Six Common Problems Expatriates Face
Contributed by Sussex SEO, 28 March, 2019
Working overseas can, for many people, seem like the ideal lifestyle especially if they can find more regular work related to their field in another country. Living as an expat has many unique advantages and rewards, such as learning a new language, exploring new cultures and presenting more unique networking opportunities. However, it also has its fair share of challenges especially when it comes to finding work and managing your finances.
In this article, we're going to discuss six common problems that expatriates face.
1. It often involves giving up security for opportunity
Staying in your home country probably has a large number of advantages in terms of your lifestyle. For instance, you may have friends and family to rely on, you may have advantages like healthcare and citizenship and you may be offered more job security because you're more comfortable with the language which is especially important if it comes to explaining or dealing with technical work.
However, this doesn't mean that becoming an expat is a bad idea. It simply means that you're leaving a life of contentment and security for one that involves more risks and opportunities. This can be an exciting thing for many people and it also means that you have the opportunity to find work that could be worth a much larger salary or be more fulfilling.
2. Starting a family or moving your existing one
Family will always be a major concern when it comes to life as an expat. If you already have a family then relocating your children and expecting your partner to also find work in your new country can be incredibly challenging and demanding. You'll be forcing your family to potentially learn a new language, your children will need to make new friends and mingling into a completely different society can be a challenge.
However, if your family is open to the idea then it can be an eye-opening and exciting experience. If you currently don't have a family, then this might not be as big a concern for you outside of learning customs, a new language and understanding how families operate differently.
3. Integrating into a new society
It can be quite challenging to not only learn a new language, but also the customs, mannerisms and culture of a new country. For instance, you might find it hard to integrate into a community because of political views that you don't agree with or you might find it hard to integrate because of a negative stigma against foreigners.
This can be a challenging hurdle to overcome but it's not impossible. It just takes a positive mindset and you need to be willing to take initiative to change people's minds about how you can integrate into their society.
4. Finding the right work
You cannot just simply move to a new country and expect to find work immediately. Whether it's legal considerations or stigma against foreign workers, you need to have a plan in order to secure your financial situation. You may need to find work before you move to a new country and you may need to consider a career of self-employment that you can start in your native country and continue to do in your new home.
If you're willing to integrate into the society of a new country and learn the language to a fluent level then you will be able to find many more opportunities for work and money. However, it's always a good idea to find work before you move and also have several backup plans to improve your financial security.
5. A feeling of homesickness
Many budding expats move into a new country with a positive mindset but can quickly feel overwhelmed, lonely and homesick. This is a difficult situation to be in and can very easily make you regret your decisions and hard work.
There are two great ways to beat the feeling of homesickness; integrate into new social circles and embrace the change of culture and to make it feel more like home. This could mean eating out every now and then to taste cuisine from your native country or finding communities that speak your native language.
6. A loss of direction
It can be very easy to lose your sense of direction when you've settled into a new country. You might feel like life is just the same and that there are no positive advantages of having moved to a new country. Perhaps you may even regret it slightly because the quality of life is a little lower despite you earning just as much or even more than your job in your home country.
Regardless of the situation, it's important to remember the reason why you moved to a new country. Sometimes it could be because you love the culture, it could be because of the employment opportunities to grow your career or even just to get away from life in your home country. Whatever the case is, remind yourself of why you worked so hard to become an expat.