It's no secret that the expat life has become increasingly popular. More and more people are either moving abroad for work, education, or otherwise simply for the sake of indulging in new experiences. Whatever the reason, living abroad can actually be incredibly beneficial, aside from just being fun and interesting. Here are a few reasons why living abroad can be a great mental workout.
Improving your communication skills
If you're moving abroad, there's a good chance you'll have to learn a new language. Not only can learning a foreign tongue increase you cognitive skills, but being a second-language speaker also forces you to rely on other methods of getting your ideas across. Being deficient at verbal communication can lead you to better understand and utilize the powers of body language – something that's proven to be effective not only in everyday discourse, but in the business world as well.
Gaining another perspective on life
Possibly the greatest mental benefit to living abroad is simply gaining a new perspective on life. It's hard to generalize about the human experience when you're only able to look at it through the lens of your own culture. Living abroad oftentimes opens people's eyes to how vastly different people think and behave from place to place. Living the life of an expat can you give you a better sense of understanding, as well as an appreciation for people who don't necessarily think the way you do or believe the same things.
Learning how to navigate
If you spend a significant amount of your life in one place, you likely know that place like the back of your hand. Unfortunately, living abroad typically means starting out fresh with absolutely no sense of direction. While this can be undeniably stressful, you can also use it as a means of flexing your navigational skills. Not only can you become handier with a map, but living in a new city also requires you to use your memory more frequently, as well as giving you the opportunity to practice your communication skills by seeking help from locals.
Improving your business skills
It should come as no surprise that professionals with multicultural backgrounds are sought after by employers. The fact is, things aren't done the same everywhere, and understanding the facets of business in different countries can make you a valuable asset to companies that do business internationally or in multicultural regions. Not to mention, if you're moving abroad for work or education, you'll have invaluable networking opportunities.
Whether you're relocating for work or you just want to create some lasting memories, your time abroad can be a priceless learning experience. Not only can you gain some valuable skills for your professional life, but you'll also benefit from the cultural insight the expat life has to offer. If you're looking to get your mind in shape, there aren't many better ways than spending some time abroad.