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Winter Blues - Combating Loneliness in a New Country

08 Dec 2019

Winter Blues - Combating Loneliness in a New Country

Moving into a new country with a different culture, language and environment can be a daunting task. It is not uncommon for expats to succumb to feelings of isolation and loneliness due to culture shock and sudden loss of connections. However, it is very important to be proactive and responsible for your feelings to avoid this. We have some great tips on how to combat the feelings of loneliness when in a new country.

Connect with other expats through Facebook groups and blogs

There is no shortage of Facebook group and blogs online. By joining groups, you can meet new people that maybe like-minded to you, or possibly going through a similar situation. It is also possible that people on blogs and groups post about events, which you can attend and make new connections. Most countries have a thriving expat community and getting in one is a great start to making new friends and combating feelings of loneliness.

Keeping in touch with friends

Although you have moved to a new country, this does not mean that you can’t keep in contact with the people back home. Skype and Facetime allow us to interact with our family and friends daily. Take advantage of this and call them as often as you can. Reminiscing to friends about old times can not only be a good laugh but can also lead to the possibility of future plans.

Be positive

It is vital to work on your positive thinking when moving abroad from your family and friends. Direct your thoughts and consider utilising an optimistic mindset. Don’t think about the negative aspects of you move, but instead target your thoughts towards the future and how you can make it better. Remind yourself of a goal you wish to achieve in the new country, which will present the idea that this is more of a journey/challenge, even if it is for a long period of time.

Be self-aware

Being self-aware is important in the sense that you are responsible for how you feel. Remain aware of the fact that you do have choices, and that it is nobody but you holding yourself back. You can choose to stay in and indulge yourself in those feelings of loneliness or you can choose t reach out and connect. There are many things you can do to connect with people, such as a simple call to home or attending local events and groups.

Learn the language

Take action in trying to learn the language of the country you are moving/have moved to. Although challenging, there are plenty of ways you can learn the language. You can use online apps and resources, attend classes, watch programmes, listen to the radio and read books. If possible, attend a course supposed to online as it brings potential to meet new friends. This is a great way to get to talk to the locals and show your dedication to your move. It can also make you feel more involved with the community you have moved into.