Living 10). Once someone moves to a foreign country,

Living abroad can be a beneficial
experience, opening up the world to many amazing opportunities. It pushes
people out of their comfort zone, boosts confidence, and teaches many important
life lessons. Despite these benefits, there also comes some great challenges
with moving abroad. These challenges include, but are not limited to, feeling
lost, lonely, helpless, dependent, and sad. Everyone experiences culture shock in a different way, and takes a
different amount of time to go through the predictable stages of culture shock (Vollmuth;
Bomhard 2009, pp 9-10).

The four predictable stages of experiencing culture shock include the
honeymoon phase, the frustration stage, the adjustment stage, and the
acceptance stage (Vollmuth; Bomhard 2009, p 10). Once someone moves to a foreign
country, the process begins with a rush of positive emotions towards the new
culture. During the stage called the “honeymoon phase”, all of the
different aspects of the new culture seem intriguing and interesting. The
negative aspects of this foreign culture are barely noticed. Subsequently, this
excitement wears off and the person now enters the stage called
“frustration stage”. This is when the negative aspects of the culture
become more prominent and noticeable to the person. Feelings of homesick,
sadness, and depression may begin to kick in during this stage. Although this is
the hardest stage of culture shock to get through, things take a turn for the
better once someone succeeds it. Next comes the adjustment stage, where someone
begins to learn the ways of the new culture and adapt to their surroundings. The
amount of time it will take to get through this stage can vary, but it
ultimately results in leading to the acceptance stage. In this last stage the
person feels at ease and accepts their surroundings and the culture they are
living in. It does not always mean that they understand everything, but they
feel alright not understanding everything. Although this can be a tough
process, in the end it is rewarding and teaches someone many things about their
self. International students, who have moved abroad to study, can be considerably
affected by culture shock. This paper will discuss the different stages of
culture shock that someone may experience, and address the most effective ways
to alleviate these symptoms. (

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