Moving to Australia

In celebration of my new site, and embracing blogging in all its glory I thought I’d open up the life of Lucy, BEFORE Lucy loved Fitness. For those of you that don’t know I’m English, and I live in Sydney. Moving to Australia isn’t something I had in my life plan, it just happened really. I moved to Australia in June 2011 (nearly 6 years ago) and as I was saying goodbye to my friends and family in England I told them it was only for 1 year or maybe 2 at the most.

This was the weekend I gathered my friends from the many corners of England and had my last big hugs! It was a BBQ, it rained and we sent the guys outside to cook the food! Nowadays I’m the one out there BBQ’ing in rain – I just love to BBQ!

 

 

 

To be totally honest that’s what I needed to tell myself too, as at the time I couldn’t deal with the thought of saying goodbye forever. I heard Sydney was a great place for ‘POMS’ (Prisoners of Her Majesty) to get work and sponsorship if you worked in Advertising and bingo that’s my trade.

So why did I leave home? Back in 2011 I was living alone in a 1 bedroom flat in Watford, England. I was single, I’d had a recent heartbreak and made a mistake when calculating the rent of my flat when I moved in 18 months previously. I could afford to pay my rent, my bills and fulfil my dream of living alone (like an independent woman – oh yeah Destiny’s Child, you got me good) though I could barely afford to do anything other than buy a £5 bottle of wine from the supermarket and settle in for another night on the sofa listening to Adele songs and looking for dates on a website called ‘Plenty of Fish’.

 

Wow this is really setting the tone for this post now.

I moved to Watford to be closer to the Advertising Agency I was working for. The director I reported into, Matt, was awesome! He accelerated my career by giving me amazing opportunities to learn & prove myself. About a year after we starting working together, he broke the news that he was emigrating to Australia with his wife, Alex, and their baby daughter. Matt told me he wanted me to move to Sydney and work for him, I thanked him, but declined the offer. At the time I had a secret long-distance boyfriend and was hoping to move up north to be closer to him. Ha!!! Girl, you had no idea.

Matt left England 4 months later, and within 1 week of Matt leaving my boyfriend broke up with me. Now as I quoted Destiny’s Child earlier, I’ve always been an independent woman and not one to hang on to men like a life raft, but I am appreciative of them when they’re in my life for whatever reason so losing a really important person in my professional life, then in my personal life was quite a blow.

Matt and I stayed in touch and he would tell me about his commute in Sydney across the Harbour on a ferry, and a few months later in February 2011 he emailed me saying “I got you a job interview’ and I remember reading this email like it was yesterday. I was sitting on my cheap IKEA sofa on a Monday night flicking through my Blackberry phone (yep, remember those?) and there was Matt’s email. It was morning in Sydney and I knew Matt was in the office so I was about to reply saying “No”. Then I asked myself “Why not?” and spent 10 minutes pondering that thought before I replied to arrange a time for the interview.

The job that Matt put me forward for took 3 months to get confirmed, and it was only a 3 month contract, yet I decided to take the gamble.

Below are some pictures from my first week in Sydney.

 

And a few more from my early days, moving back into shared accomodation was the best thing I could have done. I met Jess & Hannah and we moved into a pretty sweet apartment with a ridiculous view, klang!! I then spent the next few years partying and spending away my disposable income.

 

 

 

In the end it all worked out because 5 years later I was an Australian Citizen and out of the crazy world of Advertising and into Marketing instead. There’s a slight difference in the role, but a massive difference in terms of work/life balance. Which is why I had to quit Advertising, it was destroying me, but in the middle of all that I found bodybuilding and re-trained as a Personal Trainer. There comes the full circle. Everything works out, everything happens for a reason. It’s not just what you know, but who you know. So Matt & Alex, I am eternally grateful, and also to having a supportive family who understand that I needed to come over here and see what it was like. I go home very regularly (every 9-10 months) because my family is really really important to me.

My sister Sally, Brother-in-Law Colin, me, Dad and Mum in Cornwall, 2014.

Being away from my family and friends who know me so well is hard. I’ve questioned my decision to move to the other side of the world more than a few times, but the minute I stepped off that plane in 2011 this felt like I was meant to be here. It may not be forever either, but the past 6 years have been quite an adventure.

So I guess I’m sharing this to let you know that you never know what is around the corner, and I’m a big believer is saying ‘yes’ or in my case ‘why not’.

You only get one life, live it.

Lucy x

2 Comments

  1. Dan
    August 26, 2018 / 6:09 am

    Hey,

    Great to read your story! I am really wanting to move to Australia in the future to pursue a career in fitness. Can i just ask how you managed to obtain the VISA to live out there? I understand it can be quite difficult. Any help appreciated!

    Thanks in Advance

    Dan

    • Lucy
      August 27, 2018 / 8:44 pm

      Hi Dan, fitness was a side-line for me however it was my marketing job that got my a 457 visa (sponsorship) once I was out there. Initially I went on a working holiday visa (417 I think) which you can work for the same employer for 6 months max. then you need to change employer or get sponsored. I’m not sure how easy it is to get sponsored in the fitness industry as PT’s are mainly self-employed. I wish you the best of luck 🙂

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