7 reasons to migrate

Sergio Augusto Sánchez
4 min readMar 15, 2023
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In school, I was taught that human beings have always been nomadic. That sedentism appeared in our collective history at a time when agriculture, animal domestication, and the development of tools converged and prevailed.

However, the nomadic spirit remains in our homo sapiens' hearts. We are driven to know what lies beyond and discover new paths, new people, new sounds, and new ways of eating, laughing, and loving.

All reasons are valid because all contexts are different. As a migrant myself, I want to leave here a small list for those interested in what I have learned.

1. The war

Have you woken up with the feeling that your country is in a moment of unmanageable violence? The feeling can be real and obvious, as is the case for countries facing temporary or perpetual wars: think Ukraine, Syria, Colombia, Afghanistan, etc. If you are not holding the guns and are instead an easy target for the guns of others, it is an excellent time to consider leaving before you become just another number on the list of victims.

2. The economy

“Capitalism won,” they tell Austin Powers after waking him from his cryogenic slumber. I don’t like it, but we live in a world ruled by what the banks say. If your currency collapses, if hyperinflation has you lighting the campfire with wads of bills–as happened in Germany after WWI, or in Argentina at the start of the 21st century, or in Venezuela a decade ago–take your valuables and start packing them into a suitcase.

3. Work

Before the economy crashes or battle tanks start patrolling and destroying everything in your neighborhood, you could migrate for work: your craft or the field you studied may be in high demand elsewhere. Almost all of Ireland migrated to the United States to build cities like New York when it was impossible to have good crops on their island. Today, hundreds of thousands of engineers go to the United Arab Emirates or Saudi Arabia every year to finish sucking their land dry of oil. So, if it works for you, why not? If you can be paid more for working elsewhere, just run the numbers through Excel and make the decision to migrate.

4. Education

Yes, despite the availability of low-cost education on the Internet and the thousands of campaigns that seek to discredit conventional university education (rightly or wrongly). Hundreds of thousands of people continue to move because they seek a “better education” elsewhere. The largest universities in the world offer scholarships to people of academic excellence, outstanding athleticism, or artistic ability. In addition–and I don’t believe it is a sin to mention it–colonizing countries offer scholarships to their former colonies, hoping to make up for the years of wars and economic and labor crises they (may) have caused.

If they will pay you to study, you should do it. Being on scholarship in your adulthood is like being a child in a privileged home. You will always have the option to stay or return; make a life in a better place, or return with a hand-inked diploma on white cardboard to a place where they still admire framed white cardboard diplomas.

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5. The environment

The story goes something like this, so as not to turn this into a pamphlet: developed countries have developed by going to developing countries to help them extract all kinds of valuable minerals (oil, gold, coltan, coal, etc.). Along the way–while filling their pockets with money and their reserves with barrels–they leave in their wake (in addition to items 1 and 2 of this list) a trail of devastated jungles, forests, and paramos, water contaminated with mercury and cyanide, or rivers running dry.

The average lifespan of a healthy person, under normal conditions, is 80 years. If the piece of the planet you occupy becomes uninhabitable, you may want to consider migrating.

6. Quality of life

Although there are some indicators to measure the quality of life (including the five previous items of this list), in the end, it comes down to each individual’s point of view. In my case, to give an example, in my motherland, the only constant I found was fear: fear of being fired from my job and having to live in poverty, fear of being killed in the middle of a robbery, fear of being kidnapped and killed when they realize that they have abducted a poor person, fear of war, and fear of an economic collapse…

Now, after migrating, the only fear I have is the fear of having to go back.

7. Love

It’s not all tragedy; there are also romantic dramas… and comedies. We live in the age of social networks and dating apps. From Facebook to Bumble, we humans find digital ways to connect with each other, talk to each other, tell stories to each other, and convince each other of the possibility of a better future.

Giving it all up because, in a world of 8 billion people, you found one that puts up with your nightly snoring makes sense. In fact, it makes a lot of sense, and it is one of the hippiest reasons to migrate, to “Make love, not war”.

All reasons to migrate require thoughtful analysis. The reality is that we live on a rock in constant motion. The life span of a person is limited. The Earth, our traveling rock, is huge, even for the 8 billion humans that inhabit it. So move or stay still, either option is valid, and in either case, our rock will continue to travel at 30km/s through the cosmos.

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Sergio Augusto Sánchez

I write fiction. Short stories, blog posts, novels, and scripts for the screen, any screen. @sanchezescritor on social media. https://www.sanchezescritor.com