Adjusting to Life Abroad

Culture Shock or “Bumps”

Living and studying in a new place is very exciting, but it can also be frustrating.   You may feel a rollercoaster of emotions from the exhilaration of first arriving, to struggling to communicate effectively, to the joy of making new friends, to the sadness of having to leave.

Culture shock is referred to as the difficulties you may have while living and navigating in a new environment.  It is referred to as a shock, because these difficulties may be surprising or unexpected.  They are also referred as “bumps” because the differences or challenges you may face may be smaller, though none the less impactful.

Tips for Adapting

  • Keep an open mind
  • Be willing to try new things
  • Observe and listen to your surroundings
  • Spending time reflecting on your experiences
  • Keep a healthy balance between keeping in contact with home and interacting with your local, host community