Lost in connection
New country, new house and new adventures. All this might seem too good to be true, but so much can be achieved when you change countries and become an immigrant or an expat in a new culture. In2Motivation explains how you can make the most of your new life in a new country.
Is moving abroad always this good? We would probably say: no. This isn’t just because we don’t all move countries by choice, but because changing countries and cultures is a new adventure that also means leaving many things on stand-by or forever.
Change is always a big topic for immigrants end expats, and many times this change is not about location but much more about connection. Do we feel at home or not at all? This feeling is built by the connections that we create, rather than all the new things we will be doing in the new country.
Feeling connected is an important human need
Connection is one of the most important needs for humans. We are not designed to be alone and to be without contact for a long time.
Feeling connected is the feeling that we belong, that we are a part of something. And many times, this feeling is fulfilled with work, which is positive but not enough. A lot of companies often develop programmes aimed at creating more interaction between employees, and this is something set to continue. It also is important to take personal responsibility for your connections and to develop a sense of what these connections build, intensifying your feeling of belonging.
Studies show that people who, for the most part, make decisions alone and are more independent have a bigger inclination to developing depression. No human is designed to be alone.
How to make connections in a new country
Here are four ways you can amplify your connections in a new country and feel that you belong:
Do as they do
Take some of the most basic habits of the locals. In the Netherlands, common habits include: travelling by bike, going out just because it is sunny, walking in the park, saying good morning to people on your walk to work and eating lunch at 12:30 and dinner at 18:30.
Sooner than later, you will see that a lot of these things create a spontaneous practical brain. You’ll find out why Dutch people go to the supermarket often, instead of buying groceries for the month. You’ll also find yourself paying attention to the weather app, and to the time as well.
Don’t think that you don’t speak Dutch, just speak
You probably already know that your body language speaks much more than your mouth. Use it to create a moment where you can relate with others and promote a conversation.
Join a group from the start
Don’t wait to be invited, just appear. In Amsterdam, you have all types of groups with different interests, and you can easily find your tribe; people that like what you like.
Enjoy the change
See the good, see the bad and enjoy everything in between.
Making quality connections in your new country
One of the questions that I hear a lot from expats is: "How long have you been in the Netherlands?" Whatever the reply to this question is, it will never give you the information on how the person is feeling about their time in the Netherlands.
The most relevant question is: “How are dealing with the change?” The reply to this question will be directly related to the quality of the connections people can build in their new country.
Want to get more out of life, as well as improve your communication and connections in your new country? Check out In2motivation’s International Neuro-Linguist Programming Practitioner Course, for help realising your full potential.