Reverse culture shock happens when you move back to your home country and often is worse than culture shock. Many people realise that living in a foreign country can be difficult but going back home is often harder. When you go back home you expect things to be the same as when you left. However, things change.
Perhaps the most difficult thing to come to terms with is that you have changed. By living in another culture you see things differently than before. You've broadened your horizons and see your country, job, family, and friends in a new light. You may get frustrated with family and friends when they ask you about the country you lived in or that they don't know much about the world. You may miss things from abroad such as transport, local foods, or the people. Knowing about culture shock and what to expect will help you get used to life back home.
- Keep in touch with friends and family at home while you are abroad.
- Keep up-to-date with the news from your home country.
- Continue to study the foreign language.
- Keep in touch with your friends abroad.
- Visit neighbourhoods with people from that country. If you lived in China, head to Chinatown.
- Understand that it takes time to re-adjust.
- Interact with people from that country. Your community college or university might have exchange students. You could try setting up a language exchange.
- You can find more tips in this post at Dave's ESL Cafe.
Just because you're home doesn't mean that you can't leave again.
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