H. E Rybol has written a new practical guide for dealing with culture shock. While it seems to be written mainly with those immigrating to a new country in mind, there are lots of tips that could be useful to any traveler realizing that exploring new cultures comes with a unique set of challenges.
At about 57 pages and just $3.99, Culture Shock – A Practical Guide is a great grab for anyone who is dealing with, or thinks they may deal with, culture shock during their journey. Rybol keeps a positive attitude throughout her book and remains certain that, with a little guidance, anyone can get through culture shock and come out better on the other side of the experience.
One of my favorite passages from the book:
As corny as it may sound: a positive mindset is comforting. It is comforting to know that no matter what situation you may encounter, you can count on yourself to learn from the situation. It’s about constructive thinking: be solution- and lesson-oriented. Don’t deny or ignore the difficulty. Instead, acknowledge it and concentrate on finding a helpful next step. Dealing with a difficulty can in itself be a very rewarding and enriching experience. (pg 15)
A seasoned traveler herself, Rybol’s suggestions come from personal experience. One of the best things about this guide is that the tips are simple and can be implemented by anyone, even in times of stress. Even a backpacker on a shoestring budget would have no trouble exploring her suggestions.
That being said, I ‘d love to see some attention paid to the unique challenge inherent in reverse culture shock. She mentions it in the book but, as most travelers know, coming home and grappling with reverse culture shock carries its own set of challenges and requires its own set of tools. That exploration would make an excellent guide even more valuable.
Culture Shock – A Practical Guide is a great book to have in your back pocket if you are moving overseas. It never hurts to have some practical tips for getting over the challenges of entering a new culture and H.E Rybol has some great ones. If you are a traveler without plans of moving abroad, you still may find this guide helpful. After all, culture shock does not discriminate!
If you check out Culture Shock – A Practical Guide, let me know how you like it!