Tips: How to overcome culture shock in Bulgaria?

Living abroad can be stressful, right? And regardless of your nationality, hobbies or personality, everyone living abroad might feel alone and/or sad at times, especially when you find it hard to get used to the local culture. The important thing is to try to stay positive and make the best out of your stay (in this case – in Bulgaria!).

Here are a few things you I advise you to do in case you live in Bulgaria and you feel like you haven’t really adjusted to the Bulgarian lifestyle:

  • Learn the local language. Or at least the basics. Bulgarian people are considered friendly but they will love you even more if you try to speak their language! You should consider learning some keywords or phrases that you can use when you are out (e.g. in the supermarket) or sign up for Bulgarian language classes.
  • Make friends with locals. I know it may sound tempting to speak your native language with people from your home country, but I am sure you will be able to find some great Bulgarian friends! Hence, do try to go out more often and make sure you exchange contact details with Bulgarians. They will not only be of help in case you want to find where the cool spots in town are, but they will also help you get used to the local culture (and hopefully fall in love with it eventually?).
  • Don’t forget your hobbies. There are plenty of things to do in Bulgaria, so simply because your favorite gym back home isn’t present in Bulgaria doesn’t mean you should give up on sports or on your hobbies. There are also numerous places in each Bulgarian city where you can pick up new skills (e.g. cooking or painting), so check out our “Discount” section and look for something that suits your interests!
  • Make your friends back home jealous. Seriously. There are so many things to do in Bulgaria, including rafting, skiing, paragliding. So many places to visit too! It will be a shame if you stay in your apartment alone when you can make your friends back home jealous with your fun and cool stories about Bulgaria!
  • Learn more about Bulgarian culture and traditions. In case some things in Bulgaria seem odd to you or you are not sure what being (im)polite in Bulgaria actually means, why not read a few articles about Bulgarian culture and traditions? This way you will also introduce yourself to interesting customs that you can take part of!
  • Sharing your emotions is not a bad thing. It is fully okay if you call your family very often. It is fully okay to be homesick and to feel as if your best friend back home is irreplaceable. So do what makes you happy – give them a call and share with them your emotions. Being surrounded by supportive people and people who understand you will definitely make you take things easier. Who knows - they might give you even better ideas on how to cope with culture shock!

I hope these tips help you overcome culture shock in Bulgaria! Do you have any other recommendations or bright ideas that helped you adjust to Bulgaria? If so, share them with me on Instagram or Facebook!

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