Studying abroad requires making some lifestyle changes. Even returning home at the end of the study program. Living abroad makes you different from the person you were when you left. Studying abroad transforms you culturally, personally, and intellectually. You get new values, ideas, and habits that you might not even realize.
The people close to you expect you to remain the same person you were before going and are likely to find it hard time comprehend these changes. Your loved ones now find it hard to understand your transformative experience. Balancing the old roles without breaking the one ones is quite challenging. You might end up with stress and subsequent helplessness also known as culture shock.
Here are strategies to fit back into society after a study abroad program.
Understand and acknowledge the changes
It is very important to understand and acknowledge the changes you’re gone through while studying abroad. This is a very important step in fitting back into society after getting back home. Your view of everything around you is now changed yet your family and friends might not realize it. Spending time explaining to them why you’re now doing or seeing things in a different perspective is not something simple.
Consider keeping a journal where you continuously jot down all your reflections. The writing doesn’t have to be lengthy. Just use a few sentences and words. You can keep your journal as a file on your computer. This can become an excellent outlet to make fitting back in your old circles after you join best high school study abroad programs a breeze.
Connect with new friends you made
The best thing about joining a study abroad program is making friends from different backgrounds. Fortunately, you can connect with them online on Skype, Whatsapp, Facebook, or email. Despite not being together physically, keeping in touch allows sharing experiences about adjusting to life when back home.
Alternatively, you can meet physically with other people who also studied abroad. Meeting up with these people who underwent similar experiences allows learning from each other. It is so easy to find a meetup of other study abroad students or contact an agency that organizes study abroad programs. Interacting with people who understand your concerns is an essential part of healing.
Don’t bury your memories
When you have just got back, your friends and family will be very eager to listen to your experiences in a foreign country. And, there’s usually a lot to tell them. However, they are likely to become bored with your stories. sooner than later, you’re likely to find yourself keeping the memories to yourself. However, keeping your memories alive through expression is part of adjusting back into your community.
One way to express your experience during the study abroad program is to begin a blog. Add unique, insightful, and interesting posts to attract readership. You canals begin sharing your experience on a travel site. If you recorded some videos you feel can be helpful to others, share them on Youtube or TikTok. Additionally, make a scrapbook or print and frame the pictures you took while abroad.
Encourage other students to take the plunge
Another way to avoid reverse culture shock after a study abroad program is by encouraging others to take the plunge. Consider volunteering as a peer mentor to meet prospective students. Giving them insights about your experience will show them the right direction to take. You can also join other study abroad alumni to talk about your experiences during fairs and events.
Start exploring your country
When back home from a study abroad program, use the experience as an inspiration to begin touring your home country. Now that you have realized that travel is fun and a fulfilling experience, consider traveling across your country. You will be amazed at the various beautiful and exciting places, events, concerts, and parks near you.
Ask for help
Lastly, coping with culture shock after a study abroad program requires being mindful about fighting back in your old community. Never hesitate to reach out to family, friends, and professional counselors when reverse culture shock begins taking a toll on your lifestyle. This will ensure that you don’t suffer from anxiety and depression.
Joining a study abroad program is a necessary evil for high school students. It allows indulging in a new culture, speaking a foreign language, and seeing the world from a new perspective. Coping with a new culture on reaching abroad is challenging at first before you finally pick it up. The same happens when you get back. Use the tips above to make the transition into your old lifestyle easier.