My Expat Story: Tal Regev


At Global Living Magazine we want to connect with our readers — know what you’re all about, what you love, where you’ve been and where you’re going. The best way to do this? Hear it straight from YOU!

We received an email from Israeli expat Tal Regev, who currently lives in Toronto, Canada. Here is her Expat Story.

TalRWhat’s your favorite part of expatriate life?

Coming from Israel, I’m an expat in Toronto, Canada. Exploring the country is my favorite part! I love Canada. It’s an amazing country; the people are so calm and polite, and the sights downtown and in the country are so beautiful. I love that it’s so huge here. In Israel, you can drive for 5 hours and you will be covering most of the country, north to south. In Canada, you can drive and drive some more and it looks like it will never end. I know what you are saying to yourself, “but it’s an awful weather!” Well, if you are coming from a country in a constant war, where the news is about the infinite struggle between the Israelis and the Palestinians, you don’t care about a bad weather. You simply dress up warm, and learn how to live with the conditions.

What’s been the hardest part?

In Israel, I worked as a TV producer for 11 years. I loved the job. I studied a lot in order to gain more credibility and a higher salary. I ‘paved’ my way slowly but surely and made some great friends (and connections) in this small industry. The hardest part for me once I moved was finding my profession again. I knew I couldn’t go back to the same profession in Toronto and would need to start all over again.

When I came to Toronto, I was pregnant with my second child, so I didn’t apply for a job. After my baby was born, I wanted to take care of him and another year passed by. Then I just couldn’t find a job and decided to open a new business: Digital Life for the Expat Wife, where I help women around the world to start their own businesses online, work from anywhere at any time. It’s involved in Internet marketing, social media and more. I love it because I see results: the women that open their digital businesses are earning a good income again, gain their self-confidence, can do it in any language and still balance all of this with raising their kids.

It wasn’t easy to create, develop and run my digital business, but it was worth it! The freedom that it gave me and the control over my life is simply undeniable. Now it seemed silly to me to commute every day working for someone else, beg for days off, feel bad every time I need to take my kids to the doctor, etc. I can earn the same money from the comfort of my home, without this restriction, so why not make the effort and do it?

Where have you lived in the world?

I was born in Israel and that was where I lived the whole of my life. When I was 34, we moved to Canada. If you ask me, where do I like to live better – both! I love Israel; it’s in my heart and soul. I dream, think and talk in Hebrew. I am used to watching Israeli TV and listening to Israeli music, but I love the ‘Canadian way’ (as I call it). Full respect to every person, everyone is equal, no matter where you are and where you came from.

Where do you want to move to eventually?

I guess after the adventure of living in Canada, I would like to live where there is no war and where there is nice weather most of the year. San Diego pops into mind when I think about all these benefits.

What’s your sense of ‘home’?

The term ‘home’ has changed completely for me in the last three years. When I lived in Israel, it was the actual apartment that I live in. But in Canada, I realize that my home is where my heart and family is. The family I created, I mean. After I made one relocation in my life, to make another one, will not be that hard again. I know now what to expect and what not to expect. I know what’s important to do first (establish the kids in their ‘spots’) and second (establish yourself). So for me, home can be anywhere in the world that I choose, as long as my family is with me… This is also why my digital business suits me: It can ‘come’ with me anywhere I choose to live!

Share anything else you’d like us to hear!

No one will do the ‘work’ for you! This is a message to the expat ladies out there. Most times, we relocate due to our husband’s job. After relocating, he is going to his new exciting job, and we need to start all over again… create new friends, take care of the kids and make sure they are well in the new location, find a new profession and a means of income, etc. This was a breaking point for me, but what I realized was that no one will do the work for me. No one will find me a job, and not one person will come to my doorstep asking to be my new friend. It’s not going to happen. I need to step out of my comfort zone and find my meaning, friends, and job again – by myself.

This is your time to step out of your comfort zone and create your new life. This is the only way to make something good out of this journey; otherwise you will find yourself miserable in a foreign country. In order to make the best out of this journey, you will have to change the way you think and act. No one will do it for you. And finally…Don’t let go of your dreams!

Keep up with Tal’s expat adventures by following her on Twitter @RegevTal1, and check out her website: www.digitallifefortheexpatwife.com.

If you’d like to be featured on our ‘My Expat Story’ section, send an email to Alison at info@globallivingmagazine.com and tell us about your experience as an expatriate by answering the above questions. Don’t forget to include a picture of yourself, your website/blog, and/or Twitter handle so we can help you connect with other expats from around the world!

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