From Traveler to expat: the struggles to move to a new country

You need to learn to stop living between two countries

Are you still receiving notifications about what is going on in your country? Why don’t you deactivate them, and only check when you will decide to get informed, instead of having those notification pop in anytime. You need to learn to let it go and live with the time frame and space where you are at the moment. Avoid staying awake late in the night to talk with your friend who just starts their day. This is not sustainable on the long term. Embrace the daily life where you are and the time frame as well. 

Build a community

Wherever you are, there will be those communities around the world that will make you feel like home. Look first for the expat community, whenever it’s other international expats or the one from your country. You are sharing this common experience, you both are meeting the same issues. This naturally creates a solid bond between you.  Internet friendship is a real thing to consider as well. Thanks to Social Media, the opportunities to meet people you are sharing the same interest are huge. Especially Instagram where you can easily identify communities. Some mobile app connects people for friendship purpose only, you should give it a try as well. It may take some time to establish intimate friendships, but you have to start somewhere right? 

Understanding cultural differences is also crucial

I’m really aware of how much I’m French since I live abroad. The culture, the food, the mindset, what was normal for me, is « so french » for other people. Our manners, the time we are eating, the side of the road we are walking, all those little things we aren’t paying attention anymore suddenly are the things we are the most aware of while abroad. It can be very easy to stick with what you know. But you need to recognize, understand, and adapt to these cultural changes in the country you are living in. People are doing things differently than you do and that is ok. People have different norms and that is also ok.  

All these comments are based on my personal experience when I moved to Australia. All the situations are unique of course. Some are harder, others easier. The process is totally different for everybody. 

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