How to Deal with Expat Cold Feet
In the days before a move abroad, it’s likely that your house will be a mass of boxes; you’ll be busy trying to arrange last minute details and saying goodbye to friends and family. You’ll feel excited but also a bit nervous – perhaps you’ll even question whether you’re making the right decision.
It is absolutely normal to feel a bit odd before moving to a new country and having second thoughts definitely is not unusual – especially when you’re swapping continents. The good news is that you’re not alone! Many people who are already living abroad will have experienced the ‘expat blues’ at some point. The language, religion and culture will be all new and may feel strange, not to mention the food and the smells on the streets.
Talk, talk, talk
It might sound clichéd, but talking about things will always help – particularly if you’re talking to people who’ve been through the same experience. The most important thing is to realise that acknowledging nervousness or expat blues will help you to get past it and you don’t have to suffer in silence! You’ll have friends and family who will always be happy to listen, but you can’t underestimate the value of reaching out to other expats too – and it’s easier than ever. Explore how you can connect with other expats at work, or use social media, forums or networking websites to get in touch. If you aren’t already, follow @expatexplorer and join in our conversations too; you’re always welcome!
Get out there
Building up a network is important. Once you have a few people around you, you’ll be surprised how much more settled you feel. The only snag is there’s no instant, easy way to meet people – you’ll need to put yourself out there and make the most of every opportunity – but there are lots of different ways to do this.
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