Moving abroad with your family can be stressful to say the least. Whilst you’re busy settling into your new home and country, finding a job and the right schools for the kids, it’s easy to let the little things slip. Letting the practical elements of moving abroad take priority is natural, but one important thing that can often fall by the wayside amidst the chaos is your health and wellbeing.
Thinking about your health and wellbeing at a time like this, especially when it’s such a crucial time in your life, is essential. Just recently, I was reading a survey by Aetna International which explores the factors that affect a family’s wellness when living away from home. Rather than focus on numbers and stats, it looks at real families from around the world – 32 expat families in fact – to find out which factors of expat living affect their health and wellness the most. These factors include weather and climate, culture, and quality of life.
Without a doubt, weather and climate can deeply impact a family’s everyday life and sense of wellness. If you’re living in a country with a hot and humid climate, everyday activities like walking to work or going for a run can become a little more demanding – especially if you’ve recently moved from a country with a cooler climate.
As well as being a practical challenge, the climate of a new country can impact on fitness levels for those who prefer the outdoors to going to a gym. One of the ways to help your family adapt to a new climate and maintain your wellbeing is by being more prepared for the heat (or cold), and finding alternative ways to do the everyday things you were used to doing back home.
To further explore how weather and climate affect expat family wellness, I’ve popped an infographic below which visualises the research from Aetna International’s survey.
As an expat, what factors have you found impacted on you the most? Are they more driven by your location or your family situation?