Making the most of your time abroad

By Roman Guevara


Bored with your life? Guess what – You are not alone. A lot of OFW’s, especially in the Middle East, live “boring lives.” They may not all admit it, or sometimes even know it, but that’s the truth concerning their existence. It’s just simply boring. And boring for some can also mean unhappy.

When you are not doing the things you really like doing, if you are not with the people you want to be with, and you can’t do anything about it, that makes for a sad life. Not just a boring life. Not just an unhappy life. But a truly sad life. And no one wants to be touted by others as living a very sad existence – especially, when you are living abroad. We are supposed to be living our dreams. But for most of us, that is certainly not the case. No matter how spectacular our lives may seem from the outside, inside… life could just be a bore. However, it bears emphasizing that boring could sometimes be a good thing. In as much as it can imply monotony, it can also mean the absence of drama or tragedy. In other words, “steady lang.”

Perhaps the solution to finding more excitement in our lives is simply realigning the way we think and to just keep moving. It is often said that idle hands are the devil’s workshop. Let’s not give that bad boy a chance to corrupt us. Here are some simple but potentially impactful things you can do right now to overcome boredom.


Get a new hairstyle.

The easiest way to feel good is to look good – so find a really good hairstylist, and do not be frugal about it. Go for the best stylist in town. Ask for recommendations. Try something you’ve never done before. Ladies, in particular, can benefit a lot from this tip. Remember this quote from Coco Chanel: “A woman who cuts her hair is about to change her life.”


Work on your fitness.

Staying on the subject of looking good to feel good, being fit is not just about the aesthetics. It’s also about your health and well-being. Lose weight? Killer abs, anyone? Whatever the goal, whatever the motivation, an active life is the opposite of a boring life.


Learn a new language.

One of the perks of living abroad: meeting people from other nationalities. Dubai is an exciting expatriate city, but most Filipinos prefer to just stick to their own kind all the time. Same nationality. Same dialect. Kapampangan. Ilokano. Bisaya. Tagalog. Why not take advantage of this city’s diversity and learn a new language? Arabic is an obvious choice, but how about French? Chinese? Hindi? Nepali? Bahasa? Even Russian. When you learn a new language, you learn a new way to relate to the world.


Eat the food of other nationalities.

Always Adobo? Sinigang? Menudo? Perhaps It’s time for you to give Filipino food a break and immerse your taste buds in something different. Overcoming your food biases helps you overcome your racial biases. Don’t believe everything you hear from other Filipinos how bad certain dishes taste. Try it yourself, and then make up your mind.

And to be safe, go to the high end versions first. You can always check online some of the best restaurants in your area. They may be expensive, but at least, you got your money’s worth. Don’t be afraid to ask when you don’t know what to order. That’s part of the experience.


Biryani anyone?



ROMAN GUEVARAroman-guevara

Spiritual advisor. Life Coach. Rockstar. Roman Guevara, better known as “Kuya Roman,” has made an indelible mark in the Filipino community in the GCC with his unique brand of empowerment. In this issue, he talks about how to combat OFW boredom. Get in touch with him on Facebook:



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