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Being turned down for a job inspired me to move abroad

Two women sitting on a wall in front of the Sydney Opera House, job-inspired move.

Since turning 18 I knew I wanted to travel, but wanting something and actually doing something about it are two very different things. A number of factors would see my dream of being a world traveller slowly slip to the back of my mind whilst I wasted event penny I had on partying the weekends away…

Flash forward a few years to 2012, I was 22 and working 9-5 in a ‘real job’ which I absolutely despised. I think a little part of my soul died each day when my alarm clock went off. Imagine a place where people’s hopes and dreams go to die and I think you’ll start to get the picture. I told myself for 4 years that the money was good, the hours were reasonable and that there wasn’t anything better out there for me – lets all just take this moment to laugh out loud.

I began to think ‘maybe my life doesn’t have to be this way, maybe there is something better out there for me’ …… ‘imagine all the trips to Harry Potter World I could fit in one year’…. I filled out the online application and began the anxious wait to see if I was going to be offered an interview.

A woman moves to a new city for a job and finds inspiration by looking out over a river with the skyline in the background.

In the meantime, I had a trip to Australia booked with my family so that ought to keep my mind occupied. We spent two weeks experiencing a taste of what Australia had to offer and someone planted the seed of the working holiday visa in my head. I headed home with ambitious thoughts running through my mind, and then… I went and got myself a boyfriend.

A few weeks went by and then low and behold I received an email from Disney inviting me to an interview in the coming weeks, I was over the moon and so determined to get this job I almost forgot about my boyfriend and the potential year apart we might have to endure – Awkward. I tried my best to stand out in the interview but stumbled over a number of questions and left feeling deflated and upset at myself.


I waited and waited, and checked my emails 24/7 for weeks on end until I read the news I had been dreading: ‘unfortunately on this occasion you have been unsuccessful’. I felt like my life may as well have been over. I threw myself a pity party and cried into a tub of ice cream watching the movie ‘The Beach’ – Yes, it was rather dramatic! Then a little lightbulb came on in my head: Australia.

As 2012 was drawing to a close my grandma became very ill in hospital, I was still in my miserable job and my dream of moving overseas started to fade a little once more. I found out the boyfriend I was worried about leaving behind was cheating on me and then just a few days before Christmas my grandmother passed away.

Within a few weeks I had it all planned out; I gave myself 4 months to get my ducks in a row and scrape together enough money to survive until I managed to get a job in Australia. I applied for a 12 month working holiday visa, booked my flights and handed my notice in. As soon as I touched down in Australia in 2013 I thought to myself ‘why didn’t I do this sooner!?’

What was it that I was so worried about? If I hated it I could just hop on a plane and fly home, it really was that simple! Four years on and I have just applied for Permanent Residency, I’m working in a school which gives me 11 weeks of paid leave a year to travel wherever I like.

Australia bay

There is no doubt that if I hadn’t applied for that job in Disneyland I wouldn’t be where I am today. I truly believe that everyone should experience living in another country at least once, even if it’s only for a short time. It changes the way you view the world and gives you a new lease of life you never knew you had. Perspective is EVERYTHING.


I hear people saying they would love to travel, love to live somewhere new, that I am so lucky because I live in Australia. The truth is it had nothing to do with luck. We make our own luck in life; if you want to travel, travel! If you want to move somewhere new, go for it! All you need is determination and a positive mind, and anything is possible. Don’t stay in that soul destroying 9-5 job because you don’t think you can do any better, and don’t convince yourself that you are never going to achieve anything more than what you have now – you can, and you will!

Girl standing in front of water

Stepping outside of your comfort zone will be one of the scariest yet most exhilarating things you will ever do. I won’t lie and say it’s easy, it isn’t; you will have many lows as well as the highs, but when you look back and see how far you have come – oh how proud you will be.

Opportunities are everywhere, sometimes you just need to change your perspective before you can see them as opportunities and not failures.

Have you recently been inspired to leave your life behind and move abroad? Share you stories with us here and you could see your work published on six-two…