Sam’s Wandering Identity

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Sam is the perfect guest speaker for this podcast

She says:” As well as being a full-time mum, taxidriver, psychologist to rootless teens (her own), and dog lover, she has dabbled in various sectors, such as advertising, relocation, education, and administration. “

Throughout her life, she had to reinvent herself multiple times, because of her global nomad lifestyle.


Sam’s global nomad nature

Sam Frearson-Tubito is a third-generation global nomad/ or TCK 

who has raised four fourth-generation global nomads/or TCKs. Her four children live all over the world in Barcelona, Portland, OR, San Diego, and Sydney, and Sam and her husband now live in Athens, Greece, the 17th country she has lived in.


A New life stage

Recently, Sam entered a new phase of her life and let her reflect on how she could embrace it.

She and her husband became empty nesters, with their younger child moving out to go to university.

Sam had a thought about how she could dedicate her time to a new project.

She has been blogging for years about her traveling lifestyle and their family global experiences on  

Then had a thought on how these stories that received the attention of her readers could become something more than just a blog. 

      “I thought to myself, well, maybe this could become something a little more than just a blog.” 

Suddenly, her experiences across countries and cultures, the many people she met, became an asset, a treasure.  

A year ago, she reconnected with a school friend and discovered that she has become a book editor.

A brief conversation occurred and tac! her friend became her book coach. Sincethen, Sam has been working at writing her first book.

    “Becoming an empty nester has given me that time, that blessed amazing word, that essential time to be able to spend my days just putting words down on paper.

She is very excited. From her voice, and looking at her eyes when she was telling me about her new project, I could see the sparkle. The glow I could perceive was the inner joy that would light her up, the motivation, the sense of purpose.

Coaching tip: if we feel a sense of awe when we explain to others our projects, we are in that state of flow and purpose. A creative status that will put us in a motion state, and will help us to keep motivated, renewing enthusiasm. 

Download my free exercise to stay in the flow here.

The role of the accompanying spouse, the mum task

Many busy mums struggle to find the time to have an undivided focus on a project. Family and everyday life take away all the energy.

Priorities shift.

Even more so for mums of globally mobile families that are on continuous cycles of moving country, finding a house, the right school for the kids, settling in, rebuilding networks, establishing relationships, then saying farewell and starting over again.

For many of them, reentering the workforce is full of roadblocks. Title recognition, Visa requirements, local policies, the language are some challenges spouses face when rethinking their career in a new country. 

The EY 2018 Relocating Partner Survey Report shows that 71% of employees who are internationally mobile are male, 29% are female. The career sacrifice il largely borne by the female accompanying partner.

Yvonne Quahe explores the issues on addressing the dual career dilemma in her book:” Whose career, yours, mine or ours?” .

From main caregiver to speaker

Sam defines herself as a “people person”, who loves connecting with different people from‌ all over the world, from different backgrounds. She has the ability to find and connect with her tribe wherever she lands, forging friendships and partnerships.

She thrives on interacting with people and in one of her expatriations she had the opportunity to meet lovely ladies volunteering for an organization to foster professional inclusion in Italy.

One of these ladies could see how valuable Sam’s experience was, and the potential her unique story has to educate other families in the same situation: adapting across countries and cultures.

Sam was asked to give a talk about her life journey at the International School of Modena.

She had the opportunity to share her experiences and challenges with students, parents and teachers of the community, and explain what’s behind the definition of Third Culture Kids

It was her first experience of public speaking, which was challenging for her, but she did great because she could connect with the audience from a place of authenticity. She shared her story with a community of strangers that nevertheless had many things in common. 

For many, it was the first time to understand the nature of their unique identity, for some, it was finally finding a common sense of belonging: to a specific group of people, not a place.

This experience opened Sam a new door, an opportunity to give talks on a topic that she knows very well because it has been in the making her all life.

The Mary Poppins factor

While I was listening to Sam telling about her experience as a public speaker an image came to my mind: Mary Poppins opening up a bag and pulling out elements.

In this case, your life story and unique experiences become your assets. How to leverage all that knowledge and wisdom to make a difference in your and other people’s life?

     Coaching tip: accepting new challenges, even when other people see our potential, can lead to new opportunities, and bring to us exponential growth.

To you now, what unique element of your life or story has the potential to become an asset in your work? Everyone has at least one, so dig to find yours!

The art of Owing the moment

“The other thing I really believe in is owning the moment. You know, being fully in one place and owning your moment. Because when we do move often from one country to another, we tend to have the tendency to sort of always look back and compare or thinking about what’s next without being fully present to our present moment.


And that’s why I say, it’s really important to own the moment. Keeping, you know, putting two feet in one place fully in the circle, you know, and owning that moment. And there you get, you really, really experience life so much more, so much better, so much fuller. “

Writing since she was a child 

“I have always written a diary since… Probably the age of seven, seven or eight. Yeah, absolutely. I’ve always written my thoughts, you know, each day, every day. I’ve always enjoyed writing.”

 When they were living in Japan, Sam started her first blog there, which was really just about sharing their experiences in Japan, more like a travel blog.

And that’s where she realized,” oh my gosh, I actually really enjoy doing this.”

Readers started interacting with her and follow her travel journal on the Japanese culture taht amazed her.

Since that first experience writing about her experiences has become a daily practice. It also enabled Sam to connect with her tribe, other global nomads and her stories really begun to resonate with those people, particularly the third culture kid community around the world

This process led her to understand that she needed to do more, also to honor her life journey. And that’s why it led her to writing the novel.  

Sam’s strategy to focus on her writing, a type of networking

At times it feels lonely to be a writer. But nowadays, interconnectedness allows us to avoid that.

Sam’s strategy to stay focused on her writing and feel connected with fellow writers to be accountable has been winning for her.

“ Every time I moved to a new place, I connect with an international women’s association and I connect with the writers association. I actually belong to this really great community called London Writers Salon. And basically it’s a community where you connect online for as long as you need and work alongside other fellow writers.

Sam also attended a writing course and kept meeting up online with a group of ladies to stay accountable and keep working on her book.

This strategy and this specific type of networking paired with working style has helped Sam to fulfill a sense of belonging to a community of like minded people as well as keeping herself engaged, focused and on track with her writing. 

If it’s not there, create it yourself

Sam stresses the importance of finding a little group, a network that helps you to feel connected. 

Coaching tip: If it’s not there, create your own help if you need it. It really brings the focus on being intentional in doing things. Not just let the situation or your environment have an impact on yourself: be active on your impact.

Sam Sliding Doors moment

“When we were living in Japan, I was actually working as the admissions director for one of the international schools there and I loved it.

I absolutely loved the job. It was the most amazing job ever. It was perfect for me because I was basically helping people like me choose the right school for their children in an international environment. I was able to speak the different languages that I speak and I was thriving.”

One day, Sam’s husband shares with her he was offered an opportunity to go to the US. 

For Sam, family is the number one priority. It stems also from her childhood spent in boarding schools when her dad was sent abroad on international assignments. Sam felt that she would not replicate that lifestyle with her family, she would always be present to her children and support the family’s relocations.

“I just went, okay, let’s just go as a family, but it was a difficult decision.

But I don’t regret it one bit. It’s again, it’s about believing that the next step is really where you should be. And owning the moment again, just being present, being fully present and accepting your situation and just, yeah, being positive.”



Sam Frearson-Tubito is a third-generation global nomad who has raised four fourth-generation TCKs.

Now, she is concentrating on writing her memoir -Wandering Identity; Beneath a Borrowed Sky – and gives talks about her global nomadic life experience in international schools

She supports fellow global families by sharing snippets of her life story in

her blog,,



Resources and Inspiration

  1. Do you want to brainstorm about your Reinvention idea, or learn how Coaching skills can help you develop your project? 

You can book a free introductory Coaching session here.

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You will see how easy it is to take your first steps by looking at :

a.How you perceive CHANGE

b.Your values and your personality.

c.What are you ready to put in place tomorrow 

  1. If you are ready to move forward and would like guidance and/or peers to work with: check out the Reinvention Revolution Program


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