How to manage cultural shock after an international move to Bahrain
January 6, 2016
If you are embarking on an international move to Bahrain, you may find that you can easily prepare for the practical concerns such as packing, ordering new furniture and even finding a new place to live. However, once you are settled and living in your new country, culture shock can begin unexpectedly.
There are 4 phases to culture shock.
Phase 1: Also called the ‘honeymoon stage’. During this period everything in the new place seems charming, interesting and exciting.
Phase 2: The next stage is when we begin to encounter daily difficulties of living in the new environment and notice the differences between life in the previous location and life in Bahrain. Small obstacles such as trying to navigate around the area or holding a conversation can trigger negative feelings.
Phase 3: If we allow ourselves to continue learning about the new culture while navigating through the obstacles we can come out the other side and begin to feel much better.
Phase 4: During this stage the new place starts feeling a like home, we succeed in making local friends, we no longer fret a lot about bad things, and we enjoy the good things and experiences.
It’s important to remember that all of the negative feelings experienced at the early phases of culture shock are based on your perspective of the new home and these can easily be fixed.
Ask yourself, what does your new country have that your old one doesn’t. There will be many opportunities to try new things and think positive.
Exploring the culture can be as simple as going for a walk around the city, visiting a new restaurant or join to an expat club. Seek out opportunities where you can get involved in new activities and learn about the culture and meet new people at the same time. From our experience we know that not every day will be easy but during the challenging moments it’s important to stay open minded and positive.