Expatriate alphabet — the A, B, Cs that can make your expat experience better

by Margarita

Expatriate alphabet: A is for ATTENTION

How many kisses make a greeting?  Who gets to sit and who gets to stand in ABCs expat alphabetpublic transport?  What is a proper way to thank someone?

Sure you can find answers to these and other questions through reading about a country and taking a cross-cultural training.  But you can also find all this and more through simply paying attention to what’s happening around you.

We start our expat alphabet with a basic tip that can be useful anywhere, anytime.  You don’t even have to be an expat to benefit from you. Paying attention to what happens around you, observing it, and learning from it is an excellent way to get information about the culture you are living in.

What have you learned in the past by simply paying attention?

And what can you learn this week?

Expatriate alphabet: B is for BEGINNING

Someone once said that “life is always offering us new beginnings, it’s up to us whether to take them or not.”  And while for many people their new beginnings may not be apparent at first sight, for expatriates every move is a new beginning.

Every time we move, we find ourselves thrust into a different life – a life that offers discoveries, adventure, and learning.  And even though sometimes it’s scary and uncomfortable, it’s still a gift.  Like a toddler who looks at every new activity and every new toy as an exciting chance to explore, an expat can look at every move as a new beginning and a chance for something amazing.

What about you?  What beginnings do you remember and how do you take advantage of the ones offered to you?

Expatriate alphabet: C is for CONNECTION

C is quite simply the connection.

Connections you create when you live abroad make a huge difference in how happy and successful you are as an expat.  These connections can come from anywhere and can be with anyone and even anything.  Here is my list of who and what you can connect with:

  • Colleagues, clients and partners through networking for your job
  • New friends in the expatriate community
  • New friends in the local community
  • The culture itself (why not? Think of the culture as a breathing and living thing and you’ll create those connections in no time)

How do you create those connections?  You look for the places where you have something in common, something that create a bridge between you and that other person or between you and the new culture.

What and who else can you connect with?

These ABCs form part of the A to Z of Successful Expatriation™ Guide and Workbook which is available as a free download on our main site. This Guide and Workbook doesn’t only discuss the expat alphabet but also offers activities and exercises you can do to improve your expat life. Sign up for Expat VIP list and get this free download here (right hand column).





2 responses to “Expatriate alphabet — the A, B, Cs that can make your expat experience better

  1. I agree paying attention is important, but I always tell new arrivals that Attitude is the key to a happy start and a happy stay here in Chile.

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