Today’s Mindful Expat Guest is Sundae Schneider-Bean!
Sundae is an intercultural strategist and solution-oriented coach, and – as she says – she’s on a mission to help expats make the most of their lives abroad!
Sundae is originally from the United States, from the state of North Dakota. Even before meeting her Swiss husband and launching on a series of international moves with him, Sundae had a thirst for international adventure. In her early 20s, she traveled extensively throughout south-east Asia, where she met her husband in Vietnam – which then led her to move to Switzerland. After a number of years together there, they then moved to Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso, where they stayed until in 2016 when the political situation and lack of security in the region made it no longer safe to remain – at which point they relocated to South Africa, where they now live with their 2 children.
Sundae has her masters in Intercultural Communications and is a certified coach with the International Coaching Federation. Her experiences of living and working across cultures, being in an intercultural marriage, and raising bicultural TCK children makes her no stranger to the challenges – and opportunities – of expat life. As an intercultural strategies and coach, she works to help other expats navigate these challenges and learn to thrive in their lives abroad and make the most of their experiences.
What you’ll hear in this episode:
• Debunking some common myths about the cultural adjustment process and how believing these myths can be detrimental to our wellbeing and adjustment as we adapt to a new culture.
• How there is no one “right” way to move through the process of cultural adjustment and some of the factors (personal and contextual) that can impact what this process looks like.
• How our expectations can shape our experience — for example, by making us either more or less patient with ourselves as we move through the cultural adaptation process.
• How “culture shock” isn’t necessarily a bad thing and how we can use it as an opportunity to increase our own self-awareness.
• The importance of self-acceptance and self-compassion (rather than being harsh and critical toward ourselves) as we adjust to a new culture. Read More