After Corona, How To Adapt To New Cultures Abroad
Since you have to adapt to new people and understand how things really work there, it’s a lot of energy to spend.
Culture is the untold rules within a certain group of people, it can be within a company, a city, or a country. Each place has its own set of behaviours that everyone will respect, liking it or not. Then when we are in different places, we must understand what are those rules and how to better prepare for the challenges you’ll face in the environment you’re in.
Since we’re still living in Corona situation, it’s not possible to move or just visit a new country for now, but soon we will live as we used to. But, funnily enough, even this terrible period we’re in, make us change how we lived, changing also a little our culture, sadly culture of fear and solitude, but still for a short period (I hope) changed in our way of living.
I live in Germany for almost 2 years and a half, and since then I’ve been learning a lot about the European culture, and the German of course. And had a lot of fun moments understanding the differences between cultures from my country and where I am now. So, I could say that in the beginning is really hard to get used to all the changes, especially if you are with the family. With family are more people to get used to the new.
You choose to change “cultures”, changes which you’ve chosen to face in your life, it can be for many reasons, money, security, experiences in life. For me, it was a choice to have an experience abroad. Although I’m learning new things about Germany and other countries that I’ve visited, one type never changes that much, companies’ cultures, because people are the same everywhere despite the place where they live in the world.
From many challenges we face when we are somewhere with different cultures, some things are important to keep in mind:
- Assume nothing or jump to conclusions: When you are going somewhere new, you will face a big change in your life, which we should prepare you for. Like when I moved to Germany, I thought it would be easy for me, but it wasn’t like that. Besides the language, some things are really different here and I wasn’t aware how it would impact me, like the paperwork we have here. Not to mention the food, the people, and so on. Their perspective about how things work is totally different compared to my homeland (Brazil).
- For you to adapt to a new culture it’s required an open mindset: Since I moved, I had to have in my mind that changes will happen, then I would be able to fully appreciate what the new environment would give to me, in this case, what Germany could provide me. It’s important to be open to these moments and accept that changes come. For some people, it might be difficult, especially for those who fight against any changes they might face.
- Learn to work with the new and not against it: Instead of fighting against the culture, it’s better to be open to the changes and learn from everything and everyone close to you, this will give you more chances to adapt quickly, not to mention you will have a lot more new experiences and new stories to tell. But it’s important to understand that you are not in your own “environment”, which means it’s important to better adapt to respect the culture you’re in, so you will meet people how might help you. After all, you don’t want to be the person who everyone might hate.
Changes are never easy, with time it will be, but changes, depending on the reason you had to face those changes, will be hard. Like changing jobs, it’s hard, since you have to adapt to new people, new processes, and understand how things really work there, it’s a lot of energy to spend in those moments. One thing is for sure, people are the same everywhere, but the culture changes from place to place.