Moving overseas can be exciting, but being in a new place without your friends and family and dealing with procedures and systems you don’t know can also be stressful. Here are a few ideas for looking after yourself as you embark on expat life.
Whether you’re trying to figure out how to rent an apartment or just want to find friends in your new home town, ask your network. Chances are, you already know people who have lived in the city you’re moving to or have friends there and can put you in touch. Suddenly, settling in gets easier and you have a whole new social life.
Expat life can be lonely if you’re new, especially if you’re moving alone. So be open to meeting new people, and say yes to every opportunity to socialise. Yes, the expat social scene can sometimes be superficial, but the more people you meet, the better your chances of building a good circle of friends.
The best – and quickest – way to settle into your new city is to get out and explore. Take the subway to a stop that seems interesting; see the coolest attractions in the city; find places to do some outdoor exercise; or try all the restaurants in your neighborhood. Soon enough, you’ll know the city like the back of your hand – plus you’ll be ready to show friends and family around when they finally visit.
Moving abroad is a big change, so make the effort to take it all in and then check in with yourself to make sure you feel good about your new life. Whether your write a journal, practice meditation, or just take five minutes each evening to think about how your day went, processing the changes can be helpful in succeeding in your new home.
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