How to Overcome Challenges of Moving Abroad

Moving abroad is an opportunity and a challenge for those sent by a company, those who look for work, or those who go for studies. I would like to move abroad - how often do we hear or say it ourselves? The wish to settle abroad may be a novelty. But then, when the dream acquires the concreteness of the purpose, this immediately tastes like a challenge.

A stay abroad can be wonderful and an opportunity for personal growth. But it's not all that simple. In front of you, there would be problems and moments of crisis. Moving abroad is more than just a pleasure trip or a visit to friends who live far away. It is about questioning who you are and what you really want from yourself.

It involves leaving your roots and being immersed in a new world. It is a parallel universe so to speak. Life with its basic functions (eating, sleeping, working, etc.) will have to be lived in a totally different context to which you are accustomed.

At first sight, living abroad seems like maximum fun and unforgettable moments. In the beginning, when you are about to leave, you live an almost unreal phase. Then the beginning in the new country is like a honeymoon. Everything is to be discovered and is full of charm. But staying abroad is not a journey, its real life.

Afterward, in daily life, one will come up against difficulties and differences. Where do I go? How can I live there? These are the questions to be addressed. You have to face the challenges and stress of every day. And your support system, your family, and your friends are far from you and from the problems, you may encounter.

It is easy to settle in in a developing country for work reasons, but then the salary will be expected to be lower. And then there would be professional challenges. The key points related to this change in life would range from health services to the possible choice of school for children. A new country would have variables that are not so obvious.

You can get health insurance that also covers the ingrown toenail, but may not have all the holidays you have in India. There can be bonuses and incentives all year round, but you cannot celebrate Holi, Dussehra, and Diwali, like in India. And the taste of tandoori chicken tikka is different anyway.

Travel opens up your mind to a multitude of cultures, beliefs, folklore that sparks your imagination. The more you travel, the more you see the alikeness in people irrespective of the geographical area, faith, race and so on. Travel makes you more of a visual person. And being visual is vital in our self development.

The more you travel, the more you start loving mankind. You start seeing things from others perspective too. Traveling to a new country makes you more mindful of your surroundings. Your problems and issues will start becoming minuscule and you finally learn to let go.

One will ask, for example: how is the man-woman relationship there? How is the organization of time? Does individualism or collectivism prevail? What are the boundaries of privacy and what is the dress code? Finally, we arrive at integration. If after a few years you decide to fall back, the shock travels in reverse, because you look at the old reality through the experience of the new one and nothing can be as it was before.

The frustration is increased by the sense of ingratitude. You will probably find yourself interacting with a culture different from yours and you will face a cultural shock. You will experience a progression of emotions ranging from euphoria to the worry of having to recreate a life in a new place. A different language, different social norms and new and unknown food can make you feel lost and disoriented. There could be language barriers, different food habits and a chaotic and immoderate city.

Here is how to overcome and better manage the challenges of an experience abroad

We are told since we are children that learning English is essential for living in a globalized world. However, English is not (yet) indispensable or completely integrated into professional life. The only way to master the language is to live in the country where it is spoken daily. This does not mean you have to live a whole life in the United States or in Great Britain.

Then after you have moved to the place try to reconnect to the place where you are with a renewed spirit. Try to remember the reasons that led you to choose that experience and that particular place. Visit the museums that you wanted to see or relax in the bars that struck you when you arrived. Try to appreciate the city where you are living.

Take some time to enjoy it authentically. It is only when you integrate fully you can perceive a place teeming with life.

Pay attention to your real needs and allow yourself moments of relaxation. Then you will have more energy to enjoy other activities. If you used to exercise, do not lose the habit that you like best. There are a thousand opportunities to continue your good habits abroad and this will allow you to release stress and feel better.

But even the most intellectual hobbies can help you like reading a book, writing a blog about your experience and taking pictures in the most interesting places. It will allow you to link your passions to your experience abroad. It is not just about what, but also about how we eat.

In Greece and Turkey, it is common to order voluminous trays rich in meat, vegetables, and cheeses surrounded by different types of spices. In Northern Europe, eating hamburgers does not necessarily mean going to McDonald's. The culture of meat and vegetable sandwich actually involves the use of a wide variety of types of sauces, meat, and vegetables.

While you are having your best time in Spain during the Nochevieja or new year eve, you can discover that having dinner with tapas and a good beer is normal despite the small portions. Why not give an opportunity to the different and be enchanted? The vegetarian Romanian food is more and more appreciated internationally.

First of all there will certainly be a Romanian fish soup. For second you can not taste the saramura de crap or of torpedo (carp in brine), grilled torpedo or a turbot with tomato sauce and garlic. In Austria, Grøstl is very popular.

Try to speak to someone having same problems like you. While your family and friends at home may not understand exactly what you are experiencing, other international students and travelers can understand exactly what you are feeling.

How many times do you complain about some aspects of your life that you wish to change? Mathematics can help you in this case. If the habits you want to change are greater than those that satisfy you, you simply have to take action. Staying abroad in a country where you do not know anyone and every detail is new can be a very effective solution.

Every little daily challenge becomes an adventure to be lived in full. You will discover yourself much more active and you will find energies that you did not think you had. The cherry on the cake is that you will have the opportunity to set your life exactly as you want.

Do you want to have brilliant stories to tell during dinner with friends? Living abroad can only help you expand your repertoire! In Finland, you may experience bathing in a frozen lake before being in a hot sauna again. If you participate in a Hungarian wedding, maybe after midnight you can dance with the bride dressed in red and you can try a few glasses of palinka.

If you want to travel to Spain, while the best time to visit Spain or any other European country is during Christmas in your winter holidays, during the summer in Bayonne, in France, you can certainly see groups of staggering young people wandering, dressed in white with red cowboy kerchiefs. Whatever experience you will experience, it will remain forever in your memory.

Nowadays, there are a lot of ways through which you can meet people who also love traveling and meeting new people.

Social media groups

There are a lot of Facebook groups made by travel enthusiasts from all around the World. People post and connect regularly on those groups and share their travel plans asking the fellow group members if any of them is interested to join them during their expedition.


It is used all around the world by many people. So basically there are global homestays and social networking services accessible via websites and mobile apps.


Hostels are again a great option for a budget stay and to meet like-minded travelers around the world. Hostels are present all around the World.

And a final tip - whenever you live an unforgettable moment, touch your ear or listen to a song. When you have a particularly heavy day at work retouch your ear or listen to that song. You will magically feel the wonderful sensations that have made you feel so much alive!

Each of us has our way of seeing and living things, but an experience abroad today is a great opportunity to grow professionally, humanly and culturally. Sooner or later, we should try what it means to feel like a stranger.
Kalyan Panja