What’s one hack you should do to get through the immigration process with your brain intact?
Hi, I’m Jim Hacking, immigration lawyer practicing law throughout the United States at our office here in St. Louis, Missouri. We spend a lot of time in our videos explaining the ins and outs of the N-400 or how to complete or what to think about when you’re working on your green card application, and what to do when your case gets to the embassy.
We do spend a lot of time about the logistics and the tactical things that you have to do to get your case approved. But in this video, I want to talk about one thing that you can do to really make your life easier as you go through this entire process, and that is to come to a level of acceptance that it’s just going to be hard, and to try to be mindful as you go through the process.
I’m listening to a great book called 11 Rings, and it’s by Phil Jackson. He was the New York Knicks player who became a coach and led the Chicago Bulls to six NBA championships and the LA Lakers to five championships, and he is known as having 11 rings. He’s won the championship 11 times as a coach, which is really remarkable.
In the book, he talks a lot about working with the team and their mindset, and when I was listening to the book I was thinking about our clients who go through this process. We have sort of a spectrum. We have some who are stressed out about every single thing that happens every single day, they live and die, they breathe on it, and then we have clients who are at the other end of the extreme, who think about it, who do their best, who work hard to file the strongest case possible and then they let the process go through step-by-step and they don’t get caught up in the machinations and the frustrations of the day. They do everything they can to file the strongest case and to give all the evidence that they can, but they’re not on this rollercoaster living and dying on every single thing that happens.
Now, I know that it’s stressful and I know that it’s frustrating, and I know that the government has put up lots of hurdles to keep you or your loved one from getting the immigration benefit that you deserve. But all that being said, I think there’s also something to be said for just relaxing, with just chilling, and with trying to do things like meditation or journaling or anything you can do to sort of keep track of your emotions and maybe keep your emotions in a level place.
Now we deal with people at all places on that range that I talked about, and we’re happy to do that. We take people as they come, but it really is an interesting study of the human spirit and how people handle things differently. For me, I like to focus on the things that I can change. I love the serenity prayer from the 12 Steps, the Alcoholics Anonymous 12 Steps. God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, the courage to change the things I can, and the wisdom to know the difference.
I think that really comes through loud and clear when you’re talking about going through immigration process. There’s so much in this process that we cannot control, there’s so much that is out of our control, and there’s so much that if we let it, it can just ruin our day. But at the end of the day, we’re going to get our benefit. We filed a strong case, we’re legally eligible for it, and we know what we’re doing.
So we’re just going to know that God has a plan, or whatever higher power you believe in or no higher power, that things are going to work themselves out and that all your frustration and anger and venom, none of that stuff’s going to do any good. The thing to do is to just be level-headed, be in the moment, take it one day at a time, do your best, but try to work on the things that you can change and to let go of the things that you can’t change.
This is just some free advice. You’re obviously free to do what you will, but I do think that if you go into this with sort of an open heart and an open mindset and trying to just live in the moment and to do your best at each stage, you’re going to find yourself much calmer, much happier, and much more relieved when the process does work itself out. Just know that some day in the future, we don’t know which day when it is, but that you’ll either be reunited with your loved one or you’ll get that immigration benefit that you’ve been trying to get, and I think that’s really going to help you. I hope it does. It helps me to sort of go through my day that way. When I find myself all caught up in the emotions of the day and what’s going on with this case, what’s going on with that case, it’s a much harder way to live, and I’m just inviting you to perhaps another approach to this.
I don’t know if I’ll do any more videos like this. I’ll be interested to see the reaction about this. It’s certainly off topic a little bit, but again, it comes back to sort of my approach and my mindset as I’m working with you on your cases or trying to get as many people through the immigration process as we can.
If you have questions or want to talk, give us a call, (314) 961-8200. You can email us at firstname.lastname@example.org. Be sure to join us in our Facebook group. That’s called Immigrant Home. We’d love to see you in there. We have about 4,000 people right now, and there’s a lot of good back and forth each day about the immigration process. We also have our YouTube channel that you should think about subscribing to. That way you get updates whenever we make videos like this one. And then finally, on Tuesdays and Thursdays, usually around noon central time, I’ll be in both those places, the Facebook group and the YouTube channel, answering as many of your questions in one hour as I can for free. Thanks a lot. Have a great day.