On Not Feeling Brave!

Career Changes Revisited: guest blogger Boz Warnock shares her experience of moving overseas in later life…

© Katy Davis

When I moved to Singapore from London a year and a half ago at the age of 52, people kept telling me how brave I was.

It didn’t feel brave at all, it just felt like a chance to stop thinking that I would still be sitting in the same office for another 15 years.

As a teacher it is increasingly hard to get jobs when you are beyond your 30s – too expensive, too cynical… That can’t be good for anyone. I think my ex-colleagues are equally pleased to have a new face and perspective in their department although they were scared as well at first, and some thought I was completely mad.

Of course I was lucky that the chance came along, but I still had to make the decision to go for an interview, and it was unbelievably scary. Having to prepare for an interview after so long takes a lot of guts, I discovered. When I was offered the job I had to get into my car and drive around for half an hour before I could manage to break the news.

I am now incredibly happy in my new job, working far harder than I ever have before, but also so pleased to be able to reinvent myself to a certain extent. My daughter is only 12 so she is now having a chance to see people and places that I never even dreamed of when I was her age, so a large part of my big change was for her, even though it was a pretty big gamble – what if she hated every second of it? What if she didn’t make friends? But her life in Singapore is a dream compared to South London, and she is confident and independent in ways that would never have been possible. Do it!

[Boz Warnock]