How to overcome culture shock

Some good ways to successfully minimize and overcome culture shock are to read about the place where you will be staying and the things you will be doing, also, if possible, speak with someone already living in the new environment.

Once you are there, keep in mind that people and customs may be very different from what you are used to. Having realistic expectations and realizing that difficulties and misunderstandings may occur will help you keep a cool head when they do, and keeping an open mind will allow you to find solutions to those problems that may arise.

When possible interact with the local population. Don't succumb to the temptation to isolate yourself, even if it is within a group of compatriots. Locals will generally be pleased to introduce you to their culture and willing to answer questions. Don't be afraid of making mistakes. When you are eager to learn people are usually more than willing to meet you half-way and learn from you in turn.

Find ways to keep in touch with family and friends at home. Sometimes you just need to talk with someone who fully understands who you are and feels that your way of being is not strange, or rude. Keeping in touch also makes the homecoming process much easier.

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