Anxious and overwhelmed about moving abroad for work? Take a deep breath and check out these tips on how to mentally prepare for this big change.
You did it! You got the job abroad! Excitement sets in on the first few days. You’re excited to live in a new place, meet new people, and face new opportunities. But as reality soon sets in, the excitement takes a somber turn. You become nervous and even sad about the things and people you have to leave behind. You might even be regretting your decision.
But wait! Don’t back out of this great opportunity now! It’s completely normal for you to feel nervous or even get cold feet about moving abroad for work. Let’s face it. This is a big change and going through big changes can certainly come with these overwhelming feelings of doubt. However, there are ways to help you feel more relaxed about your choice. Let’s go through ways you can cope and mentally prepare yourself for moving abroad.
  1. Consider the Reasons Why You Are Moving
    Relax and check the facts. Think about your reason for moving abroad. In this case, you are moving for work. Try and focus on what you wish to accomplish at this new job of yours. Think about how it will help you achieve your goals in the future. There is a saying that goes “everything you’ve ever wanted is on the other side of fear.” Now think about what you might be missing out on if you back out of this opportunity.
  2. Research
    Good preparation will give you peace of mind. Research about your destination—not only about the country as a whole, but also about the area you will be living and working in. You will feel more relaxed knowing what you are getting into beforehand. You might also want to reach out to the people you will be working with in order to get a head start on making new friendships.
  3. Plan a Routine
    Not only are you going to claim a new job but you will have the chance to claim a new lifestyle as well. This tip ties in well with the last. Knowing your surroundings will help you plan your routine. Are there coffee shops you can go to before work? Which grocery stores can you go to for your regular shopping? Is there a park or route where you can go for a weekly jog? Establishing a routine like this will help you feel more at home and help you stay calm while settling in.
  4. Plan New Adventures and Activities
    Scheduling new activities is just as important as establishing a routine. Routines tend to nudge you out of your comfort zone bit by bit to help you stay open to new experiences. Perhaps you want to take language classes to help you communicate better with the locals at your destination country. Maybe take some time exploring the natural wonders of the country with an outdoor hike or a city tour. These will also be opportunities to meet and make new friends along the way.
  5. Schedule a Time To Talk To Family And Friends
    It is totally normal to feel homesick. Do not feel ashamed when you are hit with a random pang of longing for your home, your family, and your friends. Schedule a regular time to speak with your people back at home. Technology has allowed us better means to stay in touch with family members and friends. A video chat or two a week will be good for your soul. Why not take this time to tell them all about your experiences for the week?
  6. Do Not Shut Out Your Feelings
    Because we are human beings, we feel emotions. This is completely natural so do not force feelings of sadness or homesickness down simply because you want them gone. Be gentle with yourself. Sometimes it is important and even healthy to let it out. However, it is equally as important to get yourself back on your feet and get going again. The next tip will help you out with that.
  7. Celebrate Your Success
    Make sure to celebrate yourself and your successes every once in a while no matter how small you may think it is. This will come in handy especially during the first few weeks while you are still finding your routine balance. Did you successfully commute to work for the first time? That’s great! Did you manage to greet someone 'Good day!' in the native language? Wonderful! Keep tabs on these in a journal, so that you can go back to them whenever you are feeling down to see just how far you’ve gone. And go further.
That’s it! Remember that you are strong and entirely capable of doing something like this. It takes a lot of guts to move abroad for a new job and you have exactly what it takes. That, in itself, is quite a feat.
From nailing that job interview to tips on how to pack your bags, be sure to check out for more helpful guides!