Moving abroad on your own is a massive step. It might be your first time so it will be nerve-wracking but also exciting and full of opportunities. Or it might be your 20th time moving country but you’re still as nervous and excited as you were on your first move. But panic and homesickness may inevitably hit you like a ton of bricks. It’s normal though, everyone’s in the same boat. But the panic will eventually calm down, “just breathe” I tell myself. These tips will help you (and me!) mentally cope, remove stress and reduce your fear.
Everyone will be concerned for your safety, especially your parents. They are usually right and just worried about you. Do not push them away. I arrived in Madrid yesterday and have stayed my first night. It’s hard, and it will be for a while. Seeing your parents cry for the first time is hard when they leave you at the departure gates because it’s a very emotional time. Especially if you’re their first born child and are leaving home for a long time like me! I had very strong intentions to stay home but I knew I had to go, and I felt a bit guilty about it. You’ll miss them and they’ll miss you. My dad especially looked out for me from when I told him about the job to when I actually got on the plane; he wanted to know absolutely everything and make sure I was safe. Understandably. And my mum made sure I hadn’t forgotten to pack anything and made sure I checked and double checked… and triple checked my luggage. They just care, don’t take it for granted. If you listen, they actually have some good advice.
Staying in your comfort zone is a waste – embrace new challenges and do what you’ve always wanted to do because no-one can stop you. When you move abroad on your own you will have more free time and fewer distractions, amazing right? Use it to your advantage, like pursuing a sport or a new hobby. There are plenty of things out there for you to choose from and you just have to decide. Living abroad without family and friends from home may push you to your limits, but you’ll get used to it eventually. It’s usually easier to stay in your comfort zone, because as the title says: it provides comfort. The only way to do what you’ve always wanted to do is to leave your comfort zone. Seriously. It is the perfect time to do it – you are moving abroad to supposedly change your life or “start over”, so do it. Make yourself happy.
Your confidence will grow. Take Beyonce for example, do you reckon she started out THAT confident? Probably not. Moving abroad is scary, and you might be thinking negative and doubtful things like “What if it doesn’t work out?”, “What if no-one likes me?”. Push those thoughts out and change them to “Wouldn’t it be awesome if everything worked out?” and I’mm going to make friends easily”. Feel better? Good. Yes it will be difficult adjusting to the new culture and sea of unfamiliar people but once you do adjust, you’ll be over the moon, jumping for joy and like Beyonce, nothing will be able to stand in your way. If you can move abroad alone and find a job then you can do pretty much anything.
You will become more independent and self-reliant. You won’t be able to rely on the people you trust the most: your family because they are most likely oceans or continents away. They won’t be able to make all your decisions for you. Because this support system is back home, you need to make all decisions on your own which have to be decided upon immediately. But you will learn not to need others as much as you used to. You can still call or text or even Skype your family back home for support and a friendly face.
And yes it will be difficult adjusting, you’ll miss home and want to go home straight away. That’s because you’re not used to it yet, so give it a chance. I know I need to give it a chance to get into a routine and I’m will be fine. Hang on in there.