Sometimes you find yourself in front of a wall of Dijon mustard (a dream come true for me but I digress...) with no idea which one to choose. Should I go with the classic moutarde de Bourgogne, or try something different à la provençale? I tend to agonize over even the smallest decisions. Just ask anyone who's ever been grocery shopping with me.
What I’ve realized as I've gotten older, is that it doesn’t get any easier. Which college should I attend? Where should I live after graduation? What should I do with my life?
I think the hardest part for me is fear. I’m terrified of making the wrong decision. By definition, a decision represents choosing one thing, and giving up another. But you know what? There is no wrong way to go. You make your choice and then you make the most of it. Often, I make big decisions based on logic - weighing the pros and cons of each possible scenario. Then again, some decisions come from deep down.
My decision to move to France was easy and hard at the same time. Easy because, on some level, I always knew this was something I was meant to do. Hard, because it meant leaving everything behind and starting over from scratch. Being an adult is hard enough in my own country, let alone trying to figure it out in another one!
Yet, something kept pushing me forward. I quit my job, sold my car and booked my one-way ticket to Paris.
A lot of people ask me why I decided to do an MBA in France. It's a good question but in my mind the answer is obvious. Those three years as a kid in Switzerland, my junior year of college in Montpellier, all of those French classes, everything was leading me here. Having lived and studied abroad before, I still wanted that international work experience, just like my dad so many years ago. I also knew I wanted to go back to school at some point. It wasn't long after I started seriously looking into international MBA programs that I applied, and was accepted, at EMLYON. For a journalism major, the idea of business school was definitely outside my comfort zone, but that's also part of why it appealed to me. With a background firmly rooted in the creative side of content, I wanted to better understand the business behind all that content creation. I was also looking for a way to pursue my passion for all things French - the language, the culture and, who am I kidding, the food!
I love my life here but of course it doesn't come without its challenges. Instagram and Facebook only show the good moments: discovering a new city, sharing an apéro dinatoire with friends, or spending the weekend in Paris. I feel so lucky to be living out one of my dreams but along with all of that goodness comes cultural misunderstandings, maddeningly long lines at the grocery store and a week with no electricity. Getting my visa was surprisingly easy but renewing it? Well, that's another story. Complicated bureaucracy aside, French people like to go on vacation for the entire month of August. Boulangeries, restaurants, entire businesses just shut down for several weeks. Needless to say, it's gotten pretty quiet around here.
A few months ago, I was faced with another big decision that really gave me pause, the story of my life this past year. I was several months into the job search, and I found myself with only one offer. The position was interesting but the industry wasn't exactly what I had in mind. After a lot (and I mean a lot) of back and forth, I finally decided to go for it. If living abroad has taught me anything, it's that you have to be open to new experiences, even the ones you weren't expecting.
Life is like a jar of mustard. You never know what you're gonna get. Or something like that.
Plein de bisous,