Wednesday, April 25, 2007
A Guide to Minimizing Culture Shock or Don't be an "Ugly American"

we facilitated a class on minimizing culture shock

Here are a few of the tips we've put together for people preparing for a cross-cultural experience, like a summer missions trip:
  • You are a guest in the host country. A customer may demand that their desires be met but a gracious guest receives with gratitude what their host offers them.
  • Don’t judge the people of a country by the one person with whom you have a negative experience. There are good and bad people in every culture, even your own.
  • Your ability to communicate in a new context is no reflection on your IQ. It is easy to feel stupid and get down on yourself, but there is no reason. A five year old might speak the new language better than you do, but he or she has been working on it or…five years.
  • Don’t make comparisons between the host country and yours in front of local people. They will feel belittled when you talk about things back home that are bigger, better, faster, etc. You may think you are just pointing out differences but it is easy for your comments to come across as boastful.
If you're interested in more, click here to download the 5 page pamphlet that we created for the Minimizing the Impact of Culture Shock class we led last night : DONT_PANIC.pdf


At 1:15 PM, Blogger Stephanie said...

Hey guys! Would you mind if I used this with a team I am leading down to Guatemala this summer?


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