Breeching The Comfort Zone (And Thoughts On Working Abroad in Buenos Aires)

Palermo in Buenos Aires (Photo: Xomiele)

I’ve talked before about one of the reasons I love working with autism. Kids on the spectrum are constantly violating my assumptions and in order to be effective I have to continue re-evaluating my beliefs and discarding what doesn’t work.

This week I am in Buenos Aires, Argentina working with several families with special needs children. And I’m experiencing a whole new model for breaking down my assumptions. Growing up I was taught that it was useful to travel because it “expands horizons.” I never really questioned that that means. On this trip I’ve come to see why traveling can be extremely useful and how expanding horizons actually works. To make a long story short – it can be hard, but it is very worth doing.

Palermo in Buenos Aires (Photo: Xomiele)
Palermo en Buenos Aires (Photo: Xomiele)

First off, my work can be challenging. I am work with children who may bite or scream or both. (They are incredible, too.) But on this trip I’m also in a new city, speaking a non-native language, and practicing tango. The number of challenging factors has increased by several exponents! So let’s look at how exactly this is a good thing…