4 Ways to Feel at Home in a Foreign Country Teaching English

livingabroad
You’re on the plane to your new life and it finally registers…. you left your home! After all the running around to get everything done for your trip, selling your things, and stuffing your luggage, the reality of your decision has settled in your tummy and it is officially in knots. Doubts and questions start racing through your head: “what if I don’t fit in?” “what if I picked the wrong place?” “will I make any friends?” Well, you’re not alone! Leaving the comfort zone will bring out a whole slew of emotions. Here are a few suggestions to calm your nerves:

 

Make Your Space Cozy

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UNPACK! Don’t wait! Because the longer you put it off, the harder it will be to adjust to a new place. Waking up in the morning of a completely different room, in a completely different city, in a completely different country- and maybe even in a completely different continent!- will need some getting used to. But the relics from your old place that survived the trip will bring you the comfort to ease your transition. Any small personal touch will make all the difference, so get yourself the wall art, bed sheets, and plates that scream homey. These little details will anchor you here.

 

Learn The Routes

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How do you get to your school? Where will you get groceries? Is there any public transportation? Get the feel of your new city’s beats and rhythms. Noticing the traffic flow throughout the day, the pace people walk, and even how people drive will help you get acclimated. Once you get a good image of the map in your head, then you’ll be less nervous working your way around and you’ll start feeling right at home.

 

Find Your Spots

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Once you learn your way around, you’ll figure out which places are your go-to. You gotta have a favorite coffee shop, bar, and restaurant. Everyone needs to know where to get the cheapest beer or where the best pizza is! If you start going to the same place more and more often, then the staff will definitely start to recognize you and from there you can only make more and more connections with people.

 

Get Involved

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The best way to make friends is to go to the places you love. That way, you’ll find the like-minded people who share your hobbies and tastes. If you like movies, then maybe instead of staying home and watching them, you can go out and find movie nights hosted by the community. Are you an avid cycler? There’s usually a weekly bike ride in every city. No matter what you like to do or how obscure it may be, find the people to share your passions with! And, if you don’t have any, then now is as good a time as any to find what you love to do.

 

Right after all the nervousness, comes excitement, so just hold out! There’s no growth in the comfort zone, friends! Get out there and see what comes out of your new experiences. New habits? For sure. New friends? Definitely. But, above all, a new perspective. Is there any valuable advice you have to share, readers? Tell us something you’d never travel without!

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