The article has been automatically translated into English by Google Translate from Russian and has not been edited.

To start from scratch: how I arrived in the USA without English and in 4 of the year I built a successful career


Source: Interesno

Daria Karelina is a fitness expert, psychologist, triathlete and marathon runner. She helps people change both externally and internally. But it was not always so. After the divorce, she decided to try to change something in her life by coming to New York - and over time, her life completely changed. How and what had to be done for this, Daria tells in her блоге.

In 2014, I got on a Kiev - New York plane. With me was a suitcase, a little cash, a card with a reserve of money for the first time and documents.

The night before I barely slept. I was scared. I flew off into the unknown, leaving my family, friends, name and my unsuccessful marriage in Ukraine.

SMS from her husband put an end: “Probably, we will not succeed. Let's break up. I left the city, will be back in a couple of days. ”

We tried to save the relationship after I proposed to leave. He asked to give our marriage another chance. We went to the therapist and pretended that everything was fine. However, not everything can be repaired. And now it's SMS. Suddenly…

Not so I imagined the breakup after five years of relationship. I cried from shock, resentment and loss. My world collapsed. There were no more plans for the next five years, which I worked so hard.

Divorce is an injury. You ask yourself: where did you make a mistake, why didn’t it happen, what will happen next? Parting hits self-esteem. You look into yourself and try to understand how to survive this, to adequately get out of the situation? It was necessary to build a new life, to look for myself, to understand what I really want. It was all so complicated ...

It was easier to run away from myself.

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Psychologists say that a person never finally recovers from a divorce. This is probably true. The question is, will this injury absorb you, or will you grow out of it.

The first attempt to start a new life was moving to Kiev. But life in the capital has not changed anything globally. Yes, there are more opportunities, work, media. I was a sought-after fitness expert and trainer.

My site beat attendance records. I became the leading sports YouTube channel and received invitations to television and conferences. But I still did not feel “in my place” and continued, as an obsessive person, to collect visas from different countries in my passport.

Having been once in America, for many years I dreamed of moving to this country. Previously, it seemed insane - to leave this life to fly overseas, where no one guarantees me success. But now I had nothing to lose, and I decided.

If not now, then when?

Of course it was scary. “I don’t know the language”, “What will I do there?”, “How do I adapt?”, “I don’t have anyone there, neither friends nor relatives”, “What to do with things?” ?" and much more.

There were many doubts, and then they seemed to me very weighty. But now something has changed, I myself have changed.

“Mom, I decided to leave for the United States,” I said. And on the same day I bought a one-way ticket, giving myself a month and a half to prepare and collect.

Everyone has the right to make mistakes

When the first euphoria passed, the question arose: “What next?”.

My online business brought a small income, but making money at home and spending money in the States is impractical. Living in Brighton Beach, among Russian-speaking immigrants, would certainly be easier and more comfortable. But why then was it decided to make such changes in order to lead a normal life on the other side of the planet?

I made the decision to move to Manhattan.

Manhattan is the heart of New York. Manhattan is expensive, and they speak English here. However, the whole cultural life of the city is concentrated on this island, the most significant events take place here.

If I can adapt to life in Manhattan, then I can adapt to life in the United States.

I knew I was taking a chance. However, taking a chance once, you get a taste!

I remembered again that I had nothing to lose. And she allowed herself to fail, said to herself: “I will try. In the end, I can always return to Brighton. "

I moved, I have been living in Manhattan for more than three years and have never regretted it!

Three years to study

Moving not only put me in the thick of things and gave me impressions for the rest of my life, but also accelerated the process of adaptation and learning the language.

Arriving in New York, I practically did not speak English. I went out, went to the store, talked to people and did not understand a word. How could I achieve anything here without knowing the language? Learning English has become my number one goal.

I decided to learn the language myself. Mainly because it was necessary to save. I have not earned money here yet. In addition, I just did not want to "go to school."

It is easier for many to learn - they feel responsibility. But after many years of work for myself, I prefer to study on my own, in a comfortable environment with my own schedule and at a pace that is convenient for me.

My method was simple: as much communication and immersion in the environment as possible. I started dating almost immediately!

In addition to communicating with native speakers, I chose several interesting online training courses on Soursera in English with subtrites and passed them. This greatly expanded my vocabulary.

The most fun way was to watch the movie "Sex and the City" with subtitles. Very helpful with the construction of spoken language.

In parallel, I tried to understand what I would do, what I wanted.

In the future, I wanted to move away from coaching and build a career in another field.

It did not take long to search. I chose psychology as a subject. First, in my work I am not only a trainer, but also a psychologist. Work on the body is impossible without mental transformation. Secondly, my life motto: "Do what you like." And psychology was an area that fascinated me.

TOEFL - English Proficiency Test

I found a decent online school, which gave the same diploma as when I visited the university. Full-time education did not suit me for several reasons.

I have already voiced the first - I did not want to go to school again. The second stemmed from the circumstances - I needed to work in order to pay for my education.

The condition for admission to school is to pass the TOEFL exam. This is a language test for foreign students, necessary in order to ensure their ability to understand the educational material. The first step to my dream was to pass the TOEFL.

I set foot on American soil in August 2014, and in February 2015 of the year I began to prepare for TOEFL to pass the exam in early June. The daring task is to prepare for a difficult language exam when your level is still very far from ideal. But I had a goal, and again I decided to take a chance.

Moving, adapting, learning the language helped me to calm the inner perfectionist and strengthened faith in my abilities. I really wanted to start my studies in September in order to get a diploma as soon as possible.

I prepared myself and with varying success. But the test passed, even if not for the highest score, but enough to go to university. However, before my dream of starting school in September, a new obstacle arose. Due to the incompetence of a university employee, my documents were not processed on time, and I was able to start my studies only in January 2016.

This was the beginning of a new phase, and I was very worried.

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Minimum time for a diploma

A month before I began my studies, I met with a university representative.

- How long does it take to get a bachelor's degree? - I asked.

“Two years,” answered the consultant. - With full employment.

Full-time ... I assessed my situation and was forced to admit: “This is unrealistic.”

Add to this still rather mediocre knowledge of the language. But I again promised myself to try. “Step by step, and then, as it will,” I told myself and prepared for a new challenge.

Learning was hard.

First, the work took a lot of time. I continued to develop my online project. Grew my popularity as a coach.

To become the best, I constantly improved my qualifications, passed a lot of training courses on nutrition, training, recovery.

This load could not fit into the forty-hour work week. Balancing work, school and personal life was not easy.

Secondly, it was necessary to adapt to the specifics of online education - to learn, not seeing professors and fellow students.

I had a goal, I deliberately walked toward it, and I did it!

New Life, or Dreams Come True

Much has changed during this time. I live in one of the most progressive and beautiful cities in the world. I managed to become a highly paid and sought-after personal trainer in New York.

However, these were the first steps. I did not abandon my plan and decided on the next changes.

After graduating, I went to work in the health care system. My next goal is MBA. In doing so, I'm going to breathe new life into my old online business. And all this happened in less than four years.

I have no special talents. I do not differ in luck. However, there are things that have helped me achieve success.

I think they will help you too:

  • Believe in yourself. You can do whatever you really want. It will give you strength and will lead you forward even in the darkest of times.
  • Do not listen to anyone. On your way there will always be those who try to knock you off course. Believe in the process.
  • Allow yourself to dream and act. The most daring fantasies can become a reality. Do not be afraid to try and take risks. Follow the call of the heart. Remember, life is one, and it is transient.
  • Allow yourself to be wrong. Fear almost disappears when you say: “I will try,” and give yourself the right to make a mistake. Mistakes give us experience. The problem often lies in the fact that we identify with failures. We put the sign "equal" between "I did not succeed" and "I am a loser." But it is not. All my achievements in recent years have happened precisely because I told myself: "I will try."
  • Allow yourself to be a person who learns and knows. You will not criticize a child for falling as he learns to walk. Treat yourself with the same understanding.
  • Choose a goal and direct there all your attention, efforts, energy. I would not learn a language and not get a diploma in record time if I had dispersed my efforts. This was hard. There were days when I cried, felt sorry for myself, cursed everything. But the goal was achieved, and it was worth it.
  • Think of obstacles as new opportunities. On the road to success you will encounter problems. And the bigger the goal, the more serious obstacles you will have to overcome. You have a choice - be upset, fall into depression, quit a venture or see new opportunities in it.

I had to learn new things, change internally, grow with each new obstacle. As they say, if life slipped you a lemon, make limoncello. And enjoy.

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