Memorable experiences and new lessons in adapting to new families
When traveling abroad, sometimes we are facilitated to live with a host family. They will bear the cost of our lives for the duration of our stay and become like Mother or Father while there. This is certainly something new for some people who are not accustomed to living with other families besides their family.
Living with other families in other countries certainly has to deal with a different home environment, different characters, different way of life, different food, different language, different rules and certain cultures which are far different from our family.
I personally experienced it when I traveled voluntarily to several countries in Europe and Africa, which provided quite a memorable experience and new lessons in adapting to new families. The following are the right secrets that I have done for dealing with the host family during my stay to do volunteer abroad.
1. Talk about the whole thing before starting to do something
This was the most important part when I live with a host family. It was important for me to talk about and agree on everything in advance so that misunderstandings did not occur in the future. The things I talked about included: health conditions, food diet, hours of sleep, privacy needed, hours of going out and going home, my routine and host family throughout the day, religious activities, how they were contacted, the rules that must be obeyed at home and several other things. At that time I didn't make a list of important things to talk about, but it would be better to make a list of things that you want to discuss before actually living in their home.
2. Actively communicating, discussing and asking their opinions
Whatever happened during my stay at the host family's house, I always made sure to communicate it, discuss and ask their opinions first. I realized that sometimes I disagreed with some of the things they said, but at that moment I decided to really listen to their opinions. This was indeed a challenging part, but it was part of the process of adapting to a new environment. Made me learn to respect others more and not be selfish.
3. Appreciate the facilities they have provided
Accepting someone foreign in your own home is indeed a well thought out decision. Host family always try to give the best in its service. No matter how simple or luxurious their facilities were that didn't suit my taste, I tried to always appreciate them. This was a form of appreciation for the availability and friendliness of those who were willing to accept strangers like me living in their homes.
4. Give special gifts from your own country
These were things that I had prepared long before departure. I bought a few souvenirs from Indonesia and then packed them neatly to give to them. In addition, this will be a beautiful moment for them that someone from a far country has stopped by and lives in his home.
5. Cook special dishes from your own country
There is no harm in offering yourself to occasionally cook for the host family. They will be happy to enjoy dishes that they have never tried before. This can be a means to promote their own country and make them know better what our country is like. Moment of cooking together can also be a way to break the mood by sharing tips and tastes of food. No need to make complicated food menus, just make favorite foods that you often cook.
6. Tells the impression of the host family country
Every now and then tell me how impressed you were with the country you were visiting. Convey how you found it unique and quite different from your country. Tell them about your culture shock while you are there, they will definitely become more curious about your experiences while you are there. In addition, they might suggest even taking you to popular tourist spots to give you the opportunity to explore the country further.
7. Always respect the other person
The latter is no less important. As active as you speak, always respect the person you are talking to. Wait until they finish the conversation, then you respond. Never interrupt the conversation or criticize by dropping. This will give the impression that you cannot appreciate someone who is talking to you. Make the atmosphere of the conversation comfortable, flowing, not made up, and what it is. Always be honest about your feelings too!
I hope these secrets working on you too to deal with the host family. Don't forget to say "Thank you!" once you leave them after the duration of stay is finished.
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