Culture Shock

So you think you can live ABROAD or away from home!!! πŸ˜„ here are a few things to ponder on. My experiences, thoughts and feelings πŸ™ˆ sent me back to my psychology textbooks to help me understand what I’m going through right now πŸ™…

Adapting to a new culture is one of the hardest things a person can doπŸ™ˆbecause it feels as if you are leaving a part of yourself behindπŸ‘Ž

Adapting to a new culture is not easy. And nobody said it would beπŸ’­ When you move abroad, especially when the culture is very different from your own, you will be frustrated:evil:

The best thing about living abroad and adapting to a new culture is what you make of it! πŸ’ƒπŸ’ƒIt can be the best experience of your lifetime, or it can be unbearable and all you want to do is go home. Just pray πŸ™ 😜

Living abroad and experiencing a different culture is an adventure and a challenge, and most likely the most exciting time of your life🎎🌍

You have to become independent and adjust to this new culture and all this without the support and help of your friends and family. This is quite a big change.😭 but it gets better, I hopeπŸ˜„

So according to the psych books everyone goes through similar stages when adapting to a new culture:)Some of us are able to go through the process quicker and with less stress like royalty πŸ‘‘ while others go through these stages and find it difficult to adjust like ME πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚

The Stages:

1. Honeymoon Stage
2. The Distress Stage
3. The Re-integration stage
4. Autonomy Stage
5. Independence Stage

During the first stage you usually feel excited, You are open to trying new things and exploring the country. But you soon start to feel confused, alone and realise that your familiar support systems are not easily available! Calling abroad is expensive! It gets a little worse as you go through the stages of adjustment, you start to idealize life back home and compare your current situation to what is familiar. But to overcome these thoughts, you have to be more open minded than ever before. I struggle with this quite a lot. Because it is so frustrating, you feel angry most of the time and saddest of all you tend to be hostile to those around you. You cry for no reason at all. But I know that this is absolutely normal. You could spend a good few months in this stage, and that’s alright too. Just praying πŸ™ and hoping no one punches me straight in the face πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚

Don’t rush the process. Allow yourself to progress to the stage where you feel like YOU again. To the point when YOU no longer feel isolated and instead you are able to look at the world around you and appreciate where you are. I would like to believe that I’m at this stage, but at times I jump between the stages! Also completely normal…. #emo πŸ˜œπŸ˜‚

The last stage brings appreciation of both the differences and similarities of your new culture. You start to feel at home.πŸ™πŸ‘ŒπŸ’ƒ the stage to be!

I think it’s safe to say that both my husband and I are living proof that these stages exist! Thinking that our way is the better, more simpler and sensible way of doing things. And like I said before you have to remain open minded, just calm down!!! And remind yourself, that you should be open to other ways of doing things. After all, you are a guest and you are the foreigner. πŸ˜‚ #realitycheck

There’s light at the end of the tunnel…

Adapting to a new culture is an ongoing process. It may be challenging at times, but everyone who has experienced culture shock agree that going through this transition helped them to learn more about themselves and to develop greater confidence in their ability to navigate new situations.

Most importantly, it can lead to a renewed appreciation of one’s own culture πŸ‘πŸ™ growing a little everyday…

Happy travels
xxx πŸ’‹

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