The Emotional Side of Moving: Dealing with Relocation Anxiety

A few days ago, the video of a young lady who recently relocated to Canada went viral on social media, the said lady spoke about the emotional downturn and loneliness she was experiencing as a result of being cut off from her family and friends due to her recent relocation.

This video sparked a lot of actions and reactions from people on social media and while some felt she was overreacting, others especially those who had relocated abroad, affirmed that she was being realistic and her positions were correct as each of them, had gone through the phase one point or their other in their relocation journey. They further affirmed that relocating abroad was not as easy as it seemed and that there is an emotional side to relocation than we see on social media.

In this blog post, we have analysed various factors involved in relocation, the symptoms of Relocation Anxiety and how you can deal with the effects of relocation anxiety and make yourself live a much better and happier life during your stay abroad.

What is Relocation Anxiety?

Relocation anxiety otherwise known as Relocation Depression or Relocation Stress Syndrome has been described as an adjustment disorder due to moving. Relocation depression as often called is usually a result of a change in your environment accompanied by a feeling of loss or fear of the unknown. No matter where you used to live, there is a part of you that feels comfortable with the place you were before embarking on your relocation coupled with the fact that you have built a community of people (family and friends) over the years. Once you leave that vicinity to a place where you hardly have anyone to talk or relate with, your mind reacts to it and it manifests in relocation anxiety.

Symptoms of Relocation Anxiety

1. Isolation

2. Fearfulness

3. Forgetfulness

4. Constant anxiety

5. A feeling of despair

6. Insecurity

7. A feeling of loneliness

8. Withdrawal from social activities

9. Constant Tiredness

10. Lack of appetite

If you experience more than two of the above symptoms you most likely might be suffering from relocation anxiety.

Here are things you need to put in check to have a truly enjoyable stay at your new location and make the most of your relocation.

1. Prioritize Self Care

Always put yourself first and be kind to yourself, constantly remind yourself how far you’ve come and this will set a tone for gratitude which will make you treat yourself with more kindness.

2. Understand that you have a community of people who Care for you

Regardless of how terrible you feel from time to time, understand that you are never alone and that there are people who genuinely love you and have your best interest at heart even if they are a thousand miles away from you.

3. Get more physically active

Physical Activities have been found to help your overall cognitive and mental ability. Rather than sulk all day, make plans and join a gym membership, a walking group, an aerobics group and devote yourself to a physical activity from time to time. This will help your overall mental health and reduce the stake of Relocation Anxiety.

4. Make friends

While this might be difficult especially if you are on the introverted side, you should consider it because you’ll need a lot of friends to make up for friends and families back home and also to keep your company. Go out, have fun and understand that you only live once. Shrug off the feeling of aloneness and make awesome friendships and relationships that count.

5. If your symptoms persist, you might have to see a therapist

Relocating to a new country isn’t as easy as it seems and, if you are at a point where every available option has been explored and you still feel depressed, constantly such that it affects your daily activities, you should see a therapist to walk you through your healing. Understand that no man is an island and at every point in time, we all need help. This will propel you forward to seek help and assistance.

Relocation Anxiety doesn’t span a long time, it usually manifests in the first six months to one year of relocation. Understand that you have come this far to stop, you will be just fine.

It’s another relocation season, have you started taking steps towards your relocation dreams and goals?

If not, we are here to help you.

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