When you quit your job to follow your partner abroad, you didn’t realise how much you would miss using your professional skills and experiences. But here you are, a few months, a few years or maybe many years into your expat life and you feel that a part of you is ignored. Your career has been on hold for too long and you start to feel that you need to reconnect with your professional identity.

Research by Professor Yvonne McNulty (*) of Singapore University of Social Sciences has shown that career minded expat partners who do not work or do something else that replaces that in a satisfactory manner, experience loss of self-esteem, self-worth, identity and confidence and they feel isolated, disappointed, frustrated, powerless and angry.

(*) https://expatresearch.com/dual-careers/

This is definitely not the way you want to go. You are ready to pursue professional fulfilment again, be it in paid work or otherwise.

There is a problem, though:

* Where do I start?
* What exactly do I want to do?
* What can I do in my host country?
* How do I find out?
* How do I approach people?

Where….what….how………..  it’s overwhelming just thinking about it all.

It may help you to know that you are not alone.

A survey by Internations in 2019 (*) among 1,325 expat partners shows the following:

87% of respondents are highly educated with undergraduate, postgraduate or PhD degrees;
57% are not working;
44% are dissatisfied with their career prospects at the start of the overseas assignment and this number goes up to 50% in the period of one to three years.

(*) https://business.internations.org/expat-insider/2019/download/p>

There are many different ways of being engaged in a professional manner to give you that sense of excitement when you get up in the morning and the feeling of fulfilment when you go to bed at night.  

Whether you have been out of work for only a short while or for many years, your aspirations are an important part of you. Ignoring or denying them can have serious consequences for your mental health. Please, don’t let that happen.

Work with me; together we can find your path to fulfilment, be it in paid work or otherwise.

Click the Facebook icon to join my Facebook group “Expat partners seeking professional fulfilment”.


“My time with Wendela helped me to understand how to deal with the anxiety I was feeling, how to simply let it pass and to let go of a number of fears I was harbouring for no sound reason. Wendela guided me through a difficult period and taught me some valuable tools to use in the future to keep anxiety at bay. An investment in myself both mentally and financially that was well worth the money.”.


“As an expat-wife, no job, nearly 50 years old and an empty nester, I struggled with the meaning of my life and felt very useless. I wanted something, but what?
Wendela helped me to get a better and more realistic picture of myself. By asking the right questions, I started to discover who I really am, what I like and what makes me happy. Then it became much more clear what it was I wanted to do!
Wendela managed to do this in an quiet and safe environment without judgement. For me that was very important because talking and thinking about yourself is not always easy. But with Wendela I felt secure enough to talk openly.
Now I have started a new study which gives me a lot of fulfillment. But I also feel a lot happier in the roll I play in life besides my study. So I can only speak highly of Wendela from openRabbit.”.


“Dank je Wendela voor onze coaching sessions. Precies wat ik nodig had. Fijn om met iemand te praten die de situatie zo goed aanvoelt. En in mijn eigen taal.! Ik heb nu een veel duidelijker beeld van welke kant ik uitwil in mijn leven.”.


“Wendela’s ability to probe and gently challenge established patterns of behaviour has been valuable and effective in helping me create a more satisfying and appropriate role for myself at work. She encouraged me in self reflection, helped identify obstacles, and supported the process of change without being directive. I feel her input has improved my work-life balance, even 30 years into my career!”