Is there a definitive answer as to what came first? The chicken or the egg? I’m sure I could Google it (if I was somewhere else…) but right now it is a personal question – about who I am and what I am doing…
I’ve been in Shanghai for 3 weeks, and the ‘real’ world is getting ever closer. The eldest are at school, the littlest starts at Nursery on Monday and so the time to return to work is almost here. But what am I?
I mostly knew what I was in London. But here? Here, I can be anything I want to be. The majority of people know none of my back story. Or they know just what I tell them. But there are a few people here who have known me a long time – so it’s not like I can fabricate a whole history separate to my reality.
But to take on what I now ‘do’, what I actually want to do, what I have been working towards for a while, quietly, in the background, which comes first – the chicken or the egg?
To be a coach, do I just need to say I am a coach, and then get on with the act of coaching? Or do I need to get on with the coaching first – and then claim to be one at some point later down the line when it all feels a bit more credible? And if I go down that line, what do I say in the meantime? When everyone’s first question around here is actually ‘What brought your husband here?’ Because let’s not forget, I am a Trailing, no sorry… Supporting spouse… Grrrr…
So I’ll fudge it. Go with chicken and egg, depending on with whom and where and when I’m having the conversation. I have tried it out a couple of times… I’m Nicki and I’m a career and life coach… And actually, the responses have been pretty positive. No one has yet laughed at me. No one has asked for the proof, or to see the qualifications or certificates. But the nervousness of it all, the newness, hangs around me like a cloak of uncertainty. But I am going to claim my story. Out here in Shanghai, going forward, that’s what I am. I am a career and life coach and I am itching to help you get excited about your life and world again. Because I am. I have turned my very comfortable life upside down – and I feel more alive than I have in a long time. I might not know what I am exactly right now, but I’m excited to find out.
Function over form
I never really thought I cared that much about cars, or what they looked like (which probably isn’t the best admission after all these years) – but it appears that I do really care about car design – now that I really don’t have to. I am as shallow as everyone else. Just very specifically about cars right now. I should be grateful I even have consistent access to a car over here. And I am. I really am. But… It’s a Buick GL8 and it really is a brick on wheels. Yes, I know I have a lot of people to move around the place these days. But… My Ford S-Max used to do it with some level of style. It looked like it had been designed. It looked like someone cared. I was happy getting in and out of the S-Max. But the GL8? It is an Ex-Pat Minibus and it’s lack of style upsets me on a daily basis. I lust after a Lincoln Navigator. And the Ford Edge. And I am fully aware how sad this makes me sound.
Third Culture Kid
I got a newsletter that mentionned a Third Culture Kid and I clicked on the link… And when I read it, I see the future I have created for my kids. Is it a good thing? A bad thing? Will they hate me? Will the therapy bills be huge? Who knows… But whatever happens, they won’t be short of a story or two…