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The Art Of Cultural Adjustment: Getting Used To A New Home

It might be because you are on a long travelling holiday. Or because you have moved home permanently. Either way, getting used to a new culture can be challenging. Depending on which two cultures you have moved between, the adjustment period might even take up to many years. Presumably, there is a strong motivation behind your move, so it is a good idea to keep that at the forefront of your mind if things get tough. However, at some point you need to try and work through your culture shock. This is something which can take a long time, and it is an often painful process. Let’s take a look at how to make this process a little easier on yourself.

Get The Administration Out Of The Way First

Before you get into the process of trying to assimilate yourself into the new culture, it is a good idea to sort out all of your admin. There is likely to be plenty of paperwork which you need to complete and sign in order to make your move complete. Often, people fail to do this for a long time after moving. However, if you fall behind on some of this stuff, you might find yourself being deported or in trouble. Make sure you hire an immigration solicitor at your earliest opportunity. They will be able to help you with all of the paperwork. Then, you can get on with getting used to your new culture.

Understand The Nature Of Culture Shock

When you go from one culture to a different culture, you often experience what is known as culture shock. Most people have experienced this to some degree, but it is a whole other thing when you are moving permanently or for a long time. There are actually four recognised stages of culture shock. First up, you have the honeymoon period. This is when you are still fascinated by everything, and excited for your new life to begin. Then you have the rejection and culture shock itself. This is characterised by irritation and hostility, as well as a rejection of the culture. Then you have gradual adjustment, at which point recovery begins. A new humour usually appears at this point, a fresher perspective. Finally, you are able to assimilate yourself fully – you have adapted and become bicultural.

The Importance Of Meeting People

Knowing the different phases of culture shock can help you to be prepared when they happen to you. It is important to understand that they are natural, and they happen to everyone. One of the most important things you can do to minimise your culture shock is to meet as many new people as possible. The more you throw yourself into the culture, the quicker you will feel comfortable and at home there. If you shy away from new experiences, however, then it is unlikely that you will feel happy in your new home. This kind of experience is always going to be difficult, but with time and practice you will soon find yourself feeling like your same old self.

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