separating experience of living abroad in split locations. Michael, living in Türkiye, and his wife in the Philippines, demonstrate that physical separation does not dictate the strength or functionality of a family…

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Mindset: First step to making an unaccompanied tour work

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Does having the ‘right’ mindset, whatever that is, really change things for us? Can our way of thinking or feeling (aka our mindset) make a tedious job more enjoyable, a mountain hike less sweaty, and an unaccompanied tour more thrilling or even just feasible? My mom moved countries when she was in her forties, she…

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We make frequent travel work

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A while back I asked a holding the fort mum if she would be willing to speak about her experience living outside her home country, with a partner who frequently travels. Here are her answers. Do you relate? What has it been like for you with a partner who travels a lot?  It is tough. We…

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Boost your emotions when apart

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As a child growing up, we never celebrated much as a family. Birthdays yes, but not much more. I have recently been reminded that even small celebrations can boost our emotions and have a very positive impact on both our mental health and our experience of everyday life. I read an article in the Harvard…

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We are different, so what?

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There is much written about cross-cultural communication in multicultural teams. It is vital in my opinion to apply this knowledge to a family context, a mini multicultural team. What I tend to see is information for families arriving in a new country. There are so many other areas to consider: being in an intercultural relationship,…

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How a cross-cultural pyramid showed me I wasn’t weird.

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“You could nip out this afternoon and say goodbye to your friend,” I encouraged my husband on a sunny Saturday morning. Even though we had other friends visiting our home that afternoon, I didn’t think it was a problem if he left for a couple of hours. Especially as they were staying overnight and his…

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There is more to your argument

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My parents fought a lot when I was a child. They loved each other, there was no doubt about that, and their lives were intertwined for life but there were a lot of disagreements, usually expressed through shouting on my mother’s side and repressed frustration on my father’s side. Growing up, I just thought that…

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Plant S.E.E.D.S for your future

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Are you longing for a career of your own, a space where your dreams, passions and gifts can make an impact? For years you may have supported your spouse in their career, transitioning yourself and your entire family into new countries and new cultures. A feat in itself! You have dealt with home emergencies on…

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Using Set Questions

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Reconnecting with your partner after they have been away for work is one of the biggest challenges of the expat life and business travel. I have been faced with it in my own life with my husband, as well as it being a recurring topic in coaching classes and interviews. How can you ease the…

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