Why I moved to Canada
Why I came to Canada and What I’m planning on doing here.
Two days ago, I arrived in Toronto Canada and I have a work permit that allows me to be here for the next year. But why Canada and not the USA?
— “Everything you’ve ever wanted is on the other side of fear”
As most of you guys now, I used to be obsessed with New York City, and I still am. It still is my ambition to move there as soon as possible. But some things just take time, lots of time… I knew this four months ago, back in April, when I left New York City after nine months of being there. Back then, I started working on a plan to get me back to New York by starting a company there. But that’s just not something you do in one day. So I decided to go back to Belgium. To work on my plan and to save up some money :) I made a video about this a few months ago (I link it below) and I describe this process as ‘Building a runway’.
It was a good move. I made some money in the last four months, got a good start on my business plan, but I’m far from done with building my runway. I very much underestimated what being in Belgium would do to me. It’s always been tough for me how to describe what I feel like whenever I’m back in Belgium, but to say the least, it’s not pleasant. I tried to stay positive. After all, I had a lot to look forward too. But after a month, I started to have mini mental breakdowns. First they came once a week, then twice… And after a while, you just know that to keep your sanity, you have to change something. Looking back at it, I was pretty happy, most of the time. But it just killed me to be so far away from my dream both literally and figuratively.
Even-though I was born and raised in Belgium, I don’t feel any connection to it what so ever. I don’t like the cities, culture, education system, business world… I don’t know anyone in Belgium except for my family and my ex-coworkers. I’m just not interested in it and I’ve also been to distant from the country both mentally and physically. The people I love and admire and vise versa (most of them) are in New York and it kills me to not be with them. Something had to change…
Short answer, to escape Belgium. Long answer, to escape Belgium and be able to start building my career on this side of the ocean, build up contacts in Toronto who have ties with New York… Even just being in the same time zone has already had a major impact. I’m also researching and visiting similar companies too what I want to do in New York (I’m not gonna tell you what that is just yet ;)) and I’m very happy to be in a similar culture and language then New York.
I describe the last 4 months of my life as a ‘pauze’. It really feels like once I enter Belgium, I stop learning, networking and growing as a person and that’s not a nice feeling to have. And event hough I’ve only been here for two days, It really feels like someone pressed the ‘play’ button again and I’m back on track to what I really want in life.
Right now I’m working for Tiny Toronto (www.tinyto.ca). A startup focussed on building sustainable, attainable homes in the GTA (Greater Toronto Area). Toronto is known as a hub for Urban development and that’s really an industry I want to get into here. Although, I’m open for other suggestions ;)
Being here, and being able to work here, just gives me the unbelievable opportunity to build up a career in North-America and to bring me closer to my goal of moving to New York so I want to make sure I don’t waste that. The fact that I got the work permit is just insane to me, after having a total opposite experience in the United States last year.
I moved to Canada to start building my career in North-America and to be closer to New York. I’m hoping to connect with the housing and startup world in the city to get a better understanding of how cities in North-America are changing and to understand what they need. It is still my goal to start a company in New York, so being physically closer and in the same timezone will really make that easier.
But priority one is to meet people! So if you know anyone I should meet or if you want to meet me, hit me up! The easiest way to get a hold of me is through Instagram @louis_de_keyser so I hope to hear from you soon!
About Louis De Keyser
Louis is a 20 year old, in the process of moving from Belgium to his dream city, New York. He was the founder and CEO of Tiny House Belgium, a Tiny House Design and Construction company that focused on promoting the idea of 'smaller living' and 'living life without a mortgage'. He sold his business in January 2017 to pursue his dream of moving to North-America. Right now, Louis lives in Toronto Canada. Stay up-to-date by signing up to my Messenger List!