Many people around the world are willing to move overseas to start life afresh. This could be because they want to experience new adventures, expand their horizons or find better job opportunities to improve the lives of their families back at home. Whatever your reason for wanting to live overseas, we’re sure it’s justified.
The first few weeks will surely be full of excitement, but with time, the newness of everything will wear off. Therefore, you have to learn to transition from being a tourist to being a local. There are several challenges that may crop up along the way as you make this transition, but we’re here to help you prepare yourself so that you can overcome them. Having said that, let’s look at some of the most common challenges you will encounter while living abroad and how to deal with them:
Cultural differences will drive you crazy, especially in the first few months of your stay in another country. This could be anything from the way the locals dress, the slow pace at which things are done or government bureaucracy. However, you have to understand that every country has its own set of social customs and cultures.
So, what can you do to fit into your new life and make your transition less stressful? Well, for starters, if you haven’t moved yet, take as much time as you need to research the culture and customs of the nation you’re planning to move to. This will help you understand how things are done there so you can adjust accordingly.
Secondly, you have to be very observant once you get abroad. Look around you and see how things are done. What are people wearing? How do they speak? Do they give tips? How do they dispose of their waste? If you’re keen enough, you’ll be able to find the answers to these questions and much more by just observing your surroundings. Also, if you can connect with people from other countries and learn from them, the better.
If you have zero knowledge of the country you’re going to live in, then expect to struggle with the language barrier. Not being able to speak or understand what the locals are saying will surely dampen your daily interactions with them. Doing basic things like starting a conversation, placing orders at restaurants or buying supplies will be a problem. This will surely leave you feeling very isolated and frustrated.
The good news is that you can overcome language barrier overseas through dedication and hard work. So, if you haven’t traveled yet, consider enrolling in a language class or learning through online apps. Note that you can’t learn a new language overnight, so be patient with yourself. With time and determination, you’ll be able to master conversational-level skills before traveling. If you want to perfect your skills, you have to practice every day by speaking with friends, neighbors and even strangers in the new language.
Living in a foreign land with no familiar faces around is likely to make you feel lonely. This can get even worse if you don’t know anybody in the new country, and you can’t speak or understand the local language either. However, you should know that countless people living abroad have overcome the lonely phase and come out stronger. You can too. But first, you must be willing to come out of your shell to be able to make friends.
If you’re the social type, then striking a conversation with strangers while walking down the road or having dinner at a restaurant shouldn’t be a problem. But even if you’re not, you can still meet new people if you engage in your favorite hobbies. For instance, if you love singing, consider joining your local church choir or singing groups to meet people with similar interests. On the other hand, if you enjoy your booze, heading to the bar will help you meet new people and possibly make friends. Social media networks and internet forums can also help to improve your social life.
Missing your family and friends
Having supportive family members and friends are good for your overall health and well being. Because of that, you’re likely to find yourself missing them a lot when you move overseas. But, you can make the first few months more bearable by bringing printed and framed photos of your loved ones with you. Put them in a room of your choice in your new home to make you feel closer to them. Also, make phone calls, video chats and periodic visits back home to stay connected to them.
If your loved one recently passed on and was cremated, you may have wondered if it’s possible to carry his or her ashes abroad to make you feel closer to them. Well, according to TSA rules, you’re allowed to transport cremated human remains of the plane in a carry-on luggage. However, you have to check with your airline operator and the embassy of your destination country to be sure if they permit traveling with ashes of loved ones. Choosing the right container for transporting the ashes is equally important. So, consider using only TSA approved urns to make security screening at the airport easier for you. You may also be required to bring a certified copy of cremation certificate, death certificate and entry of cremation certificate. Our site is a resource for finding more information on what can pass TSA security and we sell urns that have been traveled with.
It’s possible to successfully adapt to life overseas regardless of the country you’re planning to go to. If you take the time to prepare yourself properly, you should be able to overcome the challenges that may come up along the way. With time, you’ll be able to blend in with the locals and enjoy your life abroad.