Как да убедите родители си да ви пуснат на обмен в чужбина

Thursday, April 17, 2014

How to Deal With Culture Shock During Your Exchange Year

Moving to another country to study abroad is sure to be one of the most wonderful and exhilarating experiences in your life, but it can also be very daunting! Finding yourself in unfamiliar surroundings can sometimes be difficult, and the things you originally thought of as exotic can quickly turn into things that make you feel annoyed, uncomfortable or homesick. But you shouldn’t let it get you down, and we’re here to help you work through your culture shock and make sure your exchange year is the best experience it could possibly be!

Here’s a list of things to help you deal with culture shock, if it happens:

1: Do your research

Before you go on your exchange, it helps to know what to expect! Go online and read blogs written by people living in your new city/country, watch some local movies or television shows, and read books about it. Trying to learn the language before you get there also helps. Even if you can only say ‘hello’ and ‘thank you’, it will go a long way in the first few weeks. Researching your new home won’t tell you everything there is to know, but it will help you ease into the culture much more successfully.

2: Find a friend in your new culture

Making close friends with locals in your new home is one of the most important parts of being an exchange student, and they can help you more than you might realise. Whether this is a member of your host family or a friend at school, find someone who can help you understand things about your new culture that you find confusing or overwhelming. They will most likely be happy to help explain things!

3: Do something familiar

If you’re feeling particularly out of place, things that remind you of home can help a lot. Figure out how to make your favorite food from home, and cook it for your host family! If there’s a holiday from your home culture, have a celebration for it and invite all your new friends. Listen to music and watch movies in your own language. Sometimes you just need to have a little connection with home to make you feel less isolated!

4: Write down your feelings

Keeping a private journal can really help you to work through the feelings you have about your new home. You can then later look back and see how much you have grown and changed since the beginning of your exchange year. You can also take your journal and turn it into a blog for your family and friends to read, but just make sure you don’t post anything too negative while you’re still in the worst of culture shock—you don’t want to unintentionally hurt your host family and new friends.

The important thing to remember about going on a student exchange is that you’re there to learn as much as possible about your new culture. Although at times your new home might seem confronting, you will finish your exchange with a much bigger world view and new perspectives on your own culture.

Make sure that when you are on exchange you are not always thinking about your home country, and try not to make constant comparisons between the two cultures. You will miss out on many new and unique experiences by doing this! Exchanges are not always easy and there will be bad moments, but they are worth it for the amazing memories and great friends you will make that will stay with for a lifetime.

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