How long does it take to adjust to life overseas?

romeIt’s evident that moving to a new country is never easy. When you move you leave your comfort zone behind, and begin experiencing a wide range of uncertainties and difficulties. New languages, new food, new people, new customs, different social etiquette like eating pizza with a fork, new transportation like train systems you must memorize in order to get around, and many names you can’t pronounce.

The list of things you have to learn once you arrive seems endless. Having a normal routine in a familiar environment seems impossible. Many can’t handle an international move and begin giving up in a few months. Through my personal experience after moving to France was that you need to give yourself six to nine months to truly start feeling comfortable in a new place.  Leaving any earlier is giving up.

Adapting to a new culture takes time, patience, and personal inner strength. Through this blog I hope to share my personal experience with those who are abroad, faraway, and thinking of giving up. Last year I found myself with an unexpected yet great opportunity to move to France. I accepted the offer knowing that it would lead to a great experience and career. To say that France was completely different from the United States is an understatement.  I had envisioned Paris, France to be comparable to New York City. Although, it did have similarities: gridlocked traffic, packed subway system, visible inequalities in wealth, and mixed cultures.

Feeling safe and secure and making friends took me about one month. Finally adapting and feeling accepted in a foreign culture took me six months. When the time came to return, I had fallen in love with France and I felt like I was leaving home. Give yourself enough time to adapt and learn to be patient, tolerant and accepting of differences.

 

 

Company Challenge: The Global Market

“Don’t be afraid to create new experience while conducting business travel”

Business travel may seem like a hassle for many executives while a perk to others. Although everyone has their own opinion these are some of the great benefits business travel may offer:

  1. Earning Miles: airlines offer great business class traveler many perks to make you feel at home including a business class lounge with free food and drinks. You may also discover faster check-in options to help you save time. Research airlines separately to benefit from these perks.
  2. Meet New People: you will never be lonely at an airport. Networking or making new clients is easier when you are in airports. The majority of business travelers frequent the same airports you do, why not make new friends while you wait for a flight.
  3. Experience New Things: love trying new food? How about visiting museums? Or watching sports? Traveling for business gives you the opportunity to build new experiences along the way. Enjoy each new place you visit by trying things that are not available in your home office.

If your doubting an opportunity for business travel think again and remember these benefits and say, yes to these new opportunities.