5 things that have helped me adapt to new countries (Expat on the move)

The first months after moving to a new country are always a whirlwind for me. Between finding a new house, getting services installed, and settling the furniture in, I have little time to think about the huge life changes. But, when that busyness is over, the void sinks in. I am thousands of miles away from family or friends, I do not speak the language very well, and I don’t understand the culture.

I think this is the hardest period. You start feeling alone, and lost. Your mind starts wandering and you stop living in the present (counting the days till your next trip home, or to a visit from family member) So, during my different moves – 6 countries and counting – I have found 5 different behaviors and actions that have helped me transition more smoothly. Helped me enjoy my new life, helped me find myself in a new place. 

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The Phone Does Not Ring!

As phone junkie, one of the hardest things about living in a new country was getting use to the idea that the phone never rings. It is a fact. I mean, my family and close friends live in other time zones, so they are all sleeping while I am having lunch. And, by the time they leave their office, I am in my Pjs ready to sleep.

So, over the years, thankfully, I have come to peace with the need to receive calls during the day. Though, I have developed an excessive use of Instagram and Facebook, as a way to connect with love ones. Also, with whatts app and other messaging services which are quite useful. (I will post about group chats another day, so much to say!)

As time goes by, it does get easier. And once in while, I get a surprising call from a new friend, or my parents back home. This makes my day.  Other times, false alarms like wrong numbers or telemarketing, just make me laugh, and remind me to put the phone in silence.

I guess it’s how you deal with the change, you let it beat you or you embrace it. =)

My iphone clock settings. Keeping up with the family.

My iphone clock settings. Keeping up with the family.