Mindful Expat Episode 20: Shedding Some Light on Expat Depression

What you’ll hear in this episode:

• We’ll discuss what depression is, some factors that contribute to it, and why I think this is a particularly important issue for people living abroad.
• We’ll discuss some of the ways depression can be effectively treated and how you can connect with therapists in your area or online.
• We’ll discuss some alternatives to therapy and medication, such as exercise and mindfulness practice (surprise, surprise!), that can help with depression and be used alongside other treatment methods.
• We’ll talk about some of the common barriers to getting help while living overseas and how we can overcome these barriers.
• I’ll provide some additional resources for anyone struggling with depression or thoughts of self-harm or suicide (see below for links to these resources). Read More

Mindful Expat Episode 5: Introduction to Culture Shock & the Expat (Emotional) Rollercoaster

What you’ll hear in this episode:
• A definition of “culture shock” and some of the ways it can manifest differently for different people.
• Some theoretical models of cultural adjustment, including various phases of adjustment that people may experience as they adapt to a new culture (and some of the limitations of these models).
• Some of the challenges (and opportunities) for couples and families as they move through various phases of the cultural adjustment process together.
• The importance of being patient with yourself as you adapt to a new culture and recognize that it’s a work in progress and whatever you’re feeling in one phase is temporary.
• Some of the particular challenges for couples and families as they’re adjusting to a new culture. Read More

Introduction to the Cultural Adjustment Series

Let’s kick off the new year with a series of posts on the cultural adjustment experience!

sunset-691848_640While living abroad can be an exhilarating and incredibly enriching experience, the process of adjusting to a new culture can also be quite stressful — sometimes downright overwhelming. The ups and downs can be extreme, causing emotional whiplash if you’re not careful.

Having some sense of where you’re going — or at least knowing that what you’re experiencing is normal — can be reassuring and can help you trust that your current struggles as part of an ongoing process. Remember: whatever challenges you’re experiencing right now, the story isn’t over yet. Read More