Entries by Felicia Shermis

Volunteering – helping others, making yourself happy!

It’s no secret that helping others makes you happy. It’s been studied and documented that the brain releases feel-good chemicals when you do something good for others. So it’s probably not news to anyone that the act of volunteering has a positive effect far beyond the actual volunteer work performed. It’s pretty well established that […]

Maintaining a professional social media profile

I’ve been thinking about social media and professional image and am wondering whether it’s at all possible to project the image of being fun, exciting, adventurous and carefree on social media while maintaining a professional, knowledgeable and on the ball profile for your professional life? I’ll admit I’m not the best person to answer this […]

Vacation time – what does it mean?

Vacation time is, in my view, one of the biggest pieces in trying to make the expat life puzzle work. I wonder if it isn’t also one of the least discussed topics pre-departure. I know for a fact it was for me – I hadn’t given it a single thought before following my husband as […]

The expat travel dilemma

For many, the opportunity to live abroad is a dream come true. And really, who wouldn’t be excited about the chance to develop a deeper knowledge about a new culture, its people, traditions and foods. The possibility of exploration is one of the great draws for many expats — it was certainly one of the […]

Sometimes, a little time is all you need

It’s amazing what a difference a couple of months can make. When my son was heading back to his overseas college after Christmas break, he was feeling pretty down about spending the next few months far away from home. He had a tough first semester, feeling very homesick and out of place. He was thinking […]

Coping with tax season on two continents

It’s not unusual for me to wake up from nightmares this time of year and they have almost exclusively to do with taxes; more specifically being late and/or incorrect with taxes in one form or another: not finding all the right documents and being late, using the wrong color pen to fill out forms and […]

Expat life – challenging and empowering

What is it that constitutes feeling settled in a new place? Is it when you start thinking in the local language, when you’ve gotten the hang of basics, such as queuing and ordering food at restaurants, or when they know your name at the local Starbucks? Is it when you get the jokes on late […]

Trials and tribulations of moving

We just moved this week and as far as the logistics of a move goes it was probably one of the easier ones I have ever made. We moved locally and there was no pressure to empty our old house all at once. Also, we had the benefit of prior moving experience and that counts […]

Continuing education as an adult

One of the best things I did during my first few years as an accompanying partner on expat assignment was going back to school. Not only did it provide me an opportunity to acquire new skills and make myself employable, it was also a way to meet people and make friends. In addition, I made […]

Third culture kids going off to college

Going off to college is a big step, and whether going far or staying close to home, most kids will experience homesickness and adjustment anxiety at some point in the process – some more than others for sure, but I think it’s safe to say that no one really escapes it. It’s easy to imagine […]

Decoding school culture and building a community

Changing schools can be tricky in the best of circumstances and doing so because of an international relocation can complicate matters even more. It’s not just the kids who go to school who have to make adjustments and figure out the new lay of the land; parents do too. With a new school, you have […]