10 Wellness Practices to Adopt as an Expat in Europe and Why

Moving to Europe as an expat can be both exciting and challenging. You get to experience a new culture, meet new people, and travel to different places. But adjusting to a new environment can also take a toll on your mental and physical health. That’s why it’s important to adopt wellness practices that can help you cope with the changes and thrive in your new home.

Here are 10 wellness practices to adopt as an expat in Europe, and why:

1. Take a Siesta – If you find yourself feeling tired in the middle of the day, don’t be afraid to take a siesta. After all, it’s a tradition in many European countries for a reason. You might even find that a quick nap will boost your productivity for the rest of the day. Just don’t forget to set an alarm, unless you want to wake up hours later and wonder where the day went.

2. Sip on Some Tea – Tea is like a warm hug in a mug, and it’s a staple in many European countries for a reason. Not only does it taste great, but it also has some amazing health benefits. So, next time you’re feeling stressed or under the weather, reach for a cup of tea. It might just be the boost you need.

3. Learn a New Language – Learning a new language is a great way to immerse yourself in a new culture and make new friends. Plus, it’s a great workout for your brain. Who knows, you might even become fluent enough to impress the locals. Just be prepared for some hilarious misunderstandings along the way.

4. Try Local Food – Europe is a foodie’s paradise, with some of the most delicious and diverse cuisines in the world. Each country has its own unique cuisine, and trying new foods can be a fun and exciting way to immerse yourself in the local culture. From pasta in Italy to croissants in France, there’s no shortage of delicious food to try. So, don’t be afraid to step out of your comfort zone and try something new. Who knows, you might just discover your new favorite dish. Just be prepared to Google the menu if you can’t read the language.

As we age, it’s important to maintain a healthy diet. So, don’t overindulge in the local delicacies. Instead, try to incorporate healthy options into your meals as much as possible.

5. Take a Bike Ride – Many European cities are bike-friendly, which means you can get some exercise while exploring your surroundings. Plus, it’s a great way to save money on transportation and reduce your carbon footprint. Just make sure you wear a helmet and know how to navigate the city’s bike lanes, unless you want to end up in a foreign hospital.

6. Embrace the Outdoors – Europe is home to some of the most breathtaking natural landscapes in the world. So, if you’re feeling stressed or overwhelmed, take a break and go for a hike or a walk in the park. Not only will it give you a chance to recharge, but it’s also a great opportunity to take some Instagram-worthy photos.

7. Practice Mindfulness – In today’s fast-paced world, it’s easy to feel stressed and overwhelmed. But mindfulness practices like meditation, yoga, and deep breathing can help you stay calm and focused. So, take a break from your phone and laptop, and take a few minutes to practice mindfulness. Your mental health will thank you.

8. Socialize – Making new friends and socializing can be difficult as an expat, especially if you’re not familiar with the local language and customs. However, socializing is essential for our mental health and well-being. So, don’t be afraid to put yourself out there and make new friends. Attend social events, join clubs, and participate in community activities to meet like-minded people.

But be warned, socializing in Europe can be quite different than what you’re used to back home. For example, in many countries, it’s customary to kiss people on the cheek as a form of greeting. So, don’t be surprised if you find yourself getting up close and personal with strangers.

9. Laugh Often – Laughter is the best medicine, and as an expat, you’re bound to encounter plenty of new and exciting experiences that will make you laugh. Whether it’s getting lost in a new city or trying to navigate the local public transportation system, embrace the humor in these situations and enjoy the ride.

10. Practice Gratitude – Practicing gratitude can help shift your focus from negative thoughts to positive ones. Take a few minutes each day to reflect on what you’re thankful for, whether it’s a beautiful sunset, a kind stranger, or a delicious meal. Research has shown that practicing gratitude can improve mental health, reduce stress, and increase happiness. So, start a gratitude journal or simply take a moment to appreciate the good things in your life.

Adopting these wellness practices can help you thrive. So, try incorporating them into your daily routine and see how they positively impact your life abroad. And remember, sometimes the best way to navigate the challenges of expat life is to simply embrace the journey with an open mind and a sense of humor.

Remember, wellness practices don’t have to be boring or feel like a chore. With a little creativity and a sense of humor, you can make them a fun and enjoyable part of your daily routine.

Postcards from the Road