The Only Constant

The quote ‘Change is the only constant in life’ is once again ringing true for me. Today is/was my final day at the job I have have for 7 years and the job that moved my life from Australia to Germany. It’s a big change, a massive one even. From my second day in Germany I have gone to the same office every weekday, seen the same faces regularly on the U-Bahn, gotten my mandatory Coke at the same supermarket and basically had a very comforting daily routine amidst all the upheaval of learning to adapt to life in a new country. Now that is all changing.

Alas, I don’t have news of an awesome new job which prompted all this change. I left my job in part because I felt undervalued and unappreciated. Regretfully my now former company chose to show me just how little they valued me. I have learnt some really tough life lessons, especially this past week, and now move on into the world a little wiser and a lot less trusting than before.

I do, however, have a plan, such that it is. For the first two months of the upcoming year I will be a full-time German language student at the Goethe Institute in an attempt to drag my German from barely conversational to business level. It is going to be a very tough 2 months, but one I’m looking forward to. Unfortunately, evening classes were never going to be enough to get my German to the level I need it to be to find an awesome new job here. Therefore if I wanted my job situation to change, I needed to make that happen for me. It kinda feels like burning everything to the ground in order to rebuild it.

So lots of changes are happening and all without the safety net of having a steady reliable income. I’m excited and, if I’m honest, also scared about what 2015 will have in store for me.

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13 thoughts on “The Only Constant

  1. Sounds like a scary, but much needed move. I’m also on the job market here in Germany and there’s a huge learning curve in terms of learning the job search culture here. Don’t be afraid to ask German colleagues and friends for advice!

    I took two months of intensive German courses at the Goethe Institute in Hamburg before I came to Bremen and my language skills grew in leaps and bounds. I feel like I went from an intermediate user to fluent during my time there, just because it was possible to throw all of my energy into learning the language (which just isn’t possible when you’re working full time). And my experience with the instructors there was overwhelmingly good.

    Good luck! Try to enjoy this time and focus on the positive of having a world of possibility in front of you!

    • You’re the second person to tell me really good things about the intensive course at the Goethe Institute in Hamburg. I hope I get the same awesome experience.
      Best of luck navigating the job market. It can be tough out there.

  2. How will that affect your visa / work permit situation? As a non-EU citizen you might want to check whether you´ll get a work permit before you commit to a (possibly expensive?) language course only to find out that you can only get a work permit for jobs which cannot be filled by EU citizens (Vorrangprüfung). I don´t want to scare you, I´m just thinking you should be aware that this might be a problem.

    • I am now a permanent resident of Germany so I’m free to move from job to job or even be unemployed for a while. I didn’t leave my job until I received my residency, otherwise I would not be allowed to remain in Germany.

  3. I left my job in Germany for pretty much the same reason. I felt undervalued and like no one was seeing the good work I was putting in. I moved back to the UK, where life is a LOT more stressful. I’m back in Frankfurt this weekend and am nostalgic for how easy and simple German life is.
    Good luck in your move – I’d love to be able to just focus on German!

  4. It’s interesting, I have heard from a number of Brits and Australians that there is very little positive feedback, recognition or raises in the German employment system. I’ve also found here in Leipzig that jobs for those without fluent German are few and far between. I’ve been studying Deutsch 15 hours a week for a while and just started 1B. Gosh it’s hard.

    I wish you the best of luck for new, meaningful employment.

    • I was actually employed by an Australian firm. The same company I worked for in Sydney, so it wasn’t the case of a clash of cultures.
      You are right that finding a job when you are not fluent in German in hard, which is why I’m dedicating the beginning of the year to getting my German sorted out. I have the skills potential employers want, just not the language skills.
      Best of luck with your German learning!

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