5 emotions you'll face after living abroad.

Returning home from a long period of travel or living abroad is going to be a bumpy ride for most.

The reverse culture / re entry shock transition brings about a wide and range of emotions across a broad spectrum. Sometimes you feel on top of the world full of excitement to settle back into your home and see family and old friends whilst other times you will feel sad, empty and lost. Your left wondering why you even returned home in the first place.

Unease, unsettled, sadness and empty.

This is a time of big changes so it’s completely valid to be feeling a sense of unease. Things are changing in quite a dramatic way so it is common to feel unsettled, you life has been uprooted and your environment, routine, surroundings and friendship groups are going to be different. Sad feelings come from having to leave a life behind, relationships you have built, memories you have made and in some cases a place you call home, whether that be in another country or living out of your backpack. Letting all of this go it is easy to have these empty feelings. The feeling of unease is because things are likely changing in a big way

Tip: journal write about this, talk to those close to you, seek help, other things you can do.

Excited and happy.

In contrast feeling excited for change is very common. A chance to see friends and family and be surrounded by loved ones and happy memories of the past. Reconnections and excitement for the next chapter of your life or a new adventure even if it is in an old place where you once lived. Things will be different and some things will be the same. Comforts will come flooding back to you. What new things you can start? What life can you design?

Tip: embrace this feeling and emotions and really step into it. Start to find a focus that makes you want to get up for every day career, project, hobby, relationship, lifestyle.

Lost, trapped, confused

This is common way of feeling, for so long you have been in travel mode or routine in the place abroad where you lived so coming back home will be a really big change and shift. You are completely changing most of your life circumstances so it’s understandable that you will have these feelings. Also there are lots of things happening in a new environment that may seem different so people can feel overwhelmed. Feeling a trapped sensation may be due to not having things in order in money, career, living situation, lifestyle and relationships. You may have seemingly fulfilled all that you have wanted to in your travels or time abroad without thinking of what else you would like or the aspirations you have after.

Tip: determine where this feeling is coming from may be through journal writing, meditation, turning inwards for answers. What areas of your life do you want to focus on reigniting positive feelings career, finance, relationships, health?

At first it's nice to catch up with friends and family.

This is wonderful way to settle back in to reconnect with your family, friends and significant relationships in your life. There are some that want to know everything and all about your travels and some that appear to want to know, but don’t really care. There are also some that have moved to a different place in your relationship and may have moved away from how the relationship originally was. This won’t last forever so it’s important not to bank all your happiness on sharing these stories and being fulfilled by those around you.

Tip: don’t let this be the only place you can find happiness. Meet them where they are at and don’t expect that everyone will relate and understand your experience. Be interested in what they have been doing in their life whilst you have been away.

Tip: know that some relationships will change, continue to seek new relationships and friendships with like minded people, it is something you would have done on your time abroad so keep embracing it. Know that you too have changed a great deal so some relationships will change. It’s ok to let go of relationships that no longer serve you.

Dull and boring, flat, mundane

You have expanded greatly in your time abroad. You have had changed your perception, seen new things expand your thinking, emranced different ways of living and seen different cultures so coming back to what is familiar may seem dull and boarding. This is the life your originally left because most likely you were seeking a change and a different experience.

Tip: find a focus, seek newness in your own home, how can you bring inspirations from your travels into your home life, adventure every day.

On a final note...

I like to think of emotions as ‘energy in motion.’ This is not always going to feel completely comfortable, afterall I don’t believe our lives were set up to experience a positive emotion and feeling state 100% of the time. More so a balance of 50/50 on a broad spectrum. If we don’t know what sadness is, how will we experience happiness. You have to know one end of the spectrum to be able to understand the other. Be willing to feel the emotions without judgment on yourself. It is OK to experience this.

 
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Are you feeling the effects of reverse culture shock? Having money troubles after travel? Are you ready to explore how the world can look now you are back from your big adventure? Book in for a complimentary session to talk through what is happening in your world and how I can help.


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