Sometimes culture shock can rear it’s ugly head when you least expect it: at the supermarket, on the bus or while dining out with new friends. Here are 5 tips for dealing with culture shock.
cul·ture shocknoun: culture shock
- 1.the feeling of disorientation experienced by someone who is suddenly subjected to an unfamiliar culture, way of life, or set of attitudes.
1. Don’t be shy! Make an effort to learn the language.
This will help you to increase your communication skills and get to know people in your new environment. It might be difficult at first, but as you learn the language, you will become more confident and understand your surroundings better. Also joining a language class is one of the best way to make new friends!
2. Get involved in some aspect of the local culture.
Learn to cook some new cuisine with your new friends or attend community festivals and events. You will begin to feel more comfortable meeting locals and will find yourself having fun.
3. Keep in touch with your family and friends back home.
Talk, text, share pictures and feelings. It always feels good to talk with your family or old friends back home. Sharing your experiences and problems with them will help you to ease about your worries of culture shock. Who knows they may give you a their secret idea to deal with stress!
4. Do some research and take time to travel around.
There are great ways to get information about your new locality; visit community centres, libraries or museums and be a tourist and explore. Find your local market, swimming pool and park. Learn to use the public transportation. The more you know about your community, the better you will adapt to it.
5. Take care of yourself and stay positive.
If you are sick or down, it may be hard to stay positive and get to know your new environment. So be sure to eat well, exercise and get enough sleep. Try not to take cultural differences as ‘wrong’ or ‘negative’ but as learning experiences. You will find many things you can ‘do’ if you focus on keeping a positive attitude. Remember, you’re on an adventure, the glass is half full not half empty!