The Mobile Life Series Part III: Hoi Captain! Where are we headed?

Date Created: 01.05.2015

The Mobile Life Series

This blog series is based on work by writer Diane Lemieux and trainer Anne Parker in their book The Mobile Life: a new approach to moving anywhere.


In the project to resettle abroad, the adults are team leaders supporting each other and the children through the journey. As a leader, how you feel about the move will have a big impact on how the rest of the family experiences the mobile life. There are four leadership skills that enable you to positively influence your family’s experience and ultimate happiness abroad:

1.      Evaluation: The ability to perceive and understand the different motives, perspectives, needs and attitudes to the move of each of your family members according to their development level and personality. Leaders also need to understand how each family member responds to change in order to provide the right kind of support and encouragement;

2.      Communication: The ability to communicate with your team, to explain the reasons for the move and the team’s common goal, to describe the process of change and to listen openly to their feelings, desires, hopes and fears;

3.      Investigation: The ability to help family members formulate their vision of their future life by finding the information they need to define the quality of life they want to have and the things they want to achieve at the place you are all headed;

4.      Motivation: The ability to ensure that each family member accepts the challenges of the move and, in their own way, develops a desire to be in your new ‘home’.

Using the skills of this team-oriented approach to moving will avoid having a family member turn to you at some point and say ‘I am unhappy and it is your fault because I moved because of you.’

Good teamwork means that the entire family is rowing the boat in the same direction: members each perceive the benefit of moving for themselves and are ready to support each other in achieving their goals.


Once you land, will you necessarily experience culture shock? Stay tuned for Part IV: It’s up to you how shocked you are


By: Diane Lemieux 1st May 2015

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Diane Lemieux  has spent a whole lifetime as an expat and sees moving to live in a new country as a life choice made by an increasing number of people. Those who successfully recreate a full and satisfying life in a new place develop the skills and approaches needed to deal with any change that life presents us.Her new book, The Mobile Life, co-written with Anne Parker, helps those who are undertaking this journey for the first time, and highlights the achievements of those who are experienced resettlers.