As an immigrant who moved to a new country and made it his home , I see how people can wonder about this matter and find themselves with lots of questions. Previously I talked about 11 things to do when moving to a new country , so what happens then when you have already moved?
Here is my list of things to do once you have moved to a new country.
5 Values and attitudes you should grow to settle in a new country:
1.Be Patient: For those ambitioning to live abroad, they have to realise that living abroad is going to be tough, because it is changing the reality that was created for us by our family or we created ourselves elsewhere over a period of time. So to expect that this reality can be changed overnight is not realistic. Building a new life abroad is a process that would take time but it is totally possible to do.
2.Be open: I know I mentioned this in my previous article, but being open is fundamental, because I have noticed that most people that fail to settle in the new country are because they are not open to changes. Regardless if you are going to live abroad temporarily or permanently, people and culture are going to be different from what you are used to. To the likeness of people, countries are different so newcomers need to adjust their expectations.
I would also like to clarify that according to Merriam-webster dictionary change does not necessarily mean something bad, it simply means that something is different to the way it was before.
3. Familiarize yourself to the culture: When you are new to a language and/or country there are a lot of things that you would need to get familiarized with, in order to be able to fully enjoy and connect with the new adventure. Things like: what is the culture of the new country, what is important i.e in New Zealand, Maori culture is strong and rooted within the culture of the country and its people.
4. Understand that homesickness is normal: Missing your loved ones, food,traditions and culture of your previous home is normal as we are emotional creatures. A good practice to tame this feeling would be to keep in touch with your loved ones on an ongoing basis, cook traditional food or buy it if possible from restaurants. Naturally it would take about six months to a year before it feels like your new home.
5. Connect with others:Try connecting with others by joining groups,clubs, sports, and any other possible channel that would help you create your new group of friends/gang/family. I assure you there are others that are living a similar situation to you, reach out to them and connect 🙂
8 Actionable and practical steps to do once you have moved to a New Country:
- Make your living spaces homey: I might sound a little bit old but making your living spaces yours, would help settling in. Creating a great environment at your home/apartment is definitely crucial, normally people tend to be at home for at least a period of 10 hours, which means that if you are not happy with your living spaces that is going to influence how happy your overall experience is going to be like.
- Open A bank account: Easy but very essential, specially for those who are aiming to stay in the long term, choosing a bank that has a great range of products and services would help you settle.
- Getting a licence and buying a car: A great way of making your life easier is to have a car as people can use it for pleasure and business purposes; a car would save you time, allow you to do more things and be independent. Also it looks great when looking for a job as some of them are required to have a licence in order to be able to apply.
- Get a job: It might sound basic but the best way of learning a new language, blending in with a new culture or getting to know a new country is to actually work with locals as it would challenge you to understand their local linguo, their way to speak and communicate within and outside the work environment. In terms of work ambience it would shine a light on understanding their work ethics, laws and politics.
- Have a hobby: Hobbies are a great way of keeping your mind and body active, they would also connect with others and yourself. When living abroad too much death time can translate in over thinking and over worrying. Find something that would make you happy and make the most out of it.
- Connect with local stores: Finding local providers for different services and products is very important because this would help your life to run smoothly. If you ever want to know more about this in NZ my blog is all about where to go and what to do around here.
- Get to know the politics: knowing what your rights and responsibilities are would help you keep up with your obligations towards the government like taxes and fees. But would also clarify what benefits can the government provide.
- Create a Routine: Developing a great routine would help you get settled as it would keep you focused on your goals, give you structure and guidance on what your day to day is going to look like and what to expect of it.
Cautiousness actions to help you settle down :
- Start saving: I would love to believe that everyone is saving, but if you are not, it is very important that you make this a priority as living abroad can bring extra expenses that are not planned but still would need to get covered. Things like: Applying to visas, medical expenses and so on.
- Get insurance: Everyone should be as cautious as possible. What a better way than having an insurer backing you in case something out of the ordinary happens i.e losing your job, accidents and injuries.
- Allow sufficient time when applying for visas: I think in any country visas applications are extremely time consuming. Not only for you to collect all the information needed and filling applications but also the time those take to be either approved or denied. Please bear in mind that more documents could be asked from you, so allowing extra time is primordial.
- Housing: If you are into real estate, start studying the market and what your options are because nowadays acquiring a property is a process that would take a period of time and planning. It would always pay off to be prepared ahead and know where you stand.
I would like to end this article by encouraging you to enjoy what you are living. Settling down in a new country is a process that can be long or short according to your circumstances, but it would definitely bring learning and growth to your life. Please do not get overwhelmed by it and if you do, know that there are people out there that you can reach out to.