It’s not just about cultural awareness. How we personally react to differences in general plays a huge part in adjusting to life abroad. Being aware of cultural differences prior to moving abroad gives us the opportunity to assume how things may turn out. However, our personal ability to adjust to differences determines how well and how quickly we settle in.
At least some understanding of what life abroad could be like is important to avoid having difficulties acclimatising. The idea of simply turning up oblivious to the culture sounds unwise. Just adapting to new conditions is difficult on its own. Without prior knowledge of how things work in the new environment, life abroad will be more challenging.
Our attitudes toward an unknown environment and the approach we use to handle the challenges determine our emotional and psychological wellbeing.
This useful awareness of oneself helps those who move abroad to identify their ups and downs more easily and to work on balancing the mood swings more effectively.
In reality, not many people know themselves well enough to handle the difficulties that life abroad conveys. The stronger our reactions to things, the less emotionally stable we are. Understanding the deeper levels of our personality may help us to adjust to life abroad more easily.
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