Apr 01, 2023

Surviving and thriving in your new home Down Under

Adapting to new surroundings is a critical ability for anyone embarking on a life and work journey abroad.

While it’s bound to come with challenges, there are a number of things you can do to make the transition smoother and set yourself up for success in your new home Down Under.

These tips will set you up to make a strong start in Australia and make the most of the once-in-a-lifetime experience that awaits you.

Do your research

Before making a final decision on your work destination, it is important to conduct thorough research on the culture, history, politics, and social norms in Australia. This will provide a deeper understanding of the context in which you will be operating, and equip you with the knowledge you need to effectively handle any issues that may arise during your stay.

As a starting point, you can find useful information on the Australian lifestyle on the Visit Australia website, or read about Australian cultural values on the Cultural Atlas website.  

Learn English

While in Australia, learning to speak English will not only enhance your working life by enabling more effective communication with coworkers and new friends, but also simplify daily activities such as grocery shopping and using public transportation. It will also open up many more opportunities for you in Australia. Even if you’re just starting out, there are many ways to start learning, including free apps like Duo Lingo and websites like BBC Learning English

So, don’t hesitate to invest some time and effort in learning a few key phrases in English – the benefits will be well worth it!

Be open-minded

Venturing into unknown territory can be a thrilling yet intimidating experience. However, it can also serve as a growth-filled opportunity, filled with new discoveries and personal growth. Embrace new experiences with an open mind and attitude, and strive to find the silver lining in any difficulties that may arise during your travels. By doing so, you will not only overcome the challenges, but also come away with a wealth of enriching experiences.

Build a support network

Building connections with coworkers, fellow expatriates, and members of the local community is a crucial step in making your stay abroad a success. Having a supportive network can ease feelings of isolation and provide you with a wealth of valuable resources and information. So, make an effort to reach out, establish relationships, and cultivate a strong support network during your time abroad. This will not only enhance your experience, but also lay the foundation for long-lasting connections and memories.

Take care of yourself

Adapting to a foreign land can put a considerable amount of stress on you, both physically and emotionally. That’s why it’s crucial to prioritise self-care throughout the entire process. Nourish your body with nutritious meals, engage in physical activity, and ensure that you get sufficient rest. Additionally, don’t hesitate to reach out for support if you are feeling overwhelmed or in need of assistance. Taking care of yourself during this transition will help ensure a smoother and more fulfilling experience.

Stay connected with home

Being away from home, even for a short while, can bring feelings of loneliness. However, staying connected with loved ones back home can help bridge that gap and provide a sense of comfort and familiarity. Whether through phone calls, video chats, emails, or other means of communication, regular contact with your family and friends is essential for maintaining your happiness and well-being during your time abroad. So, don’t hesitate to reach out and stay connected to the people and places you hold dear.

Be culturally aware

Culture shock is very real when it comes to long-term overseas travel, particularly if you have never been away from home. While the local culture and customs will likely be unfamiliar to you, it’s important to be respectful and mindful of your actions and words, and to avoid any behaviour that could be considered offensive.

Australia is a vibrant, multicultural country, home to a population with diverse backgrounds, and a place where you can embrace your own culture while learning about and enjoying others’. For more information on cultural diversity in Australia, visit the Australian Human Rights Commission website

Maintain a positive attitude

When you’re in the process of adapting to a new environment, maintaining a positive attitude is key. Things may not always go as planned but maintaining a positive attitude will help you navigate any challenges that come your way.

Be prepared 

Travelling means opening yourself up to the unexpected, and it’s important to have contingency plans in place to account for this; for example, how will you cope if you experience homesickness, or lose something important on the trip? While our team has plans in place to assist workers with a wide range of issues that may arise during their work placement, developing your own strategy prior to the trip could be very helpful.

Stay informed

The more you know, the safer you’ll be while overseas! Follow a trusted news source to stay in the loop about current events in the country you are working in, particularly any potential safety risks, and follow your company protocols and the advice of local authorities.

Moving to a new country to work is a major decision that comes with a host of new requirements, responsibilities and challenges. If you would like to travel overseas for work and need more expert advice on navigating the process, contact us via our website.

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