Finally, you move away! It’s the start of a new adventure. It’s your first day in a new place. The only obstacle is you don’t speak this language.
Finally, you move away! It’s the start of a new adventure. It’s your first day in a new place. The only obstacle is you don’t speak this language. Waking up in a foreign land is easy if you have the right support.
What’s that you say? You’re scared and you’re alone? You’re new to the country and you don’t know the language? You’re having a hard time getting a job?
None of this is surprising to me, and I’m here to tell you, you’re not alone! I’ve worked in nonprofits in several different countries and, in all of these situations, you’re going to get through this.
So, what are some of the things you can do?
Learn your target language (or another language)
Spend your free time with others who can speak your language. Meet other expats at expat forums, expat communities, or language classes. In most of the countries I’ve been to, expats can live pretty comfortably on $100-$200 a month.
Have a positive mindset
It’s your first day in a new city where you don’t speak the language.
It’s a night out on the town and the only person you know is the friend that picked you up.
Your first holiday in a new country.
You’re about to go off on a guided tour to some remote island and you’re nervous that you’ll get lost, or the boat will sink, or that you’ll get eaten by a shark, or some other calamity.
There are all sorts of things that could happen to you.
Maybe you could fall and break a bone, or get bitten by a snake.
Maybe you could get lost in a cave, or you could slip on a patch of ice, or fall down a ravine.
There are some things that have been known to happen in life and the main thing to remember is that you’ll survive.
You’ll have to find a way to make it through, somehow.
You’ll need to find a way to deal with whatever happens.
You’ll be fine, you just need to be prepared.
You’ll need to be as strong as you can be.
You’ll need to look after yourself and be the best person you can be.
When bad things happen to us we sometimes think that we’re not tough enough or we’re not smart enough.
And you’ll think that if you had been better prepared you’d have been able to cope better.
You’ll think that if you had been older you would have been better prepared.
Or more mature.
But we’re all the same.
We’re all going to go through tough times in life.
We’re all going to go through hard times in life.
And we’re all going to come out the other side of that tough time stronger and better people.
You will, too.
You can do it.
You can be the best you can be.
You just need to keep trying.
You’ll do fine.
And that’s how I know you’re doing the right thing.
You’re doing the right thing.
Don’t make the mistake of thinking that things are going to be easy or that you’ll never have problems. Things are going to be hard at first, but you will get through them and you will have a successful time!
Find a job
There are hundreds of job openings in any given country and many companies will be more than happy to have you work for them.
Learn a trade
There are many people in the world who are passionate about something and they want to get involved. You can become an accountant, a doctor, or a graphic designer. The world is your oyster!
Pay attention to your neighbors
If you live in a foreign country, you will probably have to live with a lot of people from other countries. If you are living in a condo or a house, make sure that you get to know your neighbors. If you’re living in a dorm, make sure that you have friends on the floor or in your room. I see many international students from different countries who get along really well with one another and that is because they make an effort to get to know each other.
Follow these steps and you’re guaranteed to have a good experience abroad!