We all bring rules from our childhoods into our adult lives. But which of these rules prevent us from experiencing a more joyful life? Through her own story, author and accompanying spouse Margaret Ghielmetti offers a gentle way to explore the rules and roles that may no longer be serving us, especially as we navigate […]
About Vivian Chiona
Vivian Chiona, founder and director of Expat Nest, is a psychologist specialised in both Child & Adolescent Psychology and Health Psychology. As a bi-cultural, multilingual expat with family all over the world, she is familiar with the blessings and challenges of a mobile life and offers quality professional assistance to clients with expat-specific challenges. Vivian has been recognised in the ‘100 Most Inspirational Women in the World for 2020’ as announced by the Women Appreciating Women organisation.
Entries by Vivian Chiona
Expat parenting can bring its own unique challenges – and especially if you find yourself parenting abroad with a partner who works away from home a lot. Drawing from author and coach Rhoda Bangerter’s webinar on the topic at the FIGT (Families in Global Transition) 2021 conference, we offer a summary of the challenges that […]
What is my purpose in life? What makes me happy? Should I be living differently? Many of us have asked ourselves these questions at some point. We share why it’s worth asking and include tips to help you find the answers.
Many parents have concerns about video gaming and their children spending too much time in front of a screen. We discuss the difference between healthy and unhealthy gaming and how to support your child to get the best out of their gaming experience.
To connect with others, it’s often important that we feel safe with them. Safe to be ourselves, to be vulnerable, in order to feel comfortable. Yet we’re all different, with different past experiences, and that can mean we feel safety in different ways. What makes you feel safe in social interactions? And how can you […]
Do you eat when you feel stressed, sad, happy, lonely, bored or angry? We all have different ways to cope with negative emotions and feelings, and emotional eating is one such way. Janine Schaeffer, a nutritional consultant with a background in psychology, explains the roots of emotional eating and shares her advice on how we […]
I love the concept of “Cultureland”. It expresses the essence of the international experience that we expats share, no matter where we are in the world. Today we check in with re-pat Eva Antza, whose exploration of cultural intelligence has helped her make sense of her experience living in another culture. This is Eva’s story […]
Smartphones have become an accepted part of our personal and professional lives, and in many cases an extension of our hands! But how much is too much? When does your phone time become an addiction? And how can you begin to take back control?
Although it’s been a year that we’re practising social distancing, weekends remain important. Yes, the restaurants and bars are closed and we should keep at least 1,5 meters distance from people that don’t live in our house, but this doesn’t mean we are not allowed to enjoy our weekends anymore.
Expats the world over establish themselves in new places, but do they call the new place home or is it where they originally came from? This Expats Nest article asks this question by sharing the story of Greek-born expat now ensconced in London.
Some of us, this year more than ever, might be dreading the upcoming festivities. Not being able to travel home to be with loved ones is going to be tough for so many people. While some might be putting a brave face on, determined to decorate the tree no matter what, others might be just […]
It is mid-November and Thanksgiving is just around the corner. With the trials that 2020 has brought us so far, it has been a tough year – though, maybe we can still take a moment and find something to be grateful for. If you wish to welcome gratitude into your life, this article outlines three […]
Trying to get your message across in a busy household takes work. Getting your children to listen to you is another mountain to climb. Remember that it is a two-way process and learning to honestly talk to each other can really help. Clear conversations can help alleviate conflict and create calm. This article outlines some […]
Is there actually such a thing as a healthy dose of nostalgia? Most expats will be familiar with those pangs of nostalgia that can hit at any moment. Being overcome by a nostalgic fog can have both its positives and negatives – it can be triggered by a negative feeling while resulting in an improved […]
Coming out of a relationship through a difficult break-up can be tough – especially if you lose love while you are living overseas, many miles away from home. This article has tips to help you deal with the heartache and start the process of healing.
Every year, we celebrate our own birthdays – and what a good opportunity this is to look back and see what has been experienced, discovered and learnt about ourselves in the last year.
We often drawn to a place, somewhere that you just feel that spark and you don’t know why. Did you ever land up somewhere on a whim or by accident, only to find it’s the perfect fit for you? Maybe it was an old photo that led you there, happenstance or a twist of fate; […]
Recent events have probably been causing us to ponder a true expat dilemma more than ever: where to next? (Not that we are taking journeys anywhere just yet.) As expats, most of us will be faced at some point with the issue of moving to another city/country or going back ‘home’ (unless we stay expats […]
Forgiveness in the face of infidelity is a tough call, but it may be your one saving grace as you begin the process of healing and take steps to moving on with your life, whether that will be in or out of the relationship.
Expat, third culture kid, trailing spouse, international, what language do you use to describe yourself or your situation? Do you identify with any of these terms? Do you choose not to? Or perhaps you’ve struggled to find a term that describes your situation with all its nuances? When it comes to discussing issues faced by […]
It can be extremely stressful when we or someone we love becomes ill abroad. As well as the (very normal) physical and mental turmoil of illness, we often find ourselves dealing with additional challenges that are unique to international life. At the Families in Global Transition (FIGT) conference in March 2018, I got together with professional healthcare […]
It’s that time when many of us are thinking or talking about our New Year’s resolutions… how we will make up for our ‘mistakes’ or ‘flaws’ in the previous year. But there’s a risk, especially when we put too much pressure on ourselves, of having unrealistic goals. The result? It becomes really tough to stick to them […]
This year marks a decade of me being an expat and I see now that I’ve felt between homes for all this time. Only recently did I realise that this feeling of belonging everywhere and nowhere has created a subtle but constant pressure in my life.
Expats often have to leave pets behind and are then taken by surprise by the depth of their grief or guilt. Though some expats do relocate with their animals, for many it’s just not possible. Excessive transportation costs, lengthy quarantine periods, a different lifestyle or new accommodation that’s not appropriate for pets, may mean you need […]
A significant majority of the expat population is the ‘love-expats’ – those who became expats because they chose to follow their partners. It is common to use terms like ‘expat partner’, ‘trailing spouse’, or ‘accompanying partner’ for those who have followed their hearts to another country. I prefer, however, to use the term ‘love-expats’, as […]
We speak to culture/travel blogger Tea Gudek Šnajdar, who talks about the special role that travel has played in her expat experience. Exploring her new country and taking advantage of the many opportunities available to travel outside of it has led Tea to find new purpose and perspective – and to a career that fascinates […]
Leaving your friends and support network behind can be one of the greatest challenges of an international relocation. But, as every expat knows, it also creates space for new friendships and the opportunity to engage with people you might not have met in your comfortable home environment. The question is: how do we make new […]
Home, Charles Dickens writes, is a word stronger than a magician ever spoke. A word that houses under its roof an entire universe of virtues. To feel at home implies an essential alignment – an ease with the world and with oneself. We all have our ways of building our homes; our own little spells […]
Have you ever felt you can’t wait to get back on your device to check Facebook? Or do you tend to sit on your phone while hanging out with friends? Have you ever sat at a dinner table and been more interested in what’s happening on Twitter than in engaging in conversation?
While many expats expect to experience culture shock when moving to a new country, few of us anticipate the shock of returning home. We assume we will transition smoothly because we have grown up and are already familiar with the culture.