Six months ago I was packing my bags from the bitter cold winter of New York City with big dreams of creating a new life in Asia. It’s been six months since I’ve relocated my life to Hong Kong. Unsurprisingly enough it feels like yesterday I was kissing my family and friends behind, to becoming something greater in a new land.
Thus far it has been an incredible growing experience, both physically, mentally and spiritually. Learning how to become culturally agile, teaching AntiGravity Fitness in Hong Kong, the many challenges, and the amazing new friends have all made for a wild ride and an epic start to this new chapter.
Living in another country offers so much for personal growth and development, no matter where it is. Cultural differences, social norms, foreign languages, and eye opening ways of life all aid towards becoming culturally agile. Learning how to adapt to the change, speak to people on a similar level of understanding, being open without judgement, all while striving to develop are some of the things that come with deep layers of challenge, and life changing experiences.
One particular moment when I first arrived to my new flat, doing my best to adjust to the new space, I looked out the window and witnessed the sun setting over central Hong Kong. In that moment it felt as though I went from one crazy concrete jungle to another over night. From then on I knew I was exactly where I was supposed to be, at exactly the perfect time.
Everyday I wake up feeling so grateful for this opportunity. Being a source of light and health to the Chinese people at Bodywize HK has been such a beautiful reawakening of living my passion. Teaching the teachers of AntiGravity Fitness and inspiring my students is such a blessing. At times it doesn’t even feel like work, rather just another opportunity to heal, share and inspire.
I find myself becoming exhausted at times with the repetitive class schedule, and the physically taxing movement, yet it hardly fades me because my passion for teaching fuels my ambition. Hosting teacher trainings, and teaching daily classes have become second nature, and it brings the greatest sense satisfaction to my career as an AntiGravity Yoga and Fitness Instructor.
This past six months has been so much fun but the challenges have been equality as burdening. Learning how to adapt to a new living and working environment, with new people, policies, procedures, and layers of new business practices have pushed me outside my comfort zone. Some things I disagree with, yet it’s my role to hold myself at a certain standard, always remembering the lessons from my mentors in NYC. It’s so different from western culture and I find myself being equally as challenged and pushed to remember excellence as a daily habit.
I miss my family back in the states more than ever, and I feel like that is truly the hardest part about living abroad. Technology is incredible for FaceTime and Skype calls, but nothing compares to hugging your loved ones.
Living in a tropical climate is so nice, however the rain, heat and humidity can become nauseating and depressing at times. It literally feels like a steam room getting from A to B in the summer time. The internal environment and work politics are interesting to say the least, and the fact that I’m the only American guy working for the company sometimes creates uneasy tension. It takes a conscience reminder of humility every day.
I’m so thankful for my new friends here! Our countless nights out in Lan Kwai dancing until dawn. Cheering on the horses at the raceway on Wednesdays. Watching the best live cover bands on earth in Wan Chai. My fellow instructors at the studio and our countless laughs together about the silly moments in class. Finding companionship and connection with beautiful people, all while staying true to myself have made for some of the the best memories to date.
All in all I find myself being so incredibly happy with my new life in Hong Kong. Becoming culturally agile, developing my skill set as the Master Instructor in AntiGravity Fitness for Asia, while continuing to network and meet as many like minded individuals is my intention for the rest of this year. Who knows what will come…. One thing is for sure, living in Asia has been a blessing and I thank God and the Universe daily for this amazing new chapter.
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