What is the name of the city or town that you are reporting on?
Did you receive any cross-cultural training for your move abroad? If yes, was it before or after the move?
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If they speak another language in your new country, do you speak the language? If yes, did you learn the language before you moved or while abroad? If no, are you planning to learn the language?
I now speak a bit and learned it after I arrived. Scheduled to begin taking lessons again this month.
Were you worried or concerned about culture shock before you moved abroad?
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How significant was the culture shock you experienced when you moved abroad?
Expats often talk about going through the "stages of culture shock." Examples include the honeymoon phase, the irritation-to-anger stage, the rejection of the culture stage, and the cultural adjustment phase. Do you feel like you went through these or any other stages as you settled into the new culture?
I really didn't experience any of the mentioned stages other than honeymoon stage. I've never been angry other than a few specific struggles I experienced with long waiting times for appointments and a few Portuguese websites.
What, if any, were some of the changes you noticed in yourself that might have been caused by culture shock? These might include things such as anger, depression, anxiety, increased eating or drinking, frustration, homesickness, etc.
A bit of increased eating and drinking.
What are some things you appreciate most about the new culture?
The slower pace of life, the rich history, the kindness of the Portuguese people, lack of guns, safety, frequent farmer's markets and heritage festivals (pre-Covid-19).
What are the most challenging aspects of the new culture?
The language! Slow moving bureaucracy.
Did you "commit" any embarrassing or humorous cultural blunders? If you did and you'd like to share them, please do tell!
I'm sure I did but can’t recall specifics.
Do you have any advice or thoughts about culture shock you would like to share?
Being prepared and very motivated to move was the biggest factor in my minimal culture shock. I read about too many people who make the move without spending very much or any time in Europe or any other country besides their own. Spend a significant amount of time outside your home country, rent apartments rather than stay in hotels. Spend at least a week each place, shop, use the public transport and live a bit like a local before deciding if the culture is comfortable.