5 Steps To Help You Adjust To Life Abroad

October 18, 2017

Booking a one-way ticket and packing your bags for a new life abroad can be a daunting experience for even the most well-travelled individuals. The thought of leaving behind all familiarity in search of a new challenge can trigger last minute panic. Nevertheless, be assured that for all who take the leap of faith are rewarded with a life changing, unforgettable experience. If you’re thinking of exploring different cultures whilst you study, follow these five simple steps to living abroad to help you along the way.

  1. Learn the culture and language

The more information you know about the country you are planning to move to the less likely you are at risk of a culture shock. Find out as much as you can about your country of choice, their way of life, their etiquette, their personal values, religion.  Make a conscious attempt to learn their language without overwhelming yourself. Learning a second language has all sorts of benefits that can help you progress within your chosen career. Read our earlier blog post on benefits of learning a second language for a deeper exploration of why being bilingual can be so valuable in my areas of your life.  If you can learn the language basics this will go a long way in terms of breaking the language barrier and preventing yourself from being isolated from the locals. Don’t panic yourself  if you do only know the simple basics of the language. Naturally, your knowledge of the language will progress whilst you live in their surroundings, you will be able overcome language obstacles every day.

  1. Explore your surroundings

Exploring And Travelling

You didn’t make the decision to travel to newer surroundings to hibernate in a room with your head in a book . Grasp every opportunity to indulge in the surroundings. Explore your new neighbourhood. Take long walks to find hidden gems, visit the country’s tourist hot spots and trial local cuisines- despite how unusual they may be! The more you explore and learn about the country the more you will climatize to your new surroundings and share their way of life.

  1. Get involved in local activities

Fully involve yourself in the local activities as an important method of socialising and building relationships. Research local community groups nearby for travellers like yourself to help you feel welcome and comfortable. Don’t be reluctant to step out of your comfort zone with activities. Take on new challenges. Learn how to say yes and carve the path of how you want to live your life abroad.

  1. Consider getting a job

Travelling Abroad

Seek work or volunteer opportunities whilst abroad. Even if you are financially stable to live abroad without an income its always a good idea to have a job to provide a sense of responsibility and routine to your life. Securing a job will help you to meet new people and build relationships and help you to expand your knowledge of their way of life and culture.

  1. Keep in touch with home

Living abroad for a year or even longer will naturally be daunting to anyone. Although it’s important to immerse yourself in your new surroundings, don’t forget to keep in touch with family and friends at home. Connections at home can make living abroad seem less lonely and unfamiliar. They are the healthiest distraction for times you are finding difficult. Finding a healthy balance between your ties to home and enjoying your new environment is vital for developing a sense of belonging without feeling alone or homesick.

When you commit to the decision of moving abroad whether that’s for a short period of time or indefinitely, the most important thing is to make your new home, your home. Allocate time each day to improve your new home. Add home comforts that could remind you of your family home to make you excited after a long day of exploring and indulging in the culture to come home and recuperate for the next day. Most importantly, know that you’re not the first and definitely not the last lone traveller, there is a vast network of travellers all over the world. Read upon other traveller experiences and take on board their tips through travelling blogs. But, first and foremost, enjoy every experience you have, life is for living to the fullest.

For more information on living and learning in the UK, read our blog post and find out why studying in the UK can help you with learning a second language and gain new experiences along the way.