Living abroad? Take Notes of these 4 Culture Shock Stages!

Mon, 24 May 2021

Culture shock is a typical circumstance that people worldwide will experience if they choose to leave their hometown. With many people travel from one country to another, culture shock can affect people differently depending on many aspects such as location, weather, or traditions.

Some people might think they are immune to this phenomenon however, it is all about the timing. It may take weeks and even months for some people to feel it. By the time the symptoms strike, there are no fixed approaches to avoiding them as it is inevitable to everyone traveling.

As we have mentioned before, people will react differently to this situation. Nonetheless, you can try to understand these 4 shock culture stages to help yourself to anticipate it! So, let’s check it out!

1. Honeymoon Phase

The first time you arrive at a new place, you might think, “Oh! This is awesome!”. If that is the case, it means you are in the honeymoon phase. Whether you are there for work, travel, or study purposes, you are really excited to explore more about that place.

The duration of this phase could differ for some people, though. For people who are just going on a short trip, this phase can exist until they go back home and don’t have time for another phase to step in.

Meanwhile, for those staying for a long time, this phase will slowly phase-out, and the next phase will develop. With that said, you need to be ready as the ‘happy’ stage may not be the same anymore.

2. Frustration Phase

This is where the negative effects of culture shock strike your days. Familiar with the word ‘homesick’? This phase plays a big part in developing your homesickness. As time flies by, you will have to face and do things that you don’t usually do, such as walking to the bus stop or even small things like locking your door.

Many things can be so irritating or simply don’t make sense in your head for so many reasons. This phase is the worst part as it can cause you to feel strange about yourself and the environment around you. Hence, you can get frustrated and feeling homesick. When you are in this phase, it is best to try to think positive and try to call your parents or loved ones – they might help!

3. Adjustment Phase

As the frustrations kick in, you may want to think of things you should do to make yourself ready for such things. The solutions you find are how you cope with this culture shock situation. It will make you more familiar with the environment around you. That is what you called the adjustment phase.

The adjustment phase is not going to happen quickly. You will have to let yourself slowly become familiar with things that are happening around you. As we have mentioned before, the way people cope with things and familiarize themselves will be different. Therefore, start finding your own solutions and turn it into something that will help you get through all of the culture shock phases.

4. Adaptation and Acceptance Phase

Lastly, you are finally able to act in acceptance with your new surroundings. After you experience all the phases above, you get to adapt and become more comfortable with all of the differences you had to encounter in your new environment. During this phase, you will realize that culture shock will always be a part of living abroad. Therefore, you need to have all the strategies applied to survive.

This phase might not happen as quickly after the adjustment phase, but try to think of ways to make you feel at home to overcome everything that makes you uncomfortable.

5. Re-entry Shock

Yes, we have a bonus on the list for you to be ready for what is to expect if you ever go back to your home country. It is not part of the culture shock stages but after many years of living abroad, you will become more adapted to your new country and less used to the customs in your home country. Unfortunately, you have to experience a what-so-called “Re-entry Shock.”

It is the moment when you finally go back to your home country, but you feel really isolated, and everything that you used to experience there has become unfamiliar. One way to overcome this phase is by making yourself busy to get distracted and slowly become yet again feel at ease in your own home.

So, are you planning to live abroad?

It definitely sounds exciting to move somewhere far with whole new different cultures and habits. However, you also have to learn and excel at the language that the people are using in your country destination as you will need to converse with them.

Are you still looking for the right place to learn a new language? LingoTalk can help you speak like a native in 10 languages you can choose by simply clicking on this link to register!

Culture Shock

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